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Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)

Prep Time:

30 Minutes

Cook Time:

25 Minutes

About the Recipe

Spanakopita: the iconic traditional Greek Spinach Pie encased in layers upon layers of golden, buttery and flaky filo pastry. For the best Spanakopita of your life, use raw rather than cooked spinach, and bind the phyllo pastry layers using a little finely chopped Sandorini Greek Feta Cheese so they stay together rather than flying everywhere when you cut it!


  • Feta – The other key filling ingredient along with spinach. A combination that’s as Greek as it gets!

  • Dill and mint – The fresh herb flavours bring an unmissable taste to Spanakopita. Don’t skip it!

  • Sandorini Greek yogurt – Or other unsweetened plain yogurt. This is a wet ingredient that makes the filling nice and juicy, but not so wet that it makes the pastry base soggy;

  • Sandorini Feta Cheese – A traditional Greek Feta cheese made from 100% Canadian Milk.

  • Egg – This is what binds the filling together. Egg is, after all, the best food glue known to mankind!

  • Garlic – Because rarely will you see a Greek dish without garlic (usually much more than just one clove!);

  • Nutmeg – This is the signature spice used in Spanakopita fillings;

  • Cayenne pepper – Just a touch, not to make it spicy, but to provide a hint of warmth. It brings an extra little something-something to this Spanakopita!

  • Lemon – Some zest and juice for brightness;

  • Green onion – For sweetness and its onion-y taste in the filling;

  • Butter – Plenty here, for brushing on each and every layer of the filo pastry! It adds flavour plus keeps each layer separated so you get the signature flakiness.

  • Sesame seeds – To sprinkle on the surface. Using both white and black is a lovely signature look, but you could just double up on one or the other!


  1. Sweat spinach with salt to remove water – Sprinkle chopped spinach with a little salt, then leave for 10 minutes. The salt will draw moisture out of the spinach which makes it easier to squeeze out the water;

  2. Wring out water – Put a handful of spinach on a clean tea towel. Bundle it up and twist firmly to squeeze out the water. It’s easiest to work with a handful at a time so you can do this step properly. I usually do it in 3 batches;

  3. Filling – Place spinach with the remaining filling ingredients in a large bowl; and

  4. Mix well – Mix filling well until it’s combined. It should be moist and juicy, but you should not see any water leaching out of the spinach into the base of the bowl.Trim filo pastry – Take the filo pastry out of the fridge 30 minutes prior to bring it to room temperature. This makes it more pliable and less prone to breaking. Then cut 16 sheets to size: 32 x 25cm / 13 x 10″ (rectangle shapes, pictured) or 26cm / 10.5″ squares.

    This makes a Spanakopita pie which is 3.5 – 4cm / 1.4 – 1.6″ thick which I think is the perfect thickness for a good filling to pastry ratio. Any thicker, and there’s too much filling. Any thinner, and there’s too much pastry!

  5. The pie base: 8 filo sheets, buttered – Lay a sheet of filo pastry on a baking paper-lined tray, then brush with melted butter. The butter not only adds flavour, it also causes each base layer to separate so you get the signature flakiness;

  6. Repeat – After brushing with butter, top with another sheet of filo pastry and continue repeating until you have used 8 sheets in total;

  7. Filling – Spread the filling in the middle of the pastry base, leaving a 2.5cm/1″ border. Make the surface as level as possible, pressing down lightly to compact the filling;

  8. Brush with butter – Brush the borders of the pastry with butter;

  9. The pie top: 5 filo sheets, butter + cheese – Cover the filling with a sheet of filo pastry. Brush with butter. Cover with another sheet of filo pastry and repeat. Do filo → butter → for the first 5 sheets of filo pastry;

  10. The pie top (final sheets): 3 sheets filo, butter only – For filo pastry sheets # 6, #7 and #8, just use butter in between each layer.

  11. Butter and sesame seeds – Brush the surface with melted butter, then sprinkle with sesame seeds;

  12. Bake 25 minutes in a 220°C/430°F oven. A hot oven is key here to make the pastry beautifully golden and crisp on top and on the base without overcooking the spinach filling!

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