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Eliopita, Elioti or Eliopitakia (Cypriot Olive Pies)

Eliopita, Elioti or Eliopitakia (Cypriot Olive Pies)

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Eliopita, Elioti or Eliopitakia are Cypriot olive pastries made either as a bread, as a roulade, as turnovers or a pie, to accompany a cup of coffee or tea.

Elioti Cypriot Olive Bread image

The dough is similar to the basic dough but instead of using water, the dough is made with  fresh orange juice.

For those who are fasting for Greek lent a variety of different food is necessary.

Do you know what Greeks used to have for breakfast some generations back?

Bread and olives, which is part of the Mediterranean Diet and that kept them strong and healthy to work all day in the fields.

Olives sold at a farmers market

Olives are very high in vitamin E and other powerful antioxidants and iron. Studies show that they are good for the heart and may protect against osteoporosis and cancer.

There are many different kinds of olives, with varying flavours and colours. Greece produces the best varieties of olives in the world and I am sure you all know Kalamata olives.   However, there are many more and if you visit Greece you will find them in all groceries, supermarkets or in any farmers’ market where you will find a bigger variety.  Try them to find your favourites.

eliopsomo photo

However, our eating habits have changed over the decades and rarely do people eat bread and olives for breakfast.

However, if you wrap your olives with either phyllo or yeasted dough, this is something you will want  for breakfast every day!

Eliopita tylichti or strifti

Eliopita tylichti (roulade) or strifti (twisted), is made by rolling a big piece of phyllo, with or without yeast, and filling it with olives, onions and aromatic herbs which is then made into a roulade.

Eliopita filling picture
The dough can be made with or without yeast
Eliopita roulade photo

The one with yeasted dough makes a much thicker crust.

eliopita with Kalamata olives image

Strifti means twisted because the roulade edges are twisted in opposite directions.

Eliopita strifti image
Eliopita strifti (twisted)


Preparing eliopitakia photo

Eliopitakia is the diminutive of eliopita, so these are mini olive pies, which are usually served as finger food at parties.

Small eliopitakia picture

You can also make small turnovers.  

These were made with yeasted dough but you can also make them with phyllo, same way as Kolokotes (pumpkin turnovers).

Roll out the dough, cut it into discs, using a small plate as your guide, add the filling on one side, cover with the other half and press with a fork to enclose the filling.  Bake until golden.

Elioti or Eliopsomo (olive bread)

Elioti or eliopsomo, is a bread with olives.

The filling ingredients are the same for all three.

Filling ingredients for a dough made with 500 grams all-purpose flour:

  • 100 grams throumbes olives or Kalamata olives, pitted
  • 80 grams crumbled feta (optional)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley or coriander (cilantro)
  • 1 tbsp dried mint
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, to wet a 24 – 26 cm baking tin.

To make this Cypriot olive bread, you mix the olives as well as the other ingredients into the bread dough during the kneading process. The olives contribute their savoury and slightly tangy flavour to the bread.

The resulting bread can be enjoyed on its own or as an accompaniment to various dishes.


The difference from Throumbes olives and Kalamata olives is that throumbes mash easily, so the dough comes out slightly darker.

The addition of feta is not traditional in Cyprus, but occasionally, I like adding some in the filling as well!

Elioti with feta image

You then mix the filling ingredients in the dough and let it rise.  

Eliopsomo (olive bread)

The most simple form of the bread is to make a yeasted dough and mix in some whole black Kalamata olives, together with the pit.

You then bake it as you would bake any other bread.  

Eliopsomo olive bread image

This is called Eliopsomo, which means “Olive Bread”.  See also my other Olive Bread with Rosemary.

throubes olives image
Throubes olives

You can use Kalamata olives, green olives but my favourite for eliopita are throubes olives.  

These olives mature on the tree until they wrinkle and look like raisins but much bigger, that’s why in Greece they call them “stafidiasmenes”, which means wrinkled like raisins.  

The best variety is that of Thassos island, which are naturally sweet.  Other varieties of throubes  from other regions, are cured in salt so that their bitterness is removed.

I have twisted this basic recipe many times and one of my creations is this delicious Savoury Cake with Olives.

olive cake image

Whether you make Eliotes, Eliopitakia, Eliopsomo or Olive Cake, I am sure you will love it, not only during Lent period but any time of the year.

