French Cheese Gougères

gougeres on a plate

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Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 40 mins
Servings: 15 to 20 servings
Yield: 15 to 20 puffs
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
105 Calories
8g Fat
5g Carbs
4g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 15 to 20
Amount per serving
Calories 105
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 10%
Saturated Fat 4g 22%
Cholesterol 56mg 19%
Sodium 160mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 73mg 6%
Iron 0mg 3%
Potassium 28mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Gougères are delicate miniature cheese puffs from France. Usually made with Gruyère cheese, they have many variations, but they all boil down to an airy cheese pastry based on a deliciously seasoned choux dough. Our recipe for classic gougères is pretty straightforward and doesn't require a lot of technical knowledge, so don't be intimidated by the choux dough requirement as it is fairly easy to make. These measurements make 15 to 20 cheese puffs, and you can double the amounts, although we recommend making the batches separately to ensure that the choux is thoroughly mixed. Use these cheese pastries as an appetizer during cocktail hour or as a pretty accompaniment to a cheese and charcuterie board. Delicious in lieu of bread rolls, the gourgères make great doughy sides to soups and stews. Eaten on their own when hot and straight from the oven, this fantastic French import has an unbeatable cheesy and buttery flavor.

If you've never made choux pastry, or pâte à choux, there are a few tips that can help you in achieving perfect consistency. First, sift your flour. This helps bring air into it and also makes mixing it in the dough a lot easier. Secondly, don't be afraid of incorporating the flour into the liquids with purpose. The choux will be airy regardless and a vigorous stir will ensure everything is well mixed and the gluten will develop appropriately for the gourgères to hold their shape. When adding the eggs, do it one at a time so it can be mixed in properly. Finally, choux needs heat, so the oven must be heated up with enough time to achieve the recommended temperature. Choux is more commonly used to make cream puffs and eclairs, but many savory baked goods are made using this type of dough.

For classic gourgères, we recommend using Gruyère cheese. Named after a town in Switzerland, this is a cheese that is aged between five to 12 months, producing a cheese that varies in flavor depending on its age. Usually described as creamy and nutty, Gruyère is a favorite of bakers because it adds flavor without taking over the whole dish as stronger cheeses might. In supermarkets, you'll find Swiss and French Gruyère, the difference being the origin because both cheeses are produced under strict supervision of standards that need to be met in order to be considered true Gruyère. Our gourgères achieve a tangy and salty kick thanks to shredded Gruyère and a few tablespoons of Parmesan cheese.

“Gougères, or French cheese puffs, are truly the perfect dinner party snack. You can prep them before hand, change the flavoring to fit your needs, and are so impressive. This recipe was very easy and straightforward to follow and I would highly recommend giving them a try.” —Tracy Wilk 

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A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water

  • 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, cut into half-inch pieces

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted

  • 4 large eggs

  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Gruyère cheese

  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Position 2 racks in the upper and lower third of the oven. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment or silicone baking mats. Set aside.

  3. In a large saucepan, bring water, butter, and salt to a rolling boil. Once the butter has melted, add the flour.

  4. Stir the mixture until a sticky dough ball forms and begins pulling away from the sides of the pan, about 1 minute.

  5. Reduce heat to low heat and cook, stirring continually, until the mixture begins to dry out a bit, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside for 5 minutes.

  6. Beat the in eggs one at a time until fully incorporated before adding the next.

  7. Mix in the cheeses, nutmeg, and pepper.

  8. Place heaping teaspoonfuls of dough onto the prepared baking sheets leaving one inch of room between each. Alternatively, use a pastry bag and a round tip to pipe the dough, or just snip the bottom of the bag and pipe.

    Bake, rotating the sheets halfway through, until the gougères are golden brown and puffed, 25 to 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

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