International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Pão de Queijo

Pão de Queijo Recipe (Brazilian cheese buns)

(Brazilian cheese buns)

Image Creative Commons by perfectsonnet

Average: 3.7 (33 votes)

Pães de queijo are tasty little cheese buns popular in Brazil. They are made with yuca (cassava) flour, which gives them an interesting taste and texture and makes them a gluten-free treat. Modern Brazilians can purchase packaged mixes or buy pães de queijo from street vendors, but homemade is best. Serve pão de queijo with coffee for breakfast.

Makes about 20 rolls


  • Milk -- 1 cup
  • Oil or butter -- 1/4 cup
  • Salt --  1/2 teaspoon
  • Yuca (cassava) flour -- 1 pound
  • Eggs -- 3
  • Grated parmesan cheese -- 1 cup


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Bring the milk, oil or butter and salt to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high flame.
  2. Remove from heat and slowly whisk in the yuca flour until it forms a smooth batter. Set aside to cool somewhat, 10-15 minutes.
  3. Beat in the eggs one at a time until they are fully incorporated, then stir in the parmesan cheese.
  4. Form 2-3 tablespoons of the batter at a time into balls with moistened hands and set on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake until puffed and golden brown, 15-20 minutes. Serve hot.


  • Chipás (Argentina): form the batter into biscuit or donut shapes before baking.
  • Try using different types of grated cheese.
  • Add a pinch of dried oregano or basil to the batter.
  • Cornstarch is sometimes substituted for the yuca flour.


I have lived in Brazil for 12 years and I am a food lover, so I understand the feelings to learn to cook "Pao de queijo". The recipe looks okay but the proportions do not seem appropriate. Those who are interested may try the following recipe that I have personally tested a number of times:


1 lb (450 - 500 g) Polvilho azedo (Sour or fermented Tapioca/Cassava flour)
1 cup (240 mL) whole milk
1 cup (240 mL) filtered water
3 medium eggs beaten
1 tsp (5 mL) common salt
1/2-cup (120 mL) cooking oil
6-8 oz Parmesan cheese (grated)


1. Mix milk, water, oil, and salt well in a large metallic container.
2. Bring it to boil. Turn off heat.
3. Mix polvilho well with a wooden spoon/spatula. Let it cool so you can knead.
4. Add beaten eggs and knead until smooth. It'll be too sticky. Have patience.
5. Gradually mix cheese until the dough stops sticking in your hand. Knead well.
6. Make 1-inch balls and place them on a baking pan with some space between them for expansion.
7. Pre-heat oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit and put the pan on the bottom rack.
8. Let it cook for 20 to 30 minutes depending on the size of the ball until slightly brown.

Serve hot with breakfast or as snack to go with tea, coffee, or soft/hard drinks.

I tried this recipe. How can you make it into balls.. it ends up like soup. I found another recipe like this that said the same thing. I did find one recipe that left out the cup of water. That may leave it with the consistency of dough, but I haven't tried it yet.

Your recipe seems to have too much liquid. The Whats4Eats recipe only has half the liquid that you're calling for, so I think the dough should turn out better. I'll try to make it this weekend to retest the recipe.

Bah! I tried the Whats4Eats recipe.. doesn't seem to have enough liquid.. added a little water but the dough ends up like glue or a huge wad of gum. I couldn't get it off my hands and onto a cookie sheet. I finally got a little onto a cookie sheet and cooked it. They were interesting.. need more salt and more cheese!

Try my recipe. Adapted after several rounds of trial and error - it uses less liquid than most recipes I've found on the net. I found the secret is making the dough the night before and refrigerating it. The tapioca flour seems to absorb the moisture, and using real butter also helps it get firm as it chills. I lived in Rio for 10 years - my daughter grew up there. She LOVES them and so do my grandkids.

1/4 cup water
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups Tapioca flour (I use Bob's Red Mill - found in health food stores)
2 medium eggs, beaten
3/4 cup to 1 cup grated parmesan cheese (or try 1/2 cup parmesan and 1/2 cup other cheese such as mozzarella, swiss, jack, cheddar or queso fresco)

Heat the water, milk, oil, butter and salt to just boiling in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat. Stir in the tapioca flour. It should be a stiff dough, like bread or pizza dough. If too runny, add a little more flour.

Let the dough cool to just warm, about 10 minutes. Add the beaten egg and stir well until mixed. Add the cheese, mix until smooth. Should be the consistency of mashed potatoes. If it is really runny, you can still sprinkle in a little bit more tapioca flour at this point.

Refrigerate the dough for at least a few hours or preferably overnight until it's stiff enough to roll into balls. The dough will keep for several days in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll into balls about 1” in diameter and bake for 12-15 minutes. If cookie sheet is not non-stick, you may want to spray with cooking spray. Don’t let them brown or they will get hard. Serve hot. Enjoy!

My husband is a chef at a brazilian resturant and I discovered these cheese pastries there. They were not made in house however so he did not know the recipe. This recipe, after trying it out, is extremely close. they were easy to make and tasted great. I made them, not my culinary trained husband and they still turned out great...

I made these exactly as stated. However I may not have let them set the full 10-15 minutes and they were runny! Read on another site that this was crucial (the resting) to prevent them from being runny. Might want to take note of that in this recipe so people do not hurry.

I was intrigued to see you using cassava flour for your Pao de Queijo recipe as I always thought it was more common to use tapioca flour? Maybe it's just because the latter is easier to get here in the UK - anyway, I'll have to give it a go!


Tapioca flour and cassava flour are different names for the same thing. Give it a go and let us know how they turn out!

Tried this recipe but substituted the 1 cup parmesan with 1/2 cup feta and 3/4 cup parmesan. Used butter instead of oil. Not runny...turned out beautiful.

My husband who just got back from Brazil said the taste was spot on.

Looking forward to trying Susanne's recipe next as it uses less flour!