Disclosure: This recipe for a Monte Cristo Pinwheels contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Thanksgiving week continues and today I’m sharing an appetizer everyone will love! Inspired by a popular sandwich, these baked Monte Cristo Pinwheels, with sweet ham, tender turkey, tangy Swiss cheese and Triple Berry Jam, are sweet and savory and will be a hit at all season long!
I love that Thanksgiving traditions are so similar and yet can be so unique and different in every home across the nation. Yes, we all gather with friends and family on the same day, and usually all have turkey, but the best way to make said turkey (fried, smoked, oven roasted) and the sides that go with it, can vary from region to region.
And dare I say it, there are even those families that don’t fuss over a big meal at home, but take advantage of the handful of restaurants open on Thanksgiving and go out to eat before heading out to shop.
Even the best time to serve dinner various from family to family. Some host Thanksgiving dinner early in the afternoon, so more like lunch, so those who want to sit and relax after the feast while cheering on their favorite football team can.
Other families wait to have Thanksgiving dinner around actual dinner time.
But no matter what time you eat, having plenty of snacks and appetizers on hand for when guests arrive early to help or hang out, should definitely be part of every holiday gathering!
One of the appetizers I always make is some variation of pinwheels. They are a great party app because they are so easy, made with store bought dough and deli meats and cheeses, and EVERYONE loves them!
Taking short cuts, like using store bought dough, sauces and spreads in the kitchen during the holidays or when preparing such a big meal, especially if you are hosting and making most if not all the food, is essential for making Thanksgiving dinner a hit and less stressful as the host!
My latest version of my “famous” pinwheel appetizer is inspired by a popular sandwich. I picked up everything I needed for these Monte Cristo Pinwheels, including the important dipping sauce, while stocking up on Friendsgiving staples at the grocery store.
For those who may be unfamiliar, Monte Cristo Sandwiches are typically served with raspberry jam for the most perfect sweet and salty combination. In this easy holiday appetizer recipe, we used mixed berry jam for a twist, however, of course you can use the traditional raspberry jam.
My Monte Cristo Pinwheels and that super easy cream cheese dip was such a hit at Friendsgiving that I know I will be making these two appetizers all holiday season long!
What are your “go to” super easy appetizer recipes for the holidays? Please share in the comments below!
Helpful Tips and Information:
How to keep the pinwheel shape while baking?
I have personally made these Monte Cristo Pinwheels MANY times and have never had any issues with the pinwheel shape not holding up during baking. Many readers have also made these pinwheels with great success!
With that said, I have received a few reader comments regarding problems with the pinwheels holding their shape while baking, so please follow these tips and the recipe exactly as written to ensure that your pinwheels come out perfectly every time:
- I usually use crescent dough “sheets” instead of crescent roll dough with the perforated lines. If you use crescent dough with the perforated lines, make sure you pinch the lines together and roll over them with a rolling pin to seal completely. You could also use puff pastry dough instead of crescent dough.
- Only spread a very thin layer of jam onto the dough. I recommend placing the jam in a microwave safe bowl and microwaving it for 15 seconds. Then use a silicone pastry brush to brush a THIN layer of jam onto the crescent dough.
- Make sure your meat and cheese is very thinly cut. I recommend getting meat from the deli counter and having it “shaved” or sliced at a .5. You could also use grated cheese, instead of sliced cheese, to make it easier to roll up.
- Use a serrated bread knife to cut the dough and cut the pinwheels to be 1¼ to 1½ inch thick.
- You can bake the pinwheels in muffin tins sprayed with non-stick cooking spray to help them hold their shape while baking.
- While I have never tried freezing these pinwheels, I think they would freeze just fine! I would recommend freezing the pinwheels AFTER baking and allowing them to cool completely. Then transfer the cooled pinwheels to a freezer safe baggie. When ready to eat, reheat from frozen on a parchment lined baking sheet at 350 degrees until heated through.
- 1 (12-ounce) can refrigerated crescent rolls
- 2 tablespoons mixed berry or raspberry jam, plus more for serving
- 4 very thin slices deli ham
- 4 very thin slices deli turkey
- 8 thin slices deli Swiss cheese
- 1 large egg
- 2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar, optional for serving
- Please read the "Helpful Tips and Information" section in the article above before making this recipe.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and set aside.
- Unroll dough into four rectangles pressing together the perforations. Spread a VERY thin layer of the jam over each dough rectangle. Top fruit spread with two slices of cheese, one slice of turkey and one slice of ham.
- Starting at the short side of the dough, roll up dough sheet into a long log shape. Using a serrated knife, cut each roll into approximately 5 slices. Arrange slices on a baking sheet.
- In a small bowl, whisk egg. Brush egg over raw pinwheels.
- Bake pinwheels in a 375 degrees F for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Immediately remove from baking sheet and transfer to a serving plate. Pour powdered sugar into a small mesh colander and dust the pinwheels with powdered sugar. Serve warm with additional jam for dipping.
Please read the "Helpful Tips and Information" section in the article above before making this recipe.