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Dulce de Leche Alfajores

This easy recipe for dulce de leche alfajores is perfect for celebrating Cinco de Mayo.  A sandwich cookie with luscious dulce de leche in the middle is near perfection!

three stacked dulce de leche alfajores sandwich cookies with spoonful of caramel sauce

Traditionally this cookie hails from South America but I read that it is enjoyed in Mexico as well. You simply can’t go wrong when dulce de leche is involved.

Dulce de leche is a thick caramel type of spread. It is luscious, smooth, rich and dreamy.

Make your own dulce de leche or buy it ready-made (that is what I did) and sandwich it generously between two plain cookies.

Dust your dulce de leche alfajores with confectioners sugar or leave plain– the choice is yours.

I read here that in Mexico these alfajores are often rolled in shredded coconut for an added layer of flavor. I shared this batch with my book club friends who kindly had very nice things to say about these sweet cookies.

Some dulce de leche alfajores recipes include cornstarch in the ingredient list and apparently that is more traditional, but other than having a slight trouble rolling these out as thin as I would have liked, there are no problems watching a dozen or so of these dulce de leche alfajores disappear among friends.

Cinco de Mayo Cookies

Let’s start off by acknowledging that Cinco de Mayo is a bigger, Americanized festivity here in the States than it is in Mexico. It is a holiday celebrated in some regions of Mexico, mainly in the area of Puebla where a fierce battle was fought in 1862 between the French and the Mexican armies.

The date does NOT commemorate Mexican’s independence (actually September 16th) and is NOT like our Fourth of July. Ok, now that we agree that all of Mexico will not be sipping margaritas, tossing back tequila shots,  and wearing sombreros like some of the over-done American celebrations that will go on here on May 5th, I say we dig right into these dulce de leche alfajores and enjoy!

Yield: 24

Dulce de Leche Alfajores

recipe for dulce de leche caramel cookies

A caramel sandwich cookie with scrumptious dulce de leche fillling

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 Tablespoons confectioners sugar, more for optional dusting
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup purchased dulce de leche


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Prepare two pans with parchment paper.
  2. A food processor is recommended and the preferred method but I didn't have one available so I made these by hand.
  3. Whisk together the flour and salt. Add the butter, sugar and vanilla and incorporate into the flour with a hand held pastry blender. Empty the crumbly dough on to a lightly floured surface and knead together a few times before forming a disk. Refrigerate the disk for 3 minutes.
  4. Roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/8-1/4 inches. Cut 2-inch circles and place on the parchment-lined trays. Repeat the process with the remaining scraps of dough.
  5. Bake for 9-11 minutes (note that 1/4 inch cookies will take a minute or two longer than 1/8 thickness cookies) and cool on wire racks.
  6. Sandwich two cookies with 1 Tablespoon of dulce de leche. Dust with confectioners sugar if desired.


Recipe credit: Dulce de Leche Alfajores page 53 of Williams-Sonoma Dessert of the Day

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 cookie

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 134Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 39mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 2g

This data is provided by Nutritionix and is an estimate only.

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Tuesday 13th of May 2014

If I made these I would eat them all right there and then. Seriously. Delicious.

Julie @ This Gal Cooks

Thursday 8th of May 2014

Yeah! LOVE that you put that little explanation of Cinco de Mayo in there. I call it my excuse to eat more Mexican food than I already eat holiday. :)

These cookies are great. I love dulce de leche. I've never had these cookies before but I need to change that stat! Great recipe, Holly!

Holly F

Friday 9th of May 2014

Thanks, Julie!

Felice/All That's Left Are The Crumbs

Saturday 26th of April 2014

Alfajores are one of my favorite cookies, and after seeing your beautiful cookies I am craving them again.

Yvette {Muy Bueno}

Friday 25th of April 2014

I love dulce de leche alfajores. They look perfect and yummy ;)

Crystal | Apples & Sparkle

Friday 25th of April 2014

These look super yummy, I just want to eat a big spoonful of the dulce de leche right out of the can! And rolling them in coconut? That definitely sounds good too! Pinned your recipe! : )

Holly F

Friday 25th of April 2014

Thanks, Crystal! Yes, the coconut sounds too good to resist too. I will definitely give that a try next week in time for Cinco de Mayo!

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