The 20-year-old Pole took a cross on his chest in the 76th minute before swivelling in mid-air to smash the ball into the net with his left foot.
Pawlowski's goal helped Malaga move up to seventh in the table with nine points. Valladolid are 13th with six points.
Javi Guerra levelled for Valladolid 11 minutes into the second half, nodding his third league goal of the season after good work by Patrick Ebert.
The home team went 2-1 up with another header eight minutes later from Colombian striker Humberto Osorio.