The Best Pinwheel Recipes

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Looking for the perfect party appetizer treat? These pinwheel recipes are your answer. Easy to make, delightful to devour, and a hit with every guest. There’s something for everyone to love in this delicious appetizer collection.

different pinwheel appetizers on plates.

Whether you call them pinwheels or roll-ups, these flavor-packed swirly bites have become party classics. I love them because of the myriad of flavor combinations you can put together. And just like their namesakes of the paper variety, these colorful pinwheel recipes will capture the attention of your guests and up the fun of your next celebration.

For this collection, I rounded up pinwheel recipes I’ve created and posted on Inspired by Charm during the past several years. Pinwheels are one of my favorite party finger foods.

If you’re a fan of bite-sized snacks that are easy to make and impressive to present, then you’ll love these pinwheel appetizer recipes. Not only are they delicious, but they’re also a versatile hors doeuvres. Whether you’re hosting a casual get-together with friends or a formal dinner party, these pinwheels are sure to be a hit.

Why You’ll Love These Recipes

  • One of the best parts? The sheer diversity! From savory to sweet, there’s a pinwheel for every palate. You can experiment with ingredients, too – the sky’s the limit.
  • Whether you’re hosting a fancy cocktail party or just a movie night with friends, these pinwheels fit right in. They’re the universal crowd-pleaser.
  • They look so sophisticated, don’t they? Yet, the effort that goes into making them is minimal. You get to impress your guests without breaking a sweat.
  • Got dietary preferences or restrictions? No problem! These pinwheels can be easily tweaked to suit your needs. Gluten-free, vegan, or meat-lover – there’s a pinwheel out there for everyone.
Italian Sub Sandwich Roll-ups |

Recipe Tips

Now that you’re familiar with what pinwheel appetizers are, let’s explore some recipe tips that will take your pinwheels to the next level.

  • Use any type of tortilla you like for your pinwheel recipes. I often use whole-wheat tortillas for my roll-ups.
  • It’s important to not overload your pinwheels with filling. While it can be tempting to add an abundance of ingredients, doing so will make them hard to roll up. Stick to a moderate amount of filling and evenly distribute it across the tortilla.
  • Refrigerate the rolled-up tortillas before cutting them. This allows them to firm up, resulting in a prettier presentation. Additionally, using a sharp knife to cut the pinwheels will result in a cleaner presentation.
  • Get creative! Turn your favorite recipe into a delicious pinwheel appetizer. Some examples include Reuben pinwheels, Greek salad pinwheels, jalapeño popper pinwheels, etc.

Below are my favorite pinwheel recipes for your next gathering or just when the snack craving hits. They are all similar but also completely different. Pick out and make your favorites.

Appetizer Pinwheels

A fantastic blend of flavors wrapped up in a bite-sized delight, perfect to kick off any event. You can see how inviting they look, almost calling you to pick them up!

turkey and cranberry tortilla roll up

Turkey Bacon Cranberry Roll-Ups

If you’re looking for a simple but flavorful appetizer that’s easy to make, you need to try these Turkey Bacon Cranberry Roll-Ups. They make the perfect tasty treat for any occasion.

Buffalo chicken roll ups on a large platter

Buffalo Chicken Pinwheels

If you’re a fan of Buffalo wings, you will want to make these pinwheels. Just cook chicken breasts and allow them to cool. Then chop the meat and mix it with cheese, onion, spices, and, of course, Buffalo wing sauce.

I like to serve these pinwheels with celery sticks. You could also provide ranch, veggie dip, blue cheese dressing for dipping if you prefer.

sun-dried tomato and basil inside of cheesy pinwheel appetizer

Sun-Dried Tomato Basil Pinwheels

The filling for these pinwheels is a mixture of cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, garlic, and fresh basil leaves. The green and red elements play off each other, giving these pinwheels a delectable look and flavor. I promise you’ll be finding excuses to serve them.

tortillas rolled up with veggies inside

Veggie Pizza Pinwheels

These Veggie Pizza Roll-Ups combine two of my favorite appetizer ideas into one easy and delicious recipe everyone will love. I like them so much because they are very simple to make and are packed with flavor. I also find it hard to resist any appetizer that involves cream cheese and/or ranch flavoring.

Tortilla Roll-ups stacked into a christmas tree on a plate.

Tortilla Roll-ups with Salsa

This pinwheel recipe gets its visual punch from green flour tortillas. While these pinwheels are delicious with salsa any time of the year, they are perfect for the holidays when stacked in a tree shape and garnished with cherry tomato “ornaments” and a yellow pepper “star.” Can you say, “Oh, tortilla Tannenbaum?”

tortilla roll-ups with bacon and cheese

Cheddar Bacon Ranch Tortilla Pinwheels

In this variation of a classic pinwheel, I boosted the flavor with minced fresh herbs, cooked and chopped thick-cut bacon, and powdered ranch dressing mix. A crowd-pleaser, this pinwheel recipe is another one you’ll want to keep handy during the holiday season.

taco pinwheels with salsa on the side.

