Spanakopita Spinach Pie

Looking to make a restaurant specialty at home? Break out of your usual box? Try making Spanakopita Spinach Pie!

Side angle of Greek spinach pie

Spanakopita Spinach Pie is a Greek speciality made from wilted spinach and cheese wrapped with flaky pastry, phyllo dough. An easy dish that pairs with anything! 

I like to rationalize that ordering a slice of Spanakopita, also known as spinach pie, is a healthier choice to other fried options. The truth is that other than getting a really healthy dose of spinach, it isn’t. 

Spinach pie is commonly made into spinach pie triangles, but quite frankly, it is much easier to make into a whole pie, like it is traditionally made in Greece. 

Wilted spinach in a skillet


Spanakopita ingredients are typically chopped spinach, feta cheese, ricotta cheese and flaky phyllo sheets, it isn’t healthy by any means. It is able to claim the health benefits of spinach which include folate, vitamin C, niacin, riboflavin, and potassium. Even better, cooked spinach helps you absorb vitamins A and E, protein, fiber, zinc, thiamin, calcium, and iron.


How do you make spanakopita?

Make a wilted spinach mixture with garlic, onions and herbs. Then toss with a mediterranean cheese blend. 

Envelope spinach mixture in phyllo dough in a 9×9 baking pan. Some prefer a pie plate, but I like a deeper baking dish. Bake to a crispy golden brown. 

What is a phyllo dough? Phyllo dough is an unleavened pastry dough, meaning it doesn’t use yeast or other leaveners like baking soda or baking powder, and therefore doesn’t rise. Instead it bakes to a crispy, crunchy, flakey dough.

process shots of how to make spinach pie

It is rolled out super thin and assembled by piling with basted butter or olive between each layer.

Most have a minimum of 4 layers, but the maximum is endless. More layers = more crunchies. 

Flakey browned phyllo dough

Phyllo can be tricky to work with and commonly disintegrates right in your hands, don’t worry. It doesn’t need to be in perfect sheets. I also don’t make my own phyllo dough, I buy it frozen at the store and it works perfectly fine. It is hard to roll dough out that thin! 

Sarah M. says: “I’ve always had spanakopita folded into triangles and didn’t like it. I just realized I liked it more prepared as a spinach pie! Great recipe and thanks for the tips on it not being soggy.”

The butter will help bind it and even it out and after you cut into it, no one will be able to tell. Some use olive oil between sheets of phyllo, but I like the taste of butter better.

Spanakopita dipping into tzatziki

Many recipes call for white onion or green onions (scallions), sometimes even both. I find this onion flavor to be too overwhelming and would prefer to taste cheese, pastry and spinach to onion, so I prefer to use shallots.

Still in the onion family, but a little more mild of flavor. 

Cross Sectional view of spanakopita

Spinach to cheese to pastry ratio is also important and often overlooked. Some have too much filling, others not enough or too much cheese that overpowers delicate spinach. Call me the Goldilocks of Spanakopita. 

I like to eat my Spanakopita Spinach Pie with a fresh lemon spritz and garlic tzatziki sauce for dipping, olives on the side and maybe even some stuffed grape leaves.

Angle view of Greek spinach pie

More delicious recipes: 

bowl of pimento cheese dip

Pimento Cheese Spread

A popular southern dish, this EASY Pimento Cheese recipe is made with only 6 ingredients and tastes great spread onto crackers or in a grilled cheese!
See The Recipe!
overhead shot of tray of german egg rolls

Pork and Sauerkraut Egg Rolls

Your new favorite fried appetizer, kielbasa and sauerkraut with potatoes and cheese wrapped in an egg rolls wrapper, fried + dipped in mustard aioli sauce!
See The Recipe!
close up of pizza log dipped into sauce

Pizza Logs

Crispy egg roll wrappers stuffed with gooey mozzarella cheese and zesty pepperoni, fried to a golden brown and dipped in marinara sauce.
See The Recipe!

Tools for making spinach pie:

Heavy Bottom Frying Pan– this will be one of your most used kitchen tools. Having something that is heavy bottom will distribute heat better and prevent burning whether you are using an electric or gas range. 

Square baking dish– you can make spinach pie in a pie plate, but I prefer a deep 9×9 baking dish. 

Basting brush– I love these silicone basting brushes. They clean and dry much easier than the old fashioned hair versions.

