Get ready to savor all the flavors of traditional Greek Spanakopita in a whole new way with this fun and easy Phyllo Spanakopita Roll! Imagine flaky layers of phyllo dough enveloping a creamy mixture of cheese and spinach, creating a culinary masterpiece that’s not just a crowd-pleasing appetizer but also a vegetarian-friendly main course.
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What Is Spanakopita?
Spanakopita is a Greek savory pie. Traditional recipes consist of a flakey phyllo dough stuffed full of a mixture of feta cheese and spinach. Phyllo recipes are commonly found layered like a pie or shaped into spanakopita triangles or hand pies.
Ingredients You Need
- Phyllo Dough – Find this in the refrigerated section of most grocery stores.
- Cream Cheese – Full-fat varieties are best. Make sure to use block-style cream cheese, not varieties from a tub!
- Frozen Spinach – Buy the boxed frozen spinach, and let it thaw completely.
- Cheese – Crumbled feta and mozzarella are included in the filling. Use full-fat varieties for the best flavor.
- Fresh Dill – This adds a hint of brightness, balancing out some of the heaviness of the fats.
- Salt and Black Pepper – Adjust to taste.
- Black Sesame Seeds – Optional but recommended, these create a beautiful appearance and add subtle crunch and a touch of nutty flavor.
How to Wrap and Roll Phyllo Spanakopita
- Prepare. To begin, preheat your oven, and grease two skillets.
- Create the filling. Combine the cream cheese, spinach, mozzarella, feta, dill, salt, and black pepper in a mixing bowl, stirring until the ingredients are well combined.
- Layer the phyllo. Lay three sheets of phyllo dough on a clean working surface, placing them vertically side by side. Overlapping the edges just slightly. Brush the top of the dough with melted butter. Then, add three more sheets, and repeat until you have five layers of phyllo.
- Spread. Spoon half of the spinach and cheese mixture along the shortest end of the layered dough.
- Roll. Starting from the end with the filling, roll the phyllo into a log enclosing the filling as you roll. Carefully transfer the spanakopita roll seam side down to a prepared skillet.
- Repeat. Create a second roll following the same process, using the remaining filling, and place it in the second skillet.
- Bake. Brush the tops of each roll with melted butter. Then, sprinkle black sesame seeds on top. Transfer the rolls to the oven, and bake just until the dough is golden brown and crispy.
Make Your Spanakopita Spectacular with These Tips
- Keep the Phyllo Covered. Keep the dough covered with a damp (not super wet or soggy) cloth or paper towel. This helps prevent them from drying out, making them easier to work with and preventing them from cracking.
- Have Everything Ready. Phyllo dough can be a little tricky. So, make sure you have everything ready to go and can work like an assembly line filling, rolling, and buttering the dough. If you can, it’s awesome to have extra help!
- Don’t Overstuff the Dough. More isn’t always better. While we love the filling, you don’t want to overstuff your phyllo dough. Otherwise, the filling will spill out and the dough will crack. For the best results, use 2 tablespoons of the spinach filling per triangle of dough.
- Roll Carefully. The dough is delicate and can break and crack easily. So, be sure to roll slowly and carefully just wrapping the phyllo around the filling.
Turn your Phyllo Spanakopita Roll into an amazing main course by pairing it with sides and appetizers that complement its flavors and add variety to your meal. We love it alongside cucumber tomato tahini salad, Lebanese fattoush salad, marinated tomatoes and feta dip, or a Mediterranean mezze platter.
Or, serve it as an appetizer and make mains like honey garlic salmon, Greek lemon chicken, and beef kofta meatballs.
Common Questions About This Phyllo Spanakopita Roll Recipe
No, as long as you’re using frozen spinach there’s no need to cook it beforehand. Just make sure to thaw and drain it well, or your phyllo might become soggy!
Yes! To prepare in advance, make the filling, and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. Or, make the spanakopita roll, and keep it in the fridge for up to one day.
Once baked and cooled, leftovers can be transferred to an airtight container and stored in the fridge for up to two to three days.
Warm leftovers in the oven at medium heat just until heated through.
Phyllo Spanakopita Roll
- 4 ounces cream cheese
- 8 ounces frozen spinach thawed and excess water squeezed out
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 18 sheets phyllo dough thawed
- 1 Tablespoon black sesame seeds optional
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius). Grease two 6-inch skillets.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, thawed spinach, mozzarella cheese, feta cheese, fresh dill, sea salt, and black pepper. Mix until well combined. Set aside.4 ounces cream cheese, 8 ounces frozen spinach, 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese, 1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- On a clean work surface, gently lay 3 sheets of phyllo down vertically, side by side, overlapping the edges by a 1/4 an inch. Brush with butter.18 sheets phyllo dough
- Next top with three more sheets of phyllo dough (just like the first set, right on top, and vertically), again, brush the top with butter. Repeat with the remaining sheets of phyllo until there are 5 layers (and 3 rows).
- Carefully spread half of the prepared spinach and cheese mixture along the shorter end of the layered phyllo dough.
- Starting from the end with the filling, gently roll the phyllo dough into a log, enclosing the filling as it is rolled. Be cautious not to tear the dough. Place the roll seam-side down in a 6-inch skillet.
- Create a second roll using the remaining phyllo dough, spinach and cheese filling. Add the second skillet.
- Brush the tops of the rolls lightly with melted butter. Sprinkle with half the black sesame seeds on each skillet. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the phyllo dough is golden brown and crispy.1 Tablespoon black sesame seeds
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.