Alfajores Cookies (dulce de leche sandwich cookies, gluten-free)

I recently started making gluten-free shortbread cookies. And having something like a good, basic shortbread under your belt is nothing but helpful.

Shortbread is a gateway cookie.

Yes, it tastes wonderful on its own, dunked in coffee (hello blue box Girl Scout Cookie)…but…it can be the base to SO many other cookies!

AlfajoresCookies1 Gateway cookie. Hardcore. It leads to hardcore cookies. You just wait, this is only the beginning.

Alfajores are AH-mazing. Delicious shortbread cookies and a thick, creamy filling of dulce de leche.

Sometimes they’re dipped in chocolate too…just a suggestion.


You can buy dulce de leche (oh, please don’t buy caramel and call it the same thing!) or you can make it! Making it is super simple, so I highly recommend it (click here to read about when I made it at home!). Don’t have time? Buy a can or jar and be on your merry way!

Happy snacking!


Alfajores Cookies (Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies, gluten-free)
(makes 1 dozen sandwich cookies)

1 cup almond meal

1/8 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. baking soda

1 ½ Tbs pure maple syrup

1 Tbs. melted coconut oil

1 tsp. vanilla extract

12 tsp. dulce de leche, divided (homemade or store-bought)

~In a large mixing bowl, combine the almond meal, salt, and baking soda. Stir together. In the middle of the dry ingredients, add the maple, coconut oil, and vanilla. Stir well until the dough becomes a ball (the batter should not be sticky or wet, it should come together if you press it together between your palms).

~Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using it.

~Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line your baking sheets with parchment.

~Between two pieces of parchment on your countertop, roll out the dough. Make sure the dough isn’t so thin that it tears, but do not make it too thick.

~Use a cookie cutter to cut out circles of dough (I used a 1& 7/8” round cutter) and place them on the prepared baking sheets. If you have to reroll the dough more than twice, place it in the fridge for a few minutes before rolling it out again. Place the cut cookie dough rounds into the fridge for 10 minutes before baking the cookies (I usually place my first pan into the fridge while I’m cutting out the dough for my second pan).

~Bake the cookies for 9-12 minutes, being careful not to burn the cookies.

~Let them cool completely on a wire rack.

~Assemble your Alfajores! Place 1 tsp. of dulce de leche on the bottom side of a shortbread cookie. Place a second cookie on top, sandwiching them together. Done! Enjoy!

Shortbread recipe adapted from this recipe


Strike up a conversation: Have you ever had Alfajores? I never have had an authentic one, but I’ve heard plenty about them from my dear friend Jessi, and if the original are anything like my homemade ones, I love them! But, I’m biased because this is my recipe 😉

Oh, and if you like these, you’ll definitely love my Brigadeiros! And if you need them to be a justification to eat cookies after a workout, you should try my Strawberry Shortbread Protein Cookies!

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  1. says

    I wish I had had this recipe in high school when the only things we coud come up with for our Spanish class fiesta dessert was Mexican Wedding Cakes. Not that those aren’t delicious, but hello dulce de leche!!!

    And the thought of shortbread as a gateway cookie is hilarious. Love it.

  2. says

    Omg, I NEVER say this but seriously, shortbread cookies are my JAM!! Hands down favorite cookie of all time is an almond flavored shortbread cookie! YUM!! And it’s kinda funny, because I normally prefer my cookies to be chewy and soft yet I love the crunchy crumbliness of shortbread!

    I’ve never had an Alfajore before…ha, I made a rhyme! 😉 Actually, I’d never even heard of them until just now! Learn something new every day! ;D