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Cheese and Onion Pasties

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Flaky cheese and onion pasties made with puff pastry. Delicate, buttery pastry filled with a savory, cheesy filling, these slices make a wonderful appetizer or light dinner. Perfect party food as well.

We love anything made with puff pastry and these cheese and onion pasties are no exception, this is actually one of our favorite savory pasty recipes.

puff pastry slices with cheese on a wire rack.

Just a few ingredients (only 3 main ones), but so much flavor, comfort, and fun. Eating filled puff pastry is always fun, I think. Easy-going food that everybody loves. You bite on it, enjoy the sound it makes, get the flaky pastry pieces all over your clothes, probably burn your tongue a little if you were too greedy and couldn’t wait, and then moan with pleasure.

Make sure to check these Chocolate Puff Pastry or these Puff Pastry Apple Pies, for instance. Just as delicious, but sweet.

collage of two pictures of cheese pasties on a wire rack and cut on a plate.

What are pasties?

The original Cornish pasties are one of the best-known and beloved British foods. They originate in Cornwall and they are shortcrust pastry pockets filled with beef, onion, potatoes, and rutabaga/swede.

Modern versions are filled with pretty much anything, like chicken, fish, eggs, and other veggies, they can be vegetarian or vegan, they can have an Indian touch (some of the best I’ve had were filled with peas, potatoes and lots of Indian spices) and they can be made with puff pastry instead of short crust as well.

Ingredients for cheese and onion pasties

Puff pastry, onions and cheese. Only three main ingredients, but the pastries are still packed with flavor.

puff pastry, onions, cheddar, oil, egg brush arranged on a wooden board.

Why use puff pastry to make pasties?

Pastry:

  • I use already rolled sheets from the refrigerator section of the supermarket most of the time. Frozen one is perfectly ok as well, defrost it, roll it (if necessary) according to the packet’s instructions.
  • It’s sooooo easy! So much easier and faster than making pie pastry yourself. Not that we don’t love that kind as well, have a look at Harry Potter’s Pumpkin Pasties or these delicious Beef Empanadas.
  • But the bought dough is so much easier to deal with, it’s really cheap and always ready to be filled.
  • And if you buy the refrigerated and already rolled sort, you will not even have to bother with defrosting and rolling. Open the pack and unroll the dough. Cut, fill, close, bake. That’s it!
  • You will need two packets of dough, each weighing more or less 275 g/ 10 oz. The rolled one is about 25 cm/ 10 inches long. If using frozen dough, roll to these dimensions.

Cheese:

  • I used a sharp, flavorful Cheddar.
  • You can use other sorts of cheese as well, just make sure it’s something strong. I would not go for mozzarella here, I find it too plain for this recipe.

Other ingredients: one egg yolk and a little milk for the egg wash. A little oil for cooking the onions, salt and pepper.

cutting a cheese and onion pasty with a small knife.

How to make pasties with puff pastry?

  • Cook onions:
    • Peel and halve the onions. Slice the halves into half rings.
    • Heat the oil in a large thick-bottomed or nonstick pan. Cook the onions with a pinch of salt until nicely golden, this will take about 10 minutes.
    • Stir often and don’t allow the onions to get too brown. If they threaten to catch, turn down the heat slightly and add a small splash of water.
    • Transfer to a bowl and let cool slightly.

frying onion slices in a nonstick pan on the hob.
  • Mix filling:
    • Grate the cheese. Mix with the onions, add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Fill puff pastry:
    • Unroll both sheets of dough on the working surface.
    • Cut rectangles of about 12×15 cm/ 4.5 – 6 inches. These dimensions will fit if the pastry sheets are as large as mine. If they are larger or smaller, it won’t matter much. Just cut them into even rectangles. (1)
    • Put half of the rectangles on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
    • Spoon the cheese and onion mixture evenly on the rectangles leaving some space around the filling. (2)
    • Mix the egg yolk and the milk in a small bowl. Use to brush the dough around the filling. (3)
    • Drape over the remaining pastry rectangles. Gently press to seal the edges and crimp with a fork. (4)
    • Brush each pasty with the egg wash.
    • Make a slit in the middle to allow the hot air to escape during baking. Use a small sharp knife. (4)
  • Bake:
    • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius/ 400 degrees Fahrenheit before starting to fill the cheese and onion slices.
    • Bake them for about 30-35 minutes until puffed and golden.
    • Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving, they will be really hot inside.

collage of two pictures of rolled and cut pastry and then filled with cheddar and onions.
collage of two pictures of filling puff pastry with cheese and onions, closing and crimping them with a fork.

