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Pumpkin Sage Puffs a Great Holiday Appetizer

pumpkin sage puffs

Pumpkin sage puffs. Credit: Laura Holmes Haddad

There’s a lot of waiting on Thanksgiving Day. There’s waiting for family and friends to arrive, waiting for the turkey to roast, waiting for the potatoes to cook. All that waiting makes you work up an appetite, especially, and inevitably, when things run late.

Forget the sad bowl of nuts on the coffee table. Something warm and lovely is in order on Thanksgiving Day. Feed your guests a small bite to hold them over until the main event. These savory, autumn-inspired puffs are just the thing. They’re creamy, crunchy, and bite-sized and perfect with a glass of Champagne. They look fussy but are actually a breeze to pull together.

Pre-baked phyllo cups are found in virtually every supermarket and you can make the filling the night before. Now just don’t keep your guests waiting too long.

Pumpkin Sage Puffs

Makes 30 pieces


2 packages miniature pre-baked phyllo cups

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ small onion, minced

1 15-ounce can pumpkin purée

½ cup ricotta cheese

1 large egg

2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage

3 slices cooked bacon, chopped fine

Salt and freshly ground pepper


1. Place the phyllo cups on two baking sheets. Preheat the oven to 350 F.

2. Heat the olive oil on medium-high heat and add the onions and a good pinch of salt. Sauté the onions until soft and slightly golden, about 5 minutes.

3. To make the filling, whisk the pumpkin, ricotta, and egg together until smooth. Add the sage and bacon, and season with salt and pepper; stir to combine.

4. Fill each cup just to the top with the filling. (You can make the filling one day ahead and keep it in the refrigerator.)

5. Bake for 15 minutes and serve.

Photo: Pumpkin sage puffs. Credit: Laura Holmes Haddad

Zester Daily contributor Laura Holmes Haddad lives with her husband, daughter and son in Northern California, where she writes about wine and food and runs her website, Her latest collaboration is "Plats du Jour: A Journey Through the Seasons in Wine Country" with the girl & the fig restaurant in Sonoma, California, released in November 2011.

  • Mia 11·16·12

    Yum that sounds amazing. I love anything that can be prepared in advance! Can’t wait to try it!

  • DWayne 11·20·12

    I am definitely going straight to the store and purchase the ingredients and serve these hot out of the oven on Thursday with the suggested champagne. Thanks again Laura for what I know will not disappoint.