This and many more pastry recipes are included in Volume 2 of my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste and many other recipes in Volume 1 of my e-cookbook, sold on all Amazon stores.

olive bread and turnovers image

You can find more Lenten Recipes clicking on the link.

Eliopita roulade image

Eliopita, Elioti or Eliopitakia (Cypriot olive pies)

Yield: 2 roulades
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

Eliopita, Elioti or Eliopitakia are Cypriot olive pastries made either as a bread, as a roulade, as turnovers or a pie, to accompany a cup of coffee or tea.


Dough for Eliopitakia:

  • 250 grams bread flour
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • Olive oil to brush it on top
  • Sesame seeds to sprinkle on top

Dough for Elioti (Roulade) or Eliopita (bread)

  • 500 grams bread flour
  • 8 grams dried yeast
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup lukewarm water
  • Olive oil to brush it on top
  • Sesame seeds to sprinkle on top


  • 250 grams, pitted throubes or Kalamata olives, washed, rinsed, stoned and chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 fresh spring onions, including part of the green leaves, finely chopped
  • ½ cup fresh mint (or 2 - 3 tbsp dried mint)
  • 1/2 cup fresh coriander (cilantro) or parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp olive oil


For Eliopitakia:

  1. Prepare the dough and set aside to rest for half an hour.
  2. Mix all the filling ingredients together.
  3. Roll out the phyllo manually or using a pasta maker.
  4. Cut phyllo into 6 x 8 cm pieces. Add some filling on one side and make a roll. Press edges with a fork to seal in the filling.
  5. Brush with olive oil on top. Sprinkle some sesame seeds.
  6. Line a baking tin with parchment paper or slightly grease it.
  7. Place them in the tin next to each other and bake in a preheated oven to 180o C / 350o F, for 35-45 minutes or until golden brown.

For Eliopita (roulade):

  1. Put the yeast, sugar, a couple tablespoons flour and lukewarm water. Mix and cover with a napkin until you see bubbles forming.
  2. Put the flour, olive oil and salt in your mixer bowl with the hook attached and mix. Add the starter, mix and then add the orange juice. Cover with a napkin and let the dough rise.
  3. When the dough is ready, divide it into two pieces. Roll out the dough into a thin phyllo and spread half of the filling all over and roll it to form into a roulade. Continue with the second one.
  4. Cover with cling film and a napkin and let them rise.
  5. Brush them with olive oil and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven to 180o C, for about 30 minutes

For Elioti (Olive Bread):

  1. Prepare the dough as above. Add the olives with all the other ingredients and knead the dough until they are incorporated in the bread.
  2. Place it in a greased baking pan. Cover with cling film and a napkin and set aside to rise. Brush it with olive oil.
  3. Bake in a preheated oven to 180o C, for 50 - 60 minutes or until golden on top.


For Eliotes:

Some people just prepare yeasted dough, as above and just add whole olives, with the pits, in the bread dough.

Nutrition Information
Yield 2 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 1830Total Fat 94gSaturated Fat 13gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 76gCholesterol 0mgSodium 1981mgCarbohydrates 214gFiber 14gSugar 17gProtein 37g

"These values are automatically calculated and offered for guidance only. Their accuracy is not guaranteed."

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Trish Lathourakis

Wednesday 4th of March 2009

Hey Ivy

I have been searching for these for a long time as the last time I had proper ones I was in my Yiayia's vilage in Prothromos.

Whenever my famliy bakes bread, we always use OJ, but also cinnamon water, it just gives it a nice subtle spice and colour to the dough.

Can't wait to try them this weekend : )

Passionate baker...& beyond

Saturday 22nd of March 2008

Have a good Easter Ivy. I love the traditional meals you post. Throws light on a new cuisine. These are wonderful! Ciao for now!


Friday 21st of March 2008

I love being introduced to all these dishes.

Susan from Food Blogga

Thursday 20th of March 2008

I wouldn't have any problem switching my oatmeal for this breakfast, Ivy. I love these!


Thursday 20th of March 2008

Oh my these would be lovely for breakfast Ivy. Sounds wonderful :D

Rosie x

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