Spinach and Cheese Christmas Tree Appetizer

by Eat Well with Lex

Are you ready to elevate your holiday parties with a show-stopping Christmas appetizer? Get read to wow your guest with this crowd-pleasing Spinach and Cheese Christmas Tree Appetizer. It combines the goodness of spinach, mozzarella cheese and cream cheese encased in layers of flaky puff pastry. The pastry is folded to resemble a Christmas tree then baked until golden brown and crispy.

Looking for more festive Christmas party food ideas, check out my Christmas Chex Mix.

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What makes this appetizer so popular is its simplicity and versatility. The combination of savory spinach and gooey cheese provides a rich and flavorful experience, making it a hit among both kids and adults. The puff pastry adds a wonderful flakiness to each bite, creating a satisfying texture.

The recipe is often praised for being easy to make, making it an ideal choice for stress-free party planning. Additionally, there are numerous variations and substitutions you can explore, allowing you to customize the dish to suit your preferences. Whether you’re hosting a holiday party, a family gathering, or just looking for a festive snack, the Spinach Puff Pastry Christmas Tree Appetizer is sure to add a touch of joy to your celebrations.

Reasons to Make These Christmas Tree Appetizer for your Holiday Party

Easy to Make: Fear not, fellow hosts! This recipe is a lifesaver for those busy holiday moments. With minimal prep and easy-to-follow steps, you can whip up this impressive Christmas party appetizer without breaking a sweat.

Irresistible Flavors: The combination of savory spinach and gooey cheese encased in flaky puff pastry creates a flavor explosion in every bite. Imagine spinach dip stuff in puff pastry! It’s a delicious holiday party appetizer that appeals to both kids and adults.

Ingredients for Spinach and Cheese Christmas Tree Appetizer

  • Puff Pastry: Serves as the base and encases the savory spinach dip filling.
  • Frozen Spinach: Thawed and drained then mixed with cheese to create the spinach dip filling.
  • Cream Cheese: Cream cheese as a creamy texture and helps binds the filling together.
  • Mozzarella Cheese: Used in the filling but also adds a gooeyness and savory flavors when melted.
  • Parmesan Cheese: Used in the filling but also perfect for grating on top once the pastries are baked.
  • Italian Seasoning: A blend of dried herbs like oregano, basil, thyme and parsley.
  • Onion Powder: Adds flavor to the filling and contributes to the overall savory flavor of the Christmas tree appetizer.
  • Garlic: Freshly minced garlic infuses the filling garlicky flavors.
  • Salt and Pepper: Essential for seasoning. Salt and pepper enhances the flavors of the other ingredients.
  • Egg (for egg wash): Whisked and brushed onto the puff pastry before baking. The egg wash creates a golden and shiny finish, enhancing the visual appeal of the Christmas tree while adding a slight crispness to the exterior.

How to Make Puff Pastry Christmas Tree Appetizer

Prepare the Filling: In a mixing bowl, combine thawed and drained frozen spinach, cream cheese, shredded mozzarella, grated Parmesan, minced garlic, Italian seasoning, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Mix well until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Bowl of mixed ingredients, including thawed spinach, cream cheese, mozzarella, Parmesan, and seasonings.

Roll Out Puff Pastry and Add Filling: Roll out the puff pastry sheets on a lightly floured surface. You’ll need two sheets of puff pastry. Generously spread the spinach and cheese mixture evenly onto one of the puff pastry trees, ensuring it reaches the edges. Sprinkle an additional layer of mozzarella cheese, then carefully place the second sheet on top, aligning the edges and corners. Using a rolling pin, gently roll the pastry to achieve an even thickness.

Puff pastry sheets filled with spinach and cheese, ready to be rolled into delightful Christmas tree shapes for Christmas tree appetizer.

Cut Into Strips: Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut the dough into 1-inch wide strips.

Create the Christmas Tree Shape: Take each strip and roll them starting wider at the base and gradually tapering to a smaller width at the top to create the shape of a Christmas Tree (See Images below for reference). Insert a skewer through the center to hold the shape together.

Accordion-style rolling of a puff pastry strip to create the Christmas tree shape for the holiday appetizer

Bake: Place the assembled puff pastry Christmas trees on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Whisk together an egg wash and lightly brush it over tip of each Christmas tree. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 400°F or until golden and crispy.

