Brazilian Brigadeiros (Chocolate Truffles)

These decadent Brazilian brigadeiros are chewy twist on a chocolate truffle bursting with rich cacao and rolled in a variety of toppings for added flavor.

Brazilian Brigadeiros Chocolate Truffles - The Well Essentials #glutenfree

This post is in partnership with my friends at Navitas Organics. Thank you for supporting the companies that help make The Well Essentials possible.


Making truffles for Christmas is one of my favorite desserts to make, and give away as gifts so when I set out to “Cook Around The World For Christmas” for 25 days I knew that one of those recipes had to be truffles. After searching for different truffle recipes from different countries around the world I finally fell upon Brigadeiros, which are a kind of Brazilian candy that can best be described as a mix between a chewy caramel and a decadent truffle.

All you have to do is a watch one video of people making brigadeiros and you will be running out to get the ingredients for this simple holiday recipe.

Brazilian Brigadeiros - Brazilian Chewy Chocolate Truffles - The Well Essentials #glutenfree

In Brazil, brigadeiros are a popular candy that you will see in pastry shops and are typically rolled in various colored sprinkles. They are made using a combination of cocoa powder and condensed milk for a simple, yet classic Brazilian dessert.

When I set out to make this brigadeiro recipe instead of using cocoa powder (which is often highly processed) I opted for fair trade cacao powder from Navitas Organics. I use this cacao powder all the time in baking. I love that it is certifed fair trade (meaning that the cacao farmers are paid and treated fairly for their work), and is full of antioxidants and healthy minerals that were not compromised during processing.

While cacao powder and cocoa powder may look the same they really aren't. Raw cacao powder is produced by cold-pressing un-roasted cacao beans that maintains the living enzymes and nutrients in the cacao. This process removes the fat from the cacao plant (cacao butter) and leaves a rich cacao powder. Cocoa powder on the other hand takes the raw cacao bean and roasts it at high temperatures, which compromises many of the beneficial properties int he cacao.

Brazilian Brigadeiros - Brazilian Chewy Chocolate Truffles - The Well Essentials #glutenfree
Brazilian Brigadeiros - Brazilian Chewy Chocolate Truffles - The Well Essentials #glutenfree

The trickiest part about making brigadeiros is knowing how long to cook them. The very first time that I made this recipe I didn’t cook the mixture on the stove long enough, which results in the brigadeiros flattening out after rolling. If the balls don't hold their shape and and flatten down you know that you did not cook the brigadeiro mixture long enough. Simply place the brigadeiro mixture back in the pan and cook for an additional 5 minutes.

One trick that I found helpful when researching how to make brigadeiros was to take a small piece of the brigadeiro mixture, roll it into a ball, and then immediately place in a cold glass filled with water. If the brigadeiro holds it’s shape after cooling down in the water you know that they have been cooked enough.

Brazilian Brigadeiros - Brazilian Chewy Chocolate Truffles - The Well Essentials #glutenfree

Brazilian Brigadeiros (Chocolate Truffles)

makes ~ 12 truffles


Ingredients

  • ¼ cup Navitas Organics Fair Trade Cacoa Powder

  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (can also substitute with condensed coconut milk)

  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 2 tablespoons grass fed butter or coconut oil

Toppings

  • ¼ cup shredded coconut

  • ¼ cup crushed candy cane

  • ¼ cup crushed cashews and sea salt to taste

Directions

  • In a medium size saucepan over medium heat, heat condensed milk, cacao powder, vanilla, and butter/coconut oil.

  • Heat liquid until bubbles begin to form, stirring consistently. Once bubbles form on the top of the liquid lower the heat to low.

  • Continue stirring consistently for 12-15 minutes, or until the liquid begins to thicken and pulls away from the pan for a few seconds as you are stirring.

  • Pour brigadeiro mixture onto a greased plate and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour to cool.

  • Once cooled, apply some coconut oil to your hands (to keep the mixture from sticking) and begin pulling the brigadeiro mixture apart, and roll into small balls.

  • Immediately coat each ball in toppings of your choice and place on a plate.

  • Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.