Tikvenik is a Bulgarian Pumpkin Strudel and is the perfect alternative to traditional pumpkin pie! Some of you may not know this but I am Bulgarian so every fall growing up my mom made this treat. It just brings so many happy memories of my childhood and I’m so excited to share this recipe with you today!
Full disclosure: I don’t like pumpkin pie. I enjoy many pumpkin desserts and treats pumpkin rolls, cookies, cupcakes, pumpkin bread, but pie is just not one of them. It’s too pumpkiny? But this tikvenik is delicious! It is layers of flaky phyllo dough and the filling is just sweet enough with a hint of cinnamon and the pumpkin flavor comes through but it’s not overwhelming!
How to make tikvenik?
Tikvenik is made out of phyllo (fillo) dough, sweet pumpkin filling and nuts. First you make your pumpkin filling. It’s pumpkin puree, brown sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon and chopped pecans or walnuts. Then you butter your top layer of phyllo dough, spread the filling on one end, grab the 2 top sheets of phyllo dough and gently roll it up into a log and place it in a 9 in round pan. To give you a good visual, watch the video below. It is actually quite easy, but it can seem intimidating. Then you bake it, let it cool fully and sprinkle with powdered sugar. It is quite impressive looking dessert and any pumpkin lover will enjoy!
Tips for working with phyllo dough.
You can find phyllo dough in the freezer aisle of most grocery stores so first things first, make sure you phyllo dough is completely thawed out before starting this recipe! Phyllo dough is very delicate and can tear easily. So take your time and work slowly!
Can you freeze tikvenik?
Yes, you absolutely can freeze tikvenik! Once fully baked and cooled, slice the tikvenik in single serving sizes and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place in the freezer for 1 hour then place in a freezer friendly zip lock bag. Freeze for up to 4 months.
How to make tikvenik vegan?
This recipe for tikvenik can be easily modified to be vegan! The only dairy product used is butter for brushing the layers of phyllo dough to keep it moist but you can just swap that out for either canola oil or melted coconut oil and you have yourself a delicious vegan treat!
Tikvenik Bulgarian Pumpkin Strudel
- 20 phyllo dough sheets defrosted
- 4 tbsp butter melted
- powdered sugar for topping
- 15 oz can pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Spray a 9 in round baking dish with cooking spray.
- In a bowl combine all the ingredients for the filling.
- Brush the top sheet of phyllo dough with a little bit of butter. Spread about 4 tbsp of filling on one end of the sheet. Grab the top two sheets and roll them up gently in a log. Place the first log spiraled in the center of the pan. Repeat with the remaining of the phyllo dough sheets and filling, placing them in the baking dish. Please watch the video below for a better visual on how to place them in the baking dish.
- Brush the top of the phyllo dough with the remaining butter.
- Bake for 35-45 mins or until golden brown.
- Let cool completely before topping with powdered sugar.
For other pumpkin treats check out my Pumpkin Whoopie Pies