Homemade Dairy-Free Pumpkin Candy inspired by Brazilian Docinhos


This naturally dairy-free pumpkin candy recipe was summited by a reader, who originally found the recipe on Food.com. Brazilian Docinhos, often called Brigadeiro, are similar to a fudge candy. They are usually made with sweetened condensed milk. But this pumpkin recipe skips the dairy altogether, for a sweet that focuses more heavily on coconut and pumpkin. It’s definitely not traditional – Brazilians love their sweetened condensed milk! But this recipe does make a tasty treat in its own right.

You can serve these sweets for fall birthdays, around the holidays, or even gift them. They look nice in little candy or mini muffin liners placed in a gift box.

Homemade Dairy-Free Pumpkin Candy Recipe inspired by Brazilian Docinhos. Also vegan, gluten-free, and allergy-friendly.

Special Diet Notes: Pumpkin Candy

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian.

Dairy-Free Pumpkin Candy (Docinhos de Abobora)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Unlike most recipes for Docinhos, this version is made without sweetened condensed milk. The key is thickening the mixture to the medium-ball stage, and letting it cool to thicken more before handling.
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Brazilian
Serves: about 50 candies
  • 2 cups grated coconut
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
  • Powdered sugar, to coat
  1. Put the coconut, pumpkin puree, sugar, cinnamon, and cloves in a large, heavy bottomed pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick, or until it reaches the medium-ball stage (238 to 245ºF).
  2. Turn the mixture out onto a greased sheet or parchment paper to cool.
  3. Once cool, shape the mixture (with greased hands) into small balls and roll it in the powdered sugar.
  4. Optionally set each candy in a bon bon or mini muffin paper.

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About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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