How many of you are familiar with Alfajores? I was oblivious to their existence until about a year ago, when I made, quite possibly, my most amazing cookie discovery to date. At the time, I received a Foodzie tasting box, which is basically a foodie gift basket full of new and fun food items. Inside my box was a package of two Alfajores cookies. They looked innocent enough. They weren’t covered in chocolate, so I didn’t attack them immediately. Finally, later that day or the next (I can’t remember), I opened the package and was prepared to eat what I assumed would be a very average cookie. I couldn’t believe how wrong I was. After two bites, I was on Google trying to find out what these amazing things were! As it turns out, Alfajores are quite popular in Spain and certain areas of Latin America. They are shortbread cookies sandwiched together with dulce de leche, and topped with powdered sugar. Swoon.

I’ve thought about those cookies over and over for the past year, and I finally got around to making them at home. They tasted so utterly amazing that first time, that like many other packaged foods, it seemed impossible to recreate them from scratch. Not only is it totally possible, but it’s ridiculously easy. It also only requires four ingredients. The bonus? Having a jar of dulce de leche leftover. Grab a spoon and pat yourself on the back for cookies well done!

One year ago: Homemade Restaurant Style Salsa
Two years ago: Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Bread
Five years ago: Pepperoni Bread


Servings 18 sandwich cookies
Prep 30 minutes
Cook 15 minutes
Chilling time 1 hour
Total 1 hour 45 minutes
Course: Snack
Cuisine: South American
Author: Michelle

Cookies from South America


  • cups
    all-purpose flour
    (plus extra for dusting work surface)
  • ½
    powdered sugar
  • ½
  • ¼
  • 1
    unsalted butter
    (chilled and cubed)
  • 1
    egg yolk
  • 2
    vanilla extract
  • Dulce de Leche
    (chilled )
  • Powdered sugar
    (for dusting)
  • Shredded coconut
    (for rolling)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, powdered sugar, and cornstarch; set aside.

  3. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.

  4. Add the egg yolk, vanilla extract, and salt, and mix until combined and smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.

  5. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until the dough just comes together. This may take a few minutes, as the mixture will go from looking sandy to seeing small clumps, and then it will eventually come together into a dough.

  6. Separate the dough in half and work with one piece at a time. Roll the dough ¼-inch thick on a well-floured surface. Using a plain round or fluted round 2-inch cutter, cut out the cookies and place them on the prepared baking sheets, leaving at least 1 inch of space between cookies. Reroll any scraps and continue cutting rounds.

  7. Bake until slightly firm and set, 11 to 14 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  8. Assemble the Alfajores: Spread about 1½ teaspoons of dulce de leche on the bottom of half of the cookies, then top with the remaining cookies. Dust with powdered sugar before serving. You can also roll the sides in shredded coconut, if desired.

Recipe Notes:

Note: Dulce de Leche is caramelized sweetened condensed milk and can be purchased in the Hispanic/Mexican section of the grocery store, or you can make your own. To do so, take 2 (14-ounce) cans of sweetened condensed milk and empty them into the top of a double boiler or a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Cover with a tight-fitting lid. Cook, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes, until the milk is thick and amber in color, about 5 hours. Remove from the heat , and beat with a wooden spoon to smooth out. Transfer to a clean bowl, and refrigerate for several hours, or up to 3 days.


Calories: 244kcal
Fat: 15g
Saturated fat: 9g
Cholesterol: 40mg
Sodium: 3mg
Potassium: 34mg
Carbohydrates: 23g
Sugar: 1g
Protein: 3g
Vitamin A: 475%
Calcium: 9%
Iron: 1.3%

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!