Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake

Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake

Butter, sour cream, brown sugar, and dulce de leche come together to create a rich and decadent coffee cake.
I always hope that it will last a few days. But it never does. It is that good.

I have this thing about cake. I also have this thing about coffee. Not to mention I have this really big thing about dulce de leche. So, I thought let me put them all together and make a dulce de leche coffee cake! Ok, so no coffee is in the cake, but it’s the perfect cake to eat with the perfect cup of coffee!

What is Dulce de Leche?

I like to think of dulce de leche as sweetened caramelized milk. It is made by reducing milk and sugar over low heat. There are a couple of different ways to make it. You can make it from scratch using this recipe or buy it. It is available at most stores or on Amazon.

The exact origins are a debate. Most believe that it originated in Argentina. However, this is a continuous point and many Latin American countries lay claim to creating this sweet treat. Me, well I say I don’t care who created it. I am just glad they did. So on behalf of American dulce de leche lovers, thank you, whoever you are (were).

Dulce de Leche Jar and Spoon
Dulce de Leche Jar and Spoon

What is Coffee Cake?

Coffee cake is quite simply any cake that is eaten with coffee. Typically coffee cake has two distinct layers that are separated with a ribbon of cinnamon, butter, and flour. This same ribbon is spread across the top of the cake before baking. Once baked it becomes the crunchy signature streusel commonly associated with coffee cake.

Dulce de Leche and Cup
Dulce de Leche and coffee cup

Ingredient Run down

This cake is baked in butter and sour cream. Which makes it heavenly, but also makes it heavier than a traditional cake. The crumb and dulce de leche are spread in the middle layer and again on the top. All of these ingredients come together to create a rich and decadent coffee cake. Here is a rundown of the ingredients that I used and why.

  • All-purpose flour – This is a strong flour, sturdy enough to hold up against the weight of the sour cream and dulce de leche.
  • Light brown sugar – Adds sweetness to the streusel crumb. You can use either light or dark, both will work with this recipe.
  • Ground cinnamon – Is a traditional flavor used in the crumb. You could go without it, but why? Cinnamon is classic tradition worth keeping!
  • Unsalted butter – Always use unsalted butter. Then when you add in salt you know exactly how much salt is in the recipe.
  • Baking powder and soda – Are leveling agents that give rise to your cake. The baking powder actually lightens the texture of your cake by enlarging the air bubbles. Use products that are less than 6 months old. Anything older will lessen the rise of your cake.
  • Sugar – Always sweetness the cake. I use good old-fashioned white sugar.
  • Large eggs – Eggs add structure, leavening, color, and flavor to cakes. Large eggs are the default at the store and easy to find.
  • Vanilla extract – Add a lot of flavor to your cake. The real study can be expensive. While I love the real stuff, I often use imitation to save money. (shhhhh, our secret.)
  • Sour cream – Adds weight and smoothness that we associate with coffee cake. For this, I use full-fat sour cream. There is just no substitute.
  • Dulce de leche – Bliss. Pure bliss. I don’t know what else to say about this gift from the gods.

Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake Coffee Dip
Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake Coffee Dip

How to make Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake

First, you will need to decide if you are going to make or buy dulce de leche. If you are going to make it, I recommend using my recipe located here. If you are going to buy some, you can probably find it at your local supermarket or order it on amazon.

Next, let’s make the topping. Once it is made, set it aside for later. To make the topping you will need:

  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Dash of salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter (room temperature)
  1. Using a whisk, combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl.
  2. Using your fingers, add the butter and mix thoroughly with your fingers.
    1. It is ideal to have small clumps form. They will bake into the crunchy streusel.
  3. Once mixed, set aside.

Once the topping is made, we will being to make the cake. You will need the following ingredients:

