Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

a bowl full of ham and cheese pinwheels made with puff pastry dough
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Ham and Cheese Pinwheels are an easy appetizer recipe made with puff pastry, sliced ham, cheese, and Dijon mustard. This simple recipe is super cute, and you can pull it together in a pinch when you need a quick holiday party appetizer or game-day snack

Surprisingly, this ham and cheese pinwheels recipe is probably my most made appetizer recipe. The great thing about this recipe is that it’s so stinking simple. Once you’ve tried this mouthwatering bite for the first time, you’ll be sure to always have a few extra boxes of frozen puff pastry in your freezer. 

Puff pastry is the perfect canvas for a million varieties of simple appetizers. No wonder it’s one of my most popular appetizers. I often use it because it looks impressively gorgeous—like my Goat Cheese Fig Tart.

Ham and cheese pinwheels freshly baked. flaky puff pasty dough, mustard, ham and cheese baked to perfection.

What You’ll Love About Pinwheel Appetizers

Making pinwheel appetizers is not only easy, but it’s super versatile. You can make this recipe with all sorts of different fillings. Ham and cheese is only one variety. 

  • Premade Dough: This recipe calls for frozen puff pastry dough so all you have to do is thaw it and give it a quick roll with the rolling pin. Alternatively, you can also use crescent roll dough. 
  • Super Easy: Making appetizers using puff pastry is incredibly easy and versatile. 
  • Versatile: You can use what you have on hand to fill the puff pastry dough, so you have an unlimited variety of easy puff pastry appetizer variations. 

Ham and Cheese Pinwheel Ingredients

Gather your ingredients and get ready to make this super easy appetizer recipe.

ingredients for ham and cheese pinwheels
  • Frozen puff pastry dough: I like DuFours
  • Ham: Thin slices of ham are the easiest to use for this recipe. If you have leftover ham, quickly chop it in the food processor. 
  • Mustard: Use a good quality Dijon mustard. I like Maille. You can use traditional dijon or the sweet hot variety. 
  • Cheese: Gruyere cheese pairs amazingly well with the mustard and ham, providing a nice sharp note against the buttery pastry. Any melty cheese can be used. Consider sharp cheddar cheese or even Swiss cheese. 
  • Fresh herbs: Fresh herbs aren’t absolutely necessary, but they add a hint of freshness and a burst of color to the freshly baked puff pastry.

how to make ham and cheese pinwheels with puff pastry

Ham and cheese puff pastry appetizers couldn’t be simpler. Here are a few helpful tips to make sure this recipe comes out perfectly. 

Step 1—Thaw The Dough

Put the pastry dough in the fridge for about 3 hours, up to overnight to thaw.

Step 2—Roll out the dough 

Dust your counter with a little bit of flour. Roll the thawed puff pastry into a 10 x 14-inch rectangle. I recommend this pasty mat. 

Step 3—Add the toppings

Start by spreading a thin layer of mustard onto the rolled-out dough. Then, add a layer of ham slices and then a layer of grated cheese. Sprinkle with any fresh herbs.

Step 4—Roll

Roll the dough into a pinwheel from the long end, jelly roll style. For a palmier shape, roll each end to the center. 

Wrap the log in plastic wrap and place it int he fridge of the freezer to chill while the oven is preheating.

Step 5—Slice

Use a sharp knife to slice the roll into 1/2–inch thick slices. Place each cut pinwheel onto a sheet pan in a single layer. Place the baking sheets back into the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes while you preheat the oven. 

Step 6—Bake

Preheat the oven to 425℉/218℃. Bake for 18 minutes—until the pinwheels are puffed and a rich golden brown. Do not underbake.

Tips and Tricks 

  • Use a very sharp knife. A sharp knife is essential for slicing these rollups. 
  • Rechill the dough before baking. I like to rechill my puff pastry dough before I bake it. Having the dough cold ensures the maximum amount of puff! 
  • Do not underbake. For puff pastry to have signature crispy layers, it’s important to bake it completely. You want the pasty to be a rich golden brown. If the pastry is underbaked, your pinwheels will be soggy. 
golden brown pinwheels sprinkles with fresh parsley

Pinwheel Recipe Variations

The easy recipe can be made in a million different ways. Here are some of my favorite pinwheel recipes.

