Three panzerotti
Alternative namesPanzarotti
TypeSavoury pie, turnover
Place of originItaly
Region or stateSouthern Italy (especially Apulia and central Italy)
Main ingredientsTomato sauce, mozzarella
VariationsPizza fritta

Panzerotti,[a] also known as panzarotti,[b] is a savory turnover, originating in the cuisine of central and southern Italy, which resembles a small calzone, both in shape and dough used for its preparation.[1][2][3][4][5] The term usually applies to a fried turnover rather than an oven-baked pastry (i.e. calzone), although calzoni and panzerotti are often mistaken for each other.


The noun panzerotto comes from a diminutive of panza, a regional variation of Italian pancia (lit.'belly' or 'tummy'), referring to the distinctive swelling of the pastry which resembles a belly bloating.[6]

Although etymologically related, the word pansòti (Ligurian: [paŋˈsɔtˑi]) refers to a totally different dish from panzerotti, denoting a type of ravioli typical of Genoa.[citation needed]

Panzerotti are also popular in the United States and Canada as well, where there are often called "panzerotti" or "panzarotti" as a singular noun (pl.: "panzerotties"/"panzarotties" or "panzarottis"/"panzarottis").[citation needed]

In Italy

Panzerotti originated in southern and central Italy, especially in the Apulian cuisine. They are basically small versions of calzoni, but are usually fried rather than oven-baked, which is why they are also known as calzoni fritti (lit.'fried calzones') or pizze fritte (lit.'fried pizzas') in Italy, most typically in Campania. In parts of Apulia, such as Molfetta,[7] panzerotti also go by the name of frittelle or frittelli (lit.'fritters'),[8][9] while in Brindisi they are known as fritte (a local variation of frittelle).[10]

The most common fillings for this turnover are tomato and mozzarella. Peeled whole tomatoes are drained and dried to be used as a filling, as using non-dried tomatoes will cause the dough to rip due to the moisture. Other fillings are onions sauteed in olive oil and seasoned with salted anchovies and capers, or mortadella and provolone cheese.[11]

A different recipe for panzerotti is panzerotti di patate (lit.'potato panzerotti'), a specialty from Salento which consists of mashed potato croquettes rather than panzerotti as the term is most typically intended.[12]

Outside Italy


Since the mid-1960s, panzerotti have been a popular fast food item in Canada. Commercialized frozen versions are called "Pizza Pockets" or "Pizza Pops".

Winnipeg, Manitoba, is a Canadian hub for panzerotti production in Canada and worldwide, where Naleway Foods has been dubbed the second-largest processor of pierogies and panzerotti in Canada.[13]

See also

Media related to Panzerotti at Wikimedia Commons


  1. ^ Italian: [pantseˈrɔtti] ; sg.: panzerotto, Italian: [pantseˈrɔtto]
  2. ^ Italian: [pantsaˈrɔtti]; sg.: panzarotto, Italian: [pantsaˈrɔtto]


  1. ^ "Classic Panzerotto". La Cucina Italiana. 19 September 2023. Retrieved 18 June 2024.
  2. ^ Minchilli, Elizabeth (December 11, 2014). "Making Panzerotti in Barivecchia", Elizabeth Minchilli in Rome. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  3. ^ Sarkar, Suhashini (June 29, 2015). "Panzerotti: The Empanada's Italian Cousin", Saveur. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  4. ^ "Deep Fried Panzerotti", Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  5. ^ Lorenza, Barletta (2009-03-03). "La vera ricetta dei panzerotti pugliesi" [The real recipe for Apulian panzerotti]. (in Italian). Archived from the original on 2015-12-08. Retrieved 2015-12-05.
  6. ^ "Panzerotto". Garzanti Linguistica. Retrieved 2015-12-05.
  7. ^ "Panzerotti", Culinaria Italia. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  8. ^ "Quindici OnLine - L'informazione a Molfetta - Tradizioni molfettesi: Tra le frittelle di San Martino e il ricordo di un lettore di Quindici". Retrieved 2013-05-15.
  9. ^ "Degustazione di frittelle al Centro polivalente per disabili". 2006-10-27. Retrieved 2013-05-15.
  10. ^ "Panzerotti fritti: i migliori 10 del Salento". 2014-06-10. Retrieved 2015-12-06.
  11. ^ "Panzerotti Recipe". 24 September 2022.
  12. ^ "Spizzica in Salento....: panzerotti di patate salentini". 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2015-12-06.
  13. ^ "Naleway Foods". Retrieved 2020-10-28.