Pineapple Quesito (Puerto Rican Breakfast Pastry)

Pineapple Quesito and Coffee | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

This is a Quesito (Ke-see-toe) and it is delicious. Seriously, it is so perfect in its simplicity; flaky puff pastry wrapped around sweetened cream cheese and buttery pineapple. And it’s beautiful, in a shabby chic kind of way, nothing fussy, just rustic goodness with a generous dusting of powdered sugar. The best thing is that you can whip this together in about 5 minutes and instantly satisfy your craving for something sweet. I’ve made them three times for breakfast since I returned from Puerto Rico. You see, I am desperately grasping to my memories of being there. I just returned, less than a week ago, and already I miss it. It was paradise, which is enough to make one long for its sandy shores, perfect weather, gorgeous waters, friendly people, and the discovery of Puerto Rican pastries like Mallorca and the quesitos. But, returning to Minnesota and having to shovel my car out from the snow, in APRIL, was frankly, more than I was mentally prepared to handle. So, I make quesitos, shut my eyes, hold a shell to my ear and pretend I am still lying on the beach.

Puerto Rico | ZoeBakes

You can too! (This picture is of the swimming beach in Rincon – if you’d like to visit, I suggest you check out the website by Chelsea Harms, whose recommendations for everything from hotels, surfing lessons and snorkeling spots, were the foundation for our perfect vacation.)

Pineapple Quesito:

The pineapples:

2 cups fresh pineapple, chopped into small pieces

2 tablespoon butter

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped out

Cream cheese filling:

1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature

2 teaspoons sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


2 sheets puff pastry, thawed

egg wash (1 egg beat with 1 tablespoon water)

Sugar for sprinkling on the pastry

Confectioners’ (powdered) sugar for dusting the baked pastry

To make the quesitos:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line two baking trays with parchment paper.

Pineapple cooked in butter and brown sugar | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

In saucepan melt the butter over medium heat, add the brown sugar, pineapple and vanilla bean, with the seeds. Cook until the pineapple is tender and the juices have thickened to a syrup. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly while you make the cheese filling.

Filling quesitos with pineapple | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

To make cheese filling: In a bowl mix together the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Cut the puff pastry into 4 to 5-inch squares, depending on the size of the puff pastry sheet you have. Spread the cheese filling in the middle of each piece of pastry.

Brushing pineapple quesitos with egg wash | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Place the pineapples over the cheese filling. Brush the points of the pastry with the egg wash. Fold one side over the filling, then tuck the other point under the pastry, to create a roll.

Pineapple Quesitos on baking sheet | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Tuck the points under the filled pastry, which will puff up high and keep the filling in the center.

Brushing pineapple quesitos with egg wash | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Brush with more egg wash and sprinkle generously with sugar.

Pineapple Quesitos | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown and crisp. You may have to rotate the two trays, top to bottom and back to front, to make sure they are baking evenly.

Pineapple Quesitos | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

They will be light and puffy when they are done. Allow them to cool.

Dusting Pineapple Quesitos with Sugar | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Dust with confectioners’ sugar.

espresso 01

They are fantastic with a cup of coffee, an espresso or any rum drink.

Pineapple Quesitos with Coffee | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

For those of you who are still suffering through winter, even though it is spring, here are some pictures to gaze at and dream of being warm while you eat your Puerto Rican pastries.

Puerto Rico 03

Puerto Rico has gorgeous beaches (This is an island off of the coast of Fajardo, where we went paddle boarding, kayaking and snorkeling. That’s what we did when I didn’t have my feet up, book in hand and sipping a rum drink.)

Puerto Rico | ZoeBakes

Not to mention the mind blowing rain forest…

Puerto Rico

and the history and charm of old San Juan. Yep, it was all fantastic.

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29 thoughts to “Pineapple Quesito (Puerto Rican Breakfast Pastry)”

  1. They look lovely. 🙂 You can make them filled with all sorts of things….passion fruit cream cheese? YUM.

    I lived in Puerto Rico for a few years so I feel your pain. I lived and worked in El Yunque rain forest for a while and then lived right off of Old San Juan docked on my boat and traveled around to the other islands. It was divine. Did you get some mofongo while you were there?

