Chocolate Alfajores

Total Time

Prep: 40 min. + chilling Bake: 5 min./batch + cooling


about 1-1/2 dozen

Updated: Jun. 27, 2023
Chocolate alfajores, also known as alfajores de chocolate, are a popular South American dessert made of slightly sweetened shortbread cookies filled with a rich and creamy milk caramel called dulce de leche. It's best to chill the dough at least 2 hours so the cookies hold when baking. —Kimberly Scott, Kosciusko, Mississippi
Chocolate Alfajores Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons rum extract or vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 can (13.4 ounces) dulce de leche
  • 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut, finely chopped


  1. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in egg yolks and extract. In another bowl, whisk flour, cornstarch, cocoa, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture. Shape dough into a disk; wrap. Refrigerate until firm enough to roll, 2 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to 1/8-in. thickness. Cut with a floured 2-in. round cookie cutter. Place 1 in. apart on greased baking sheets.
  3. Bake just until set, 5-7 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  4. Spread dulce de leche on bottoms of half of the cookies; cover with remaining cookies. Press edges into coconut. Refrigerate in airtight containers.

Chocolate Alfajores Tips

What are alfajores made of?

Alfajores are made of two sandwiched shortbread cookies with dulce de leche spread in the middle. We made chocolate shortbread cookies for this recipe, but traditional alfajores use regular shortbread. Travel the globe by trying another one of our cookie recipes from around the world

How do you keep alfajores fresh?

To keep alfajores fresh, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. You can also freeze alfajores for up to two months. (Follow our cookie freezing guide for more tips.) 

Is dulce de leche the same as caramel?

Dulce de leche is not the same as caramel, but they are very similar. To make dulce de leche, you slowly cook sweetened condensed milk at a low temperature, which results in a confection that's creamier than caramel. To make caramel, you cook granulated sugar by itself (for dry caramel) or with water (for wet caramel). Store-bought dulce de leche works well in this recipe, but making your own homemade dulce de leche is even better.

Research contributed by Christina Herbst, Taste of Home Assistant Digital Editor

Nutrition Facts

1 sandwich cookie: 173 calories, 8g fat (5g saturated fat), 45mg cholesterol, 126mg sodium, 23g carbohydrate (15g sugars, 1g fiber), 2g protein.