Save the Day with Spinach In Puff Pastry

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What can I tell you about this delicious dish?

It’s perfect for those little celebrations, gatherings with friends when you’re cozy and warm inside with cocktails on the couch, or out in the sunshine on the patio.

It’s a little fancy, but simple to make, perfect for a light lunch picnic, or paired with your favorite warming soup in the wintertime.

A plate of spinach in a flaky crust in the foreground with two more dishes and more slices on a wood board with a metal spatula, on a blue cloth on top of a brown wood surface, printed with orange and white text.

This beautiful, savory, filled puff pastry uses a grocery-store shortcut to eliminate the hardest task. Rather than making your own dough, you just buy good old frozen puff pastry.

Overhead shot of a golden brown square of puff pastry with three vents sliced into the top and a spinach filling, on a blue and white cloth with several forks and a short stack of white and blue plates to the left, and a metal spatula towards the top of the frame, on a wood background.

As for the rest of the work: you’ll chop, mix, and assemble a little. But mostly, the effort is minimal, and you will be so pleased when you take this golden, flaky creation out of the oven to eat and enjoy.

Twelve pieces of homemade spinach filling in golden brown puff pastry on a wood peel with a metal spatula and three blue and white plates alongside a few forks, on a blue place mat with white flecks, on a wood surface.

Similar to spanakopita, this dish is so much easier to make, with two simple layers of pastry crimped together rather than individually filling and wrapping each portion.

Overhead shot of homemade spinach in puff pastry cut into twelve slices and arranged on a wood board with a handle, with a metal spatula, a small stack of blue and white plates, and several forks, on a blue place mat on a striped wood table top.

I think it’s very pretty, which is another plus. But then, I am partial to spinach in terms of food appearance.

Overhead oblique shot of homemade spinach in puff pastry cut into twelve slices and arranged on a wood baking peel, with a metal spatula in the foreground removing a slice, on a blue cloth with several forks and plates, on a wood surface.

Look at that rich green poking out from inside the dough! Mixed with the Gruyere and Parmesan, infused with garlic and onion butter, the filling is very creamy and very spinachy, and I mean that in a good way.

A metal spatula holds a slice of spinach in puff pastry up to the viewer, with more pieces arranged in rows on a wood board in the background, on a blue cloth on top of a wood surface, with a small stack of plates and forks to the left, on a black background.

Eating this, I like to think I’m in France – a bit refined with a touch of class, but it’s also something you can imagine eating on the sidewalk at a cafe table outside a Parisian bistro.

Overhead shot of three small plates of sliced spinach in puff pastry with more on a wood board with a metal spatula to the left, with forks on each plate, on top of a blue cloth with white flecks, on a wood surface.

You’ll want to serve this savory pastry hot out of the oven, if at all possible.

Vertical oblique shot of three plates and a board topped with square portions of spinach in puff pastry, with a metal spatula, on a blue cloth on top of a wood surface.

You could microwave slices the next day and enjoy them for lunch, but the dough will get a little gummy. If you’re reheating, the toaster oven is definitely the way to go. But it’s really at its best as soon as you make it.

Barefoot in Paris: Easy French Food You Can Make at Home

This recipe is adapted from Ina Garten’s cookbook Barefoot in Paris: Easy French Food You Can Make at Home, available on Amazon.

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Twelve slices of spinach in puff pastry arranged in rows on a wood serving board and shot at an oblique angle, with forks on top of a blue cloth with white flecks, on a wood background.

Spinach in Puff Pastry


  • Author: Shanna Mallon
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 12 servings
  • Category: Appetizers
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Vegetarian

Description

If you need a classy meal to truly wow a small crowd, the best spinach in puff pastry is here to save the day. And it’s easy to make.


Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 Tbsp)
  • 1 14-oz bag frozen chopped spinach, defrosted
  • 1 cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 5 large eggs, divided
  • 1 Tbsp unseasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 1/2 tsp salt, divided
  • 1 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 2 sheets (1 17.3-oz box) frozen puff pastry, defrosted in refrigerator overnight

