These sweet cheese bourekas feature a Slavic twist and are stuffed with sweet farmer’s cheese. Perfect served for breakfast or eaten as a midday snack!
Are you a fan of sweet and salty pastries? These sweet cheese bourekas are just that. Serve them with a hot cup of coffee or tea for either breakfast or dessert and watch your worries melt away.
Note: Traditional cheese bourekas are made with a combination of feta cheese, ricotta cheese, and kashkaval cheese. In our version, we take a shortcut and use 100% farmer’s cheese to simplify the process.
What are Bourekas?
Bourekas are Middle Eastern hand pies that originated in Israel and are eaten everywhere from Turkey to Tunisia. Typically, they are served for special occasions and celebrations. Depending on the season and region, they come with a myriad of different sweet and savory fillings. Here, find a breakdown of the flavor, texture, and time it takes to make our sweet cheese bourekas.
- Flavor: The flavor of these bourekas is the perfect balance of salty farmer’s cheese and sweet sugar.
- Texture: The texture of these bourekas features a sweet, creamy cheese filling encased with flakey puff pastry dough.
- Time: From prep to table, these pastries take just under 25 minutes to make. So low maintenance and easy to put together!
Preparing Our Easy Cheese Bourekas
All you need to make these bourekas is 5 simple ingredients and a quick bake in the oven.
- Make the Filling: In a mixing bowl, use a fork to combine the farmer’s cheese with the sugar and egg.
- Divide the Dough: Using a rolling pin, flatten out the puff pastry sheets. Slice them into 8-9 even squares.
- Assemble the Bourekas: Next, place a dollop of the sweet cheese mixture on one half of a puff pastry square. Fold over the opposite corner of the dough squares to form triangles.
- Brush the Tops: In a small bowl, whisk the last egg and brush a light layer of the egg wash on the surface of each boureka, followed by a sprinkle of sugar.
- Bake the Bourekas: Bake them at 350°F for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!
Homemade Puff Pastry & Farmer’s Cheese: Skip the store bought stuff and make our quick puff pastry dough and easy farmer’s cheese if you’re feeling up to it.
Pro Tips for Making Cheese Bourekas
If you’re making bourekas for the first time, a couple of foolproof tips will help you nail our version of the popular Middle Eastern pastry.
- Work quickly with the puff pastry. The longer the puff pastry sits out at room temperature, the more the butter will melt and cause the pastry to fall flat in the oven. Keep it in the freezer just until you’re ready to assemble the bourekas to ensure it stays nice and fluffy!
- Don’t seal the outer open edge of the triangles. Unlike an empanada or other folded pastries, you don’t want to seal the edges of the bourekas too much. You want the cheese to peek out of the sides a bit!
- Use a pastry brush for the egg wash. Make spreading on the egg wash that much easier by using a pastry brush! This will also ensure you don’t put too much on.
If you are in the mood to experiment or just make a variety of different bourekas for a party platter, find some ideas to inspire you.
- Traditional Cheese Bourekas: Combine 1/2 cup feta cheese (leave the large crumbles of feta for more texture!), 1/3 cup kashkaval cheese, 1/3 cup ricotta cheese, and 2 large eggs. Season to taste with salt and a pinch of black pepper. Top the bourekas with egg wash and sesame seeds of poppy seeds.
- Eggplant & Farmer’s Cheese: Place a dollop of ikra (Slavic-style eggplant spread) on the puff pastry dough squares and top with parmesan cheese.
- Berries & Cream: Use the same farmer’s cheese filling as the recipe indicates and add on a handful of fresh berries – blueberries, strawberries, & blackberries work best.
Storing Best Practices
Have some leftover cheese bourekas or would you like to batch cook some and freeze ’em for later? Find all you need to know here.
- Storing: While bourekas are best fresh out of the oven, you can store them in plastic zipper bag or sealed container on the counter for 1-2 days. If you plan to keep them any longer, stick them in the fridge for up to a week.
