Goat Cheese Phyllo Purses

by Shawnda on March 2, 2011

in Appetizers,Holiday Favorites

Stuffed Phyllo Beggar's Purses
Updated from the archive

Food blogging has introduced me to some wonderful people. And one of those wonderful people just happen to be getting married soon! Kelsey, of Apple a Day, will be walking down the aisle in just a few weeks. To celebrate, Amy of Sing for Your Supper, is hosting a virtual bridal shower with a handful of Kelsey’s blogging buddies.

The menu is outstanding. I chose to make Phyllo Purses, or you might know them as Beggar’s Purses: an oozy goat cheese filling wrapped up with a few layers of delicate, crispy phyllo dough. And butter. Where there is phyllo, there is butter!

Stuffed Phyllo Beggar's Purses

Phyllo purses are in my Top 5 favorite appetizers. They look nice, they taste great, and you can fill them with lots of things (spinach-artichoke is one of my faves). They’re not really that much work but I have learned a few tweaks to the technique over the years:

  • Lay everything out – utensils, filling, melted butter, etc – before even opening your package of thawed phyllo.
  • Keep the unused pile of phyllo covered with a barely-damp paper towel (too wet and the top layer will stick to the paper towel)
  • If you put a large hole/tear in one of the three sheets of dough, just add a fourth sheet so you don’t lose any of the filling while baking.
  • Don’t underfill the purses. Underfilling will create too much of a “poof” on top of the purse – one that will get droopy in the oven and fall over sideways before it has time to crisp. It happens. Same great taste, but less impressive presentation.
  • Don’t pull too hard when tying the green onion strips/chives around the purse, they’ll snap. While mostly for appearance, it does aid a bit in keeping the purse closed in the oven.

You can see the full shower menu over at Sing for Your Supper and Apple a Day. We wish Kelsey all the very, very best in a joy-filled future!

Goat Cheese Phyllo Purses

Elegant phyllo purses filled with tangy goat cheese and bacon.


  • 5 oz goat cheese, softened
  • 2 Tbsp chives, chopped
  • 4 slices of pancetta or bacon, cooked to a crisp (prosciutto is good, it's just not crispy)
  • black pepper
  • 6 sheets of phyllo dough
  • 6-8 Tbsp of melted butter
  • Chives or strips of the tops of green onions for tying


  1. Preheat the oven to 400.
  2. Stir together goat cheese, chives, crumbled bacon, and a few grinds of black pepper in a small bowl. If the goat cheese is too hard, put it in the microwave for 10 seconds.
  3. Unroll the phyllo dough onto a dry surface. Remove 1 sheet of phyllo dough and place it on a dry surface (I put a sheet of wax paper between the dough and countertop).
  4. Brush the entire top of the sheet with melted butter.
  5. Top with another sheet of phyllo and brush the top of it with melted butter.
  6. Repeat with one more sheet of phyllo. Cut the stack into 4 equal rectangles.
  7. Place a golf ball-sized filling onto the center of each piece of dough. Gather the sides into a pouch and form a purse, pinching the gathered dough.
  8. Tie a chive or a strip of green onion around the gathered dough.
  9. Place the purse onto a lined baking sheet and lightly brush with melted butter.
  10. Bake for 8-10 minutes until the phyllo purse tops are golden brown and crispy.
  11. Remove from oven and let cool. Serve warm or room temperature


Yields: 8 purses

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 30 minutes


{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Cherine March 2, 2011 at 4:08 am

Those cute purses must be addictive!


2 Lauren at Keep It Sweet March 2, 2011 at 4:55 am

What a perfect shower food. They look so cute and delicious.


3 notyet100 March 2, 2011 at 5:11 am

this looks so yum,..


4 Blog is the New Black March 2, 2011 at 6:48 am

Great recipe! I don’t eat goat cheese myself but these would make a great app. I also can think of a few substituions. Great job!


5 foodiebride March 2, 2011 at 1:40 pm

@Blog is the New Black, Definitely – you can go sweet, savory… it’s incredibly versatile. As long as the filling isn’t too liquidy, you’re golden!


6 Josie March 2, 2011 at 8:11 am

Oh Yum! These little purses are just the cutest (an tastiest looking) app I’ve seen in a while! Perfect for a shower!


7 Kelsey March 2, 2011 at 9:08 am

Shawnda, these are such a beautiful addition to my shower. I just love goat cheese and pancetta, especially together with buttery pastry! I feel so fortunate and so spoiled to have so many wonderful women willing to take their time to do this shower for me. Thank you, thank you!


8 Nikki (Pennies on a Platter) March 2, 2011 at 9:38 am

These are so cute and girly! I might make them for a girls night I have planned for this Saturday. :)


9 Annie March 2, 2011 at 10:13 am

Yummmm. I’ll take a dozen, stat. Thanks.


10 Cara March 2, 2011 at 11:08 am

Another reason we’d get along in real life – our mutual love of goat cheese!


11 Amy @ The Nifty Foodie March 2, 2011 at 11:22 am

How precious are these? They look and sound delicious!


12 Mr & Mrs P March 2, 2011 at 11:37 am


Roughly how big were the squares? Also each purse is only 3 layers thick?


13 foodiebride March 2, 2011 at 1:40 pm

@Mr & Mrs P, Thanks! Yes, each purse has 3 layers. My squares were ~4×6 (the uncut phyllo was ~8×12).


