Deliciously flaky walnut pumpkin pie with crunchy filo pastry. The soft, juicy filling is spiced to perfection and has added crunch from the walnuts. Serve warm with a side of ice cream or cream cheese frosting!
Pumpkin pie with filo pastry
Nothing screams out winter flavours like walnut pumpkin pie. The warmth of the spices, the sweetness of the pumpkin and flakiness of the crust make for a perfect treat. This recipe is a combination of all these things, with an Eastern European twist.
I grew up eating pumpkin pie every winter, and it's one of my favourite desserts ever. My grandmother passed on her secret pumpkin pie recipe, made with a sprinkle of love and lots of flavour!
Most pumpkin pies typically feature a crunchy crust, a smooth filling and either meringue or creme on top. This pie is completely different, but equally as delicious. Made with a flaky filo pastry and crunchy, yet soft filling, the pie will WOW everyone who tries it!
Preparing the filo pastry
What makes this pie unique is the flaky and buttery filo pastry. You can use store bought filo, which typically comes in 10 sheets pack. Ten sheets will be enough to make two pie rolls, so plenty to go around!
The secret to the flakiness of the filo, like most pastry - is butter. This recipe uses melted butter, which is brushed on each individual filo sheet. Butter makes the filo become ultra flaky, giving a wonderful crunch when you bite into it.
How to assemble the walnut pumpkin pie
The best part about making this walnut pumpkin pie is that it's so easy to assemble. The pie has only two components: the filo pastry sheets and pumpkin filling. Let's begin:
- Stack 4-5 sheets of filo pastry, brushing each sheet with melted butter. Buttering each individual sheet will make the pie have a very crispy and flaky crust.
- Place the pumpkin filling along the longer edge, leaving 2-inches (5 cm) on the edges.
- Wrap the shorter edge over the filling, then roll the sheets over the filling to seal in everything.
- You can either roll the entire sheet over the filling if you like extra crust. Otherwise, cut off the excess with a sharp knife. See below on how to reuse the filo pastry scraps.
- Tuck the sides underneath, sealing the filling it completely.
- Brush the pie with more melted butter, then bake until crispy.
What to do with scraps of filo pastry
Depending on the type of filo pastry you use, there may be some extra leftover scraps. Please, don't throw them away - they can be turned into a delicious roll. Improvise with whatever you have in your fridge: cheese, jam, vegetables, fruit etc. Anything goes, just be adventurous!
I used my scraps to make a quick roll with goats' cheese, Za'atar and asparagus. It was delicious!
How to serve walnut pumpkin pie
This pie best served whilst still warm (not hot). I love eating it with either vanilla ice cream or cream cheese frosting. If you're feeling fancy, pipe it over the individual slices before serving.
I always like to use my extra creamy White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting, which works perfectly with this walnut pumpkin pie.
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Walnut Pumpkin Pie with Filo Pastry
- 400 g filo pastry* (8-10 sheets)
- 100 g butter, melted (½ cup)
- 1 kg pumpkin, grated* (6 cups)
- 100 g walnuts, chopped (¾ cup)
- 100 g butter, softened (½ cup)
- 100 g soft brown sugar* (½ cup)
- 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon allspice
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Peel and core the pumpkin, then grate it in larger chunks.
- In a large saucepan mix the pumpkin with the sugar, butter and spices.
- Cook over low heat for 12-15 minutes until the pumpkin softens. Let cool completely.
- Take one sheet of filo pastry and brush it with melted butter. Place the second filo sheet on top, and repeat the brushing process. Use 4-5 sheets of filo in total, brushing them after each sheet.
- Place half of the pumpkin filling along the length of the sheet in a wide strip. Leave a 5 cm (2-inch) edge on each side so you can roll the pie.
- Tuck the short edge over the pie. Start rolling in the rest of the phyllo pastry to cover to filling. Cut off the excess with a knife.
- Seal the edges by pressing down and using a little butter if needed.
- Use the rest of the pumpkin filling and phyllo sheets to make a second roll.
- Brush both rolls with more melted butter and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Sprinkle some icing sugar on top and serve with cream cheese frosting or vanilla ice cream.
- I recommend using a kitchen scale in grams for more accuracy. The cups used for the conversion are standard US customary cups (1 cup flour = 136g). There are many different types of cups across the globe, which is why I strongly recommend using grams instead.
- Filo pastry - in this recipe filo pastry cannot be replaced.
- Pumpkin - the best varieties to be used for this pie are: Cinderella, Sugar Pie or Small Sugar pumpkins. Any types of sweet pumpkins will work as well.
- Sugar - this recipe uses soft brown sugar, however regular white sugar or dark brown sugar can also be used.
- Storing - store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days. This pie isn't ideal for storing in the fridge, as the filo pastry will become too soft. The unbaked pie can be frozen by covering it in plastic wrap, then one layer of aluminium foil. Thaw in the fridge overnight, then bake as indicated in the recipe.