  • Try other kinds of dough: Ham and cheese pinwheels can also be made with crescent dough or even pizza dough. You know, the kind in the can. 
  • Sausage pinwheels: Brown your favorite ground sausage and sprinkle it on the rolled-out dough.
  • Pizza pinwheels: Add a layer of pizza sauce, sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese, and top with pepperoni. 
  • Italian pinwheels: Prosciutto, salami, provolone cheese, and fresh basil.
  • Pesto pinwheels: Chicken, pesto, and mozzarella.
  • Olive pinwheels: Olive tapenade.
  • Goat cheese and fig jam pinwheels: Fig jam with goat cheese and bacon. 
  • Caramelized Onion pinwheels: Caramelize the onions and sprinkle with crispy bacon and thinly sliced granny smith apples. 
ham and cheese pinwheels in a bowl ready to dive in

​How To Store Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

  • At room temperature: If you are not serving these right away, store pinwheels in an airtight container at room temperature. Ham and cheese pinwheels taste great warm and at room temperature. 
  • In the fridge: Pinwheels will stay fresh for up to 4 days. Reheat them in the oven to crisp the pastry before serving. 
  • To reheat: To reheat ham and cheese pinwheels, preheat the oven to 375℉/190℃. Place them on a baking sheet and heat until they are rewarmed—no need to thaw them first. 

Can you make ham and cheese pinwheels ahead of time?

Yes, you can make this recipe ahead of time. These taste great when served at room temperature. If you are serving them the same day, you can make these pinwheels ahead of time. Store them in an airtight container until you are ready to serve them. 

If you need to make them further ahead, I recommend freezing the pinwheels after they are baked. 

Can you freeze ham and cheese pinwheels?

To store leftovers, freeze the ham and cheese pinwheels; it is best to bake them first. Place them on a baking sheet in the freezer until frozen. Store the frozen pinwheels in an airtight container for up to a month. 

Reheat them straight out of the freezer.

what to serve with ham and cheese pinwheels

This bite-sized appetizer is great when served with a glass of champagne or cava. Chenin blanc is another great wine pairing for this appetizer.

close up of ham and cheese pinwheels cheesy goodness

More appetizer Recipes to Love

We have plenty to choose from if you’re craving more appetizer recipes. Here are some of our most popular and craveable snacks.

Check out our creamy dips, tasty Buffalo Wings or Parmesan Wings, Salsas, and Guacamole.

Leave A Review

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a bowl full of ham and cheese pinwheels made with puff pastry dough

Ham And Cheese Pinwheels

These Ham and Cheese Pinwheels are the ultimate snack or appetizer for any occasion. With a flaky pastry crust, savory ham, and gooey cheese, they're a mouthwatering delight that's easy to make at home. Whether you're hosting a party or simply craving a tasty treat, our recipe provides step-by-step instructions to ensure success. Get ready to impress your guests with these delicious, crowd-pleasing pinwheels. Try them today and elevate your snacking game!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Servings 24 pinwheels
Calories 95 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
 

  • 1 sheet puff pastry dough, thawed overnight
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 4 oz thin sliced ham, very thin deli slices
  • fresh parsley, for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Thaw the pastry dough. Put the pastry dough in the fridge for about 3 hours, up to overnight to thaw.
  • Roll out the puff pastry. Dust your counter with a little bit of flour. Roll the thawed puff pastry into a 10 x 14-inch rectangle.
  • Add the filling. Start by spreading a thin layer of mustard onto the rolled-out dough. Then, add a layer of ham slices and then a layer of grated cheese. Sprinkle with any fresh herbs.
  • Roll. Roll the dough into a pinwheel from the long end, jelly roll style. For a palmier shape, roll each end to the center. 
  • Slice the pinwheels. Use a sharp knife to slice the roll into 1/2–inch thick slices. Place each cut pinwheel onto a sheet pan in a single layer. Place the baking sheets back into the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes while you preheat the oven. 
  • When you're ready to bake. Preheat the oven to 425℉/218℃. Bake for 18 minutes—until the pinwheels are puffed and a rich golden brown. Do not underbake.
  • Garnish. Sprinkle with freshly minced parsley.

Laura’s Tips + Notes

Recipe Variations
  • Try other kinds of dough: Ham and cheese pinwheels can also be made with crescent dough or even pizza dough. You know, the kind in the can. 
  • Sausage pinwheels: Brown your favorite ground sausage and sprinkle it on the rolled-out dough.
  • Pizza pinwheels: Add a layer of pizza sauce, sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese, and top with pepperoni. 
  • Italian pinwheels: Prosciutto, salami, provolone cheese, and fresh basil.
  • Pesto pinwheels: Chicken, pesto, and mozzarella.
  • Olive pinwheels: Olive tapenade.
  • Goat cheese and fig jam pinwheels: Fig jam with goat cheese and bacon. 
  • Caramelized Onion pinwheels: Caramelize the onions and sprinkle with crispy bacon and thinly sliced granny smith apples.
You can assemble the scrolled logs of filled pastry in advance. They will keep in the refrigerator for several hours. Do not slice them until you are ready to bake them.

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Nutrition

Serving: 1 pinwheelCalories: 95kcalCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 4gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 151mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 0.1gCalcium: 70mgIron: 0.3mg
Keyword ham and cheese pinwheels, pinwheel appetizers
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