16 Phyllo Recipes for Light-as-Air Pies and Pastries

It's okay to be flaky when you're baking with phyllo

Love baklava and Greek spinach pie? Those famously thin crusts are made by layering and baking many sheets of unleavened phyllo dough to produce a light but crunchy covering. To get started, study our recipe for from-scratch phyllo dough, or simply grab a brand of frozen dough if you're short on time. Now you're ready to bake: many of our favorite Greek recipes and Middle Eastern recipes incorporate phyllo—from that sweet baklava to meaty pastry pies and fruit-filled tarts. With our guide to the 16 best recipes, you'll never fear phyllo again.

Almond-Cardamom Pakhlava

almond-cardamom pakhlava
At Zulya Kazimova's bakery in Baku, pakhlava—the Azeri version of baklava, which she cuts into a diamond shape—is made using 14 layers of a dense yeasted dough rolled out so thinly and painstakingly that it becomes translucent. For home cooks, prepared phyllo dough produces a wonderfully crisp, lighter, and flakier version. To defrost frozen phyllo quickly, set it in a microwave (still wrapped in its plastic packaging) on the defrost setting for about 30 seconds, then rotate the package and repeat. Get the recipe for Almond-Cardamom Pakhlava »Jason Lang

Veal and Pearl Onion B'stilla (North African Meat Pie)

Veal and Pearl Onion B'stilla (North African Meat Pie)
B'stilla, a North African meat pie, is traditionally made with poultry. Cookbook author Suzanne Zeidy's take includes veal and caramelized pearl onions. When ordering the veal for this recipe, have your butcher remove the bone. Get the recipe »Helen Cathcart

Apple and Armagnac Phyllo Pie (Tourtière Landaise)

Apple and Armagnac Phyllo Pie
The crust of this striking dessert—named for Les Landes, the region where it is beloved and ubiquitous—curls up into jagged shards as it cooks, like a crown. Get the recipe for Apple and Armagnac Phyllo Pie (Tourtière Landaise) »Michelle Heimerman

Apple Croustade (Flaky Apple Tart)

Flaky Apple Tart
Crisp, paper-thin sheets of phyllo dough wrap and crown tender brandied apples in this classic French tart. Get the recipe for Apple Croustade (Flaky Apple Tart) »David Yoder

Cashew Baklava

Cashew Baklava
Brown sugar, cinnamon and nutty, rich cashews are rolled into tight baklava cigars in this eminently snackable dessert. Get the recipe for Cashew Baklava »Neal Santos

Moroccan Pigeon Pie (B'stilla)

Moroccan Pigeon Pie (B'stilla)
Pigeon is traditionally used to make this slightly sweet, savory Moroccan pie, but chicken thighs, quail, or Cornish game hens make excellent substitutes. Get the recipe for Moroccan Pigeon Pie (B'stilla) »Andre Baranowski

Spiced Apple Strudel

Spiced Apple Strudel
This easy-to-assemble strudel from author Eugenia Bone makes use of preserved spiced apples and store-bought phyllo dough. Get the recipe for Spiced Apple Strudel »André Baranowski

Boereg

savory phyllo pastries
If your feta is very sharp, soak it in cold water in the refrigerator for a day before using. See the recipe for BoeregBen Fink

Accordion Pastry

Accordion Pastry
This paklava-like pastry may be curved into a circle before baking, then filled with more nuts in the center, for a variation called glore. Get the recipe for Accordion Pastry »Ben Fink

Zucchini Pie

Zucchini Pie
Feta cheese and zucchini squash are the focus of this savory pie. Get the recipe for Zucchini Pie »Zubin Shroff

Cheese Pie

Cheese Pie
We prefer this pie be made with fewer layers than in most traditional recipes. Get the recipe for Cheese Pie »Zubin Shroff

Phyllo Dough

Phyllo Dough
Allow several hours to make phyllo. See this RecipeZubin Shroff

Baklava

Baklava
This Greek version of a favorite Middle Eastern sweet is always best made with commercial phyllo.
See this Recipe
Zubin Shroff

Fennel and Herb Phyllo Pastries (Hortopita)

Fennel and Herb Phyllo Pastries (Hortopita)
These Greek pastries unite a buttery crust with bright-tasting fennel and feta cheese. Get the recipe for Fennel and Herb Phyllo Pastries (Hortopita)»Todd Coleman

Epiran Feta Tart (Alevropita)

Epiran Feta Tart (Alevropita)
Made with a simple egg batter, this feta-studded tart hails from the region of Epirus in southeastern Europe. Get the recipe for Epiran Feta Tart (Alevropita) »Ingalls Photography