Make Ahead Easy Homemade Dulce de Leche


Whether you’re a spontaneous baker or a once-in-a-while cookie/cake enthusiast, having dulce de leche at home can save you a lot of time! Learn how to make it with me!

I’m someone who thinks dulce de leche makes everything taste better. It’s something that I enjoy licking right off the spoon. I’d freeze it into popsicles and devour them if I had my way. I digress. 

When I’m baking, I sometimes get the brilliant idea of adding dulce de leche to a recipe to see how it would taste. There are also lots of recipes that do actually call for dulce de leche, like these delicious walnut-shaped cookies. Having a few cans at home can be really helpful. 

Today, I’m going to share with you how you can make dulce de leche at home to save you time next time you’re baking.

It all starts with a can of sweetened condensed milk. Or four. Or ten. However much you want to keep in stock. 

Things to remember:

You’ll want to boil water in a pot – enough so your can/cans are completely submerged throughout the entire process. 

Don’t get too impatient with the boiling process. It takes time for the condensed milk to cook and become dulce de leche. Two hours of boiling to be exact. No more, no less. Two hours is the sweet spot.

Let those cans rest. You need to give the cans time to cool down after they’ve been boiling for two hours. You can speed up the process by putting them in the refrigerator but I like to just let them come up to room temperature on the counter. 

So, that’s it! You’ve got your own little stock of dulce de leche that you can conveniently use whenever needed!

I like to make a few cans at a time, that way I could have some on hand if I would need when baking. After boiling you could leave in your pantry or in fridge (wherever you got some room), try to use during first three months after cooking, depending on the brand, after three months it could become sugary; which isn’t very good.

Dulce de leche

How to make Dulce de Leche:

  1. Water is a must! The water needs to be over the cans at all times, if you see your water is below the cans, while boiling pour in more water.
  2. Boil on medium heat, for exactly two hours. Set timer from the time you turned on the stove. Through out the two hours, just make sure water is above the cans.
  3. After two hours, take cans out and leave them out on counter or in fridge for them to cool down. 

Dulce de leche


This recipe can be used in so many desserts:

Equipment I Used

Dulce de leche homemade caramel

Dulce de Leche (homemade caramel)

This recipe is a great one to stock up on and just have ready for any dessert!
Cook Time 2 hrs
Cool Time 3 hrs
Total Time 5 hrs
Course Dessert
Cuisine Latin American
Servings 1
Calories 1271 kcal


  • soup pot


  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk uncooked


  • Place a can of sweetened condensed milk into a large pot and fill with water so the can is completely covered.
  • Boil on medium heat for exactly 2 hours. Add more water through out the process if it's not covering the can.
  • After 2 hours, take the can out and allow it to cool for a few hours on the countertop or in the fridge.
    Dulce de leche homemade caramel


Recipe and calculations are for one can. Use a larger pot for more cans. 
These are super great to have on hand when needing to make cream for a cake!


Nutrition Facts
Dulce de Leche (homemade caramel)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 1271 Calories from Fat 306
% Daily Value*
Fat 34g52%
Saturated Fat 22g138%
Cholesterol 135mg45%
Sodium 503mg22%
Potassium 1469mg42%
Carbohydrates 215g72%
Sugar 215g239%
Protein 31g62%
Vitamin A 1057IU21%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Calcium 1125mg113%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword caramel, dulce de leche, easy, homemade, recipe
Tried this recipe?Let us know in the comments how it was!

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