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Gluten free pão de queijo (Brazilian cheese bread) recipe

Gluten free pão de queijo (Brazilian cheese bread) recipe

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  • Bread
  • Bread for special diets

These delicious Brazilian cheese balls are gluten free and suitable for those coping with coeliac disease. Try experimenting with different types of herbs and cheeses to achieve a variation on the result.

46 people made this

IngredientsServes: 6

  • 120ml olive oil or butter
  • 80ml water
  • 80ml milk or soya milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 270g tapioca flour
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 55g freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 beaten eggs

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:20min ›Ready in:30min

  1. Preheat oven to 190 C / Gas 5.
  2. Pour olive oil, water, milk, and salt into a large saucepan, and place over high heat. When the mixture comes to the boil, remove from heat immediately, and stir in tapioca flour and garlic until smooth. Set aside to rest for 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Stir the cheese and egg into the tapioca mixture until well combined, the mixture will be chunky like cottage cheese. Drop rounded balls, about 2 to 3 tablespoons worth, of the mixture onto an ungreased baking tray.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven until the tops are lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(267)

Reviews in English (212)

The whole family loved these. I didn't have just tapioca flour so used a mixed gluten free flour. Puffed up beautifully and light fluffy texture.-23 Aug 2017

by luv2cook

I lived in Brazil, in the state that made this bread famous, for almost 5 years. I was so excited when I read the "bad" review that the bread was "rubbery." That is exactly the way it's supposed to be! Yeah! I did take out the garlic as that's not a normal thing for this bread, and I switched the ratio of water and oil as there was WAY too much oil in it. Overall, was great to find this recipe. My husband loves it and it helps with the home sickness!-18 Jul 2008


This recipe turned out perfectly for luncheon today - crispy on the outside, almost creamy on the inside. My children loved it and decided it tastes like Cheetos only better! I used the exact proportions stated in the recipe but omitted the garlic because I wanted the cheese to predominate.If you don't let the dough rest 15 minutes before you put in the cheese and egg, it will be very runny like a crepe batter.Things I Did Differently:I used grape seed oil instead of olive oil and warmed the liquid ingredients in the microwave until a little white foam appeared on the top of the mixture. I did the rest of the mixing as instructed except I hand kneaded the dough a bit in the bowl to get a smoother mixture. I used the 1 & 1/2 inch scoop that I use to make drop cookies to put the dough on the cookie sheet. But then, I went back and rolled each little ball between my well-oiled hands to smooth them. I had to bake them a little longer, but then, my oven's always slow.-23 Jun 2008

Authentic Brazilian Cheese Bread - Pão de Queijo

Published: March 22, 2019 • Modified: May 17, 2021 • by Author: Analida • Word count:1531 words. • About 8 minutes to read this article.

In Portuguese, the name is pão de queijo. I heard a lot about this authentic Brazilian cheese bread my gluten-free friend. She's a celiac, and therefore no wheat. I've always been intrigued for a long time.

I recently met a lady from Brazil at a conference. Her name is Claudia, and she runs a hip and successful lifestyle blog called Trendy Latina. She covers topics from movies to recipes to travel and beauty. I encourage you to check it out. Needless to say, we got to talking about food, and I asked her if I could share her recipe for authentic Brazilian cheese bread - pāo de queijo on this blog. She readily agreed. I am now very excited to share it with you.

Grain Free Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo)

Cheese Bread! Need I say more. You are going to LOVE this Grain Free Brazilian Cheese Bread recipe!

Last week, I told you guys about my Sunday Farmer’s Market ritual. I mentioned the Brazilian Cheese Bread that my Little One loves. It got me thinking about those light, fluffy, chewy balls of goodness and decided to share the recipe with all of you bread lovers out there.

Brazilian Cheese Bread (also called Pao de Queijo) is a small, baked, cheese-flavored roll popular in Brazil. Being made from tapioca flour, they are naturally grain and gluten free. They can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, or savory little snacks. They make excellent tiny little mini sandwiches. Oh, and they are especially delicious steaming hot out of the oven.

And the best thing is that they are super easy to whip up. You don’t actually have to know how to bake bread to enjoy these savory little cheese puffs. But your family might be seriously impressed if you do.

Feeling creative? The recipe I am sharing is for a basic cheese bread using Parmesan cheese. Feel free to experiment with other cheeses. I love this with Queso Fresco. I have also added fun things like fresh herbs, bacon, olives, and goat cheese.

A note about the milk: You can use any milk of choice for this recipe. Traditionally, it is made with whole cow milk. I have made this recipe with raw cow milk and homemade coconut milk (if using canned, I recommend doing 1/2 cup canned full fat and 1/4 cup water). Feel free to experiment.

So go ahead. Give it a try. Bake them. Eat them. Love them.