- Freezing: There are two ways you can freeze bourekas – you can freeze them fully-cooked or you can freeze the unbaked pastries. To do so, lay them in a single layer on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Place them in the freezer uncovered for 1-2 hours and transfer them to a plastic bag or Tupperware for up to 1 month. To thaw, place the bourekas in the fridge until softened.
Reheating Tip: If you want to rewarm the bourekas, reheat them in the air fryer or conventional oven until crispy and melty. Should be no more than 3-5 minutes at 350°F!
Do you need to roll out the puff pastry dough for bourekas?
Rolling out the puff pastry dough for bourekas makes it so your pastries aren’t way too doughy. However, this is all about preference. If you don’t mind a more pastry-forward boureka, feel free to leave the sheet of puff pastry dough as-is.
Can you use filo dough for bourekas?
Yes, you can substitute filo dough for puff pastry dough for bourekas. The texture will be much lighter and flakier, but still equally delicious!
Can you use cottage cheese for cheese bourekas?
It’s not a good idea to use cottage cheese for cheese bourekas. This is because cottage cheese tends to have a higher moisture content, making your pastries prone to coming out too soggy. If you have to use cottage cheese, strain out as much of the moisture as possible with a cheese cloth.
More Sweet Cheese Pastries
- Farmer’s Cheese Cake with Raisins (Zapekanka) – Slightly sweet farmer’s cheese cake
- Farmer’s Cheese Donut Holes (Russian Ponchiki) – Donut holes stuffed with farmer’s cheese
- Pierogi with Farmers Cheese (Vareniki Recipe) – Dumplings stuffed with cheese
- Sochniki (Sweet Cheese Cookies) – Butter cookies with sweet cheese
- 1 sheet puff pastry dough
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup farmer's cheese
- In a medium bowl, combine the farmer's cheese with the sugar and one egg.
- Use a rolling pin to flatten out the puff pastry dough. Divide the dough into equal-sized pieces (about 3 by 3 inch in size). Place a dollop of the sweet cheese on one half of a puff pastry square. Fold over the other side to form a triangle. Repeat until all the puff pastry squares are stuffed and folded.
- In a small bowl, whisk the last egg and use it to brush the tops of the bourekas. Sprinkle on some sugar.
- Bake them at 415°F for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!
My family really enjoyed these! Super simple to make too, can't wait to have them again!
I am so thrilled to hear that, Olivia! Thank you for sharing, Enjoy!
WOW! We loved this. It was just so easy to make!
Hi Shana, I am so glad to hear it! Enjoy!
Could NOT love these more. thank you thank you thank you!
I am so glad to hear you love this recipe. Enjoy! Happy holidays!
Yummy & Easy to make 🙂
So good to hear! 🙂
Hi Natalya, Thank u for this easy recipe. I just tried it . It turned out really yummy, I used cheddar cheese & cream cheese, dash of salt coz I didnt have farmers cheese 🙂
Anyway, I have a question...
Did u roll out the puff pastry?
Hey Jaci, I did roll it out a little because we prefer a thinner dough. But its really not a deal breaker.
Hi! I just made this recipe and I had exactly one cup (225 g)of farmer cheese but it was way to liquid and sweet! How many grams did you use?
I measured mine with a cup, it was 1 cup. Some farmers cheese can have more liquid. Which brand did you use?
What is farmer cheese?????
Here is a recipe or you can find it in most European markets. https://momsdish.com/recipe/2…
These look really good and I want to make them. I have 2 questions, what do you use the flour for? I dont see it used anywhere in the instructions. Second, do you roll out your pastry dough? Thanks
Hi, I used the flour to roll out the dough. Yes I do roll it out a bit.
Do you think its possible to make those with cottage cheese?
I think they would be too watery. You can use cream cheese.
can i use ricotta cheese?
I think ricotta would work but you may need ti adjust on the sweetness.