These crispy-edge, fudgy-center Dulce de Leche Chocolate Brownies are loaded with cocoa, dark chocolate, and caramel flavor! Swirled with dulce de leche and sprinkled with sea salt, this is your ultimate brownie recipe!
Chocolate and salted caramel make one classic combination. And more specifically, dulce de leche, cocoa, and dark chocolate make an amazing brownie combination. These brownies are loaded with classic-style chocolate flavor, swirled with cooked sweetened condensed milk, sprinkled with sea salt, and perfectly baked for the ultimate indulgent dessert!
Ingredients for Dulce de Leche Chocolate Brownies
To make these brownies, you will first need to make dulce de leche, for which you will only require one ingredient - a can of sweetened condensed milk.
For the brownies, you will need a few staple ingredients:
- butter - does not need to be softened or room temperature, as we will be melting this in the microwave
- dark chocolate - coarsely chopped so it's easier to melt!
- granulated and brown sugar - for this recipe, I used a mixture of both sugars
- vanilla extract
- fine salt and coarse sea salt - the latter is for sprinkling the brownies!
- all-purpose flour
- cocoa powder - I prefer using Dutch-processed cocoa powder for its intense chocolatey flavor which is a must for chocolate brownies!
How to Make Dulce de Leche
Making dulce de leche at home may be time consuming, but it's definitely worth every minute, and does not really require any special skills. Plus, it can be used in so many different recipes, or even eaten by the spoon or mixed with tea or coffee! You do need to be careful with hot caramel and keep a watchful eye on the stove at all times. So make sure you have a few hours on your hands before making dulce de leche.
I prefer making dulce de leche using the stovetop. There are other methods, but I do find this one to be the most straightforward. Here are some tips:
- First and foremost, remove all paper wrapping from the can to avoid creating a water-bath mess (in case you're wondering, the design on the can in the photo is not a paper wrapper but on the can itself ;))
- Make sure the can is completely sealed before placing it in boiling water.
- The most important thing is to keep the can immersed in water at all times while cooking! Therefore, make sure that your stove-pot is high enough to hold the can plus a couple of inches of water above it.
- Check the water level every 20 minutes or so. You will need to top up with water frequently as water level will drop over time.
- Once ready, bring out the can from water using kitchen tongs and make sure that it has completely cooled down before attempting to open it. Opening a hot can will cause the hot dulce de leche to spill under high pressure and burn you, so please be extra careful here!
- Dulce de leche can be made up to 2 weeks ahead and refrigerated in an airtight container. If the can remains sealed and airtight, it can keep for up to 2 months.
Tips for Making the Perfect Brownies
- The secret to getting a crispy top and fudgy center lies in the mixing step. Please do not be tempted shortcut this step! Eggs and sugars should be mixed together at the start (before adding butter and chocolate), for 4 to 5 minutes. The mixture should be pale and frothy and this is what results in the shiny, flaky brownie crust! If you have one, use a stand mixer as it saves you a lot of energy!
- When melting chocolate and butter, heat the mixture in the microwave at 30 second increments and whisk well between each cycle. The chocolate will continue melting whilst you're whisking, so be sure not to overheat as overheating will ruin the chocolate.
- When baking your brownies, start checking for doneness once you hit the 25 minute mark. To make sure your brownies are done, insert a toothpick into the center and this should come out with a few moist crumbs. Do not wait for a clean toothpick to come out of brownies as this would mean overbaking!
- Allow brownies to cool down completely before cutting them to ensure a nice clean cut :). This recipe yields around 9 large brownies or 12 smaller ones!
Making Ahead and Storing Dulce de Leche Chocolate Brownies
Brownies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days or in the fridge for up to 5 days. Dulce de leche can be made up to 2 weeks ahead and refrigerated in an airtight container.
Have you tried these fudgy dulce de leche chocolate brownies? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and don't forget to rate the recipe! Also, don't forget to follow Baked Fig on Pinterest, and Instagram to stay updated with any new recipes! If you're looking for another way to use dulce de leche, why don't you try using it as a filling for these Chocolate Orange Linzer Cookies?
Dulce de Leche Chocolate Brownies
Dulce de Leche
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk (397g)
- ¾ cup dulce de leche
- ½ cup butter (113g)
- 1 cup dark chocolate coarsely chopped (170g)
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp. fine salt
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour (94g)
- ¼ cup cocoa powder (Dutch-processed) (25g)
- ¼ tsp. coarse sea salt
To make Dulce de Leche (Stovetop Method)
- Remove all the paper labelling and place a sealed can of sweetened condensed milk in a large pot of water, making sure to completely immerse the can under water.
- Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 2.5 to 3 hours, checking the water level frequently (every 20 minutes or so) and adding more water as necessary to cover the can. Water level will go down over time and the can needs to be kept covered with water at all times.
- Turn off heat, allow the can to cool down (in the pot), then slowly and carefully bring out the can using kitchen tongs. Make sure the can has completely cooled down before moving to the next step! Do not attempt to open the can while it's still hot as pressurised hot caramel may spill out!
- Slowly and carefully open the can and transfer the caramel into a glass container. Allow to cool completely before using. Dulce de Leche will harden as it cools down or when refrigerated. If it becomes to hard to spoon out, whisk in 1-2 tbsp of milk or warm in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.
- Preheat the oven to 175°C (350F) and line a 8x8 or 9x9 inch brownie pan with baking paper.
- Sift flour, cocoa powder, and fine salt into a large mixing bowl and mix using a spatula.
- Place granulated sugar, brown sugar, and eggs in a large bowl of a stand mixer fixed with the paddle attachment. Mix well on medium speed for 4 to 5 minutes until mixture is pale and frothy.
- In the meantime, place butter and coarsely chopped dark chocolate in a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl and warm in the microwave at 30 second increments, whisking between each cycle until chocolate and butter are melted.
- Add vanilla and chocolate mixture to egg and sugar mixture and mix for 2 to 3 minutes on medium speed until well incorporated.
- Add dry ingredients to mixture in two additions, mixing after each addition until just combined. Do not over-mix.
- Pour half of the batter into brownie pan and flatten using a spatula. Using a tablespoon, place dollops of the dulce de leche mixture (approx. half of dulce de leche) and using a butter knife, swirl caramel into chocolate mixture. Add remaining chocolate mixture followed by a few tablespoonfuls of dulce de leche and swirl mixtures again. Remaining dulce de leche will be used after baking.
- Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, then carefully sprinkle with coarse sea salt and place back in oven. Bake for another 8-12 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Do not wait until toothpick comes out clean as this signals overbaking!
- Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely before cutting in 9 or 12 equal portions. Top with remaining dulce de leche before serving as desired.