Pao de queijo – gluten free little cheese breads

cheese puff 2

Pao de queijo… even the name sounds yummy, don’t you agree?  These little puffy cheese buns are a specialty from Brazil, and we find them frozen in our local shop, sold at an exhorbitant price…

They are naturally gluten free, and we love them, but their price prevents me from buying them often.

So, yesterday, I thought I just MUST try and make them homemade.  I searched for a recipe and it was an amazing success!  Delicious, easy to make, and naturally gluten free, they turned out perfect, for a fraction of the price of those I buy from the shop!  I will definitely be making them again.

I followed a recipe I found in a French blog (click here for the link); the only thing I changed was the kind of cheese I used.  Being in Switzerland, I just HAD to use Gruyère cheese!  But I guess any hard salty cheese would work. 

The only tricky bit of this recipe was finding tapioca flour.  In fact, I didn’t!  I only could get my hands on tapioca starch, so I used that, and it was perfect.  If you can’t find that, my guess is that cornflour would be the next best thing, but I haven’t tested it yet!

There you go – enjoy!


For about 30 little cheese breads

  • 250 g tapioca starch
  • 120 ml milk 
  • 60 ml water
  • 45 ml sunflower oil (or another neutral oil)
  • 1 egg
  • 120 g Gruyère – or mature Cheddar, or any salty hard cheese
  • a bit of salt


  • Place the milk, water and oil in a pan.  Add a little salt and bring to the boil.
  • Put the tapioca starch in a large bowl.
  • Add the boiling liquid to the starch and mix well.
  • Add the egg and cheese.
  • Mix well – I used a hand mixer with kneading hooks.
  • Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
  • Place small balls of dough on the paper (the dough isn’t very firm, so I used a spoon to do this)
  • Bake in the oven at 200°C for about 20 minutes.

Hope you enjoy this!  Reach out to me on Facebook if you have any questions!