Baking golden Christmas tree-shaped appetizers in the oven for a delicious holiday snack. eatwellwithlex.com

Variations for Puff Pastry Christmas Tree Appetizer

  • Add Bacon into the spinach and cheese mixture
  • Mix in finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes into the spinach mixture.
  • Spread a light layer of pesto on the puff pastry before adding the mixture.
  • Sprinkle a pinch of red pepper flakes to add a kick
  • Add smoked salmon strips between the layers and serve for Christmas brunch

How to Store and Reheat

These Christmas tree appetizers are better served fresh but if you have leftover, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Ensure they are separated with parchment paper or foil to prevent sticking.

When you’re read to enjoy preheat your oven or air fryer to 375° F and reheat for about 10-15 minutes or until heated through. Make sure to keep an eye on them.

Platter displaying the finished Spinach and Cheese Puff Pastry Christmas Trees, ready to be served. eatwellwithlex.com

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Spinach and Cheese Puff Pastry Christmas Tree Appetizer:

Can I make the Spinach and Cheese Puff Pastry Christmas Tree in advance?

Absolutely! Prepare the puff pastry Christmas tree ahead of time, store it in the refrigerator, and bake when ready.

Can I prepare the filling in advance?

Certainly! The filling can be prepared a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator until you are ready to assemble and bake the Christmas tree appetizers.

What dipping sauces pair well with these Christmas tree appetizers?

Marinara sauce, pesto, or a garlic aioli make excellent dipping choices. Choose a sauce that complements the flavors in your filling.

Can I make these appetizers without using frozen spinach?

Yes, fresh spinach can be used as well. Simply chop and blanch or steam the fresh spinach before incorporating it into the filling.

Can I make a sweet version of the puff pastry Christmas tree?

Absolutely! Swap the savory filling for sweet ingredients like Nutella, cream cheese, or fruit preserves to create a delightful dessert version.

More Holiday Appetizer Recipes:

Brown Sugar Bacon Wrapped Scallops

Parmesan Crusted Potatoes

Jerk Sweet Chili Wings

Parmesan Crusted Brussels Sprouts

Crispy Smashed Sweet Potatoes

DID YOU MAKE THESE PUFF PASTRY CHRISTMAS TREE APPETIZER?

Don’t forget to leave a ★ star rating and comment below to let us know much you loved the recipe. We’d love to hear about your experience and any creative variations you’ve come up with.

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Close-up of a golden-brown Spinach and Cheese Puff Pastry Christmas Tree on a platter. eatwellwithlex.com

Spinach and Cheese Christmas Tree Appetizer

A quick and easy homemade Christmas tree appetizer for parties. A creamy spinach dip filling is encased in flaky puff pastry, cut and shaped like a Christmas tree then baked until golden and crispy.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Servings 12

Ingredients
  

  • 2 sheets puff pastry thawed
  • 1 cup frozen spinach thawed and drained
  • 4 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 tsp
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 egg for egg wash

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven according to the instructions on the puff pastry package. Usually around 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Prepare the Filling

  • In a mixing bowl, combine thawed and drained frozen spinach, cream cheese, shredded mozzarella, grated Parmesan, minced garlic, Italian seasoning, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Mix well until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
    Bowl of mixed ingredients, including thawed spinach, cream cheese, mozzarella, Parmesan, and seasonings.

Roll Out Puff Pastry and Add Filling

  • Roll out the puff pastry sheets on a lightly floured surface. You’ll need 2 puff pastry sheets. One for the top and one for the bottom.
  • Generously spread the spinach and cheese mixture evenly onto one of the puff pastry trees, ensuring it reaches the edges.
  • Sprinkle an additional layer of mozzarella cheese, then carefully place the second sheet on top, aligning the edges and corners.
    Puff pastry sheets filled with spinach and cheese, ready to be rolled into delightful Christmas tree shapes for Christmas tree appetizer.
  • Using a rolling pin, gently roll the pastry to achieve an even thickness.

Cut Into Strips

  • Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut the dough into 1-inch wide strips.
    Sliced puff pastry strips arranged on a clean work surface for assembling Christmas tree shapes.

Create the Christmas Tree Shape

  • Take each strip and roll them starting wider at the base and gradually tapering to a smaller width at the top to create the shape of a Christmas Tree (See Images below for reference). Insert a skewer through the center to hold the shape together.
    Accordion-style rolling of a puff pastry strip to create the Christmas tree shape for the holiday appetizer

Bake

  • Place the assembled puff pastry Christmas trees on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Whisk together an egg wash and lightly brush it over tip of each Christmas tree. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 400°F or until golden and crispy.
    Baking golden Christmas tree-shaped appetizers in the oven for a delicious holiday snack. eatwellwithlex.com
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