Pandebonos, Colombian cheese bread (gluten free)

Kolumbianische Käsebrötchen namens pandebonos

I already blogged about the Paraguayan version of cheese bread. But today I want to introduce you to Colombian cheese bread: pandebonos! Pandebonos are, as many Latin American recipes, gluten free as they are prepared with tapioca starch. Pandebonos take very little time to prepare and are easy to make with regular ingredients.

Kolumbianische Käsebrötchen namens pandebonosI hate to admit that it took me so long to finally make and then publish this recipe. That’s because pandebonos are my husband’s favorite dish from Colombia. And since he is Colombian, you may get why I am upset I didn’t try this recipe much earlier. He had tried, many times and had failed. I don’t blame it on him, for some reason Colombian recipes often don’t seem to work, at least I also had to experiment a lot before I was happy with achiras, another cheese snack from Colombia. We don’t really know what’s the reason for this, could it be that a lot of his favorite recipes are from Bogotá, the capital of Colombia and this mega city is at very high altitude (2,500 meters)? Is it because Colombians annoyingly never write down recipes, it’s all by eye measurement or feeling?

Kolumbianische Käsebrötchen namens pandebonosAt first I seemed to have beginner’s luck with this recipe, the first batch was perfect. But then, oh dear, they melted away, they were all sad and flat, it was downright depressing. At least my husband didn’t mind and happily munched away the wrong batches. He also told me he was relieved that I also had so many failures before I finally got the hang of it. And the secret is: less milk. Yes, it is as simple as that. The dough will still look a bit crumbly, but you should be able to form little golf balls with it. And since it took me forever to figure this out, below you will see a picture of the right consistency. Please, please be sure to only add milk to the point you get that consistency. Otherwise your little pandebonos will deflate and be flat.

Somehow that reminds me of the way my grandma cooked, she never had a scale, she didn’t really measure anything, she just would know by the way something looked, smelled, or tasted if it was right or still needed something. Extremely frustrating. But be it as it may, I finally found a really great recipe I adapted to my needs. According to my husband it does taste like taken straight out of a Colombian bakery, so I dared to publish it on my blog.

Kolumbianische Käsebrötchen namens pandebonosCredit: Sweet y salado (also in Spanish)

Pandebonos, Colombian cheese buns

Serves: About 15 pandebonos
Prep Time: 15min Cooking Time: Ca. 18-20min

Pandebono is Colombian are small cheese buns, gluten free and prepared with tapioca starch. This is a snack bread typically eaten for breakfast or in between.


  • 30 grams of butter
  • 240 grams of tapioca starch/cassava/manioc flour
  • 20 gram corn flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 30 grams of regular sugar
  • 200 grams of grated mozzarella
  • 50 grams feta cheese
  • 1 egg, size L
  • Milk as needed



Preheat oven to 200 degreese Celsius and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.


Melt the butter and set aside. Then mix tapioca starch, corn flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Add the cheeses and mix thoroughly. Then add the egg and butter. Now to the tricky part, adding the milk. You need a crumbly texture as you can see on the picture above, but it has to be moist enough. You should not add too much milk as your pandebonos will deflate, but too little is also bad, you should be able to form balls from your dough.


Roll pandebonos the size of golfballs, you should get around 12-15. Place about 12 or less on your baking sheet and bake for about 15 more minutes. Once your pandebonos are golden, take out and serve immediately.

Kolumbianische Käsebrötchen namens pandebonosIf you wonder what to do with tapioca starch, check out all below recipes with tapioca starch:

From left to right:

Colombian achiras (cheese snack)

German black forest cake

Colombian buñuelos (deep-fried cheese snack)

Paraguayan chipas (cheese bread baked in muffin tin)

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