Taco Pinwheels

Served with a side of salsa, these taco pinwheels are an easy and flavorful appetizer recipe that’s perfect for entertaining. Mine are made with taco seasoning, cheddar cheese, chicken, olives, and jalapeño, but feel free to customize them with your favorite taco toppings.

black forest ham pinwheels on a platter.

Black Forest Ham Pinwheels

These Black Forest Ham Pinwheels will quickly become your new go-to appetizer recipe. Freshly sliced ham is layered with seasoned cream cheese, dried cherries, green onions, swiss cheese, and just a drizzle of honey to create a flavor combination that’s nearly impossible to resist. 

Pinwheel Sandwiches

An upgrade to the regular sandwiches. Why have plain when you can have it swirled? These are not only delicious but also a visual treat.

Italian Sub Pinwheel Sandwiches with toothpick on a plate.

Italian Sub Pinwheel Sandwiches

These pinwheels channel the flavors of a classic Italian sub. A layer of cream cheese is blended with Italian seasonings and sub fixings, such as chopped banana peppers and black olives. Then it’s all topped with pepperoni, salami, Provolone, tomato slices, and mixed greens.

After rolling the tortillas up, insert a few toothpicks to hold them together. Your guests will want seconds and thirds of these Italian sub pinwheel sandwiches, so make plenty.

BLT Pinwheel Sandwiches lined up and displayed on a large platter.

BLT Pinwheel Sandwiches

These BLT Pinwheel Sandwiches feature fresh romaine lettuce, crispy bacon, juicy tomato, and creamy avocado mayo all rolled up into a perfect bite-size package. Get ready to be the talk of the party with this delicious and crowd-pleasing appetizer!

Dessert Pinwheels

Who said pinwheels are only about the savory? These sweet treats are bound to be the star of your party. Rich and flavorful, yet so light!

red and green Christmas Pinwheel Cookies on a plate.

Pinwheel Cookies

I made these Pinwheel Cookies for Christmas, but you can make them any colors to suit your event or celebration! These will make a colorful and bold addition to your cookie platter.

Cherry Almond Pinwheel Cookies on plate.

Cherry Almond Pinwheel Cookies

Cherry cookie dough and almond cookie dough are swirled together to create these light, crisp, and flavorful Cherry Almond Pinwheel Cookies. If you’re looking to add color, pattern, and festive flavor to your cookie trays, these will do the trick!

Frequently Asked Questions

Before we jump into the recipes, let’s cover some basics. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about making delicious pinwheel recipes. 

Can I make pinwheels the day before?

Yes, you can absolutely make pinwheels the day before. Just make sure you keep the air off of them. Wrap them in plastic food storage wrap or store them in an airtight food storage container.

What are Italian pinwheels made of?

In the following list, I’ll share my favorite pinwheel recipes. Italian pinwheels are really popular. They are usually filled with the same ingredients as an Italian club sandwich – ham, pepperoni, salami, provolone cheese, cream cheese, and Italian spices.

Should I refrigerate pinwheels before cutting them?

Yes, refrigerating the pinwheels before you slice them is a fantastic way to help them hold together better. The cream cheese filling will harden a bit, which keeps all the ingredients rolled up as you cut them into slices.

How do you make pinwheels for kids?

If you know you will serve pinwheels to kids, just use some kid-friendly ingredients. Depending on the crowd, this usually means avoiding veggies inside the pinwheels. Turkey and cream cheese pinwheels are generally kid-friendly choices.

taco pinwheel appetizer on a platter.

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  1. Hi Michael xoxo and a big hug I have tierd these and they didn’t turn out right and they did’nt like them somm one probom I had they didn’t stay together.ops what went wrong try four different kinds to wraps love youpresentations .Gave a hint on how to make look so pretty like yours ???

    1. Hi there. Can you give me a little more information? Which ones did you try? The filling should hold them together. Perhaps you’re not rolling them tight enough?

      xo Michael

  2. Michael, question. I made the Italian sub pinwheels for a football tailgate and they were a huge hit. I have made the sundried tomato ones before and they are my personal favorite. I’m hosting a bridal shower for 60+ ladies and chicken salad is already on the menu. I need a pinwheel without chicken to go as another option. What do you think about ham in with the sundried ones? I feel the sundried ones I can make up ahead easier and I won’t worry with wilty lettuce or soggy tomatoes. Thought or ideas? any other no fail shower food ideas? preferably without oven prep bc the rental facility does not have and it is about 30 in travel.

    1. Stephanie, so glad you like them! Ham could work. I think a turkey or chicken (which I know you said you didn’t want) would be a better flavor combination. You’re welcome to search all of my appetizers HERE, but other than dips, nothing is standing out to me. Hope that helps!

      xo Michael