    1. Hi Briana,

      Oh yes, we had quesito filled with guava, passionfruit and just cheese. We had a lot of them! 😉

      We ate mofongo and all sorts of other dishes made with plantains. It was fantastic! How did you bring yourself to leave the island?

      Cheers, Zoë

      1. Zoe,

        I tend to eat up as much as I can when I go back. There are a row of Kiosks on the beach on your way to Fajardo from San Juan on the main highway and they have all sorts of empanadas and delicious things there, including mofongo. I tend to gain a few pounds when I go back and eat at the kiosks all day and sit on the beach.

        Leaving was difficult but reality was calling. I miss it terribly and laugh at all the adventures I had there, including studying those little coquis at night in the rain forest, being on the mountain when hurricane Bertha blew through, and getting my boat stuck on a reef. Ha! Thanks for taking me down memory lane, I should plan a trip back there this fall or when it starts to get cold.

        Did you find that everyone was incredibly nice? I’ve never met nicer people. Were you on Vieques?

        Beautiful pictures of your trip, BTW. I love your blog, it’s fantastic!

        1. Sounds fantastic Briana,

          No, we never made it to Vieques, just not enough time! ;( It is the reason we will go back, I’ve heard it is magical. The people were incredible.

          Thanks! Zoë

  2. Hi Zoe! Nice blog, and the recipe, and the photo’s ev’rything is perfect. But Quesito is not pronounced so, but : kesito. Regards!

  3. Sounds nice and simple, and delicious. But how do I print the recipe without all the photography? Thanks!

    1. Hi Kevin,

      Only way I know is to copy the post and paste it into word, then you can delete the photos. Looking for a better solution, but for now thats it.

      Thanks and enjoy the quesito! Zoë

    1. Hey Bubbles,

      I have no idea what you wrote, but I assume it is hilarious! 😉 No, the cheese stays right where it is meant to be!

      Cheers, Zoë

  4. Zoë, they look absolutely delicious! Pity, I have never tried pineapple version yet, must try to make it 😉 I worked on the cruise ship and used to visit San Juan every other week. I went also to El Yunque rainforest, to couple little islands near Vieques… magical place. Unfortunately Arecibo observatory was closed to visitors when I was in the area 🙁

  5. !Oh my! !Que rico! I just opened my e-mail and your post. Good try with the Spanish! My salivary glands are working overtime. I’m going to forward this to friends and family. I thought about making Monkey Bread this weekend, but this dessert trumps Monkey Bread right now!

  6. Aww Zoe thanks so much for the mention!!! It was my pleasure to suggest all sorts of ideas for you guys 🙂 I’m sorry we didn’t have the opportunity to meet up, but please come again!! There is still so much to see 🙂

    1. Hey Chelsea,

      Your recommendations were perfect! We had a blast! I only wish we had met while we were there. Next time!

      Cheers to you and your beautiful island! Zoë

  7. Hi Zoe, Thanks for the great description of your trip. And the great recipe! The puff pastry reminds me that I’d posted a while back on your ABin5 blog about laminated doughs. I’m still trying to come up with a decent FAST puff pastry but am not even close. The usual quick croissant recipe that’s common online makes truly terrible dough, just like crescent rolls in a can. I want really flaky pastry, without all the turns and chilling. Maybe not possible…You mentioned you too were experimenting with laminated dough. Any news?

  8. Well, they’re in the oven. They smell great! Thanks for the recipe!

    But man was the puff pastry hard to use. Are you using store-bought? I used the Pepperidge Farm stuff and I could not unroll it. I ended up flattening out one of the sheets with a rolling pin. What is your secret, Zoë?

    1. Hi Seth,

      Was the puff pastry stuck together or was it still frozen? It is easiest to unfold when it is chilled, but not frozen. If it is at room temperature it can get sticky.

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. I let it thaw in the fridge overnight, but then I guess I let it sit out on the counter too long while I was cooking the pineapple. In any case, I found you have a recipe for puff pastry so I may be using that in the future.

  9. These look delicious! I’m in high school, and in my Spanish class we’re learning about Puerto Rico and how holidays are celebrated there, especially the foods! We will be having a fiesta soon with the foods we’re learning about, as well as other Puerto Rican foods, and I would really love to make these! So I was wondering, how many quesitos does this recipe make? I couldn’t find it, and I’m going to have to make a ton for my class! Gracias, Senora!

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