Pinwheel Sandwiches

With holiday gatherings coming up there can be an awful lot of things that you need to take a plate of something to. A couple of weeks ago I was part of a choir festival that raised money for local food banks and we were each asked to bring something for the refreshment tables. I’m always happy to contribute, but this year was the first year I really felt uncomfortable bringing something that might not be plant based. Part of my interest in plant based cooking is that I want to serve the best possible foods to my family and friends, foods that promote healthy, long and happy lives. Preparing to bring a plate to an event I felt the same way – I only wanted to bring something that contributed to others’ well being.

A week or so before I had been at another fundraiser and I noticed how cute the pinwheel sandwiches were. At the time they both contained dairy or eggs, but I really loved how they had used red and green tortillas to make them festive. I figured I could come up with a plant-based version to share.


Pictured above are the leftovers that missed the platter for the choir festival. I used a garlic-flavoured hummus, arugula, and roasted red pepper strips with a sundried tomato flavoured tortilla.

Here is a quick tutorial on how to make hummus-wrap style ones. Below are instructions for a “meat”-salad style version.

Pictured below is a “ham” salad version where I used leftover fake ham diced small with vegan mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, green onion, celery, and cilantro. These are pictured with a West African Peanut Soup that my roommate made from a Moosewood cookbook (more on this in an upcoming post).


Here is my prep, lots of diced stuff…


Then loading up the tortillas, heavier on the side I’m rolling from…


I post this not as a recipe, but to give you an idea of tiny snacks that you might be able to bring along to functions you attend, and to give a few tips that I’ve learned in making them.

  • Make sure you have one kind of wet ingredient. For me it was the hummus, or the mayonnaise in the “ham”-salad.
  • Try to have a few colours inside so that the cross sections look interesting.
  • Put things more on the initial side that you will roll from, as in the picture below.
  • Have a tiny bit of war water handy. I use it to seal both the inside and outside of the roll, not unlike how some people seal up the ends of seaweed when making kimbap or sushi.
  • Wrap the rolled up tortilla tightly in saran wrap, twisting the ends shut. This helps them seal and keep their round shape.
  • Refrigerate for at least an hour. My leftover roll that I sliced the next day was much easier to slice, so even making them up the night before would be great.
  • When you take them out of the fridge, slice them with a nice sharp knife. You shouldn’t be sawing through them, just a quick cut.
  • Also like sushi, don’t worry about the ends being funny. Some will slice neater than others, you can always taste test any that aren’t quite perfect as a form of quality control.
  • Have fun and be creative! If you have any great combination ideas I’d love it if you posted below.

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