Flaky Indian Cheese Twists baked with a blend of two cheeses and Indian spices inside. Use ready-rolled puff pastry sheets for a quick-fix recipe.
These vegetarian cheese twists can be ready in under 40 minutes, including prep time.
These Indian Cheese Twists are so simple to prepare and can be made with mostly store-cupboard ingredients. Serve with chai, your favourite glass of fizz or even as a dunker for soup. They’re divine!
These Indian Cheese Twists are…
Quick & easy
Easy to veganise
How to make Cheese Twists with Puff Pastry
The process is so simple. All you need are two sheets of ready-rolled puff pastry, cheese and any extra fillings of your choice. I’m using garam masala, onions, chilli flakes and fresh coriander for an Indian twist (literally!).
If you want to make vegan cheese twists, be sure to grab yourself a roll or block of vegan puff pastry. I use Jus Rol for a vegan version, along with plant-based cheese like Violife and an oat milk “eggwash”.
What’s in Indian Cheese Twists?
My favourite way to make Indian-style cheese twists is with puff pastry, a blend of two types of cheese (Cheddar and mozzarella), onions, chillies and this Homemade Garam Masala.
You can use shop-bought garam masala if you like and reduce or increase the amount of chillies as per your taste, too. I like them to be medium-hot.
How to twist Cheese Twists
The most important thing is to begin with very cold pastry. Pop it in the fridge for at least an hour before you start. Only take it out of the fridge after you’ve prepared your filling ingredients.
Take a sheet of puff pastry. Top it with your prepared cheese filling mixture, leaving a 1cm gap at the edges of the pastry.
Gently press the cheese down with your hands, taking care not to press it into the pastry too hard. Top with another sheet of puff pastry and press again gently to compact the cheese so it doesn’t all fall out when you twist.
Use your fingers to press and seal all the edges closed. You can add a small amount of water to wet the pastry if you like but I don’t always find this necessary.
Return the sealed pastry to the fridge for 10 minutes or so to chill again. If your pastry is still super cold, you can skip this step.
Cut the pastry into long rectangles about 5-6cm wide. My 320g sheets of puff pastry makes 6 large cheese twists.
Now take your first cheese twist and use both hands to hold either end. Twist both hands in opposite directions (one going clockwise and the other anti-clockwise) to form a twisted shape.
How many twists you get depends on the size of the pastry. I get about 1-2 full twists with each hand. They will puff up in the oven so the shape won’t matter too much. They don’t have to look perfect.
Brush with the eggless “eggwash” (turmeric, milk & agave combo) and sprinkle over some kalonji seeds. You can also use sesame seeds.
Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200C/400F for 20-25 minutes until golden all over. Serve hot.
How to make Cheese Twists with shortcrust pastry
If you prefer shortcrust pastry, you can make this recipe with ready-rolled shortcrust sheets. As with the recipe below, ensure the pastry is very cold before you begin filling, cutting and twisting.
I recommend cutting each twist about half the size of the puff pastry version for a more dainty cheese straw to serve with drinks.
The result will be a little less puffy and more like a biscuitty cheese straw. Both versions are delicious but the puff pastry style will always have my heart.
Are supermarket Cheese Twists Vegetarian?
Supermarket-bought cheese twists are not always vegetarian. Some may contain cheese which is made from animal-sourced rennet. If you’re not sure, check the ingredients label. This will usually list the type of cheese in the product.
How to make “eggwash” without eggs
If you’ve been following me for a long time, you’ll remember these Mini Mushroom & Feta Pies. This was one of the first times I made an eggwash without eggs and the results were perfect.
Simply mix together warm milk of your choice, a very small amount of ground turmeric and agave. And there you have it. A perfect “eggwash”, minus the eggs.
Milk for spreadability, agave for a shiny finish and turmeric for this glorious egg-yellow colour. Don’t worry, the agave in such a small amount won’t make your finished bake taste sweet.
How to make Vegan Cheese Twists
Yes, it’s entirely possible! Many brands of packaged puff and shortcrust pastry are vegan. Read the label and most importantly, make sure it’s made with shortening instead of butter.
