15 Sweet Treats Made With Dulce de Leche

Quick and Easy Perfect Puff Pastry Squares with Dulce de Leche
Photo: Fioa

Dulce de leche, which translates as "sweet [made] of milk," is a simple ingredient with a huge impact. It brings serious sweetness to desserts, but isn't overly saccharine, with a flavor profile that comes close to that of caramel. However, dulce de leche's very name points out the key difference and flavor you can't quite put your finger on: milk. Dulce de leche is best recognized as the filling for the South American sandwich cookies called alfajores, but you can also use it in many other ways. Scroll through to see how you can add some subtle sweetness to your life by making these recipes with dulce de leche.

01 of 16

Alfajores (Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies)

Alfajores (Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies)
Happyschmoopie

A chef managed to sweet-talk this alfajore recipe out of a Peruvian street vendor, so you know it's the real deal. Make sure not to cut the dough slices too thick, and remove these from the oven before they turn brown.

02 of 16

Banana-Dulce de Leche Pie (Banana-Caramel Pie)

Banana-Dulce de Leche Pie (Banana-Caramel Pie)
Melissa Goff

This recipe starts with making your own dulce de leche, which takes time but costs much less than buying dulce de leche at the store. Combined with bananas and whipped cream, dulce de leche adds a dose of decadence to icebox-style pie.

03 of 16

Dulce de Leche Brownies

Dulce de Leche Brownies
Roxybc

How do you make a gooey, fudgy brownie even better? Add pockets of dulce de leche and drizzle caramel on top. The result is a sinfully delicious dessert — if you can manage to wait, these taste even better the next day.

04 of 16

Tres Leches Cake with Dulce de Leche

Tres Leches Cake with Dulce de Leche
Fioa

This recipe takes tres leches cake to the next level by adding a layer of dulce de leche once the other three milks have fully soaked into the cake. A touch of lime zest adds a zippy bit of contrast. Serve with a tart, fresh fruit, such as berries.

05 of 16

Dulce de Leche Apple Pie

Dulce de Leche Apple Pie

A simple experiment with using dulce de leche instead of caramel in apple pie that creator Lauren Hewitt now makes every thanksgiving. This pie tastes similar to a caramel or caramel apple pie, but using dulce de leche subdues the sweetness.

06 of 16

Creamy Iced Applesauce Bars

Creamy Iced Applesauce Bars
Chef Lucy

Caramel and apples are a match made in heaven, so it's no surprise that dulce de leche makes a good partner for the fall fruit's flavors. These freezer bars taste like smooth apple sherbet but without the bite and make a great option when you want a taste of fall while it's still summer.

07 of 16

Quick and Easy Perfect Puff Pastry Squares with Dulce de Leche

Quick and Easy Perfect Puff Pastry Squares with Dulce de Leche
Fioa

These tasty squares barely require any culinary skills thanks to the ultimate supermarket shortcut: frozen puff pastry. All you have to do is thaw, assemble, and bake.

08 of 16

Dulce De Leche Bars

Dulce de Leche Bars
SunnyDaysNora

These rich cookie bars are easy and delicious, and thanks to the shortbread, the flavor profile fits holiday gatherings and cookie swaps perfectly. To cut the thickness of the shortbread and dulce de leche, use a 9-inch square pan instead.

09 of 16

Cafe Dulce de Leche

Cafe Dulce de Leche
Tammy Lynn

Cafe dulce de leche, also known as dulce de leche coffee, is an incredibly indulgent upgrade upgrade to your regular morning cup. It's a classic, cozy drink in Latin America and also tastes great with a little booze mixed in. If you can't find any dulce de leche, try 8 pieces of soft caramel candy and ¼ cup of half-and-half.

10 of 16

Peruvian Alfajores

Peruvian Alfajores
Deanna

"I replaced the shortening with butter and it turned out perfectly," says community member ricfera. "If you don't want the dough to stick to the surface spread some flour on the surface and also on your rolling pin. don't roll the pin from one extreme of the dough to the other but roll in short intervals. You can add some shredded coconut for gasnish after the alfajores are done."

11 of 16

Walnut-Shaped Cookies with Dulce de Leche

Walnut-Shaped Cookies with Dulce de Leche
Top Home Plus

Creator Knopka grew up making these cookies, also known as Oreshki with her mother in Latvia. They're typically eaten during holidays, notably Christmas and Easter, in Russia, Latvia, and other Slavic countries.

12 of 16

Mousse de Dulce de Leche Repostero (Dulce de Leche Mousse)

Mousse de Dulce de Leche Repostero (Dulce de Leche Mousse)
Fioa

This make-ahead mousse isn't just indulgent, it's also incredibly easy to make and customize. All you need to do is combine three ingredients, chill for 12 hours, and beat until stiff peaks and your desired consistency forms.

13 of 16

Torta De Hojas

side view of a slice of 10-layer cake frosted with dulce de leche and coated with chopped walnuts
chileanwife

Torta de hojas is an iconic Chilean dessert, and this torta de hojas recipe doesn't have a single review under four stars. It's a time-consuming and delicate cake, and a little bit goes a long way thanks to all the dulce de leche. Community member katie_luvs2bake! recommends diluting the sweetness with pastry cream, which is often done in bakeries.

14 of 16

Suspiro Limeno

whipped dairy dessert
Alisa Zelaya

The dulce de leche in this traditional Peruvian dessert is intensified because it's made with the addition of eggs, vanilla extract, and evaporated milk. The sweet flavor and airy meringue texture make a combination that's almost impossible to resist.

15 of 16

Alfajores Argentinean Style

Alfajores Argentinean Style
Alice Rebua Leite

This Argentinean adaptation of alfajores gets a little flavor kick with the addition of rum and lemon — you can even take that touch of citrus by adding orange zest and extract. If you're having difficulty rolling out the dough, add another egg.

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