Dulce De Leche Baci Kisses

Baci di Dama are petite Italian cookie sandwiches made with ground hazelnuts. The cookie base has cocoa powder added for that perfect hazelnut-chocolate combination that I love so much. These cookies are chocolate-y, without being too sweet and they melt and crumble once bitten. For the filling, we create the most decadent dulce de leche buttercream that you’ll want to eat by the spoonful. The cookies come together quickly, however take note of the cook time for the dulce so you can plan accordingly.
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Dulce De Leche Baci Kisses

Baci di Dama are petite Italian cookie sandwiches made with ground hazelnuts. The cookie base has cocoa powder added for that perfect hazelnut-chocolate combination that I love so much. These cookies are chocolate-y, without being too sweet and they melt and crumble once bitten. For the filling, we create the most decadent dulce de leche buttercream that you’ll want to eat by the spoonful. The cookies come together quickly, however take note of the cook time for the dulce so you can plan accordingly.
5 from 2 reviews
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Course: Dessert — Cookies
Cuisine: Cookies
Keyword: Sandwich Cookies, Baci di Dama, Dulce De Leche, Cookies, Dessert, Baking, Italian
Servings: 42

Ingredients

For the Dulce de Leche

  • 1 ¾ cups (414 ml) whole milk
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 2/3 cup (128 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda

For the Buttercream

  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup (96 g) granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons corn syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup (113 g/1 stick/ 4 oz) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup (75ml/104g) dulce de leche, cooled

For the Cookies

  • 1 cup (128 g) raw hazelnuts, skinned and coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup (135 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup (28 g) dark unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/3 cup (70 g) light brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ cup (33 g) confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 3/4 cup (6 oz) unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into 12 pieces
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon real vanilla extract

Instructions

For the Dulce de Leche

  • In a large saucepan whisk together the milk, cream, sugar, vanilla bean seeds + pod and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, whisk in the baking soda and set a timer for 1 hour. Whenever you walk by the pot, give it a stir and adjust the temperature to keep it from boiling; you just want some bubbles around the edges of the pan. Usually between the 30-45 minute mark, the color starts to deepen and the mixture begins to thicken a bit. When this happens, it’s going to be more prone to a heavy boil (which is bad), so stick near it adjusting the temperature as necessary and stirring more frequently. It should be done anywhere between 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 1/2 hours. This dulce deepens and thickens faster than usually because of the addition of cream, so keep an eye on it. You want the dulce to have a nice thick consistency as well as a bronzed and deep caramel appearance. Strain the dulce into a heat-safe bowl. Pour into a lidded container and stash in the fridge until ready to use. It will thicken more as it cools.

For the Buttercream

  • Place the egg whites, sugar and sea salt in the bowl of an electric stand mixer and set on top of a pot of simmering water. Whisk constantly, for about 3-4 minutes or until the mixture is thick, opaque and when rubbed between two fingers no longer feels gritty. Place the bowl in the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk on high until it holds stiff peaks. Replace the whisk with the paddle attachment, and with the mixer on medium add the butter, one chunk at a time, waiting for one to blend completely before adding in the next. If the mixture curdles, your butter may be too cold. If it’s soupy, you may need to chill it for a quick spell in the fridge. Once all the butter has been added, run the machine for several more minutes until the mixture is smooth, glossy and voluminous. Run the machine on medium and add in 1/3 cup (75ml/104g) of the dulce de leche.

For the Cookies

  • Preheat the oven to 325F and line several baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place the hazelnuts in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment and pulse until they are finely chopped and have the appearance of fine breadcrumbs. Add in the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, powdered sugar and sea salt and pulse until completely combined. Scatter the butter over the hazelnut mixture, along with the milk and vanilla and pulse to combine. Use a spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure everything is combined.
  • Form 1 teaspoon-size dough balls and place on the baking sheet, 1-inch from each other. Bake in the center of the oven for 10 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a rack to finish cooling.
  • Once cool, smear the bottom of one cookie with the dulce buttercream and set another cookie on top.

Notes

**This is the original version of this recipe; the one included in the Bake From Scratch issue has some quantity differences.
Thanks for baking with me! Please tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your beautiful treats! xo

7 Comments

  • Liz Tosti December 11, 2019 at 7:36 PM

    5 stars
    Can these cookies be frozen?

    Reply
  • Paula D December 4, 2019 at 3:29 PM

    5 stars
    Any substitution for a non nut version?

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth December 6, 2019 at 5:06 PM

      Hi Paula! I apologize for the delay. I can’t think of an ingredient substitution for that particular cookie. I might recommend finding another chocolate cookie (I have a bunch on my site and in the book) and making some small cookies with the dough and using this filling. This buttercream is so delicious, I wouldn’t want you to miss out on it!! xoxo

      Reply
  • Morgan December 3, 2019 at 7:05 PM

    What a perfect, adorable little holiday treat!!!!!! Your recipes always amaze me!!!

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth December 3, 2019 at 7:23 PM

      Thank you Morgan!! These were so fun to make!!! xoxo

      Reply
      • Lisa sample December 30, 2020 at 10:53 AM

        Hi! I am making these now..:For the butter cream did you mean corn starch not corn syrup?
        I have made this twice and the butter cream is too soupy..::

        Reply
        • Rebecca Firth December 31, 2020 at 6:57 AM

          Hi Lisa, the corn syrup is correct. The buttercream shouldn’t be soupy…this could happen for two reasons. The first is that the egg white mixture wasn’t completely cooled before adding the butter. The second would be if the Dulce wasn’t cooked down and thickened enough. Let me know how it goes!!
          R xo

          Reply

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