In South Florida pretty much all of the grocery stores with a bakery have an assortment of Hispanic pastries/baked goods. Empanadas, arepas, and of course, pastelitos.
Pastelitos are Cuban pastries with various fillings. They can be sweet or savory. Today I’m sharing with you the king of all sweet pastelitos – pastelito de guayaba.
This pastelito is filled with guava paste, which is a very sweet, very thick guava reduction. It is absolutely one of my favorite things. I’ve briefly shared about it before in a couple of recipes.
In this recipe, guava paste is the star. Pastelitos de guayaba (the Spanish word for guava, as you may have guessed) come in two forms – con queso y sin queso. The combination of guava paste & cheese is truly wonderful. Any cheese will do, but for pastelitos it’s cream cheese. The two flavors melt and marry beautifully in the puff pastry. If cheese isn’t your thing, that’s OK. Just stick with the guava.
Thanks to the wonder that is frozen puff pastry, this recipe is ridiculously simple. I don’t make it often because it’s kind of a calorie bomb, but it’s worth every single one.
To make a dozen pastelitos, cut the guava paste brick into 12 slices. I usually cut in into quarters & then each quarter into 3 pieces. Then lay the guava slices on to the puff pastry sheet, using the folds as natural dividers. For this batch I put cream cheese on half of them.
Top with the other sheet of puff pastry, cut into 12 squares that each contain a guava slice, & score the top. Then brush with an egg wash to get that nice golden color.
These pastries are so flaky and delicious. Cuban people would call this breakfast, but this makes a great dessert, too. Basically good for any occasion, any time of day! Pastelitos are delicious warm or cold, but you definitely want them to cool for a few minutes after coming out of the oven. Hot guava = lava. Hey, that rhymes! These can be a little messy between the flaky crust and warm, gooey guava. You’ll definitely be licking your fingers!
Now that I don’t live in South Florida anymore I might be making these more often. If your local grocery store bakery doesn’t offer pastelitos, now you know how to make your own!
Pastelitos De Guayaba
Makes 1 dozen pastries
- 1 package frozen puff pastry
- 1 brick of guava paste (approx. 14 oz)
- cream cheese (optional)
- 1 egg for wash
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Thaw the puff pastry according to package directions. You want it thawed enough to unfold without cracking, but not soft.
Unfold one sheet of puff pastry on to a parchment paper lined cookie sheet.
Cut guava paste into 12 slices. Place 4 slices per pastry sheet fold to get your 12 servings. If adding cream cheese, place 1 tbsp (or slice of the same length as guava slice) on top of guava.
Unfold the second puff pastry sheet and place it over the one with the guava paste. Cut into 12 squares and score the tops of each.
Brush egg wash on each square. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool for a few minutes before serving. Can be enjoyed warm or cold.