  • 8 tablespoons of butter at room temperature
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup dulce de leche
  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. These are your dry ingredients.
  3. In a large bowl using either a hand or standing mixer, beat together the butter and granulated sugar at medium-high speed. The goal is to have the mixture be light and fluffy. This will take about 3 minutes.
  4. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Add in the vanilla.
  6. Reduce to low speed and add the flour mixture in batches, alternating with the sour cream. Two things to note here:
    1. You will want to start and end with the flour. I added mine in the following order: flour, sour cream, flour, sour cream, flour.
    2. The goal is to the flour just enough to incorporate. It is VERY easy to over-mix here. If you do over-mix the result will be a flatter cake. If you’re worried about over mixing, I recommend mixing the flour and sour cream in by hand using a spatula.
  7. The cake batter will be very thick. This is your goal.
  8. Using the butter wrapper, grease a square cake pan or a loaf pan.
  9. Spoon half of the cake batter and using a spatula, smooth the top. Sprinkle half of the crumb topping over the batter. Then drizzle half the dulce de leche over the top of the crumb.
  10. Spoon the remaining cake batter on top and smooth the top. Sprinkle on the remaining crumb topping. Drizzle the dulce de leche over the top.
  11. Bake at 325 for one hour. The cake and topping should be golden brown. If you’re using a toothpick, once inserted into the center of the cake the toothpick should come out clean.
  12. Let cool in the pan for 20 minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool.
  13. If you have leftover dulce de leche it tastes great drizzled over the top!
A little extra dulce de leche never hurt anyone😊

Visual Steps

1
Make the Crumb Topping: Mix together 3/4 cup all purpose flour, 2/3 cup light brown sugar, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 pinch of salt.
2
Using your hands, add 5 tablespoons of room temperature butter and mix well. set aside.
3
Make the Cake: mix two cups of all purpose flour, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
4
Using a hand mixer, blend 1 cup of sugar and 8 tbsp of room temperature butter.
5
Add 2 large eggs, one at a time.
6
Mix 2 tsp of vanilla
7
Mix flour and sour cream in alternating batches (flour, sour cream, flour, sour cream, flour)
8
Grease cake pan. Layer batter, crumb, dulce de leche. Repeat.
9
Bake for 1 hour in a preheated oven @ 350 degrees. Cool and then enjoy!
Check out my other content @lifeonwesterlycreek on Jumprope.
Dulce de Leche Slice

Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake

Butter, sour cream, brown sugar, and dulce de leche come together to create a rich and delicious coffee cake.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American, argentinian, German, Latin American
Servings 6

Equipment

  • Mixer (hand or standing)
  • Large bowl
  • Medium bowl
  • Whisk
  • Spatula
  • Square cake pan or loaf pan

Ingredients
  

Crumb Topping

Coffee Cake

Instructions
 

Step One – Make the Crumb

  • Using a whisk, combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl.
  • Using your fingers, add the butter and mix thoroughly with your fingers. It is ok to have small clumps.
  • Once mixed, set aside.

Step Two- Make the Batter

  • Preheat the oven to 350.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. These are your dry ingredients.
  • In a large bowl using either a hand or standing mixer, beat together the butter and granulated sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. About 3 minutes.
  • Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Add in the vanilla.
  • Reduce to low speed and add the flour mixture in batches, alternating with the sour cream. (Recommended sequence: Flour, sour cream, flour, sour cream, flour)
    Mix just enough to incorporate, using caution not to over mix.
  • The cake batter will be very thick. This is your goal.

Step Three – Assembly and Baking

  • Using the butter wrapper, grease a square cake pan or a loaf pan.
  • Spoon half of the cake batter and using a spatula, smooth the top . Sprinkle half of the crumb topping over the batter. Then drizzle half the dulce de leche over the top of the crumb.
  • Spoon the remaining cake batter on top and smooth the top. Sprinkle on the remaining crumb topping. Drizzle the dulce de leche over the top.
  • Bake at 325 for one hour. The cake and topping should be golden brown. If your using a tooth pick, once inserted into the center of the cake the toothpick should come out clean.
  • Let cool in the pan for 20 minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool.

Video

Dulce De Leche Coffee Cake by lifeonwesterlycreek on Jumprope.

Notes

Recipe notes:
Recommended equipment:
Keyword Coffee Cake, Dulce de Leche, Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

How to Make Dulce de Leche

How to Make Dulce de Leche

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Dulce de Leche
My translation, caramelized heavenly milk
Actual translation, candy made from milk
Universal translation, damn that’s good!


What is Dulce de Leche?


For those of you who are new to dulce de leche, it is probably easiest to think of it as sweetened caramelized milk. It is made by reducing milk and sugar over low heat. It takes about an hour and a half to two hours to make, but like homemade caramel, it’s worth the work.

The exact origins of this sweet treat are a debate. Most believe that dulce de leche originated in Argentina. However, this is a continuous point and many Latin American countries claim to create this luscious sauce. Me, I say I don’t care who created it. I am just glad they did. So on behalf of American dulce de leche lovers, thank you, whoever you are (or were).