  • whole milk
  • vegetable oil
  • salt
  • tapioca flour (2 cups)
  • eggs
  • Parmesan cheese
  1. Preheat the oven to 425.
  2. Simmer in a medium saucepan, bring the milk and vegetable oil to just below a simmer. Bubbles will form at the edge and rise from the bottom.
  3. Add the salt and 2 cups of sifted tapioca flour.
  4. Remove from the heat and with a wooden spoon, stir the mixture until the mixture come together.
  5. Transfer the dough to the bowl of a stand mixer and fit it with a paddle attachment.
  6. Turn the speed to low and allow the dough to cool down until the dough is no longer steaming.
  7. Turn the mixer on low speed, add the eggs and allow it to incorporate fully before adding the second egg.
  8. Add the grated parmesan cheese to the pão de queijo dough and stir to combine.
  9. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
  10. Use a small cookie scoop portion out the dough, spacing an inch apart.
  11. Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly golden on top and the cheese bread is free from the pan when the pan is shaken.
  12. Serve warm.

I will serve these gluten free cheese breads warm, fresh out of the oven covered in a clean towel in a bowl. They are delicious cold, served with an espresso or a glass of tea.

I love freshly grated parmesan cheese in this recipe. I am not a fan of the parmesan cheese in the green container or even the pre-shredded stuff in the bag. This recipe works best with the freshly grated cheese. You are welcome to mix it up with different grated hard cheeses. Just be sure that you are using 2 cups of the cheese.

Unfortunately, there isn&rsquot an easy substitute for tapioca flour or tapioca starch in this recipe. The unique properties of the tapioca flour lead to a tender, delicious cheese bread that all-purpose flour can not provide.

Once the breads are cooled, store them in an airtight container. But it is rare that we have leftovers at my house! They are usually all gobbled up while they are fresh from the oven.

I will reheat Brazilian cheese bread in the microwave with a damp paper towel over them. But my favorite way to reheat them is to place them on a cookie sheet and place them in the oven THEN turn the oven on to 200. When the oven beeps that it is hot, the bread is ready!

A great option for when you want to make a double batch of gluten free cheese bread puffs is to freeze a portion of the dough to be baked off later. Just portion out the dough on a silicone mat or parchment paper, freeze completely and store in a freezer-safe container, with as much air removed as possible. Just within 3 months and do not thaw before baking off.

Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pão de Queijo)

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen

Yield: 20 puffs

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes


2 cups finely grated Parmesan cheese, divided


1. Preheat the oven to 400º and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, salt and butter, and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and whisk in the tapioca flour until incorporated.

2. Transfer the mixture to a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With the motor running on low speed, add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated, followed by 1½ cups of the grated Parmesan.

3. Scoop 2-tablespoon-size balls of dough onto the prepared baking sheet, spaced 1 inch apart. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the balls of dough.

4. Bake until golden brown and puffed, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a platter. Serve warm.

What is Brazilian cheese bread made with

Tapioca flour is also known as tapioca starch. Unfortunately you can’t substitute with other kind of starch for tapioca flour. Other types of starch won’t create the same texture. Tapioca flour is very fine, white powder that works well in gluten free baking.

You can use any cheese of your choice. I like mine with Parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese. You can also add some mince garlic or dried herbs to make it more flavorful if you wish.

For oil, I used grape seed oil this time. Olive oil would be great too.

Heat milk, butter and salt in pan and remove from heat as soon as bubbles form. Stir in the tapioca flour with wooden spoon until combined.

Beat dough in a stand mixer with paddle attachment for 3-5 minutes, or until it has smoothed out. Then add the eggs one at a time, before adding the Parmesan and mixing until combined.

Scoop the dough on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake at 375°F for 15-20 minutes.

So Pão de Queijo or Brazilian cheese bread, originates from shocker - Brazil! These slightly sour mini bread buns have a cracked, crunchy toasted cheese exterior but soft, spongy interiors.

Although the rations vary, the general list of ingredients stays the same. The Tapioca flour is what gives the bread a slightly tart quality and undercooked interior. Great thing is these are gluten-free!

Every once in a while the dough doesn't turn out exactly right. If it is a little runny make sure you have beaten it long enough so that everything comes together.

If all else fails, just place in the fridge for a couple of hours before scooping out. Don't keep adding flour.

Like most breads, they are best the day of baking but you can keep at room temperature for 2-3 day or in the fridge for up to a week. They will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Yes. You can keep the dough in the fridge for up to a week. You can also actually freeze the bread before baking. Just portion out the dough onto the baking sheets and freeze until solid.

Transfer to freezer bags and freeze for up to 1 month. You then bake them frozen for the same amount of time.

Heat oven to 375°F and place bread on baking sheet. Place in oven 5-10 minutes or until bread is heated through.

