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Jun 10, 2022

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies

These dulce de leche dumpling cookies, with their soft and crumbly cookie crust and sweet caramel filling are such a treat. 

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies in a casserole dish.


These dumpling cookies are like miniature hand pies filled with dollops of dulce de leche, a caramel sauce made with milk and sugar that has been simmered for a couple of hours. 

The dough is super buttery and not too sweet. It's very much like pie dough but with a little bit of baking powder. The cookies get most of their sweetness from the dulce de leche filling and a generous sprinkling of sugar on top. 

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies on a platter.


Cake Flour

Baking Powder

Granulated Sugar and Sparkling Sugar

Cold Unsalted Butter


Egg White

Dulce de Leche (you can usually find it next to the sweetened condensed milk in the grocery store). I've used it as a filling for Noche Buena Cookies and Alfajores. It's also delicious for making a caramel butter cream frosting

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies on plates.

To make these cookies, all you need is a rolling pin, a baking sheet, some parchment paper, and a four inch round cookie cutter. 

To incorporate the butter into the flour, I used my favorite pastry cutter. You can also use a food processor and just pulse the butter into the flour in about 10 pulses. I just wasn't in the mood to wash my food processor. 

Use the parchment paper for lining the baking sheet on which you bake the cookies as well as for rolling out the dough. I like to use parchment or wax paper for "sandwiching" the dough as I roll it out so it won't stick to my work surface or rolling pin. I've never been very good and smoothly rolling out dough without lots of sticking. 

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies on a small pan.

How to Make These Dumpling Cookies:

First, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and the sugar. Add some chilled butter and then cut it into the flour with a pastry cutter. Add the vanilla extract. 

After that, pull the dough together with your hands, pat it into two discs, and chill it before rolling it out. 

Next, cut the dough into rounds with the cookie cutter and dollop a teaspoon of dulce de leche into the middle or the rounds. Fold the dough over and crimp the edges with a fork. 

Finally, brush the tops with whisked egg white (I had some left over in the refrigerator from making lemon curd cake), sprinkle them with granulated sugar or sparking sugar, and bake them. 

The biggest issue I had was that a few of the dumplings burst open and spilled some of the caramel contents. I found myself pulling the baking sheet out of the oven, pushing the dough back over the filling, letting the baking sheet cool about five minutes, and then placing them back in the oven to finish baking. That seemed to work. The issue is probably because the dough is so tender. 

They are still delicious, no matter how much the dulce de leche goes rogue. 

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies halved on a plate.

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions:

You can substitute all purpose flour for the cake flour. The dough might even hold together more strongly. 

For the dulce de leche, you can substitute a good quality fruit jam instead. You could also drizzle the finished cookies with a confectioner's sugar glaze. 

Be sure to keep the dough cold when you are working with it. If it gets sticky, place it back into the refrigerator. 

If you like, you can also make your own homemade dulce de leche. There's a great recipe for dulce de leche in the book, Cheryl Day's Treasury of Southern Baking, one of my new favorite baking books. She uses the term "milk jam." 

The dough recipe has been adapted from Cheryl's recipe

I've become familiar with her from various podcasts, including Milk Street, The Spork Report, and The Splendid Table. She grew up in Los Angeles who rediscovered her Southern roots and eventually established a bakery in Savannah Georgia. Definitely see if you can catch her on these aforementioned podcasts. 

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies on a plate.

Friday #BrunchWeek Recipes

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Breads, Grains, and Cereals

Egg Dishes

Main Dishes


Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies in a casserole.

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies

Dulce de Leche Dumpling Cookies
Yield: 14 to 16 cookies
Author: Karen's Kitchen Stories
Prep time: 30 MinCook time: 35 MinInactive time: 1 HourTotal time: 2 H & 5 M
These dulce de leche dumpling cookies, with their soft and crumbly cookie crust and sweet caramel filling are such a treat.


  • 188 grams (1 1/2 cups) cake flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 170 grams (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white, whisked, for sealing the seams and brushing the tops
  • 1/2 cup dulce de leche
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons sparkling sugar or granulated sugar for sprinkling


  1. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and sugar
  2. Add the butter cubes and stir to coat with the flour. Next, using a pastry cutter, cut the butter into the flour until you have crumbles no larger than pea-sized.
  3. Sprinkle the vanilla over the dough and gently knead it together.
  4. Form the dough into two flat disks, wrap it with plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for at least 1 hour and up to three days.
  5. When ready to bake, heat the oven to 350 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. Working with one disk at a time, roll the dough out to 1/8 inch thick and cut the dough into four-inch rounds, flouring your cookie cutter each time. Gather up the scraps and place them back into the refrigerator.
  7. Place the rounds, two inches apart, on a baking sheet. Drop a teaspoon of the dulce de leche in the middle of the rounds. Working with one round at a time, brush the edges with the egg wash, fold the dough over the dulce de leche and crimp the seams together to form a semicircle. Brush the outside with the egg wash and sprinkle with sparkling or granulated sugar. Prick the dough on top a couple of times with a toothpick.
  8. Roll out the rest of the dough repeat.
  9. Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, for 35 minutes, until golden. Cool the cookies on the pan on a wire rack. When cooled, store in an airtight container.


Note: If the cookies break open, you can remove them from the oven, gently reclose them with your fingers, and let them cool for about 5 minutes. Place them back into the oven and continue baking.

Nutrition Facts



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dulce de leche, dumplings
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Would you like to comment?

  1. They look like they would absolutely melt in your mouth. YUM!

  2. I recognize that little pan! These cookies look absolutely incredibly. Such a great pairing with that crust.

    1. I owe you for these and appreciate them so much! Thank you!

  3. So flaky and I love that sparkle the sugar gives them!

  4. Ooooo that filling sounds amazing! I am loving the sound of these cookies!

  5. I've made small jam filled cookies like this and we totally loved them. A dulce de leche filling would be awesome!

  6. oooo love this cookie! I have a weakness for dulche de leche and I am making these cookies right away.

  7. These cookies look so delicious. I love the flavors and the color in these beauties.


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