As much as I love it, I am embarrassed to admit that I did not discover dulce de leche until 2012. To be fair, I have been narrow in my dessert options until the last decade. However, I was getting married that summer and we wanted to offer two different types of desserts. We were eating at one of my favorite Denver restaurants, Tony P’s, and that is where I was introduced to dulce de leche. Tony’s cake introduced me to a whole new world of flavor. (Thank you, Tony!)


Dulce de Leche Coffee Cake and Coffee

What is the Difference Between Dulce de Leche, Caramel and Butterscotch?

The truth is dulce de leche, caramel, and butterscotch are all very smilier and yet still very different. It took me some time before I could tell the difference between the three. Here is how I think of the differences…

Dulce de leche is made from slowly cooking milk and sugar together at a low temperature. The caramel color comes from the browning of the milk. Some recipes, including mine, use baking soda. By adding baking soda the cooking process is sped up (but note it still takes a long time to make).

Caramel is made from cooking granulated sugar at a high temperature. As the sugar melts, it caramelizes. To achieve caramelization, the temperature must reach between 240 – 245 degrees.

Butterscotch is made from cooking brown sugar with butter, also at a high temperature. Butterscotch has a sweeter flavor than caramel. It is also softer than caramel.

Easiest way to think of it…

  • Dulce de Leche = Milk +Sugar
  • Caramel = Sugar
  • Butterscotch = Brown Sugar + Butter

Dulce de Leche Pour



What Can I Use it With?

I use dulce de leche where caramel is often used. In fact, I created this batch to use in a coffee cake recipe I am developing. There is enough leftover that I will also be using to make cinnamon rolls. Aka, there will be lots of dulce de leche recipes coming your way! Here are a few other places I think you will enjoy it.

Use as a topping on

  • Budino
  • Sundae’s
  • Ice cream
  • Doughnuts
  • Cheesecakes
  • Brownies/blondies
  • Waffles
  • Pancakes

Use as a filling with

  • Cookies
  • Macaron’s
  • Cakes
  • Crapes
  • Swiss roll cake
  • Trifle
  • Tarts
  • Chocolate

Use as a dip/mix with

  • Apples
  • Popcorn
  • Strawberries
  • Banana
  • Marshmallow
  • Pretzels
  • Coffee
  • Granola
Dulce de Leche across dough



How do I make It?

There are two common ways to make dulce de leche. One is the traditional Argentinian way and the other is using condensed milk. For this recipe, I am going to focus on the traditional Argentinian way. It is a slow process, but to be honest, I like the slow process. While the milk is caramelizing there is time to do other things in the kitchen. Just make sure you stay close towards the end so that you can stir the milk often.

What you'll need
1 Cinnamon Stick
(1)
Sugar
(1 cup)
Baking Soda
(1/4 teaspoon)
Dark Corn Syrup
(1 tablespoon)
Whole Milk
(4 cups)
Steps
1
Add milk, sugar, dark corn syrup, cinnamon stick. Stir.
2
Bring to a boil and then add baking soda.
3
Reduce heat and simmer for 1-2 hours, stirring periodically.
4
Stir more towards the end to avoid burning. Quantity should reduce to 1 cup
5
Cool for an hour. The end result is thicker and darker.
6
Use it as a topping, on desserts or with sweets. Can be stored up to one month in the refrigerator.
For written instructions visit Life on Westerly Creek
Check out my other content @lifeonwesterlycreek on Jumprope.
Dulce de Leche Jar and Spoon

Dulce de Leche Recipe

Dulce de Leche is sweetened caramelized milk that is perfect with coffee, cakes, crepes, macarons, ice cream, and a million other things.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 2 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Sauces
Cuisine argentinian, hispanic, Latin American

Equipment

  • Heavy saucepan

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • In a heavy saucepan over medium heat add milk, sugar, dark corn syrup, and cinnamon stick and stir.
  • Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Once the sugar has dissolved, add the baking soda and stir to combine.
  • Reduce the heat to low and cook uncovered at a low simmer. Stir occasionally, but do not re-incorporate the foam that appears on the top of the mixture.
  • Continue to cook until the mixture is a dark caramel color and has reduced to about 1 cup, approximately 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
    **About an hour into the process, stir more often to prevent the milk from burning.
  • Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl to cool.
  • Store in the refrigerator in a sealed container for up to a month.

Video

Dulce de Leche by lifeonwesterlycreek on Jumprope.
Keyword Caramel, Dulce de Leche
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!