It’s not a party without a pinwheel

My favorite food group is the appetizer group. If it’s little, meant to be eaten with my hands, and laid out on cute platters in groups of 20, I’m SOLD!

However, there really is one standout appetizer that slays me every time, and that’s the beloved pesto pinwheel.  These babies are legit the best things since sliced bread, and since my aunt began making them when I was still in high school, I officially can’t remember (or imagine) family parties without them.

I don’t know if it’s the pesto, the gooey cheese, or the butter-laden puff pastry, but these bad boys never fail to put me in a fantastic mood (and then promptly put me on the couch, where I moan about how much my stomach hurts because I ate 30 of them).  The recipe listed below is one I finally wrote down after the 400th phone call to my mom asking “So, do I put the cheese on first or the ham?  Ok, and then what do I bake it at?  For how long?”

Pesto Pinwheels
  • 1 box thawed puff pastry (2 sheets)
  • 1 jar pesto
  • ½ lb thinly sliced ham
  • ½ lb thinly sliced swiss cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Carefully unfold the puff pastry and lay flat on a clean surface pushing the seams together if they’re separating.
  3. Spread pesto liberally (really go all out if you’re like me and can’t get enough of the green stuff), then top with one layer of ham.
  4. Add a layer of cheese, trimming edges of ham and cheese so it all evenly fits on the square of pastry.
  5. Beginning on one end, tightly roll up halfway (this can get a little messy, but don’t worry, it’ll still taste good). Rotate the pan or whatever you’re working on and roll up the other half to create the “pinwheel” effect.
  6. Press both sides tightly tightly, and flip over so the open seams are on the bottom. Again, push every together tightly and then slice, no more than ½ in thick each.
  7. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes.
I’ve actually experimented with different liners, and parchment paper is the only one I’ll use anymore for these. If I can ever figure out how to post pictures on here, I’ll possibly maybe one day add a tutorial. But seriously, it’s not hard – just roll them up! Please note – these are NOT healthy, but frankly, good appetizers rarely are. Also, make sure you get puff pastry, not phyllo dough, as they are different.

4 thoughts on “It’s not a party without a pinwheel

Leave a Reply