Can you make ahead?

Yes, you can prepare them up to one day ahead. Don’t brush them with egg brush. Refrigerate on the lined baking tray or large lined cutting boards or platters, so that they don’t stick to each other. Cover them loosely with plastic wrap. Once ready to bake, preheat the oven, transfer them to the baking tray, brush with egg brush and bake.

five large pasties filled with onions and cheddar cooling on a large wire rack.

Can you freeze cheese pasties?

You can prepare them and freeze them unbaked. Place on a baking tray but don’t brush them with the egg brush. Freeze until solid then transfer to freezer bags. This way you will be able to remove only a few from the bag if desired.

When ready to bake them, remove them from the freezer but don’t defrost them. Brush them with egg brush and bake in the preheated oven (200 degrees Celsius/ 400 degrees Fahrenheit) for 30-40 minutes until cooked through and deeply golden.

Can you reheat them?

You can reheat them for about 10 minutes in the oven at 180 degrees Celsius/350 degrees Fahrenheit.

large onion cheddar pasties on a wire rack with parsley, one split on a plate with a knife.

Tips

  1. You can make the cheesy pasties with shortcrust pastry as well, either bought or homemade.
  2. They can have other shapes as well, you can cut them into rounds, place the filling on one side and flip the other side over the filling.

More puff pastry recipes:

five large pasties filled with onions and cheddar cooling on a large wire rack.

Cheese and Onion Pasties

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Cheese and onion pasties, flaky, buttery, and incredibly delicious. Serve as an appetizer or light meal with a green salad. These puff pastry pasties are perfect for entertaining as well. They can be prepared in advance and they can be baked from frozen.

Ingredients

  • 550 g/ 1.2 lb puff pastry (Note)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large onions, about 350 g/ 12.5 oz total weight
  • 200 g/ 7 oz/ generous ¾ cup grated Cheddar
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, more to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons milk

Instructions

  1. Cook onions: Peel and halve the onions. Slice into half rings. Heat the oil in a large thick-bottomed or nonstick pan. Cook with a pinch of salt until golden and soft, about 10 minutes. Stir often and don’t allow them to get too brown. If they threaten to catch, turn down the heat slightly and add a small splash of water. Transfer to a bowl and let cool slightly.
  2. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius/ 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Mix filling: Grate the cheese. Mix with onions, add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Egg brush: Mix egg yolk and milk in a small bowl. Use to brush the dough around the filling.
  5. Cut puff pastry: Unroll both sheets of dough on the working surface. Cut rectangles of about 12x15 cm/ 4.5 - 6 inches (Note 2). Place half of the rectangles on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  6. Fill, close: Spoon the filling evenly on the pieces leaving some space around the filling. Drape over the remaining pastry rectangles. Press to seal the edges and crimp with a fork. Brush with egg wash. Make a small slit in the middle to allow the hot air to escape during baking.
  7. Bake: about 30-35 minutes until puffed and golden. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Notes

I used two sheets of ready-rolled refrigerated puff pastry. Each roll weighs 275 g/ 10 oz and is about 25 cm/ 10 inches long.
You can use frozen puff pastry instead, either already rolled or a block. Defrost and roll (if necessary) according to the packet’s instructions.
These dimensions will fit if the pastry sheets are as large as mine. If they are larger or smaller, it won’t matter much. Just cut them into even rectangles.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 pasty
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 543Total Fat: 39gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 474mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 12g

Nutritional information is not always accurate.

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