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Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo) is SO easy to make and is the perfect addition to any meal. You will love the chewy bread and cheesy center.
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This Pao De Queijo Recipe, or Brazilian Cheese Bread, is the stuff dreams are made of! I originally discovered it at a restaurant called Tucanos Brazilian Grill. Every time I go to Tucanos, I seriously have to try to limit myself to only a few of these little cheese rolls or I will completely go to town on them. I found a great recipe on the back of a bag of Bob’s Red Mill tapioca flour and gave it a try. I switched up the cheese to sharp cheddar to enhance the flavor, and they are so good! If you haven’t had these rolls before, now is the time! Oh, and did I mention they are GLUTEN FREE?! So this one is for all of my gluten-free friends out there!
Ingredients in Brazilian Cheese Bread
The ingredients used to make this Pao de Queijo recipe are very simple. Here’s what you need:
- Oil – Vegetable oil works best for this recipe.
- Tapioca Flour (or Tapioca Starch) – You can also use cassava flour (pretty much the same thing). This is the main binding agent for the pão de queijo.
- Cheese – any kind of shredded cheese will work. Parmesan and cheddar cheese are the two that are most commonly used, but you could add mozzarella, colby jack, just about anything you like.
What is Pao de Queijo?
Literally translated to “cheese bread” in Portuguese, these small, round, baked cheese rolls are a popular snack and breakfast food in Brazil. And even though it’s called “bread”, the dough doesn’t use yeast (hence, gluten-free!) and the consistency is sort of in between a cake batter and cookie dough and is extremely stretchy. These cheese rolls are actually really cool to make, and even more fun to eat! If you want to create a delicious Brazilian feast, serve these yummy rolls alongside a helping of our Brazilian Rice and Beans with Sausage. You won’t believe how quickly this meal comes together, yet it looks like you spent hours creating this masterpiece!
Two Easy Ways to Make Brazilian Cheese Bread
1. The Authentic Way – The first way is the more “authentic” way to make them. There is a little more technique and skill involved. This is the way as described in the recipe below.
2. The Blender Method – This is the best way to make Brazilian cheese bread if you are in a hurry or simply want to make things easier on yourself. I honestly can’t tell much a difference between the two methods. I am all about ease and usually find myself putting it all in a blender more often than not. Here’s what you do:
- Preheat oven to 400-degrees
- Put all the ingredients except the cheese in a blender.
- Blend until smooth (about 20 seconds) then scrape the sides of the blender.
- Add cheese and pulse 3-4 times to incorporate.
- Spray a mini muffin pan with cooking spray and fill each cup with the cheese mixture until almost full.
- Place in the oven and bake 15-20 minutes or until the outside of the rolls are golden brown and puffed up. Do not over bake! The texture on the outside is more dry and “bread” like and the inside is more soft and chewy.
Frequently Asked Questions About Brazilian Cheese Bread
Don’t worry if the inside is a bit gooey. Because the rolls are made with tapioca flour it has a natural gooey quality even when they’re cooked. They will taste delicious!
Cornstarch makes a great replacement for tapioca flour if you can’t find it and you can’t tell the difference!
The best way to store this Brazilian cheese bread is tightly covered with as much air squeezed out as possible. It can be kept at room temperature overnight, in the fridge for three days, or in the freezer for up to two months.
READ MORE: 35+Quick and Easy to Follow Dinner Ideas
More Roll Recipes
In our family, a dinner is truly not complete without a side of bread or rolls. Here are a few of our tried and true recipes for you to add to your dinner table!
How to Make Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo)
Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo)
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups tapioca flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill — I found mine in the gluten-free section of the grocery store)
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese get a small block of Parmesan and shred it yourself… it makes a BIG difference
- 3/4 cup sharp or medium cheddar cheese shredded (shred yourself, just like the Parmesan)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Combine the milk, oil, and salt in the saucepan, and whisking occasionally, bring it to a gentle boil over medium heat. Remove from heat as soon as you see big bubbles coming through the milk.
- Add all of the tapioca flour to the saucepan and stir until you see no more dry tapioca flour. The dough will be grainy and gelatinous at this point.
- Transfer the dough to the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. (Alternatively, you can do the next few steps by hand. Be prepared for a work-out.) Beat the dough for a few minutes at medium speed until it smooths out and has cooled enough that you can hold your finger against the dough for several seconds.
- Whisk the eggs together in a small bowl. With the mixer on medium, beat the eggs into the dough in two additions. Wait until the first addition has been fully incorporated into the dough before adding the second. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- With the mixer on medium, beat in the cheese until fully incorporated. The resulting dough will be very sticky, stretchy, and soft with a consistency between cake batter and cookie dough.
