For as long as I can remember, every party hosted by my mother has had one thing in common: brigadeiros. Rich in taste and smooth in texture, brigadeiros are probably my favorite dessert (I wrote my common app essay on them - that's how obsessed I am).

What Are Brigadeiros?

A brigadeiro (pronounced bɾiga'dejɾu) is a traditional Brazilian party dessert that is similar to a bonbon or fudge. Created in Rio de Janerio in the 1940s, brigadeiros' origin is tied to political campaigns of presidents and even the suffrage movement of Brazil. Today, brigadeiros continue to be one of the most popular desserts in Brazil for any occasion. My mom even jokes that you aren't at a Brazilian party unless there are brigadeiros.

Brigadeiros in Brazil are most commonly shaped into bonbon balls after cool-off and topped with chocolate chip sprinkles. You could also eat the fudge plain with a spoon, top the balls with your favorite granola or cereal, or even make a Pavé de Brigadeiro (which loosely translates to layers of brigaderio) using saltine crackers.

As if they were blessed gifts from the gods, brigadeiros are also super easy to make, even in the college dorm kitchen. If you are looking for a quick dessert, consider brigadeiros to solve your next sweet tooth craving. 


  • Prep Time:20 mins
  • Cook Time:10 mins
  • Total Time:30 mins
  • Servings:20
  • Easy


  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder/hot chocolate
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • Optional toppings
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  • Step 1

    Add condensed milk, cocoa powder, and butter in a pan (any type of pan would work, but a saucepan is preferred). Place on medium/low heat.

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  • Step 2

    Mix the ingredients together until the mixture starts loosening up from the bottom of the pan. This takes roughly 10 minutes.

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  • Step 3

    To check to see if the mixture has started to loosen up, tip the pan, you should see the finished mixture detach from the pan.

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  • Step 4

    Once cooked, let the brigadeiro cool off on a plate. For a quicker cool down, place in the fridge. Cooling down can take up to 20 minutes. And your brigadeiro mix is complete!

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  • Step 5

    For the traditional appearance of brigadeiros, roll the fudge in your hand until it forms into a ball and then dip the ball into the topping of your choice. Place the final product in a mini cupcake wrapper.

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  • Step 6

    For a sweet and salty bite, layer saltine crackers and brigadeiro fudge until you reach a desirable height. Cover the sides and top of your layers with brigadeiro.

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Spoon Tip: Brigadeiros can easily be made in the microwave. Add ingredients in a bowl and microwave in one-minute intervals. Between each interval, mix the ingredients. You can tell the brigadeiros are done by the same method mentioned before.

And now you have your next go-to party dessert! Or if you are like me, just make them for yourself and don't share ;). 

Isabella Steidley