What is the Difference Between Calzone & Stromboli?

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Differentiating between a calzone and a stromboli is difficult, especially since both can be made from the same ingredients. Next time you order one, why not try asking for a pizza volcano or a pizza moon, instead?


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The calzone, according to Epicurious, is a stuffed pizza that resembles a large turnover. It is vaguely shaped like a half moon and is often made mostly of cheese with sauce served on the side for dipping. Calzones can also be filled with meats and vegetables and are generally small, with the largest size typically being 12 inches.


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A stromboli is similar to a calzone, but it is more of a sandwich than a pizza, Epicurious explains. Unlike the calzone, it traditionally contains no ricotta. Also unlike the calzone, it does not originate from Italy, although it might be named for the volcano on the Italian island of Stromboli.

Italian Roots?

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Calzones originated in Naples, Italy, and were named for the baggy-legged pants worn by Neapolitan men during the 18th century, according to Pizza Manual. The birthplace of the stromboli is contested with one theory stating that it was created in 1950 in Pennsylvania and named after a film. A second theory suggests that the sandwich was invented in 1954 in Washington State, and also named after the same film.