Brigadeiros

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Ultra chocolatey and fudgy brigadeiros — a traditional Brazilian dessert made of sweetened condensed milk, cocoa powder, butter, and chocolate sprinkles. This candy is simple to make and sure to be a hit with whoever tries them!

These brigadeiros are simple to make, but require a bit of planning since they do need some chilling time! They’re a great make ahead treat, transport well, and make a beautiful addition to any party or holiday spread.

Image of the ready to eat chocolate sprinkle covered brigadeiros

My mom spent a few years of her childhood (and then returned as an adult) in Brazil. She still speaks perfect Portuguese and has made us brigadeiros and limonada brasileΓ±a (brazilian limeade) ever since I can remember. Those were some of our two favorite treats growing up! 

We loved sitting over the stove stirring the brigadeiro “dough” with her and then rolling the fudgy balls in chocolate sprinkles (stealing bites of the dough and handfuls of sprinkles of course). So today I’m sharing my mom’s brigadeiro recipe that came from her friends in Brazil. I’ve added a pinch of salt to balance the sweet and enhance the flavors, but other than that, this is the recipe we’ve eaten and enjoyed for years. 

Brigadeiros history

It’s said that Brigadeiros were named after a Brigadier General who was popular in Brazil at the time of World War II. The reason they were invented is because chocolate was scarce during the war, but Nestle’s cocoa powder was readily available.  

What are brigadeiros

A brigadeiro is a traditional Brazilian dessert. It’s made of sweetened condensed milk, butter, cocoa powder, and sprinkles covering the outside layer. Brigadeiros are a staple in Brazil and can be eaten with a spoon straight from the pot, which is by they are often called “brigadier de colder” (spoon brigadeiro). Trust me you’re going to be stealing spoonfuls too!

Yes! They freeze well for up to 3 months. To freeze leftovers: make sure you have already rolled them in the sprinkles, and then place on a parchment paper lined sheet pan. Freeze until solid and then carefully transfer to an airtight bag. Seal without air and freeze. Thaw in the fridge.

Image of the brigadeiros recipe with a bite out of one of them

More no bake treats:

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Brigadeiros

5 from 2 votes
Ultra chocolatey and fudgy brigadeiros -- a traditional Brazilian dessert made of sweetened condensed milk, cocoa powder, butter, and chocolate sprinkles. This candy is simple to make and sure to be a hit with whoever tries them!
Print Recipe

Brigadeiros

5 from 2 votes
Ultra chocolatey and fudgy brigadeiros -- a traditional Brazilian dessert made of sweetened condensed milk, cocoa powder, butter, and chocolate sprinkles. This candy is simple to make and sure to be a hit with whoever tries them!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Brigadeiros
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Chilling Time 30 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 12 brigadeiros
Calories 112kcal
Author Chelsea

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, separated
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk (do not use low fat or fat free)
  • 1/3 cup regular cocoa powder (not dutch process)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Chocolate sprinkles or additional cocoa powder, for decorating

Instructions

  • Soften 1 tablespoon butter and rub it over a large plate. Set aside.
  • In a nonstick 10 to 12 inch saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and add the sweetened condensed milk. Add the cocoa powder and salt and reduce the heat a tiny bit. Stir nonstop for 8-13 minutes or until the mixture begins to pull away from the edge of the pot; it should be very thick. To check if its done, run a wooden spoon through the center and watch to make sure it takes a few seconds to melt back into the center again. Transfer the mixture to the prepared plate and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes
  • When mixture is set, butter your hands to prevent sticking, and pull off a portion of the mixture (about 1/2 to 1 full tablespoons). Roll the mixture between your hands to get a perfectly round ball. Repeat with the remainder of the mixture to get about 12 balls. Pour sprinkles (or cocoa powder) on a flat plate and roll the fudge balls into the sprinkles (or cocoa powder) to coat.
  • Best enjoyed same day!

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 112kcal

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Nutrition Facts in brigadeiros

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35 Comments

    1. That’s how traditional brigadeiros are supposed to be πŸ™‚ Thanks so much Taylor and thanks for the pin!

  1. They say you learn something new every day. I had no idea what a brigadeiros were. Thanks for enlightening me. πŸ™‚
    Love the strawberry essence. Can’t wait til there here fresh and local.
    Have a beautiful Wednesday!

  2. That is so cool that your mom lived in Brazil! And I love that you adapted a fun Brazilian recipe for springtime! I’m sure the chocolate brigadeiros are good, but this strawberry version looks so fun and festive. I’m trying to imagine how wonderful they taste. πŸ™‚

  3. Haha, well I can’t say it, let alone try to spell it, so all I’ll say is WOW! These are so cute and the thought of pink taffy rolled into balls with sprinkles sounds amazing! I bet I would eat the whole batch, popping one after another into my mouth. Pinned!

  4. How awesome that your mom lived in Brazil and made these for you growing up – totally cool! One of my friends made chocolate orange ones for us back in college and they were fantastic but I know I would love these even more since I can’t get enough of strawberries and the sprinkles are so pretty πŸ™‚

  5. This is such an interesting recipe!! And really only two ingredients?! That’s crazy! The texture looks amazing and they sound so delicious. Plus I love how you turned them into a great Easter treat! So cute!

  6. OMG, these are just SO CUTE!! I`ve never had brigadeiros, but I know I would love them. Even though these do not have the chocolate in them, I love strawberry flavored desserts~

  7. What a fun recipe and so pretty too. My kids love anything round, chewy, sweet, and sprinkled so this would definitely make them happy. Pinned. Would love to share this on my weekly roundup.

  8. My Tia ( who was born and raised in Brazil) used to make Brigadeiros when she lived here in the U.S. She had given me her recipe but I miss placed it. My Tai now living in back in Brazil is hard to get a hold of, that is why I have been searching the web for a good Brigadeiro recipe. I must say she never made chocolate or any other flavored Brigadeiros, I remember making them with her, she simply used sweetened condensed milk and butter, after chilling the heated mixture in the freezer over night, we would roll and cover the candies with chocolate sprinkles. I am not sure why she didn’t use cocoa in the mixture but i’m ok with that. My family and friends all loved the simple little candies. I would love to try your version of the recipe thank you for sharing it!

  9. 5 stars
    I know brigadeiro all too well… I am from Brazil and have been making them for years! They are a staple in any celebration. My daughter loves them and always ask for them in her birthday parties. My American neighbors and her American friends always expect them whenever there is a gathering. Brigadeiros have become quite famous and are being made in a variety of flavors now, there are even some gourmet recipes that are to die for.

    In Portuguese we call these strawberry brigadeiros “bicho de pΓ©” which in English means “foot bug”! I found that that this unusual name comes from the fact that the original strawberry brigadeiro was left with little black spots from the fresh strawberry fruit after it was done, so it was a pink “dough” with little black strawberry “seeds” in it, which resembled “foot bugs”. The other Brazilians correct me if I am wrong, but every kid I know from Brazil (including myself) have had foot bugs as a child. We used to play barefoot all the time, it was impossible not to end up with them at least once in a life time…

    Anyway, I have been looking for a good strawberry brigadeiro recipe for valentine’s day, and this one is a champ! The one I am used to make, requires strawberry powder, the real thing, which makes the candy more tangy and less sweet. But this ingredient is hard to find and is somewhat expensive. So the way you have it here seems to be the perfect alternative. Thank you so much!

        1. Oh my gosh I’m OBSESSED!!! Your card couldn’t be any cuter πŸ™‚ I love it and thank you so much for sharing!

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