Dulce de Leche Bars are incredibly easy to make and absolutely scrumptious. Enjoy gooey and rich Dulce de Leche in a cookie bar base for a decadent treat.
If you have tried dulce de leche yet, you are missing out. I remember when I first discovered this Latin American decadence about 20 years ago. Our local grocery store brought in a new line of President’s Choice products and I wanted to see what it was like.
OMG. So good. It’s sweet, silky and richy. If you like caramel, you will LOVE dulce de leche. After that, I was all about making dulce de leche desserts.
These Dulce de Leche Bars are perfection. Each bite is sweet and creamy with a cookie feel. They are incredibly rich so one bar is often enough to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Why You’ll Love Dulce de Leche Bars
- Can I enjoy warm or at room temperature
- Easy to make
- Ready in under 1 hour
- Decadent and divine dessert
- Perfect for sweet cravings
- An easy way to use dulce de leche
- Kid friendly
- Perfect for a potluck or bake sale
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- Salted butter – Unsalted butter will also work, but I would add a bit of extra salt to the dough to balance out the sweetness.
- Sugar – If you need to, you can use all white granulated sugar or all brown sugar in this recipe.
- Light brown sugar – Dark brown sugar will also work, and will give it a more caramel flavor.
- Buttermilk – If you don’t have buttermilk, add a teaspoon of lemon juice to your 1/4 cup of milk. Let sit for about 1 to 2 minutes and it will curdle. Instant buttermilk!
- All-purpose flour
- Baking soda
- Dulce de leche – You should be able to find dulce de leche at your local grocery store. My local store keeps it with the jam and peanut butter. You can also find it on Amazon.
How to Make Dulce de Leche Bars
Step One: Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9×9 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Step Two: Beat the salted butter, sugar, and light brown sugar together in a mixer until fluffy.
Step Three: Add in the buttermilk and beat until fully combined.
Step Four: In a separate bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon.
Step Five: Gradually combine the flour mixture into the sugar and butter mixture by beating it on low speed. Beat until just combined and be sure not to over mix.
Step Six: Press about ¾ of the dough into the baking dish.
Step Seven: Heat the Dulce de Leche in the microwave in 15 second increments to get it to a pourable and spreadable consistency. Pour the Dulce de Leche over the dough, spreading evenly.
Step Eight: Drop remaining dough in half-tablespoon pieces over the Dulce de Leche layer and then bake it in the oven for 34 to 36 minutes, or until the top dough is golden brown.
Step Nine: Cool completely before cutting and serving.
What to Pair with Dulce de Leche Bars
- Add caramel bites, toffee bits, chocolate chips or even peanut butter chips to the batter or Dulce de Leche itself to bring it up another level of decadence.
- Drizzle caramel sauce or extra dulce de leche on top.
- Serve it with a dollop of Cool Whip, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
- You could skip the dulce de leche altogether and use hot fudge sauce, butterscotch sauce or caramel sauce in its place.
Cover and store these bars in the fridge for up to a week.
You can also freeze them for up to 3 months. Wrap them up individually and then thaw them out at room temperature when you are ready to eat.
If you want to eat these as bars, it’s very important to wait until they cool completely or else it will be a glorious sloppy mess.
If you don’t want to wait for them to cool, you can scoop it into a bowl and eat it warm with some ice cream.
Is Dulce de Leche the Same as Caramel?
No, dulce de leche is different than caramel although they do have their similiarities.
Dulce de leche is made by cooking milk and sugar together while caramel is made by slowing heating sugar with water, butter or other liquids.
Typically, they can be used interchangeably in recipes.
And yes, you can make your own homemade dulce de leche.
If you make the recipe, rate it on the recipe card below and tag me on Instagram and use #simplystacie. I like sharing the photos on my Instagram stories!
Dulce de Leche Bars
- ¾ cup salted butter softened
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 ½ cups Dulce de Leche
- Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9x9 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Beat the salted butter, sugar, and light brown sugar together in a mixer until fluffy.
- Add in the buttermilk and beat until fully combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon.
- Gradually combine the flour mixture into the sugar and butter mixture by beating it on low speed. Beat until just combined and be sure not to over mix.
- Press about ¾ of the dough into the baking dish.
- Heat the Dulce de Leche in the microwave in 15 second increments to get it to a pourable and spreadable consistency. Pour the Dulce de Leche over the dough, spreading evenly.
- Drop remaining dough in half-tablespoon pieces over the Dulce de Leche layer and then bake it in the oven for 34 to 36 minutes, or until the top dough is golden brown.
- Cool completely before cutting and serving.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.