Kirbie's Cravings

Brazilian Cheese Puffs

These cheese puffs are light and airy with a chewy texture and are very easy to make. You only need a handful of ingredients and a blender to make the dough.

photo of a plate of Brazilian cheese puffs

I’ve made cheese puffs before and love how easy to make and the chewy texture. I’d sort of forgotten about them until I came across an article on Serious Eats which got me craving them again.

Until recently, I only knew them as Korean tapioca bread (also sometimes called mochi bread in Japanese bakeries). But apparently, they are quite popular in Brazil, too.

close-up photo of Brazilian cheese puffs

How to Make Chewy Cheese Puffs

These cheese puffs are made with tapioca flour, giving them a super chewy texture. It is the same flour used to make the chewy tapioca balls or boba served at Tapioca Tea places. However, texture-wise, these chewy breads taste a bit like mochi and they are often called mochi as a result even though mochi is made with glutinous rice flour.

You can do all sorts of different flavors but the only ones I’ve had so far are black sesame (which is usually the most common one for the Korean tapioca breads), and cheese (which is the most common one for the Brazilian breads like I’m sharing today).

I’ve seen cheese puffs that are perfectly round which is hard to achieve at home. The batter is completely liquid. Until I find a special mold I have to settle for more muffin-looking ones since I have to use my mini muffin pan to bake them.

These little breads are a cinch to make. You pour a few ingredients into a blender (or food processor in my case) and then mix it all up. Then you spoon the batter into your muffin pan and 20 minutes later you have some light, airy, chewy, puffy breads.

photo of a cheese puff split in halfclose-up photo of a cheese puff

How long do Brazilian Cheese Puffs keep?

I think they’re best the day they’re made, but you can keep leftovers in the refrigerator. The texture will change so you will need to warm them up before serving.

Can I use different kinds of cheese?

Cheddar cheese is what’s used for Brazilian cheese puffs but you can definitely switch up the cheese and try new flavors.

Brazilian cheese puffs

You if you like cheese bread you might like to try my French gougeres, too.

Brazilian Cheese Bread Puffs

Servings: 24 puffs
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: Brazilian
These cheese puffs are made with tapioca flour which gives them a super chewy texture. They are easy to make and great as an appetizer or snack.


  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup cooking oil
  • 2/3 cup fat free milk
  • 1 1/4 cups tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 tsp salt


  • Preheat oven to 450°F and grease a mini-muffin tin. Put all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. (Your batter will be liquid) Pour batter into greased mini muffin tin about 2/3 full and bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until the breads puff up and are a light brown color.
  • Serve the breads after they have finished cooling. The breads don’t store well (they harden and lose their chewy texture) so please eat within 24-48 hours. Any uneaten breads should be stored in an airtight container.


Recipe source: Lily’s Wai Sek Hong


Serving: 1puff, Calories: 62kcal, Carbohydrates: 5g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 9mg, Sodium: 116mg, Potassium: 15mg, Vitamin A: 45IU, Calcium: 26mg, Iron: 0.1mg, Net Carbs: 5g

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!

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34 comments on “Brazilian Cheese Puffs”

  1. Bookmarked! Have you ever been to Fogo de Chao? It’s a Brazilian Steakhouse and they serve baskets of these little cheesy rolls and I am OBSESSED with them! I go to that restaurant just for those. I’ve been searching for a recipe somewhat similar to them and this looks like it might be it!

    • No I haven’t been there. I do love Brazilian Steakhouses though. Hopefully this is the recipe you are looking for!

  2. Just printed this off, cannot wait to try them. I love your site, thanks for all the amazing information and inspiration!

  3. I don’t know if you read my Bad Movie night post when we had it sponsored by Foodbuzz but Kristen and I tried to make these and we tried two different recipes. The first one came out tasting good but didn’t puff up at all. The 2nd recipe looked right but came out bland! We used grated queso fresco though. Maybe I’ll try your recipe and see how it works out… We ended up using a box mix we got from the Portuguese market.

    • Oh I did read your post, but I didn’t realize you were trying to make these! I remember being curious what kind of cheese puffs you were trying to make and why they didn’t turn out. I’ve had no problems with this recipe.

  4. These remind me of the cheesy biscuits you posted awhile back. If I don’t have blender or food processor, can a whisk or hand mixer work just as well? Did you get the tapioca flour as 99 Ranch (is there a certain brand name?)

    Can’t wait to try these out – looks amazing…i love these things at Rei Do Gado and loved them!

    • I think you can whisk them by hand too. I was actually thinking of doing that but my cheese was shredded instead of grated and I wanted them to be smaller, so I thought it would be better if I threw it into the food processor. Yes I got the tapioca flour at Ranch. I just got the cheapest one available, I don’t even remember if there was more than one brand.

  5. these sound great – I’m keen to try them. Do you think they use a special pan at the bakeries or just a different recipe?

    • I’m not sure, but my guess is that it is a different recipe. The reason why I think it’s a different recipe is because for the korean version, there is a mix you can buy, and I’ve bought it before. The mix is much more solid and you can shape them into balls and bake them as balls. I’ve never been able to find the korean recipe. I’ve looked for it for a long time and the only recipe I came across was this one for the Brazilian ones.

