Bits of pepperoni in a creamy, garlicky spinach filling, wrapped a flaky fillo crust. With warm marinara for dunking, this Pizza Spanikopita appetizer twist on the classic spanakopita recipe will wow them all.
So this spanakopita recipe is different, right? And fun. And yummy. When I found I had an opportunity to work with Hormel, I wanted to pull out all the stops and started coming up with ideas. Somethun diff’rent. So I was jotting things down left and right, and my daughter chimed in that the spanakopita sounded best to her – because we loooove spanakopita. The past two years, we went to the Food and Wine Festival at Disney, and spanakopita from Greece is an absolute favorite. Like, very seriously so. Like, so awesome that I sent my husband through ridiculous crowds to fetch a bunch while I watched the kidoooos – and he did it willingly. So for us, it’s a thing. Anything with a flaky crust and I’m generally in, but add the cheesy spinach filling and it just does not get better.
And so here we are.
Gah-lick. You needs lots of that. And just a couple other pantry staples for my spanakopita recipe. A little cheese, some sauce. Some more cheese. And of course the pepperoni. And the fillo. …Fillo can be a pain – this is where the love comes in. Be gentle and patient, and fillo will work for you too. Promise.
So, let me repeat:
- More Cheese
- And fillo. Or phyllo. Whatever.
Just remember they do not have to be perfect. My triangles were obtuse, while my daughter’s were impressively equilateral. (nerd moment)
So we had these beautiful, flaky triangles made and were left with the question …dip or no dip? I wanted to dip in marinara, because I was going for the whole pizza twist thing. My daughter preferred them plain. Either way, it was spanikopita success. My daughter, “Wow these are a lot better than I thought they would be” …from a 12 year old, that is pretty rave.
…a couple hours later, we were still bumping into each other in the kitchen every couple minutes when we’d each go in and snag another. ..then another. ..and..
…which brings up one last thing, pizza taste! These were just delicious. With the pepperoni minis, I didn’t have to chop – I just threw them in, and the pepperoni flavor in the filling was truly yummy. And given how many of these I consumed (seriously, I went to town), I was happy with how not greasy these were. This is because instead of brushing the fillo with butter, I used cooking spray. I also used enough cheese, but not so much cheese. Annnd, they even tasted great at room temperature. So this spanakopita recipe can be made, then carted and served to whomever wherever you would like to show off your mad spanakopita skills.
So here is my fun new idea and I hope it looks good to youuu. This pizza plus spanakopita recipe really is super awesome tasty and will make you look like a rockstar.
- 1 bunch chopped scallions white and green parts
- 2 10 oz boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed and water squeezed out
- 1 5 oz bag Hormel Pepperoni Minis
- 1 t dried dill
- 3 large eggs
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ c freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 4 oz Neufchatel cream cheese
- ½ c shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- ¼ t kosher salt
- ¼ t freshly ground black pepper
- 40 sheets 1 box frozen fillo dough, thawed (see Note)
- cooking spray
- plain dry breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 400.
- In a bowl, combine the spinach, scallions, pepperoni, dill, eggs, cheeses, salt, and pepper, and mix together.
- Keep the fillo dough sheets covered with a damp paper towel (only very very lightly damp towel - too damp and the fillo will become too soft and uncooperative). Unfold 1 sheet of the fillo dough. Spray with cooking spray. Repeat by laying a second sheet of fillo dough over the first sheet, and spray it with oil too. Cut the sheet lengthwise into 3 long strips. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the spinach mixture at one end of a fillo strip. Roll it up into a triangle (like folding a flag). Place it on an oiled baking sheet. Repeat until all the pastry and filling have been used. Spray triangles with cooking spray, and sprinkle some breadcrumbs on top.
- Bake 12 min until edges are lightly browned. Serve with marinara sauce for dipping. Yields: ~40 appetizers.
- I did not use the whole box of fillo. I used 26 sheets and ended up with 38 triangles, but I was spooning the filling pretty generously.
Calorie count is purely an estimate calculated using an online application to serve as a guide and not to be taken as accurate nutritional information. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.