These bite-sized appetizers are the perfect holiday snack! They’re filled with melty gouda cheese, homemade cranberry sauce spiked with rum, and it’s all nestled into a perfectly flaky pastry nest.
This post is sponsored by our friends at Blue Chair Bay! All opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that make Blue Bowl possible.
This whole recipe is delicious – I mean, you can’t really go wrong stuffing cranberry sauce and cheese into a flaky puff pastry package. BUT the magic is really in the cranberry sauce! I’ve spiked it with a little of Blue Chair Bay’s Spiced Rum to give it an extra punch of flavor. And, who doesn’t like adding a little splash of something boozy to their appetizers??
The homemade cranberry sauce is so simple to make – all we’re doing is cooking sugar and water together to dissolve the sugar, then we’ll add our fresh or frozen cranberries and let them cook down. Finally, the fun part – stirring in all our mix-ins! I like to use a little maple syrup, our Spiced Rum of course, and a pinch of orange zest and allspice. It’s the most delicious homemade cranberry sauce!
Once that’s made, you’re basically done with the bulk of the work for this recipe! All we’re doing enxt is cutting pre-made puff pastry into squares to fill our muffin tins with. Add shredded gouda cheese and our boozy cranberry sauce to each, brush with a little egg wash, and bake. That’s it, folks! Easy peasy.
This recipe is perfect for this holiday season, since it’s individual apps (no cross dipping or anything like that happening, here!) and it’s a smaller batch recipe, for our small gatherings.
Garnish these with a little fresh rosemary if you like, and watch them be gobbled up!
You’re under an hour away from these flaky pastry, gooey cheese, and rum-infused cranberry sauce bites of perfection. Happy baking, and have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!
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Puff Pastry Bites with Gouda and Spiced Rum Cranberry Sauce
For the Spiced Rum Cranberry Sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups fresh or frozen whole cranberries If using frozen, don't thaw them
- 2 tbsp real maple syrup
- 2-3 tbsp Blue Chair Bay Spiced Rum
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 1 pinch allspice
For the Rest of the Puff Pastry Bites
- 6 ounces gouda, grated
- 1 sheet puff pastry thawed according to package directions
- 1 large egg, for egg wash
- fresh rosemary, for garnish optional
- Prep: Make sure your puff pastry is thawing while you start on the cranberry sauce!
- Make the Spiced Rum Cranberry Sauce: Add the sugar & water to a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Bring this to a boil, and then reduce the heat to medium, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved (this will only take a couple of minutes). Once the sugar is dissolved, lower the heat to a simmer over low heat, and add the cranberries. Bring the mixture to a boil again, and then reduce the heat to a simmer over medium low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries are mostly broken down - about 10 minutes. (Don't' freak if the cranberries aren't breaking down - just turn up the heat a bit, and keep cooking them until they're mostly all broken down.)Next, stir in the maple syrup, spiced rum, allspice, and orange zest. Taste and add more rum or any of the other mix-ins if desired. Stick your pot of cranberry sauce in the fridge to chill and thicken up while you get the rest of the recipe ready. (You can scrape it into a smaller bowl if your fridge is too full to stick the pot in).
- Assemble the Puff Pastry Bites: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Roll your thawed puff pastry out on a lightly floured counter until it's about 14 x 12. Cut into 12 equal (doesn't need to be perfect) squares. Spray a muffin tin well with nonstick spray. Place one square into each of the muffin cavities. Add about 1 tablespoon of gouda to each, and top with 1 tablespoon of the chilled cranberry sauce. Beat the egg in a small bowl and brush the exposed parts of the puff pastry with the egg.
- Bake: Bake the bites for 21 to 23 minutes. The puff pastry will be golden brown and the cranberry sauce and cheese will be bubbly. Let cool in the pan a few minutes, then use a butter knife to loosen and pop them out of the muffin tin.
- Serve + Store: Enjoy immediately! These are best while fresh the first day, but leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 days.
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