Baklava is the classic Greek dessert that is made with layers of phyllo, an aromatic blend of ground nuts and spices, and then drenched in a sweet honey syrup. These baklava spirals are beautiful and perfect for a dinner party. Elegant and delightful!
Ingredients for Baklava Spirals
- 1 pound (#4) phyllo
- 10 ounces of unsalted butter, melted
- 3-4 cups of ground nuts: pistachios, walnuts, almonds, pecans
- ground cinnamon
- ground cloves
- granulated sugar
- Greek honey
- lemon juice
- vanilla extract
It’s important to use thin phyllo sheets for this recipe. Number 4 is best and is the kind that is usually sold in most supermarkets. Sometimes the phyllo isn’t labeled and in that case it’s number 4. There will usually be a picture of baklava on the box. If it says “country phyllo” then those sheets will be thicker. If you like thicker pastry sheets then, use them but, personally, I do prefer the thinner sheets for this recipe as they are more traditional.
Make the Syrup
The syrup should be cool once the baklava spirals come out of the oven. Pouring cooled syrup over hot phyllo keeps it crispy. So, begin by making the syrup.
Combine the water, sugar, and lemon juice in a saucepan and stir everything together. Bring it to a boil and remove from the heat as soon as the sugar dissolves.
Add the honey and the vanilla extract and give it. a mix. Set it aside to cool completely. The syrup can be prepared a few days ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator.
Feel free to switch up the flavors of the syrup if desired. Here are a few ideas:
- add a pinch of cardamom seeds to the syrup
- add rose water instead of the vanilla extract
- use orange juice instead of lemon juice
- thawing out the phyllo pastry is crucial. Phyllo is sold in the freezer section and should be thawed overnight in the refrigerator. Leave it inside of its packaging until ready to assemble the spirals so that it does not dry out and crack. Allow the phyllo to come to room temperature and it will be easy to work with.
- work with one sheet at a time but sometimes 2 sheets can be stuck together. Don’t bother trying to separate them as they might tear and shred. Just go ahead and use both of them.
- Drizzle butter over the sheet and create a row of nuts on the bottom portion of the phyllo. I add about 2 heaping tablespoons but this can be adjusted according to your preference. If you’d like, add more or less.
- Roll the pastry up and if you prefer smaller spirals cut the roll into 2 portions and then form each one into a small spiral. Or, roll it into a larger spiral.
- Place the spirals on a baking tray that has been lined with parchment and at this point, you can bake them until golden or freeze them up to 2 months.
- Freezer Instructions: Place the tray in the freezer and once the spirals are frozen solid, wrap the tray tightly with a few layers of plastic wrap. They will keep fresh for up to 2 months. When ready to use, bake them frozen at 325 °F until golden and crisp. About 1 hour.
- As soon as the baklava spirals come out of the oven, pour all of the syrup over them. Dust the tops with cinnamon and set them aside for an hour to absorb the syrup.
- Serve with tea or coffee.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Watch the Video Tutorial
I hope that you give these Baklava Spirals a try and let me know what you think. Send me your recipe requests and I will get to them as soon as I can. Kali Orexi and I’ll see you back here soon with another delicious recipe worth sharing. xx Dimitra
- 1 pound (#4) phyllo, thawed and at room temperature
- 10 ounces unsalted butter, melted
- 2 cups (250g) ground walnuts
- 2 cups (250g) ground almonds
- 2-3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
For the Syrup
- 1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 and 1/2 cups water
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 °F, 180 °C.
Make the Syrup:
Combine the water, sugar, and lemon juice in a saucepan and mix together. Bring it to a boil and as soon as the sugar has dissolved remove it from the heat. Add the honey and vanilla extract, mix together, and set aside to cool.
Make the Filling:
Combine the almonds and walnuts in a mixing bowl and add cinnamon and cloves. Mix well to combine.
Assemble the Spirals:
Lay one sheet of phyllo on the counter and drizzle some melted butter on top.
Spread about 2 heaping tablespoons of the nut mixture on the bottom portion of the sheet.
Roll the sheet up to form a log. Roll from the edges inward to form a spiral shape.
Place the spirals on a baking tray that has been lined with parchment paper.
Brush the spirals liberally with the remaining melted butter.
Bake on the center rack until golden and crisp. 35-45 minutes.
As soon as the pastries come out of the oven, pour the cooled syrup on top of them and set them aside at room temperature for about an hour.
Dust the tops with cinnamon and serve with coffee or tea. Enjoy!
Freezer Instructions: Place the tray in the freezer and once the spirals are frozen solid, wrap the tray tightly with a few layers of plastic wrap. They will keep fresh for up to 2 months. When ready to use, bake them frozen at 325 °F until golden and crisp. About 1 hour.
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