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Homemade “Hot Pockets” Makeover

Soft, fresh, whole wheat rolls stuffed with melty cheese, ham, and vegetables.

I sure ate a lot of Hot Pockets when I was a kid. They were new to the supermarket shelves back then, and greasy and salty, and I was eight, so those were all plusses.

But now that I’m all grown, some things have changed. I want to eat vegetables and whole grains. I want to avoid weird processed ingredients, and I want to teach my kids the importance of home cooking. Change is good.

But I still kinda want to have Hot Pockets for lunch. Sometimes.

So, I set out to recreate those flavors in my kitchen with the addition of whole grains and fresh vegetables, and the subtraction of all the unpronounceable ingredients. The results were amazing, and a big hit with my kids!

Makeover Magic

“OMG they actually taste just like hot pockets.”

That’s the text message that I sent to my husband the first time I made these Homemade “Hot Pockets.” And actually, it’s only partly true. Because these warm and cozy little buns far outshine the commercial version in freshness, flavor, and nutrition.

To start, I use 100% whole wheat flour as a base for these pockets. Whole milk, extra virgin olive oil, and an egg help create a truly soft, delicious dough… no tough or grainy texture here.

Once it’s had a quick rise, I divide the dough into about 14 balls (plus or minus one won’t matter) and roll them out to add fillings.

We like stuffing these pockets with ham, cheddar, peas, and peppers. But you can absolutely add cooked chicken, spinach, broccoli, or anything else that strikes your fancy. (My 6-year-old stuffed all of his with spinach… follow your heart, little guy!)

As you fill each pocket, just fold it over like a little package, and press the seams together to seal it all in.

Finally, brush an egg wash on top of the pockets, so they have a nice sheen to them. (Don’t be intimidated by this step. I used my fingers and it only took a minute.)

Then bake. Voila!

Packed Lunch Perfection

Packing a healthy school lunch in under a minute feels great. I love it!

I can tuck a couple of healthy Homemade “Hot Pockets” and a piece of fresh fruit inside a lunchbox and be ready for whatever’s next. (That’ll probably be the toddler crayoning the wall two seconds from now.)

But until then, yessss.

You can even throw the leftovers in the freezer… in true Hot Pocket style. Pull them out for a quick lunch or hearty-after-school snack.

What fillings will you try?

Homemade “Hot Pockets” Makeover

  • 8 serving – pizza dough, whole wheat
  • 3 cup – spaghetti or marinara sauce
  • 8 serving – turkey pepperoni
  • 1 cup – spinach
  • 8 ounce – mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup, pieces or slices – mushrooms, white
Serve With:
  • 2 cup, chunks – pineapple
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F. If using a pizza stone, be sure to place into oven now.
  2. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a rectangle. (Get creative and make them smaller or larger depending on which hands will hold the pocket.)
  3. Shred cheese; chop mushrooms and pineapple.
  4. Add 2-3 tablespoons of sauce onto one side of each of the dough pieces, leaving an area around the edge so edges can be sealed together. Add desired fillings to 1/2 of each rectangle. Fold other half over to form a pocket; seal edges by pressing the dough together. Cut a small slit into each pocket and place them on a baking sheet (or pizza stone).
  5. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool. Serve with pineapple on the side.

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