As for the cheese, you can substitute the dairy cheese for your favourite plant-based blend of cheese. There are tonnes of options on the market now, most made with nuts or coconut.
Finally, replace the milk in the no-egg “eggwash” with any plant-based milk of your choice. Enjoy your vegan cheese twists!
Can you freeze Cheese Twists?
Absolutely. I like to freeze these prior to the baking stage. This way, you can pop them on a lined baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes until bubbly and golden.
To freeze: Follow the recipe instructions up to the point before baking, arrange in a lined, freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 6 months. Bake straight from frozen and do not allow frozen cheese twists to thaw.
Watch the video: How to make Cheese Twists
What flavours of Cheese Twist can I make?
Other delicious flavour options you have are pesto and olives, sun-dried tomatoes and wholegrain mustard or even a Greek-inspired version with spinach and feta.
For something more festive, try brie or camembert with cranberry sauce. The options are truly endless!
Indian Cheese Twists: Recipe
- 2 x 320 g sheets ready-rolled puff pastry cold
- 75 g mature Cheddar, grated (or vegan alternative)
- 75 g low-moisture mozzarella, grated or cubed into very small pieces (or vegan alternative)
- 1 small red onion very finely diced
- 1 tbsp fresh coriander finely chopped
- 1 tsp garam masala recipe linked below
- 3/4 tsp red chilli flakes
- 2 tsp kalonji seeds (nigella seeds)
For the egg-free "eggwash":
- 2 tbsp warm milk (any of your choice)
- < 1/8 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tsp agave
- In a bowl, mix together the cheese, onions, coriander, garam masala and chilli flakes.
- Take your first chilled puff pastry sheet and set it out on a work surface lined with a sheet of baking parchment about the size of your tray. Top with the cheese mixture, leaving a 1cm gap at the edges of the pastry. Gently press the cheese into the pastry, taking care not to push it in too far. It just needs to be even.
- Top with another sheet of puff pastry and press again gently to compact the cheese so it doesn't all fall out when you twist.
- Use your fingers to press and seal all the edges closed. You can add a small amount of water to wet the pastry if you like but I don't always find this necessary.
- Return the sealed pastry to the fridge for 10 minutes to chill again. If your pastry is still super cold, you can skip this step.
- Cut the pastry into long rectangles about 5-6cm wide. Pop the twists on a large, flat baking tray on top of a sheet of baking parchment. My 320g sheets of puff pastry makes 6 large cheese twists.
- Now take your first cheese twist and use both hands to hold either end. Twist both hands in opposite directions (one going clockwise and the other anti-clockwise) to form a twisted shape. Don't worry if any cheese falls out, just put it back in.
For the egg-free "eggwash":
- Mix together the warm milk, turmeric and agave.
- Brush with the eggless "eggwash" (turmeric, milk & agave combo) and sprinkle over some kalonji seeds. You can also use sesame seeds.
- Bake the cheese twists in a pre-heated oven at 200°C/400°F for 20-25 minutes until golden all over. Serve hot.
- Storage: Store in an airtight container in a cool place. Eat within 48 hours. To re-heat, pop the cheese twists in an oven preheated to 200C/400F for 3-4 minutes or in an air fryer at the same temperature for 2 minutes.
- To freeze: Follow the recipe instructions up to the point before baking, arrange in a lined, freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 6 months. Bake straight from frozen and do not allow frozen cheese twists to thaw.
- For a vegan version of these Indian Cheese Twists: Use a vegan brand of puff pastry (Jus Rol in the UK and Pepperidge Farm in the US) have vegan products available. Use your favourite plant-based blend of cheese. I recommend using at least one mozzarella-style cheese for added cheese pull action. There are tonnes of vegan cheese options on the market now. Most are made with nuts or coconut. Finally, replace the milk in the no-egg “eggwash” with any plant-based milk of your choice. Enjoy your vegan cheese twists!
How to make Homemade Garam Masala
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If you like this, you’ll love my recipe for Homemade Vegetable Samosas