  6. Hi! I’m brazilian and can say these cheese puffs are really yummi! But our recipe is different. We use “minas cheese” and “canastra cheese” instead of cheddar and I can say: makes all different! Try replace cheddar for 1/2 cup of parmesan or gruyère cheese. It’s delicious!!!!

    • Does the recipe you use have a liquid batter or is it more dough-like so that you can make round balls? I love parmesan and gruyere cheese, I’ll definitely try that next time.

  7. I love, love these!!! They are so yummy, you can’t eat just one! I love how round and beautiful yours are.

  8. ooooh. I want to make these. I will call them tina’s cheesy poofs

  9. Hello! I am Brazilian also and I would like to share the recipe I use:
    Boil 1 cup of milk, 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 cup of oil together. In a bowl, mix 3 cups of tapioca flour*, 1 tsp of salt and a cup of cheese**. Pour the liquids over the other ingredients and mix it all. If you want to make them into balls you might need to add a bit more of tapioca flour. I usually just scoop spoonfuls of the dough into the pan and they get an irregular shape with some spikes that turn golden brown when baked and I like that. Bake at 400º for 20 minutes or so until they get a hard golden shell but are still chewy on the inside. You don’t have to wait for them to cool, you can eat them while they are still warm.
    *Here in Brazil we have two types of tapioca flour, the sour one and the sweet one. In my recipe I use 2 cups of sour tapioca flour and 1 cup of sweet tapioca flour, though we can also use only one or the other, and I don’t know which type you have there in the US but it shouldn’t make a big difference, I am just letting you know about that.
    **Also, I use any kind of cheese for this recipe and it always works, you can also mix cheeses. I usually use the cheese that has been forgotten in the fridge and instead of throwing it away, I turn it into beautiful and delicious cheese breads.
    Send me an email if you try this out ir if you have any doubts or questions 😉

  10. Hey! I forgot to mention one important thing: add one egg to the flour and cheese mixture before you mix in the liquids.

  11. In this case the tapioca flour acts as a leavening agent and you don’t have to use anything else. Just make sure they have a crispy shell when you take them out of the oven so it will hold their form without shriveling.

  12. These cheese puffs are actually called PÃO DE QUEIJO, which literally means “bread of cheese”. They look yummy!

  13. Wow, I want the cheese puffs! They look so adorable and yummy! Thanks for the recipe :))

  14. Great recipe, worked out really well (I used a Fontina, Parmesan, Asagio blend) ! Needless to say, I could have polished them all off in one go but was able to exercise some self-restraint. They freeze well and, if you use a toaster oven to gently re-heat, tastes just as good later on.

  15. This recipe looks wonderful! I’ve been dying to try it out ever since I found it a few weeks ago 🙂

    Unfortunately, when I finally go to make them, I find I’m out of tapioca flour! Do you know if ‘glutinous rice flour’ can serve as a substitute? I imagine it would still manage to create a chewy texture give the glutinous quality.. but I’m not sure.

    • I don’t think glutinous rice flour will work the same way. I know glutinous flour creates a chewy texture, but it’s not really the same. There may be a way to use glutinous rice flour, but I think it would require changing a lot of other steps. I haven’t actually tried, but this is just my thoughts based on working with glutinous rice and with tapioca flour.

  16. i love cheese puf, and all brazilian food, is the best.

  17. Hi, i have looked for the chewy puff for years. Glad i found your post. But wonder can i not add cheese in the batter? As i ll fill the puff by custard. And eat just like choux pastry. 🙂
    Looking forward your reply! 🙂

    • Hmm, Well yes you can not add cheese to it. I don’t know if you call fill these. They aren’t like choux pasty in texture and I think it would be very hard to fill them. You might want to stick to a choux pastry recipe if you want to fill with custard. Good luck!

  18. In Brazil, we have two kind of tapioca or cassava starch. One is called sweet tapioca (polvilho doce) and it’s the usual tapioca stard. The another one is fermented and it’s called sour tapioca (polvilho azedo). The first one make a very puffy “pão de queijo” and the second, a chewy one.
    Recipes vary from region or family, as well the sour and sweet tapioca proportion. Mine is 50/50.
    So that’s my recipe.
    In a bow, mix 250 grams of sour tapioca and 250g of sweet tapioca with 100 ml of warm water. Mix everthing until you have a humid flour. Set aside.
    Boil 100ml of milk and 100ml of vegetable oil (back in the where there wasn’t vegetable oil industry, people in Brazil used to use porl lard) and scald the humid flour with this mix (if you like, you can add some fennel seeds). Ad 2 eggs, one by one, mixing up everthing. To finish, ad 350 grams cured grated cheese (like parmesan or gruyere). Mix everthing until you have a thick dough.
    In the begining, it will a little liquid, but hard enough to mold in small balls.
    If you put in the fridge, after 6 hours the flour will absorb the liquids and it will be easier to shape.
    Bake at 240°C, until slightly brown or dark yellow.

  19. I just made these vegan, GF & dairy free (vegan cheese and almond milk) and they were still amazing!! Thank you!!

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