Extra Puffy Brazilian Cheese Puffs
  • Chef: Jo Whitton 
  • Makes: 12
  • Time: 30 minutes + cooling time


  • 200g cheddar cheese, or a mixture of cheddar and parmesan 
  • 200g milk of choice 
  • 100g olive oil or melted butter 
  • 1 tsp sea salt 
  • 300g tapioca starch, or arrowroot 
  • 3 large eggs 
  • Extra olive oil or butter for greasing tins, or paper muffin cups

Butter, to serve, optional 


Grate cheese and set aside. 

Heat together milk, oil and salt in a saucepan on the stovetop on medium heat until hot but not bubbling, stirring occasionally. 

Place tapioca starch into a food processor and add the warm milk and oil mixture. Mix until well-combined. Cool mixture for 20 minutes or so. 

Add eggs and cheese to the cooled mixture and blitz for 20 seconds until mixture is smooth and creamy. Place into the fridge or freezer until mixture is thickened and completely cold before continuing. 

Meanwhile prepare a 12-hole muffin tin by greasing with some olive oil or butter, or line the muffin tin with paper liners. 

Preheat oven to 200°C. 

Scoop out cold mixture into muffin cups with an ice cream scoop or large dessert spoon, so the cups are approx ¾ filled with a rounded top. The mixture will be very stiff and even have a dry, crusty layer – that’s fine, the crusty bits will melt and they will cook perfectly.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown and crunchy on the outside. Make sure they are firm to touch before removing from the oven, so they don’t fall. To make them even crunchier on the outside, you can turn off the oven, leave the door slightly ajar, and leave them there for another 10-15 minutes. 

Serve hot for a super crunchy outside and chewy inside!