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How to Make Dulce de Leche from Sweetened Condensed Milk in a Slow Cooker Recipe

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  • Author: Mirna Pena
  • Prep Time: 5 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 7-14 hours
  • Total Time: 7-14 hours
  • Yield: ~16 oz
  • Category: Topping
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: Latino/Hispanic


Sticky, delicious, goodness made at home! Easy to make, and you only need 1 ingredient!



114oz can of Sweetened condensed milk

1 16oz mason jar or 2 8 oz jars

Slow cooker or crock pot


Start by opening your sweet and condensed milk can and pouring the whole thing into a 16 ounce canning jar or into two 8 ounce canning jars splitting the milk evenly between the two jars.

Using new canning lids, close the jars tightly, but NOT TOO tight so that you can’t get it open!

Place the jars in your slow cooker or crockpot next to each other standing up or lying down, either way is fine.

Fill with enough water to cover the jars about ½ an inch.

Cover and set the slow cooker on low.

Leave in for about 6-7 hours for a light colored dulce de leche, 9-10 for dark brown but not too thick consistency, and 12-14 hours for thick not runny, holds its shape consistency.

Once your milk has reached the color and consistency that you would like, carefully remove it from the hot water using tongs or another tool and on to a cooling rack or hot plate to cool. 

After about 30 minutes you can try and remove the lid, if it’s cool enough to handle. Letting it cool for 1 hour would be best.

The lid might be a bit stuck and hard to open. If that happens, unscrew and remove the top ring and wiggle a butter knife between the lid and the glass  jar VERY CAREFULLY until it pops.

You now have delicious dulce de leche!




You can make different thicknesses if you cook multiple jars at once. You can pull them out as you see the color change. Pull out at around 6-8 hours for a light still slightly runny consistency, after about 10 hours it will be more of a caramel color and more thick and less runny. At 12 hours it will be dark and thick.

There will be some lumps, to work them out, stir or whisk your dulce de leche vigorously until it becomes smooth.

Does need to be refrigerated.

Lasts about 3 weeks or a few months if never opened after removing from the water.

Use a glass jar so the BPA chemical doesn’t contaminate your food.