14 Amy (Sing For Your Supper) March 2, 2011 at 11:56 am

Thanks SO much for playing along, Shawnda! These seriously look SO good!


15 branny March 2, 2011 at 12:29 pm

These look delicious and and they are perfect finger food appetizers.


16 Mary @ Delightful Bitefuls March 2, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Ohhh my! This looks silly delicious!!

Great blog; happy I found you!

Mary xx
Delightful Bitefuls


17 Melissa March 2, 2011 at 11:12 pm



18 Bridget March 3, 2011 at 8:22 am

These are adorable, and they include pretty much all of my favorite ingredients!


19 Lovey March 3, 2011 at 9:06 am

These look so cute and tasty! Do you think there is a way to make these without meat and still have a rich flavor?


20 foodiebride March 3, 2011 at 10:43 am

One of my favorite phyllo purses is meatless – a spinach-artichoke dip-like filling. I don’t think you can go wrong as long as you like the combination of flavors and don’t try to use something too liquidy.


21 Briana March 3, 2011 at 9:50 am

These look delicious! I think i will make them to be little “pots o’ gold” for a St. Patty’s day party!


22 Marianne @ Meal Mixer March 4, 2011 at 8:54 am

@Briana, awesome idea!


23 Christina March 3, 2011 at 1:01 pm

I have never used phyllo before but these look fantastic!


24 Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen March 4, 2011 at 7:00 am

TOP 9!!! AWESOME!! Well-deserved!! ?- Katrina


25 Marianne @ Meal Mixer March 4, 2011 at 8:47 am

Good tips! Tying the scallions is pretty tricky. I have made something like this before but used an olive oil in a mister in place of the butter. You lose a bit of the flavor, but it goes a lot faster and takes away some of the fat/calories.


26 Kelsey March 4, 2011 at 3:24 pm

Congratulations on making the Top Nine with this recipe. Way to go!


27 Robina Pirie March 4, 2011 at 4:04 pm

Can these be frozen as I make I will have to make about 250 each weekend for four weeks. Something to pair with vidal icewine.


28 foodiebride March 7, 2011 at 10:18 am

@Robina Pirie, I didn’t freeze any from this batch. If I were going to try it, I’d probably assemble them through pinching the purses and then freeze them on a baking sheet. I wouldn’t tie the chive/green onion strip around them until I was ready to bake. I’ll give the freezer test a try the next time I make these and report back.


29 Claudie March 4, 2011 at 5:11 pm

You know, you are really saving me because I’ve got a bunch of phyllo dough leftover from another recipe… and I wasn’t sure what to make of it. Well, looking at your wonderful purses and having goat cheese and bacon in my fridge, I think it’s pretty clear what I’ll be doing :)


30 Dina @ The Dish and The Dirt March 4, 2011 at 7:03 pm

Those look lovely with so many possibilities. I’m already imagining some type of mushroom mixture in them.


31 Courtney March 5, 2011 at 8:17 am

I love goat cheese, especially when combined with crispy phyllo. They look absolutely stunning, and I love the way you tied them. I cannot wait to try these soon. I don’t think I can wait for a special occasion to roll around because I want these now! :)


32 a frog in the cottage March 7, 2011 at 8:34 am

I love goat cheese, your little purses are just perfect !!


33 Jen @ BeantownBaker.com March 11, 2011 at 1:54 pm

These look so cute and tasty. Too bad this shower wasn’t a really one with all the goodies everyone made!!


34 baobabs April 18, 2011 at 1:41 am

One of my absolute favourites!! in primary school, we used to eat these pouches that were stuffed with meat balls with sweet chilli sauce and they were endearingly called money bags.. nostalgia. looks like quite a feat to get it done beautifully, brava!


35 Meghana December 31, 2011 at 2:24 pm

How do you prevent the goat cheese from coming out while in the oven? I tried using very little for the filling, but it still leaked! :(


36 foodiebride December 31, 2011 at 5:22 pm

Where are they leaking from – the top? Be sure to pull the purses tightly closed And seal at the top. You could also try baking them in a muffin tin if the melting is due to ‘structural issues.’


37 Megan November 4, 2012 at 11:36 am

These look great! I personally am not too crazy about goat cheese so when I make this I will use Brie.


38 Jacki November 9, 2012 at 8:09 am

I will make these but instead of goat cheese I will use cream cheese and crab filling


39 Jacki November 9, 2012 at 8:10 am

I will make these but instead of goat cheese I will use a cream cheese, finely chopped onion and crab meat.


40 foodiebride November 9, 2012 at 10:10 am

That sounds great!


41 Elizabeth January 4, 2013 at 7:28 pm

I added sun dried tomatoes, too….super yummy!!!!


42 Jami November 11, 2013 at 6:30 am

Sounds great, has anyone tried freezing them? Having a large party and trying to prepare ahead if possible.


43 Shawnda November 13, 2013 at 8:32 am

You can freeze them pinched together but don’t tie the green onion around them – from experience I can verify that they ‘strings’ do not do well in the freezer. Set them on the baking sheet and freeze ’til solid. And then carefully transfer them to the freezer bag/container – the tops can be delicate so don’t let anyone set a half gallon of ice cream on the bag. To bake, put on a baking sheet, add the green onion strips, and bake as directed. Minus the green onion strips, they go from freezer to oven pretty easily.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: