wikiHow to Make Pinwheel Sandwiches

Three Parts:Preparing Pinwheel SandwichesServing Pinwheel SandwichesCustomizing Your Pinwheel Sandwich

Pinwheel sandwiches are small sandwiches that are curled up into a roll. Depending on the topping used, pinwheel sandwiches are very versatile; they're great for afternoon tea and elegant enough for cocktail parties. As an added bonus, these sandwiches are a perfect size for little fingers and are wonderful at kids' parties. Even if you're not used to preparing your own appetizers, pinwheel sandwiches are fairly simple to make. Once you've got the basics down, you can customize them to suit the tastes of you and your guests.

Part 1
Preparing Pinwheel Sandwiches

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    Make thin bread slices.[1] Begin with a loaf of your favourite sandwich bread. Cut thin slices lengthwise across the loaf. The thinner you make the slices, the easier it will be to roll them into wheels. As you cut, make an effort to keep the slices at a consistent thickness.
    • Cutting your loaf lengthwise will allow you to make longer pinwheel sandwiches.[2]
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    Cut crusts off of bread slices.[3] Although some people already prefer sandwiches without the crust, removing them is a necessity when making pinwheel sandwiches. Take a knife and slice out whatever crust is around the slice. Try to cut as little of the soft bread away as you can.
    • Unlike a regular sandwich, only one slice of bread will be used for each sandwich.
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    Flatten the bread with a rolling pin.[4] Sandwich bread tends to be light and fluffy when cut off a loaf. Flatten it down with a rolling pin to spread out the bread and compress the slice. On top of increasing the surface you'll be able to layer, flattened bread is also easier for rolling.
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    Moisten the bread with butter. Take a knife and spread butter on the side of the bread you'll be putting ingredients on. This will help keep the bread moist and enable easier rolling when it comes time to shape the sandwich.
    • You may butter the bread on both sides if you're concerned the roll won't be moist enough.
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    Layer your bread with a spread.[5] Cream cheese, mayonnaise, and jam are all great choices for a sandwich spread. Once you have a layer of butter, lay down a spread, covering the surface of the bread evenly. Once you have the bread covered to your satisfaction, you can use the knife to even out the spread a little more.
    • Layering your sandwiches with multiple spreads can be a good idea, although certain spreads may not compliment each other.
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    Add wafer-thin ingredients on top of the bread. Remember that you'll need to roll your sandwich so you need to avoid overfilling the bread. Ham and salami are great choices because they're usually cut very thin by default and roll up easily. Although ingredients like sliced ham won't add much height on their own, you should be wary of the fact you'll want to ultimately roll up the bread when you're done.[6]
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    Roll up the bread like a burrito. When all of the ingredients are set on the bread, take one side and begin to roll the bread over itself, as you might when preparing a burrito. If you cut your slices to be long by default, roll it up from one short side to the other.[7]
    • The rolling and subsequent cutting of pinwheel sandwiches bears a lot in common with sushi.[8]
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    Roll into plastic wrap.[9] After making the sandwiches, immediately roll each wrapped sandwich in plastic wrap. Flatten out a piece of plastic wrap and roll the plastic along the sides and edges so no air is getting to the sandwiches.
    • If you'd like to cut the sandwiches before refrigerating them, just make sure to wrap the platter of cut-sandwiches very well or they may dry out quickly.
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    Refrigerate for half an hour. Although pinwheel sandwiches are good for eating immediately after cutting, wrapping and refrigerating them for half an hour will help them to keep their distinctive shape.[10]
    • If you're serving sandwiches on a hot day or the fillings of the sandwich are cold (like cream cheese), you may want to refrigerate them a little longer. Sandwiches can be refrigerated from 30 minutes up to one day.