Spanakopita Spinach Pie for Pinterest

Questions you might have about how to make spanakopita: 

Where does spanakopita come from? Origins are unknown, but it is accepted as a Greek spinach pie. Other beleive it to be TUrkish, but is indubitably mediterranean. Most early spanakopita was stuffed with a mixture of spinach, olives, cheese and honey. 

Can you freeze spanakopita? You sure can! Since the spinach is already wilted, freezing is possible. Package it well and eat within 3-4 months. 

Is spanakopita healthy? It depends on your definition of healthy. It is not gluten free or keto friendly, but it does contain a hefty dose of leafy greens and heart healthy olive oil. There are healthier things to eat, but there are also worse. 

Can I add olives to my spinach pie? You sure can! Toss in 1-2 tablespoons of chopped olives to the mix. 

Does spanakopita have dill? Some recipes for spanakopita do include dill. You can toss in 1 tablespoon of fresh dill, roughly chopped, or 1 teaspoon of dried dill. 

Is spanakopita served hot, cold or room temperture? Spinach pie can be served at any temperature, it is purely personal preference. 

Can spanakopita be made ahead? You can, but be mindful that the phyllo dough might get a little soggy. Reheat in the oven for best results, but it is best served freshly out of the oven. 

What does spanakopita mean? I don’t think it has a literal translation, but it is the name for a Greek spinach pie. 

Why is my spanakopita soggy? The main two reason for soggy spanakopita is the spinach or the ricotta cheese. Spinach must be well wilted. Look for little to no remaining moisture in the skillet. If you do this ahead of time, put it in the fridge, uncovered to let it dry out even more. 

Even if you ricotta seems to be fairly dry or drained, drain it even more. Any moisture left will result in soggy Greek spinach pie. Place 1-2 layers of cheesecloth in a fine mesh sieve or colander and allow to drain for an hour or so. You can also put it on a plate and let it drain in the refrigerator. 

Can I use frozen spinach? You can use frozen spinach, but you still need to saute it well to get the residual moisture out. 

Cross Sectional view of spanakopita

Spanakopita Spinach Pie

4.17 from 12 votes
Spanakopita Spinach Pie is a Greek speciality made from wilted spinach and cheese wrapped with flaky pastry, phyllo dough. An easy dish that pairs with anything! 
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 9



  • Preheat oven to 35o degrees. Coat a 9×9 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  • In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic. Saute until they start to soften and become fragrant.
  • Add spinach and parsley, toss using tongs (much easier than a spoon) until wilted and reduced in size.
  • Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, beat egg in a medium mixing bowl. Add drained ricotta cheese, crumbled feta cheese and Kosher salt.
  • When spinach mixture has cooled, toss to combine.
  • Lay one piece of phyllo dough in the bottom of your baking dish. Baste lightly with melted butter. Continue with 3 more sheets of phyllo. Ends may fall over the sides.
  • Spoon spinach mixture into the baking dish. Fold ends over into the dish. It is okay it looks messy.
  • Layer remaining phyllo sheets, basting with butter between each layer, on top, tucking ends into the dish.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes, or until top is lightly browned. If it starts to brown too fast, place a leaf of aluminum foil over the top.
  • Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
  • If you’ve tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was!


Even if you ricotta seems to be fairly dry or drained, drain it even more. Any moisture left will result in soggy Greek spinach pie. Place 1-2 layers of cheesecloth in a fine mesh sieve or colander and allow to drain for an hour or so. You can also put it on a plate and let it drain in the refrigerator.


Calories: 218 kcal, Carbohydrates: 13 g, Protein: 6 g, Fat: 15 g, Saturated Fat: 7 g, Cholesterol: 50 mg, Sodium: 626 mg, Potassium: 360 mg, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 1 g, Vitamin A: 5290 IU, Vitamin C: 19.5 mg, Calcium: 161 mg, Iron: 2.4 mg
Author: Chef Jessica Anne
Calories: 218
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Greek
Keyword: greek spinach pie, spanakopita, spinach pie
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Chef Jessica Anne Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal, Mashed and more!

Read More About Jessica

4.17 from 12 votes (7 ratings without comment)

Join The Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

Questions and Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    We ate so much of this when we were island hopping round Greece. This recipe is bringing back some happy memories.

  2. 5 stars
    I love spanakopita, such a delicious combination of cheese, spinach and crisp pastry. Yours looks wonderful.

  3. 5 stars
    Spanakopita is quite literally one of my favorite Greek dishes! Really looking forward to trying this easy recipe!