This gluten free baked brie, or brie en croute, is a perfect appetizer for New Year’s Eve. Filled with melted brie and a praline sauce on top, it’ll wow your guests and make you forget it’s totally gluten free!
Who says we can’t have puff pastry anymore? And who says we can’t have baked brie for that matter? Ever since I tried baked brie at a company Christmas party many moons ago I’ve loved it! And of course I never got around to making it until after I was diagnosed and wanting those things I couldn’t have anymore.
What is Brie en Croute?
In French, the term “en croute” simply refers to anything baked in a pastry crust. Putting a wheel of brie cheese in pastry and baking it is called brie en croute, or baked brie. In this case, the pastry we’re using is my glorious gluten free puff pastry!!
Sometimes baked brie has a sweet topping in between the brie and the pastry. I recreated the one that was served years ago at my company Christmas party. Pecans, brown sugar, maple and cinnamon are slathered on top of brie cheese, tucked in the flaky pastry. It makes such an unbelievably seductive bite of heaven.
Preparing the Pastry and Filling
Once you’ve made my gluten free puff pastry, you’re more than halfway there to cheesy heaven! It can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days, or frozen for months and thawed the night before you want to use it.
When you make the pastry, the final shape will be a rectangle. Cut 1/4 of the pastry off, straight down with a sharp knife (save the rest for other purposes). Wrap it in plastic wrap and allow it to come to a cool room temperature (about 30 minutes).
Mix the pecans with the maple syrup, butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a small saucepan until the sugar melts, about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Set aside.
Rolling Out the Pastry and Filling It
Begin by pressing down the length of the dough with your rolling pin to flatten it slightly before turning it and doing the same thing. Keep doing this until you can roll it into a large round or square (it doesn’t need to be perfect). It should be about 8-10 inches in diameter, enough to pull up over the wheel of brie.
Place the brie in the middle of the pastry and add the pecan mixture on top. Gather the pastry up and around the brie cheese to meet in the middle.
Once you’ve gathered the pastry around the brie, it’s up to you as to how you want to decorate it. As you can see in my pics, I chose to make it look like a little package gathered at the top, waiting to be tore into. But you can go the simple route and simply fold the pastry over to encase the yumminess underneath. OR you can cut off excess pastry and cut out of the scraps with small cookie cutters and place those on top with some egg wash serving as “glue.”
Carefully place the pastry on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush it with an egg wash.
Bake for about 30-40 minutes, or until golden brown (if it starts getting too brown on the very top, place a small piece of foil over just those edges to allow the rest of the pastry to brown and crisp). Remove from the oven and let it sit for about 15 minutes before serving.
What To Serve With Baked Brie en Croute
I love apples with brie cheese, even if the brie is just room temp, and will often have that as a snack. Apple slices served with this brie en croute is a no brainer. You can choose granny smith for the tartness to tame the sweetness of the pecan pralines, but any apple slices will work just fine. Pear slices would also work great. I also like to scatter clusters of fresh grapes and dried fruit over the platter.
Crackers also go well with baked brie. Any gluten free crackers are great, but I’m partial to Milton’s Gf Crispy Sea Salt Crackers. There are several wonderful gluten free crackers on the market, though, so use whatever you like and is available to you.
What could be better than melty cheese with a pecan praline sauce, all wrapped in a glorious gluten free puff pastry? Serve this at your New Year’s Eve party for a showstopper of an appetizer. You’re sure to get rave reviews 🎉
Gluten Free Baked Brie (Brie en Croute)
- ¼ recipe glorious gluten free puff pastry
- 1 8-ounce wheel of brie
- ½ cup (120 g) coarsely chopped pecans
- 1 tbsp butter
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ cup (50 g) lightly packed brown sugar
- 2 tbsp real maple syrup
- dash of salt
- 1 large egg
- crackers, slices of apples, grapes, dried fruit, etc for serving
- Make the puff pastry according to recipe directions. Cut off ¼ slice and rewrap the rest and refrigerate or freeze for other purposes. Wrap the slice in plastic wrap and allow to come to cool room temperature, about 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Make the pecan praline sauce: in a small saucepan, melt the butter. Add the pecans, cinnamon, brown sugar, and maple syrup. Cook over medium heat just until the sugar has dissolved, about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour into a small bowl and set aside.
- On a lightly floured surface, begin pressing lightly on puff pastry dough to flatten and enlarge the width. Turn and continue pressing until the piece of dough is enlarged enough to begin rolling it out. Roll out to a rough square or circle (it doesn't matter the shape, as long as it's big enough to wrap around the wheel of brie). The final thickness should be about ¼ of an inch.
- Place the wheel of brie in the middle of the pastry and top with the pecan praline topping (the "sauce" will thicken and harden as it cools). Fold the pastry up and over the brie and praline sauce. Excess pastry can be cut off using kitchen shears if desired. You can also use the excess pastry by cutting it out with small cookie cutters for decorations on top. "Glue" them onto the pastry with egg wash.
- Carefully pick up and place the wrapped brie onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Whisk one egg with 1 tbsp water and brush over the entire surface of the pastry.
- Bake at 400° F for about 30-40 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown. If you've gathered the pastry at the top like I did, you may need to take a small piece of foil and cover just the edges on top so those don't burn while the rest of the pastry continues to brown and crisp.
- Remove from the oven and allow it to sit for about 15 minutes.
- Place on platter and serve with gluten free crackers, slices of apples and/or pears, clusters of grapes, and dried fruit and/or nuts, etc.