Soparnik (Croatian Pie)


About a week and half ago I bought a bunch of locally grown kale as all the kale I grew over the summer had finally been used up. I have slowly been getting through it, mainly adding some to smoothies in the morning, but today I notice that some of the leaves were starting to yellow, which meant I had to use the rest up quickly or it would all go bad and would have to be thrown into the compost.

Luckily I had just the recipe for it. It also gave me an opportunity to use a new gluten free flour blend I received from my sister. While visiting friends she stopped in a cafe that served gluten free goodies and bought some for me to use. Thanks for the flour sis!



With the two main ingredients in hand I set out to make Soparnik.

Soparnik is a traditional Croatian pie dish often attributed to the “poor mans diet”. It consists of two layers of thin dough stuffed with swiss chard. It reminds me of spanakopita from Greece or green onion pancakes from China. Instead of swiss chard I used kale, which works rather well in this dish and I feel keeps with the tradition of using up readily accessible produce.

I used a 12″ pizza plate to shape the pie. The bigger you make it the more traditional, but as only 2 people would be sharing I opted to make a smaller version. A pizza stone or round baking tray would be the best thing to use for baking the pie. I also had some issues trying to form the dough into circles, this could be that my gluten free dough does not have the same stretch that regular dough does, but I was able to get an oval-shaped pie.One thing to remember when you make this dish, you must cut it up into traditional diamonds shapes otherwise it is not Soparnik!







Also remember to sprinkle copious amounts of flour on surface before rolling out, otherwise it is hard to lift off. I found that with the use of an offset knife I could fold the dough over into a tube then roll out onto my pizza sheet. The finished pie is not as flaky or golden brown as those with regular flour but for a gluten free version I think it was a good try. If anyone does try making this at home let me know how you get on with making a flaky golden brown crust.



Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
  • 1 Cup gluten free all-purpose flour
  • ½ Tsp xanthan gum ( do not add if your flour mix already has it)
  • ½ Tsp salt plus ½ Tsp
  • ½ Tsp pepper
  • ½ Tbsp olive oil plus 2 Tbsp
  • ⅔ Cup water
  • Large handful Kale or swiss chard, washed and completely dried
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 Clove garlic, minced
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
  2. In large mixing bowl or bowl of stand mixer add flour, xanthan gum, ½ tsp salt and ½ tbsp olive oil. Start to combine.
  3. Slowly add in water. You may not need all the water or you may need a bit more. The dough should come together in a smooth ball, not too sticky to the touch. Knead for a further 5 minutes.
  4. Divide dough into two balls and leave to rest for an hour in an oiled bowl.
  5. Break up larger pieces of kale and add to a bowl. Add in onion, ½ tsp salt, pepper, and 1 Tbsp olive oil. Mix to combine.
  6. Once dough has rested, dust surface with flour then roll out one ball of dough as thinly as possible. Transfer to baking sheet that has been lined with parchments paper and olive oil.
  7. Add the kale filling on top and press down to remover any air.
  8. Roll out other ball of dough and place on top of kale filling.
  9. Pinch and fold over edges until completely sealed. Prick top with a fork and brush with olive oil.
  10. Bake for 15- 20 minutes. Check on pie before baking for a further 5-10 minutes. Surface should be slightly spongy to the touch.
  11. Remove from oven and flip pie over. Let cool down completely before cutting into diamond shapes.
  12. Add minced garlic and a drizzle of olive oil to the top before serving.


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