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Spread pine nuts on one of the prepared baking sheets in an even layer. Place in oven and bake until nuts are toasted for about 5-10 minutes, tossing halfway through.
  3. Heat butter in medium-sized skillet over medium-low heat. Once melted, add onions and cook for 5-7 minutes, until tender. Stir in garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
  4. Lightly beat 4 eggs. Squeeze most of the water out of the spinach and place it in a large bowl. Add the onion mixture, Gruyere, Parmesan, beaten eggs, breadcrumbs, 2 teaspoons salt, 3/4 teaspoons ground black pepper, nutmeg and pine nuts. Mix well.
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining egg and water for the egg wash. Set aside.
  6. Unfold one sheet of puff pastry and place it on the prepared baking sheet. Spread the spinach mixture in the middle of the pastry, leaving a 1-inch border. Brush the border with the egg wash.
  7. Roll out the second sheet of pastry on a floured board until it’s an inch larger in each direction, to make a 11-by-16-inch rectangle. Place the second sheet of pastry over the spinach and seal the edges, crimping them with a fork.
  8. Brush the top with egg wash, but don’t let it drip down the sides or the pastry won’t rise. Make three small slits in the pastry, and sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until lightly browned.
  9. Transfer to a cutting board and cut into 12 pieces. Serve hot.

Notes

This recipe can be assembled a day in advance, stopping just before brushing with egg wash and baking. Simply put step 5 on hold until the next day, and refrigerate after completing step 7. Brush with egg wash and bake when you’re ready to serve. Plan for about an hour so you will have time to preheat, bake, and rest the pastry before slicing.

Keywords: spinach, puff pastry, savory pastry, appetizer, lunch

Cooking By the Numbers…

Step 1 – Chop, Mince, Defrost, Grate, and Measure

Defrost the frozen spinach and puff pastry according to the instructions on the packaging for each. When they’re ready to go, set aside on your workspace until you’re ready to use them.

Peel and roughly chop the onions until you have 2 cups total. This took me about 2 medium onions to achieve. Set aside.

Overhead shot of a glass measuring pitcher of chopped onions, square dish of pats of butter, and a small round bowl of minced garlic, on a wood background with vertical stripes.

Peel and mince 3 cloves of garlic. Set aside. You can also use your garlic press for this, if you prefer.

Grate the Gruyere and Parmesan cheeses until you have 1 cup and 3/4 cup respectively. Set aside.

Measure all remaining ingredients as they are listed in the ingredients list. For the eggs, add 4 eggs to one small bowl and 1 egg to a separate small bowl.

Overhead shot of bowls of defrosted frozen spinach, beaten egg, grated Gruyere and Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, and pine nuts, on a striped light brown and beige wood surface.

Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

Step 2 – Toast Pine Nuts

Add the pine nuts in an even layer to one of the prepared baking sheets.

Bake until the nuts are toasted and golden brown, about 5-10 minutes. Toss them halfway through baking so they don’t brown too much on one side. Transfer from the hot pan to a small bowl, and set aside.

Be sure to keep an eye on them. They’ll quickly transition from beautifully toasted to burned if they’re in the oven too long.

Step 3 – Cook Onions and Garlic

Melt the butter in a medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and stir them to coat with the butter. Saute for for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally.

The onions should be tender and translucent; turn down the heat if they start to brown. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.

Sauteed onions nad garlic in a nonstick pan, on a striped brown wood surface.

Remove from heat to cool slightly.

Step 4 – Make Filling

Lightly beat 4 eggs in the small bowl.

Remove as much of the water from the spinach as possible. You can do this by pressing it in a fine mesh strainer, squeezing it in a piece of cheesecloth, or squeezing in your hands with paper towels.

A stainless steel mixing bowl of cheese, egg, pine nuts, spinach, garlic, onion, salt, and pepper, with a wooden spoon, on a striped brown and beige wood surface.

You won’t get every drop, but the spinach should be drier and water should not easily flow from it when you squeeze it.

Overhead closely cropped shot of a mixture of defrosted frozen spinach, garlic, onion, pine nuts, and egg in a stainless steel bowl being mixed with a wooden spoon, on a striped brown and beige wood surface.

Add the spinach, beaten eggs, onion mixture, Gruyere, Parmesan, breadcrumbs, 2 teaspoons of salt, 3/4 teaspoon pepper, nutmeg, and toasted pine nuts to a large bowl. Stir until well combined.

Step 5 – Assemble Pastry

Add the water to the bowl with the remaining egg and whisk together until combined. Set aside.

Unfold one sheet of puff pastry and place it on the second prepared baking sheet.

Overhead shot of a square piece of pre-made puff pastry on an orange and beige Silpat silicone pan liner set into a rimmed metal baking sheet.

Spread the spinach mixture in an even layer in the middle of the pastry, leaving a 1-inch border on all sides. Brush the border with egg wash.

A spinach and onion mixture spread over the surface of a square piece of puff pastry with a slight border left around the perimeter, on a silicone pan liner set into a rimmed metal baking sheet, with a small glass bowl of egg wash and a black-handled silicone brush.