Do not heat in microwave as outside of bread will turn soft. By reheating in oven, you keep the outside crispy but the inside gooey.

Pao de Queijo a.k.a. Gluten-Free Brazilian Cheese Bread Heaven

There’s been a lot of talk and no action regarding these gluten-free Brazilian cheese breads. I know I’ve been promising a pao de queijo recipe since January, when I returned from the land of these magical cheese puffs. And you may think I’ve just failed to deliver. But the truth is I’ve been hoarding many a Brazilian delicacy for you, much as I did many a cheesy roll from our Rio breakfast buffet.

Now that the summer games are almost upon us, and I finally rolled out my epic healthy hedonist travel guide to Rio, I’d be remiss in letting you go another day without one of these puppies in your hand.

It didn’t take me long to go into pao de queijo withdrawal when I returned to the States, and I was relieved to discover soon thereafter (while developing a host of Brazilian recipes for Food & Wine), that they are actually quite simple to make. Most of the venues where I inhaled my helping of cheese bread likely whipped theirs together from a mix. For the lazy among you, this is totally an option. (You can find a good one here). But since these puffs are already not necessarily the healthiest, I liked being fully in control of my cheesy destiny.

The star of the show (besides cheese), is sour tapioca flour. You can use regular tapioca flour, but for the most authenticity and easy handling, I’d advise ordering a bag online. The other ingredients are fairly straight forward pantry items: vegetable oil, eggs, milk and Parmesan cheese. (I used almond milk in my first batch since that’s all I had on hand, and it worked just fine.)

As you know by now, my domestic goddess status is sub-par in the baking department. So the fact that I nailed these Brazilian cheese puffs on the first try, would indicate that they’re pretty difficult to mess up. The first thing to note is that the batter is rather sticky. I found it helpful to use a wooden spoon before switching to greased palms to knead the dough. You may also notice that the sour tapioca flour has kind of a foul smell. Just muscle through all of the above, friends.

Feel free to get creative with mix-ins. This version, which I made for F&W, included some browned sausage in the batter. Cut the finished rolls in half, stuff with a fried egg and you have the world’s best gluten-free Egg McMuffin.

The version below makes two dozen, but you can make them slightly larger (same bake time) and use them as slider rolls. If you’re hosting an Olympics party, I recommend channeling some churrasceria vibes and sandwiching them with some thinly sliced steak (or roast beef) and arugula, like I did in the above.

By the end of next week, I should have a full Brazilian menu for you, along with some other tips for how to make your opening ceremony viewing party a little more wild and colorful (just buy a lot of cachaca). And in the meantime, I’m off on my next travel adventure to the Pacific Northwest! If you any of you have recommendations on where to eat in Portland or Seattle (and anywhere in between) I would love your advice in the comments section. I imagine I will be hoarding oysters much like I did these cheese breads, though I doubt they will fare as well rolled inside a hotel napkin for safe keeping.

Gluten Free Cheese Breads (inspired by Brazilian Pao de queijo)

My kids love cheese breads, my family does too and everyone we have had over for play-dates does as well. They are always a hit with the kids!

Gluten Free Cheese Breads

Some links in my posts may be affiliate links, which means that I may receive a commission if you purchase items by clicking on these links. I will always disclose when a product in a post has been gifted by a company as well as when a post or product is sponsored.

Miami’s Diversity

We live in Miami, Florida and the best thing about Miami besides beaches & weather is its diversity. It’s the perfect setting for a cross-cultural family like ours. We have friends from around the world, our kids are growing up appreciating different cultures and the culinary experience in Miami reflects its population’s diversity.

Several Latin restaurants and bakeries here in Miami offer cheese breads. They all have variations of this snack and people from different regions in Latin America will recognize the differences down to the cheese used or type of flour. In Brazil, cheese breads are called pao de queijo, in Bolivia they are called cunapes, in Paraguay they are called chipas, some bakeries call them pan de bono or pan de queso too.

I don’t pretend to cook the cheese breads like any of the above countries, instead I came up with my own recipe that is pretty similar in ingredients and texture. The main ingredient of the cheese bread is yuca flour or tapioca flour. Some countries call it cassava flour. Tapioca flour is naturally gluten free. So these cheese breads are gluten free too!

My kids eat the breads as snack, I eat them in the afternoon with a coffee and I noticed my husband last night just added ham & cheese in one and ate it as a sandwich slider.

Could These Be Made Dairy Free?

This is a fairly dairy-heavy bread and I have not tried the dairy free version myself. However, I think it would work as the main element of this bread is the tapioca starch.

You could use a plant-based milk in place of the cows milk and dairy free cheese in place of the mozzarella and cheddar. If you are feeling brave and want to test this for me, please do let me know how you get on!