Savoury baklava

Savoury baklava

Use up leftover pumpkin in this tasty recipe

I make my savoury baklava from roasted pumpkin and pistachios that I layer between flaky sheets of filo pastry. I then drizzle a honey mustard & thyme syrup over the baklava.

This recipe has been influenced by Greek and Middle Eastern cuisine and it produces a flavourful pastry that is ideal as a vegetarian dinner or lunch.

A twist on the traditional sweet dish

Baklava is traditionally a sweet dish made of sheets of filo pastry (also known as phyllo or fillo) that are brushed with butter and layered in a large baking dish with chopped nuts (typically walnuts or pistachios). The baklava is chilled and cut into diamond shapes before being baked in the oven. Often a honey-based syrup is then poured over the pastry dish to soak in before serving.

My savoury version consists of a mashed roasted pumpkin, red onion, thyme and roasted pistachio filling that you layer between sheets of crisp filo pastry. You then pour a honey, wholegrain mustard and lemon syrup over the top of the baklava and garnish it with fresh thyme leaves and pistachios.

When you eat this dish, you can taste the crunchy pastry combined with soft pumpkin, roasted pistachios and sweet yet citrusy honey syrup.

You should make savoury baklava because it is:

  • Seasonal: pumpkin is now in season (spring).
  • Crunchy, buttery and a moreish main meal.
  • Good for a dinner party because you can make it in advance, chill it in the fridge and then bake it just before your guests arrive.

Savoury baklava’s main ingredients:

  • Pumpkin
  • Filo pastry
  • Pistachios
  • Honey
  • Mustard
  • Lemon
  • Thyme

Tips for busy cooks

You can use store-bought frozen pumpkin chunks instead of fresh pumpkin if you need to save time.

Use dried thyme for the garnish if fresh thyme isn’t available.

Swap pistachios for chopped walnuts if you prefer.

Serving suggestions:

  1. Dinner: serve with fresh Greek salad.
  2. Lunch: eat with a green salad or roasted veggies.

Pumpkin rules!

This recipe is a great way to make pumpkin taste delicious. Pumpkin’s naturally sweet orange flesh is enhanced by the nuts, honey, mustard and lemon in this dish.

Will you use pistachios in this savoury baklava? Or, will you use walnuts?

Let me know by leaving a comment and a recipe rating below – I’d love to hear from you.

Do you love pumpkin? Here is another recipe for you to try: roasted pumpkin and sumac dip

Have you got leftover filo pastry? Use it in this recipe: rice pudding filo cups

Savoury baklava

This savoury baklava is made from roasted pumpkin, pistachios and crunchy filo pastry that is drizzled with a honey mustard & thyme syrup. It makes a flavoursome vegetarian dinner or lunch.
Meal Type Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Greek-Inspired, Middle Eastern-Inspired
Keyword Baklava, Vegetarian
Chill in fridge 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 4
Author Veg Coast Cook


  • 1 kg pumpkin cut into quarters, seeds removed,
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 medium red onion finely sliced
  • 1 clove of garlic crushed
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil reserve 1 tsp for glaze
  • 120 g chopped pistachios lightly roasted
  • Salt and pepper
  • 40 g unsalted butter melted
  • 200 g chilled filo pastry
  • 1 tbsp runny honey
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • Olive oil spray for greasing


  1. Preheat oven to 200°C fan, line a baking tray with greaseproof paper and grease a large rectangular ovenproof dish.
  2. Put pumpkin quarters on lined baking tray, sprinkle with 1 tsp dried thyme, cover with foil and bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes or until the flesh is soft. Remove from oven, scoop out pumpkin flesh and put into a bowl and mash.
  3. Put mashed pumpkin into sieve and press down with a spoon to get rid of some of the liquid coming out of the flesh so that you are left with a drier pumpkin mixture.
  4. Fry onion and garlic in 1 tsp olive oil in a medium saucepan over a low heat for 3 minutes. Add mashed pumpkin and most of the roasted chopped pistachios (reserving around one tablespoon for the topping) and season with salt & pepper. Stir and cook for a further 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

  5. Brush each sheet of filo with butter and lay a third of the pastry in the ovenproof dish. Top with half of the pumpkin mixture. Add half of the remaining pastry, ensuring each sheet is brushed with butter. Add remaining pumpkin mixture and top with remaining pastry. Brush top layer of filo with butter. Chill baklava in fridge for 20 minutes then slice into large diamond shapes.

  6. Bake baklava in oven for 45 – 60 minutes until golden. Cover with foil if the top gets too brown. Remove from oven.
  7. Combine 1 tsp oil and the honey, mustard and thyme in a saucepan and simmer gently over a low heat for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. Pour over still warm baklava, scatter remaining pistachios and some fresh thyme leaves on top and serve a slice with a fresh Greek salad.

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