Note the layer of filling will be quite thick, and that’s a good thing.

Roll out the second sheet of pastry on a floured work surface, until it is 11 inches by 16 inches.

Overhead shot of a marble and wood rolling pin with a square of puff pastry on a brown and beige striped wood surface.

Place the rolled out pastry over the spinach and seal the edges, tucking the overlapping pastry under the bottom layer as needed.

Overhead shot of a hand using a fork to crimp the edge of a square of filled puff pastry, on a Silpat silicone pan liner in a rimmed baking pan, with a small glass dish of egg wash with a beige and black silicone and plastic pastry brush resting on the rim, on a wood background.

Press to seal the edges and crimp with a fork around the edges.

Overhead shot of a square of filled puff pastry with fluted edges on a beige and orange Silpat silicone pan lines, with a small cup of egg wash and a silicone brush.

Brush the top lightly with the egg wash. Make sure the pastry isn’t too wet, and that it doesn’t drip down the sides.

Overhead shot of a square of raw puff pastry filled with a spinach mixture, with a fluted edge and three vertical slits cut into the top, on a Silpat pan liner.

Slice three small slits in the top of the pastry. Sprinkle with the remaining salt and pepper.

Step 6 – Bake

Bake for 30-40 minutes, until lightly browned and the pastry is cooked through.

Overhead shot of just-baked spinach in golden brown puff pastry with three vertical vents cut into the top to show the filling, on a well-used tan Silpat silicone pan liner with an orange border, set into a rimmed metal baking sheet.

Let cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet before moving to a cutting board.

Twelve slices of spinach in puff pastry arranged in rows on a wood serving board and shot at an oblique angle, with forks on top of a blue cloth with white flecks, on a wood background.

Cut into 12 pieces with a sharp serrated knife. Make sure to let the knife do the work here, so you don’t press down too firmly and cause the filling squish out with the force of your cutting. Serve immediately.

Can I Make This Ahead of Time?

Yes, you most certainly can! This recipe can be assembled a day in advance, so all you have to do when you are ready to serve is simply bake and you’re good to go.

To prepare the pastry a day ahead, you will need to stop the process just before brushing with egg wash and baking.

A plate of spinach in puff pastry in the foreground with more on two plates and a wood board in the background in soft focus, with a metal spatula and a blue and white place mat, on a brown wood surface.

Wrap the pastry in plastic wrap and refrigerate. When you’re ready to serve, transfer it to your prepared baking sheet, brush with egg wash, and bake.

If you love cooking with spinach, you are going to want to check out these amazing recipes as well:

When will you serve this delicious dish? Will you make it more of a meal, or an appetizer before the big event? Tell us in the comments below, and be sure to come back to rate the recipe once you try it yourself.

Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on February 10, 2009. Last updated: January 4, 2019 at 22:53 pm. With additional writing and editing by Meghan Yager and Allison Sidhu.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Shanna Mallon

Shanna Mallon is a freelance writer who holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her work has been featured in a variety of media outlets, including The Kitchn, Better Homes & Gardens, Taste of Home, Houzz.com, Foodista, Entrepreneur, and Ragan PR. In 2014, she co-authored The Einkorn Cookbook with her husband, Tim. Today, you can find her digging into food topics and celebrating the everyday grace of eating on her blog, Go Eat Your Bread with Joy. Shanna lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with Tim and their two small kids.

12 thoughts on “Save the Day with Spinach In Puff Pastry”

  1. so would you call this an entree or a side or an app? regardless, it looks great! i like Ina too, she just seems like someone you could come over for a visit and she’d feed the ever living hell out of you.

  2. Ina is totally adoptive aunt material. Do you think she’s looking to fill that position for a few lucky folks? And really…doesn’t puff pastry just make everything awesome? All those flaky butter flakes. Mmmm.

  3. Just found your blog from Tastespotting. Love it! And this dish from Ina looks amazing. That’s the one BC cookbook I don’t have, so thanks for sharing.
    I used to be a copywriter who turned to food blogging, too.

  4. I was about to say…wowsa! that took 20 minutes? I’m impressed! I love Ina too. I love her house and how laid back she is. I LOVE her kitchen too.

  5. Lan, I keep asking myself the same thing. At first I thought entree, but then it could easily be a side. Maybe a nice brunch addition. I guess it could be anything you want!

    DD, Flaky and buttery are always good things, so true.

    TJ, I’m enjoying all the Ina/Jeffrey love here. (And the weather, while short-lived, was all I made it out to be and more.)

    Thanks, Karen! I was glad to find your site, too!

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