Green Chile Holiday Pinwheels

In between my book suggestions, I am sprinkling in some New Mexico inspired recipes.  Why?   Because December is one of my favorite times to visit the Land of Enchantment.

Our last Christmas trip was in 2014 and although we seriously thought about returning this year, it just didn’t happen.


Tortilla pinwheels are a staple appetizer, especially around Christmas.  Here’s one with a New Mexico twist.

Green Chile Holiday Pinwheels

Adapted from  New Mexico Magazine, December 2015

Just a little NM twist on classic holiday roll-ups.


  • 10 oz. goat cheese, softened
  • 2 garlic clove, minced
  • 3⁄4 cup chopped roasted mild New Mexican green chiles, fresh or thawed frozen and drained
  • 3 whole-wheat flour tortillas, “burrito size”
  • 1 c. grated mild cheddar cheese
  • 1 can (4.25 oz.) chopped black olives


  1. Combine goat cheese, garlic and green chilies in a food processor and pulse to mix until smooth.
  2. Spread goat cheese mixture over tortillas. Sprinkle each tortilla equally with about 1/3 c. of cheddar cheese and a third of the olives.
  3. Roll tortillas up snugly. Wrap individually in plastic and chill for at least 1 hour or as long as overnight.
  4. Unwrap each tortilla log. Cut with a sharp knife crosswise into 3⁄4-inch pinwheel slices. Arrange on a platter, cover with plastic wrap, and let sit at room temperature a few minutes before serving.
  5. Serve with the salsa of your choice.

Yield: 3 dozen

I served these with some Green Tomato Salsa Verde that I canned up in the late fall.  You could definitely serve the pinwheels with a “Christmas” mix of both red and green salsas.

I’ve made these twice now for holiday functions.  Use whatever cheese you like.  You can definitely use cream cheese instead of the goat cheese.  (We just love goat cheese!)  And, I’ve also used pepper-jack cheese in lieu of the cheddar.  Ramp the heat up if you will by using hotter green chiles.

Make these up for your next holiday get-together, whether it has a New Mexico theme or not.

What’s your favorite version of roll-ups or pinwheels?

What’s to come this holiday season?

  • One more New Mexican inspired “gifts from the kitchen”
  • An heirloom family fruitcake recipe
  • Some more book gift idea (with a chef theme)

Please stay tuned.

Aside:   Almost every year I try my luck and enter our local paper’s “12 Days of Cookies Contest.”   I’ve won honors once in 2014 with a Nutella No-Bake recipe.  (You can read more on my gushing post about the win here.)  Although I didn’t win this year, I got an honorable mention for my Coconut-Orange Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies.  

You can’t imagine my surprise as I spotted my recipe in Saturday’s paper!   After sharing the news with The Hubs, I was told he didn’t remember this recipe so I must need to make them again NOW.  🙂

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My Favorite Reads

Eat, Pray, Love
Running with Scissors
SantaLand Diaries
Me Talk Pretty One Day
Angela's Ashes
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly
My Life in France
Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen: How One Girl Risked Her Marriage, Her Job, and Her Sanity to Master the Art of Living
Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise
A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table
Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
The Liars' Club
Code Name Verity
The Paris Wife
The Shoemaker's Wife
The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo: A Novel
Brother of the More Famous Jack
Burying the Honeysuckle Girls

Debra's favorite books »