- Using an ice cream scoop, a tablespoon measure, or a dinner spoon, scoop rounded portions of the dough into mounds on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Space the mounds an inch or two apart. Dip your scoop in water or spray with cooking spray to prevent sticking.
- Transfer the sheet with the puffs to the oven and bake for 25-28 minutes, until the puffs have puffed, the outsides are dry, and they are JUST starting to color. Do not over bake! Cool briefly and eat.
- Cornstarch makes a great replacement for tapioca flour if you can’t find it and you can’t tell the difference!
- Do not over bake! The texture on the outside is more dry and “bread” like and the inside is more soft and chewy.
- Don’t worry if the inside is a bit gooey. Because the rolls are made with tapioca flour it has a natural gooey quality even when they’re cooked. They will taste delicious!
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Why are mine hollow in the middle?
They are supposed to be hollow in the middle!
Didn’t realize that using the blender method these would be liquid. So, not having a muffin tin I just poured the batter into an 8×8 baking pan. No rolls of course but a beautifully bubbly delicious bread. Well not really bread. More like gushy cheesey pastry. Who cares? It’s low fodmap and oh so yummy. Used Gruyère instead of cheddar!
Hi, I made a batch of rolls last week and they were perfect. An absolute hit with the family. Today I made them again and had an issue were the mixture split and the oil started to separate from the milk and tapioca flour. Any ideas as to were I went wrong?
I am not sure why that happened, but I have seen some recipes that suggest adding another egg to the batter as a cure for breaking!
Eureka! After testing so many recipes off the internet that all turned out to be a dud, I have finally been rewarded with the best pao de queijo recipe ever. My son is obsessed with brazi bites but they are not always available the market and they’ve gotten quite expensive. I also prefer to make my own so I can use organic cheese and eggs and avocado oil. This is it!!! I would add more cheddar and less Parmesan instead of equal amounts so the flavor is less sharp. But overall… this recipe is a winner. Thank you for sharing.
Please note gluten does not come from yeast but from the grain used.
Good point. People are so easily
easily confused it’s amazing. There are people right now wondering if only Brazilians can eat these rolls or maybe Brazilian tourists!
“Is it okay for me to eat Brazilian Cheese Rolls in Canada? I don’t have Celiac.
My husband and I loved snacking on brazi bites (which came frozen ) this recipe looks so good! I wonder if I can freeze these and cook them later ? So that way I’ll always have some ready to eat if I make them ahead of time ?
Yes, you could definitely freeze them.
Hello. Can I omit the cheese altogether? I cannot have dairy.
The cheese is what makes up the texture, so it won’t work if the cheese is left out. Sorry!
I am dairy free also and I plan on using dairy free cheeses!
Is it okay to use a mixed Mexican cheese pack (jack, queso, cheddar) to substitute the two cheeses you have?
We haven’t tried it with other cheeses, but I think it would be okay!
What is the serving size? Are there 9 carbs per 2 inch roll? Also, does it have to be vegetable oil? Would olive, avocado, or grapeseed oil work?
Yes, the serving size for the nutrition facts is 1 roll. We haven’t used any other kind of oil, so I can’t say if those would work.
Can you use a nut or coconut milk with this recipe?
We haven’t tried any milk substitutes with this recipe yet, but let us know how it goes if you do try it!
Well I tried this recipe for my first attempt at Pao de Queijo and they turned out pretty great! Beautiful texture! I have no idea how other commenters are saying theirs came out runny. In step 4 my dough didn’t really ‘smooth out’ until I added the eggs though. I would recommend adding a sprinkle of garlic salt on top before you pop them in the oven. Delicious, thanks!
Hi. Your recipe looks delicious especially as I am a cheese lover. I have a pack of cassava flour in my pantry. Both tapioca flour and cassava flour are from the cassava plant but there is a slight difference I think. Any advice?
I haven’t used cassava flour, but from what I can find online, you should be able to substitute it!
Can I make the dough in the morning and portion and cook later?
It will taste better if made fresh. Thanks for asking!
I love Brazilian Cheese bread and yours was so good! My whole family loved them and have already asked me to make them again. Your directions were so easy to follow..Thanks so much!
This recipe needs to come with a disclaimer warning everyone that you will want to eat every last one of these, haha! Seriously, they’re amazing!!
My husband spent time in Brazil and LOVED this snack. He approves of your version of this recipe!! SO good and SO easy to make. Thank you!
This cheese bread recipe is a family favorite! So easy to make and buns are so soft and fluffy!
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