Share Share

Pao de Queijo with Chilli

Kar Yee’s Recipe

Kar Yee is a FoodCycle Bow Road volunteer.

Typically Pao de Queijo remains an unadulterated Brazilian speciality but a little experimentation is no bad thing, though you can omit the chilli for a more traditional version. Unlike regular bread, these are wheat-free and have an unusual but morish texture. Think of chewy, stretchy cheese crossed with a kind of choux bun.

Tapioca flour is readily available (still!) in Asian supermarkets and online, and if you can’t find any, the World food section of a very large, very popular, blue branded supermarket usually sells a mix – the better ones being Japanese due to a long history with Brazil.

These are best eaten immediately and make a great bar snack. 

Serves 2 (makes around 8)


  • 40ml Milk
  • 60ml sunflower/vegetable oil
  • 40ml Water
  • 125g tapioca flour
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 egg
  • 25g grated Parmesan (or alternate similar hard cheese)
  • 1 tsp of chilli flakes


Preheat the oven at 180℃.

Boil Milk, Oil, Water and salt.

Take off the heat and add the tapioca flour, beating in until combined. 

Allow to cool and then add the egg, parmesan and chilli beating vigorously.

  • NOTE: The mixture may resemble badly scrambled egg with white sections in, therefore I prefer to beat hard enough until these are not apparent. The difference in leaving them in is that the resultant cheese balls won’t be smooth in appearance.
  • NOTE: At least some Parmesan is critical to achieving a cheesy taste, cheddar, even the mature type, does not carry enough flavour.

Scoop golf-ball sized balls of the mixture onto a lined baking tray, allowing plenty of room for spread.

  • NOTE: I like sprinkling some cheddar over the top to add some colour and more flavour.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes and take out when they look round and puffed up.

Eat immediately.

You can follow Kar Yee on Instagram.

Find your local project and volunteer

Stay in the loop