Dulce de Leche is a caramel milk-based sauce. Literally translated, it means “milk candy” or “candy of milk”.
It is a South American confection prepared by slowly heating sweetened milk which gradually changes colour, texture and flavour.
It is very similar in flavour to caramel, but differs however, as caramel is made by heating sugar. Dulce de Leche is prepared by heating milk with sugar, light corn syrup (or Glucose syrup), baking soda & a pinch of salt. It does take a little time to prepare (about 40-60mins) but worth it for the delectable flavour.
I’ve seen so many ways to make Dulce de Leche including simmering an unopened can of sweetened condensed milk in a big pot for several hours, but the results are no where near as luscious.
You’ll become addicted once you make this recipe!
Thick, glossy, rich, sweet golden caramel that turns simple treats into luxurious desserts.
Original recipe by Joy of Cooking adapted by Angela Palermo
5 minPrep Time
1 hrCook Time
1 hr, 5 Total Time
4 cups or 1 ltr Full-cream milk (cow's or goat's milk)
150 grams Granulated white sugar
2 tblsp Light corn syrup
1/2 tsp Baking soda
1 tsp Pure vanilla extract (optional)
- Put the milk, sugar, corn syrup, baking soda and salt in a large, heavy-duty (about 8 litre) saucepan. Place over medium to medium-high heat and bring just to a boil.
- Watch carefully, and as soon as the milk begins to foam up, stir with a heatproof spatula or wooden spoon, and reduce heat until the milk is just at a low rolling boil. If the milk foams up too much, remove the saucepan from the heat until the foam starts to subside. Then return to heat.
- Continue to cook the milk, stirring the bottom and sides of the saucepan frequently, until the mixture becomes very thick and sticky and caramel coloured (this will take about 40-60 minutes). It is important to frequently stir the milk so it does not burn. Adjust the heat as necessary; you want the milk to be at a low rolling boil.
- Remove from heat and strain, if necessary. Stir in the vanilla extract. Let cool before covering and storing. The Dulce de Leche can be stored in the refrigerator for at least a month
There are several stages the milk goes through during the cooking process. When the milk first comes to a boil there is a lot of foam. Eventually the foam subsides and after about 15 minutes, you will notice that the milk turns a light beige colour. As it continues to cook, the milk thickens and gets darker and darker in colour. The more you cook the Dulce de Leche, the thicker and more caramel coloured it will become. Once the Dulce de Leche has been reduced to about 1 1/4 cups (300 ml) it is ready.