Part 2
Serving Pinwheel Sandwiches

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    Cut each roll into bite-size pieces. When you have rolled your bread slices up, you should have one or more burrito shaped rolls. In order to make them into pinwheel sandwiches, take a knife and hew them into evenly-sized chunks. Cut them into bite-sized chunks that are similar in size to bites of sushi.
    • If you want a proper measurement, cut the pieces in one inch segments.[11] An inch length is a good bite-size for this type of sandwich.
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    Slice off excess pieces.[12] If you've sufficiently loaded your sandwiches, there's a good chance there will be ingredients that are protruding from the bread once you've rolled it up. If there's anything sticking out from your roll, snip it off as close to the roll as you can.
    • If you're short and time and aren't trying to make perfect pinwheels, you don't necessarily have to trim the excess pieces. But doing so will make your pinwheels look more professional.
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    Secure your pinwheel pieces with a toothpick. Although pinwheel sandwiches do a reasonably good job of holding their shape, locking them down with a toothpick will make sure they don't unfurl before being eaten. Before you present them, impale them down the centre with one toothpick each.
    • If you're packing the sandwiches for children, it may be best for safety's sake to go without the toothpicks. The same applies to serving the very elderly.
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    Serve on a party platter. Pinwheel sandwiches are a perfect party food. Because they look great as a finger food, you should put some effort into the way you present them on a platter. The most common way to do this is to ring them around the perimeter of the platter, working your way in as you fill the tray.
    • Including a dipping sauce in the center of the platter will be a hit if you're serving a group.
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    Pack in school lunches. Pinwheel sandwiches are small enough to fit snugly into a kid's lunch box. Seal them in ziploc bags to preserve their freshness. Because of their small size, you should be able to pack three or four into one bag. If you're making them specifically for a child, you should fill them with his favourite ingredients.

Part 3
Customizing Your Pinwheel Sandwich

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    Choose a different type of bread. While dense white bread is the standard bread for pinwheel sandwiches, you can easily swap it out for a lighter or more interesting option. Tortillas (whole-wheat or flour) are a good choice for beginners since they're easy to roll and don't have crusts to trim.[13]
    • You could also try Hawaiian bread, pita bread, brioche or naan. Just be sure to roll the breads so they're flat before you make your sandwich.
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    Use a creative spread. If you want to keep your pinwheel sandwich simple and classic, spread the bread with butter, mayonnaise or mustard. This can be a good idea if you're making a lot of sandwiches for a crowd. But if you're feeling more adventurous, consider using:
    • Hummus
    • Refried beans
    • Salsa
    • Pesto
    • Pizza sauce
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    Choose savory fillings. Create a variety of savory pinwheel sandwiches so people can choose what they like. Make a few simple options like a ham and cheese or shredded chicken pinwheel sandwich. You should also play around with other combinations of meats, eggs, tofu, and seasonings.[14][15]
    • Think about some of your favorite meals and try to recreate those flavors in a sandwich. For example, you might make a pizza-style, southwestern, or Thai pinwheel sandwich.
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    Try sweet fillings. Pinwheel sandwiches can also make great desserts if you use sweet fillings. Or, you could make a salty-sweet flavor combination by combining a savory meat (like turkey) with a sweet filling (like cranberry sauce). Examples of sweet fillings include:[16]
    • Flavored yogurt
    • Sweetened cream cheese
    • Chocolate spread
    • Peanut butter
    • Honey
    • Cranberry sauce
    • Thin slices of apple, pear, banana or strawberry
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    Make a vegetarian sandwich. There are a lot of options for a vegetarian sandwich (which also make great additions to meat sandwiches too). Select several vegetables, but keep in mind that they should be sliced thin so they roll easily and are easy to eat. If using a vegetable with high water content (like cucumber or tomato) make sure to apply a spread to prevent the bread from becoming soggy. Good vegetable options include:[17][18]
    • Tomato
    • Fresh spinach leaves
    • Lettuce
    • Shredded carrots
    • Strips of bell pepper


  • Be careful with toothpicks if you are making the sandwiches for young children or the very elderly. They may not notice them and bite them. Try to use toppings that won't require the toothpick.
  • You won't be able to make pinwheel sandwiches unless you are using soft bread.[19]

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Categories: Party Snacks