Are you looking for an easy, festive Christmas appetizer for the Holiday Season? This Pesto Puff Pastry Christmas Tree recipe is an impressive addition to any holiday table. It is as delicious as it is beautiful. Get the kids involved; they will love it.
Let’s face it, most of us are looking for a quick, easy appetizer for the busy Holiday Season, but not just anything will do. It needs to look amazing and taste fantastic. Puff pastry is usually a labor-intensive recipe, but now that we can get vegan puff pastry in the freezer section of most grocery stores, it is a super quick and easy way to make a spectacular appetizer.
Most people, me included, use a pesto filling in the Puff Pastry Christmas Tree Appetizer, maybe because of the green color, or maybe because it is a fantastic flavor combination, but customize the flavor to fit your family.
You can even use the Puff Pastry Christmas Tree as pull-off breadsticks for the main meal. Substitute the dinner rolls with the Christmas Tree bread. Either way, it will be a show-stopping addition to your Holiday meal.
Here is a list of fillings I would recommend:
Looking for More Holiday Appetizers?
- Vegan Roasted Garlic and Herb Cheese
- Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms
- Green Olive Tapenade
- Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip
What do I Need to Make this Puff Pastry Christmas Tree?
- Vegan Puff Pastry
- Pesto (or preferred filling)
How Do I Make a Puff Pastry Christmas Tree?
- Thaw the puff pastry according to package instructions. This usually takes about an hour and is important as the dough will crack if the pastry is too cold and it will be difficult to work with if it is too warm.
- Unroll each piece of pastry and place it on a piece of parchment paper.
- With a rolling pin, roll out both pieces to make a slightly thinner rectangle.
- Spread the fresh pesto on one piece of the rolled-out puff pastry.
- Cover with the other piece to make a sandwich. Gently press the two layers together.
- Cut the tree shape, basically a large triangle.
- Cut a short stem from leftover pastry dough and add it to the bottom of the tree.
- Slice the tree every inch from the bottom to about three inches before the top on both sides, leaving about an inch in the middle. (Do not cut the stem)
- Twist each cut piece downward. The larger pieces (branches) twist two times, and when it becomes more difficult, twist only once.
- Brush with melted margarine if desired, and bake until golden brown.
How Do I Store the Puff Pastry Christmas Tree?
- This puff pastry appetizer should be eaten within a few hours of baking.
- It can be served at room temperature, so it can be baked a couple of hours before the meal.
- To save time, make the puff pastry Christmas tree ahead of time, cover it with plastic, and store in the fridge until ready to bake.
- It can be stored unbaked in the fridge for up to three days.
- If using pesto as the filling, it may change color.
Why Did My Puff Pastry Not Rise?
- The oven may not be at the right temperature. The temperature of the oven must be high (400F) in order to create enough steam for the puff pastry to rise.
- Do not open the oven until the puff pastry is nearly done.
Is There a Way to Keep the Pesto from Getting Brown?
The best way to keep the pesto green while baking is to blanch the basil before making the pesto. It is an extra step, and many do not mind the slightly brown color, but if you would prefer the vibrant green color, blanch the basil first.
How Do I Blanch Basil?
- In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil.
- Prepare an ice bath for the basil by adding water and ice to a large bowl.
- Drop the basil into the boiling water for a few seconds, then drain and immediately add to the ice water. Leave in the ice water for a few seconds, drain, and squeeze to remove as much water as possible.
- Make the pesto.
Pesto Puff Pastry Christmas Tree Appetizer
Are you looking for an easy, festive Christmas appetizer for the Holiday Season? This Pesto Puff Pastry Christmas Tree recipe is an impressive addition to any holiday table. It is as delicious as it is beautiful.
- Yield: 1 Tree 1x
- 1 pkg. (two sheets) frozen vegan puff pastry
- 1/2 recipe vegan pesto (Click here for recipe)
- Make pesto
- Thaw the pastry for an hour or so before unwrapping.
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Unroll one piece and place on a piece of parchment paper. Repeat with the second piece.
- With a rolling pin, roll out the pieces to make a slightly thinner rectangle.
- Spread the pesto on one piece of the puff pastry. Cover with the other piece to make a sandwich. Remove the top layer of parchment paper.
- Cut out tree shape (large triangle). Add a short stem from leftover pastry dough to the bottom of the tree. Slice the tree (horizontally) every inch, starting about 3 inches from top to bottom on both sides, being careful to leave about an inch in the middle.
- Twist each piece downward. The larger pieces (branches) twist two times, and as it becomes more difficult, twist one time. Brush with melted margarine if desired.
- Bake at 400F for about 18-22 minutes, until golden brown.