Sorvete de Doce de Leite (Dulce de Leche Ice Cream)

This is a re-post with a few, slight modifications…and new pictures! I made it for my Brasilian mother-in-law’s birthday party on Sunday afternoon. All our Brasilian relatives were there and gave it a big thumbs up. So, I’m taking it on good authority that if you make it, people will like you.

It may not surprise anyone that I love Dulce de Leche. After all, it’s sweet and caramely, and delicious.

I wish I could say that my husband introduced me to it while we were in Brasil visiting family. That would be so romantic. Rather, I just grew to love it even more than I had before.

In Brasil, where it is called Doce de Leite (and that’s what we call it at home), I watched the ladies at the Mercado Central in Belo Horizonte stir big vats of it with wooden spoons longer than their arms. There were myriad varieties–some were darker or lighter, some were made with cultured milk. All were delicious. I tasted them all.

My first taste was actually as a college girl. I lived in my grandfather’s basement. He liked to keep a stash of Haagen-Daz Dulce de Leche ice cream in the freezer. I was guilty of mining out the dulce de leche swirls. That was far before I owned my ice cream maker or even considered making it on my own.

When my husband bought me a Cuisinart ice cream maker, I attempted to make it. And the attempts just keep getting better. And out waistlines just keep expanding.

Don’t even think about making this ice cream if you are on a diet. I don’t even want to know the calorie count. (I remember well enough my first taste of Haagen Daz and falling over dead when I saw the nutrition label. P.S. This is better than HD.)

As with every flavor I make, my husband claims this is by far the “best ice cream ever.” I would be lying if I didn’t say that this really is the best ice cream I’ve ever made.

You can make it without the egg yolks, just add another cup of milk. The texture won’t quite be the same, but the flavor will still be wonderful.

Servete de Doce de Leite (Dulce de Leche Ice Cream)
original recipe

2 cans dulce de leche** (purchased, or homemade–see this post for instructions)
2 cups whole milk
4-6 egg yolks (depending on how rich you want it)
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup cream, col (heavy or light cream will both work)
dash of salt

Whisk together one can of dulce de leche and the milk in a medium saucepan. Heat gently over medium heat until very hot, but not boiling.

Whisk the egg yolks and sugar until light in color–you can also use an electric mixer.

Slowly add the hot milk mixture to the eggs while whisking. Pour back into pan. Gently cook over low to medium heat, until it starts to thicken and reaches 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. (Don’t let it exceed 180 degrees, or it will curdle. If you don’t have a thermometer, cook until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.)

Strain the cooked custard through a fine mesh sieve into a clean bowl and add the cold cream.

Chill until very cold and freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer directions.

Place 1/4 of the ice cream in a freezer-proof container. Dollop with 1/2 to 1 teaspoonfuls of dulce de leche. Top with another 1/4 of the ice cream. Repeat until all ice cream has been transferred to the container and most of the dulce de leche has been dolloped. (You will probably only use 1/2 of the remaining can.) Use a knife tip to swirl the dulce de leche through the ice cream.

Place in the freezer for several hours to harden before serving.

Makes about 1 1/2 quarts.

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  1. I love you for sharing this recipe. I am going to make it soon!

    Oh..and I made your bonbons for my family over Valentine’s. They were a HUGE hit!

  2. Dulce de Leche is food of the gods. I can just eat it with a spoon (and I don’t want to know the calories either, it’s just better not to look!)

  3. ok, serioulsy are we on the same wave length here?? I just bought “Doce de Leite” as we also call it, to make ice cream. I will just use your tried and true recipe!! We also only buy from Many Lands because it tastes better than the American made or make our own. Love it!

  4. Oh, yeah, that looks good. I love ice cream. Blue Bell homemade vanilla has been my fave for a while.

    I have an ice cream maker, too & used it a lot when I first got it but haven’t in a few years guess I need to break it out.

  5. I’ve made your recipe for this ice cream a number of times and it’s my fam’s fave. We just LOVE it- and you’re right, it is better than HD. (Which we can’t get since we moved overseas, anyway!) Thanks so much for this recipe. :)

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