For an easy holiday party appetizer, look no further than these everything bagel puff pastry cheese straws! This simple party food recipe is ready in just a few minutes and disappears almost as quickly.
The day I found everything bagel seasoning blend at my local warehouse store was a good day. I absolutely love this stuff! It’s good on avocado toast, hard boiled eggs, and takes easy holiday party appetizers, like these crazy easy cheese straws, to the next level! Just a handful of ingredients and a few minutes of prep, and you’ll see what I mean. Everything bagel cheese puff pastry straws are a must for entertaining!
What is a cheese straw?
Cheese straws, a very popular snack, are made one of two ways. You can either mix shredded cheese, flour, and a little seasoning, roll thin and bake. Or, you make the fancier version here with the help of frozen puff pastry. Add your cheese and seasoning, then twist and bake. I’ve made both, but for holiday entertaining, the puff pastry wins out for me. There’s something about the swirl that instantly signals to guests this is a party! And puff pastry cheese straws are easier to roll out.
I haven’t decided if they belong in the bread basket, with crackers, or on a plate all their own. I usually serve them on their own. You can tuck them into bread baskets on buffets or pair with crackers near cheese and charcuterie plates. There probably isn’t a wrong place to serve them on the party buffet as long as they’re near the snacks. Don’t be surprised if guests grab seconds or thirds with their main dish!
Can I make everything bagel cheese straws in advance?
You can shape them in advance, but they’re definitely best baked just before your party. In fact, cheese straws are almost impossible to resist fresh from the oven after they’ve cooled just enough to crisp properly. Forget the candles to make the house smell nice, cheese is the perfect scent to welcome guests to a party!
Of course, if you have a lot of cheese lovers coming over, don’t forget to make my fresh cranberry baked brie too. It’s basically the only baked brie I make. Pro tip, extra compote makes an amazing sauce for meats or condiment in sandwiches.
A few tips for perfect puff pastry cheese straws…
While this is a very easy recipe, there are a few tips to getting nice crunchy straws. There’s nothing worse than biting into a cheese straw and missing that satisfying “crunch” from toasted puff pastry.
For the best puff pastry cheese straws, make sure that you give your oven plenty of time to preheat. An oven thermometer is a great investment, especially at only about $10, and has become a kitchen must for me. We move every few years for the Godfather’s job, and the thermometer helps me achieve consistent results even using different ovens. A nice hot oven will provide a good puff for your pastry and crisping of the cheese.
Don’t be afraid to mix things up a bit. I use a mix of cheddar and parmesan or asiago here to keep the flavors nice and sharp. A very basic cheese straw recipe usually relies on a single sharp cheese, like cheddar. Because the puff pastry cuts some of the sharpness with fat, a mix of cheeses helps keep things cheesy! Not to mention, the mix kind of reminds me of a cheese bagel, which goes with the everything bagel seasoning, very serendipitous.
At a party, cheese straws are typically part of a larger spread of finger foods and heavy hor d’oerves. When oven times are planned to the minute pre-party, the pairing depends on the kind of event. If I’m primarily serving finger foods, I’ll include a good mix of make-ahead items like: pimiento cheese, chicken salad in (store bought) phyllo cups, maybe some croquetas, and slow cooker guava glazed meatballs.
Heavy appetizers allow me a little more flexibility with the oven. This way, the only things on that list I’d need to bake just before the party would be the cheese straws and croquetas, in that order.
If I’m serving cheese straws as an appetizer to a sit down meal, I want to encourage mingling beforehand. To do this, I keep things simple with a nice cheese and charcuterie board. Some recipes that might appear on the board include hummus, avocado ranch dip, or whipped goat cheese. I’ll bake the cheese straws before I start the main dish for the party (maybe my vegetarian pumpkin lasagna). Serve the straws at room temperature with the other “snacks” as guests mingle. Cheese straws provide a nice compliment to crackers, pita, or naan set out with the cheese and charcuterie assortment.
So if you’re looking for a delicious party appetizer for your next soiree, add these amazing easy puff pastry cheese straws to the menu. Enjoy, darlings!
- 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 2/3 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
- 1 sheets store-bought puff pastry, thawed
- 1 tablespoons everything bagel seasoning
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon water
- Preheat your oven to 375 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner. Set aside.
- Stir together your grated cheeses and bagel seasoning in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Lightly dust your work surface with flour. Lay out your puff pastry and roll into a rectangle that is about 11 inches by 16 inches. You don't want to flatten the layers, but you do want to smooth out the seams.
- Whisk the egg with a teaspoon of water in a small bowl. Brush the egg wash over the puff pastry and top with the cheese and seasoning mixture. (See notes)
- Lightly press the mixture into the puff pastry with your rolling pin.
- Using a pizza wheel, ribbon cutter, or sharp knife, cut your puff pastry into even strips. Gently twist each strip and lay on your parchment paper. Repeat until all the strips are on the baking sheet.
- If you are preparing the puff pastry cheese straws in advance, you may loosely cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate here, up to 3-4 hours, before baking. Otherwise, move on to the next step.
- Bake the straws for 18-24 minutes until golden in color and lightly puffed.
- Remove from the oven and allow to sit on the baking sheet 5-10 minutes to set and crisp a little. Serve warm or at room temperature.
If you'd prefer to omit the egg wash, you may, but the cheese might not stick as well. The straws will still be delicious, but I would sprinkle any cheese that falls off the straws on top of the straws prior to baking.
An alternative would be to use a little milk for a milk wash to help the cheese stick. If you go this route, please use a sparing hand! Too much milk will make the puff pastry soggy in the oven.
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