Christmas tree puff pastry

Christmas tree puff pastry appetizer

Start off your Christmas feast with the most festive appetizer: a Christmas tree made with puff pastry in just a few quick and easy steps.

Easy and quick

The idea of a Christmas tree made with puff pastry is not mine, it is super common on Italian tables and there are so many Italian recipes out there with different fillings. We could say it’s an Italian Instagram trend.

It is such a genial idea as not only is delicious (always the most important thing), but it’s so pretty and it’ll add an extra festive touch to your Christmas table.

The secret of this recipe is that it looks very difficult to make, but it’s extremely simple, anyone can make it!

I had so many ideas for the filling but then I had nothing left in the cupboard and couldn’t bare go out in the cold. I scrabbled food leftovers and came out with an even easier recipe that I hope you’ll like and try this Christmas.

If you don’t have all the ingredients, don’t worry. I have listed other alternatives in the recipe notes hoping you also can avoid one more visit to the shops in this busy time of the year.

O Christmas tree

Riccardo has been making this puff pastry tree for our Christmas lunch for so long now. We always joked that this was our way to decorate our home with a Christmas tree as we never had one till last year.

A Christmas tree has been at the centre of so many debates between my husband and I. Riccardo (the Grinch) was absolutely against it as we would have to store it in a small flat all year if we bought it made of plastic and he didn’t feel comfortable with the idea of cutting a tree just for the occasion if we went for the real one.

I made so much research trying to convince my opinionated flatmate.

What’s best for the planet? The answer is quite sad, both the real and plastic ones are not very sustainable. However, the plastic tree always wins the evil crown. If you buy your real tree from responsible sources (e.g. ensuring they always plant a new tree for every one they cut), the real tree will beat the plastic one even if you keep the latter forever. As they say, plastic (not diamonds) is forever.

I must say that there are also many other factors you should take into account. I don’t want you to feel any pressure reading this post, always consider what’s best for you and your family.

For example, in Italy, it’s almost impossible to find real trees as it is not part of the tradition. There are also so many other types of Christmas tree out there. My friend Alice is very inventive and she made a tree out of recycled wood, she did it out of necessity as she has a cute naughty cut but it turns out an absolute stunner.

While I was getting more and more undecided, Riccardo found the best solution: second hand is always best.

Last year, he surprised me with a beautiful tiny tree he found on the app NextDoor.

Our neighbours posted there that they were giving away their beloved Christmas tree for free on the up.

I couldn’t love our tree more, it’s tiny and a bit scrappy but it lightens up with all our precious decorations.

This year we have two Christmas trees at our place, a preloved one with shimmering lights and lots of red decorations, and a new one with delicious puff pastry and pesto sauce. Not sure which one I like the most!

Christmas tree or no Christmas trees, I hope you will all have a wonderful festive season.

Christmas tree puff pastry appetizer

Course: Snacks, StartersDifficulty: Easy
Prep time


Cooking time



Start off your Christmas feast with the most festive appetizer: a Christmas tree made with puff pastry in just a few quick and easy steps.


  • 375 g puff pastry

  • 80 g vegan soft white cheese

  • 80 g vegan pesto

  • Decorations
  • 1 spoon of plant-based milk

  • Black sesame, sunflower, and flax seeds

  • Cherry tomatoes (I’ve used around 7)


  • Roll out the puff pastry and cut it into a shape of a tree. The first step is the tree trunk: cut the bottom of the puff pastry’s rectangle so you have a long stripe, 10 cm in width. Set this aside.
  • Now let’s make the tree top: Start from the middle of the short side and cut two straight lines to the opposite corners. You will be left with three triangles: a big central one and two smaller ones on either side.
  • Move aside the smaller triangles for later use. Stick the tree trunk’s stripe together with the bottom of the big triangle. This starts looking like a tree!
  • Mix the pesto and cheese and spread it on the tree of puff pastry. Fold the long stripe in the middle to complete the tree trunk. Cover the rest of the tree with the two smaller triangles. Make sure to seal off the sides so it doesn’t explode when in the oven.
  • Score the centre of the tree with two parallel lines to highlight the trunk. Now make the branches of the tree by slicing the pastry from the sides, be careful not to slice all the way through. Twist each branch, try to get 2-3 turns on the lower longer branches.
  • Brush the tree with two spoons of milk, sprinkle some seeds on top for a pop of colour, and decorate with some halved tomatoes to make your Christmas baubles.
  • Bake for 20 minutes at 200 C.


  • Use a pizza wheel cutter to cut the tree with ease.
  • Other filling ideas: Spinach and cream cheese, Olive pate and tomatoes, Nutella if you fancy a sweet treat.

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