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Love the Starbucks cheese danish? Save money by making these easy danishes at home with just a few ingredients!
I love grabbing a treat along with my coffee in the morning, especially when I’m pressed for time.
The Starbucks cheese danish is simple, yet hits the spot when you want something just lightly sweet.
The only problem is that those delicious pastries can add up in cost, making a trip to the coffee shop an expensive outing.
Luckily, it’s easy to make this cheese danish recipe at home! Plus, you can bake an entire batch and reheat them as needed to enjoy a homemade pastry all week.
I was surprised to find out that the Starbucks cheese danish only has a few ingredients.
In fact, aside from the puff pastry, you might already have everything else on hand!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Puff pastry sheet
- Softened cream cheese
- Granulated Sugar
What kind of puff pastry should I use?
Depending on where you live, there might be only one or two varieties of puff pastry available to you.
I like the Weiwalka brand of puff pastry, which is found near the other refrigerated doughs. I find it is easier to work with than frozen puff pastry rolls, and doesn’t require thawing.
Dufour is an excellent brand of puff pastry that uses all butter. It’s well worth searching for!
Of course, you can always just use whatever brand is available to you. You can also make rough puff pastry at home, if you like.
Make sure that you are using puff pastry, not croissant dough sheets. You could also try this recipe using puff pastry shells, but keep in mind you will likely need to adjust filling and baking times.
How to make Starbucks cheese danish
I recommend preparing the cheese filling before the pastry.
You want the puff pastry to be as cold as possible before going into the oven, while still being soft enough to handle.
If you’re using refrigerated puff pastry, that means you don’t need to let it sit out long before unrolling and cutting.
For frozen puff pastry, thaw it according to package directions. Depending on the temperature of your kitchen, this can take 20-30 minutes.
Preheat the oven and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. While the fat content of puff pastry means it won’t stick to the pan, the parchment helps with easy cleanup and helps make the browning a bit more even, especially if your pans are aged.
Beat together the cream cheese and sugar in a bowl. I use a hand mixer for this step to ensure the mixture is completely smooth. You can beat the cream cheese to break it up before adding the sugar, or mix in one step.
Unroll your pastry and use a rolling pin to gently roll it to about 9×13 inches. Then, cut the pastry into 8 rectangles. Don’t worry if they aren’t perfectly equal! Transfer the rectangles to your prepared baking sheet.
Use a paring knife to score a smaller rectangle into each pastry piece, leaving a ½-inch border all around. Be careful that you do not cut all the way through the pastry.
Spread some of the cream cheese mixture onto the pastry, keeping it inside the smaller rectangle you just scored. Repeat until you’ve used all of the pastry and filling.
Beat together an egg with 1 tablespoon of water. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash on the edges of each puff pastry.
If you don’t have a pastry brush, use a paper towel dipped into the egg wash.
Bake the cheese danishes until crisp and golden brown. The cream cheese might start to brown too; that’s OK! Let cool slightly before serving.
Because of the cream cheese, I recommend storing any leftover cheese danishes in the refrigerator.
Store in an airtight container and reheat as needed.
The cheese danishes will lose their crispness during storage, but you can crisp them up again by warming in the oven or toaster oven at 350°F for 8-10 minutes.
If you like, you can freeze the pastries for longer storage. They will keep, well-wrapped, in a freezer safe container for about 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat as above.
Cheese danish variations
These cheese danishes are just one version of the popular Starbucks pastries.
Seasonal fans should check out the summery red berry cheese danish or my sugar plum cheese danish. Now you don’t have to wait for your favorites!
You can also change up this recipe to suit your mood or tastes. Make it a blueberry danish, or add lemon zest and juice for a bright start to the morning.
Top with your favorite fruits before baking, or try a bit of a savory taste and add tomatoes and sauteed onions.
Nuts are also an excellent choice. Layer on sliced almonds or chopped pistachios, then drizzle the baked danish with warmed apricot jam or honey.
Whether you make them for brunch or to have on-hand all week, these cheese danishes are a must.
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed if frozen
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, beat together cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
- Unroll puff pastry and, if needed, use a rolling pin to gently roll out to a rectangle approximately 9×13 inches. Cut pastry into 8 rectangles.
- Transfer the rectangles to the prepared baking sheet, leaving some space between. (You might need two baking sheets.) Using a paring knife, score a smaller rectangle inside each piece of dough, leaving a ½-inch border all around. Be careful to not cut all the way through the dough.
- Spread about 2 tablespoons of the cream cheese mixture onto each smaller rectangle. Beat together egg and water, then use a pastry brush or paper towel to brush the egg wash on the uncovered pastry edges.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, until puffed and golden brown. Let cool slightly before serving.
I have to tell you I’ve tried so many different danish recipes that haven’t turned out good. (Note that I have tons of other baking experience.) This danish turned out perfect. I’ve never made a danish that turned out so good! Awesome recipe! ??
Thank you so much Amber!
Wonderful and easy! Should any leftovers be refrigerated?
Hi Doug, I recommend putting leftovers in the refrigerator and then re-warming them in the oven or a toaster oven briefly to crisp up. Enjoy!
Absolutely wonderful recipe…… I’ve tried a couple and this one is certainly the best so far ……..
this was so easy to make and delicious! i’m hooked! putting a few in the freezer for future snacks.
Can you make the day before?
Hi there, you can make these in advance, but I recommend re-warming them in the oven or a toaster oven before serving to crisp up the pastry.
I made these with just a slight alteration. I didn’t have puff pastry but I did have a can of Pillsbury pizza crust. I rolled it out and poked a few holes in it because I didn’t want it to puff up too much. It’s not that big so I only got 6, kinda wonky rectangles out of it. Did everything else exactly and baked at the temp in this recipe for 12 min and OMG I’M IN LOVE. I really don’t like the flakyness of puff pastry so this was a perfect substitution for me. The flavor is amazing with just a light sweet flavor. Please… whatever dough/pastry you use….MAKE THESE.
Can you freeze these? And if so, would you do it before or after baking?
Hi Hannah, they can be frozen! I prefer to freeze them after baking and reheat in the oven or toaster oven until crisp. You can freeze before baking but puff pastry doesn’t rise quite as well when it has been thawed and refrozen.