Tres Leches Cake
Tres Leches Cake

If you are looking for a fitting finish to a Mexican inspired meal, Tres Leches cake is the answer. In essence, it is a sponge cake that is soaked in a mixture of sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and heavy cream. The three milks give it a lovely richness, but because of the lack of butter in the cake, it manages to be incredibly light at the same time. This is an unfrosted version, but if you’d like to make it look a bit prettier, a dusting of cinnamon flecked powered sugar before serving does the trick.

Tres Leches Cake

Tres Leches Cake
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Chill Time 1 hour
If you are looking for a fitting finish to a Mexican inspired meal, Tres Leches cake is the answer. In essence, it is a sponge cake that is soaked in a mixture of sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and heavy cream. The three milks give it a lovely richness, but because of the lack of butter in the cake, it manages to be incredibly light at the same time. This is an unfrosted version, but if you'd like to make it look a bit prettier, a dusting of cinnamon flecked powered sugar before serving does the trick.
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Course Dessert
Servings 10

Ingredients
 

For the cake:

  • 1 cup (200 grams) sugar
  • 5 large eggs, separated
  • cup whole milk
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar

For the three milks mixture:

  • 12 ounce can evaporated milk
  • 1 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum

Optional for serving:

  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions
 

For the cake:

  • Preheat your oven to 350 F. Butter a 10 x 10-inch baking dish and set aside.
  • Beat ¾ cup sugar and the egg yolks in a stand mixer for about 5 minutes until pale in color and increased in volume. Pour the milk and vanilla into the mixing bowl and beat until combined. Add the flour and baking powder to the egg yolk mixture and fold gently until the flour is incorporated. Be careful not to overmix.
  • In a separate clean bowl, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar to soft peaks. Add the remaining ¼ cup sugar a tablespoon at a time and beat until the egg whites are glossy and hold stiff peaks. Fold a third of the whites into the yolk mixture gently, then carefully fold in the remaining egg whites. Pour the batter into the buttered baking dish.
  • Bake the cake for 30-40 minutes until the top feels springy to the touch and the sides have pulled away slightly. Remove from the oven and let it cool for 10-15 minutes in the baking dish.

For the milk mixture:

  • Combine all ingredients for the milk mixture in a bowl and whisk until combined well.
  • Using a skewer or small knife, pierce the cake all over being careful not to tear the cake. Pour the milk mixture all over the cake. Let it absorb for 15 minutes, then spoon over any liquid that has pooled around the sides. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours, or up to 8. Dust with a mixture of powedered sugar and cinnamon if desired before serving.

Notes

A note on the size of your pan. I have made this in a 9 x 9-inch baking pan, but the cake *almost* spilled out over the sides. If you don’t have a 10 x 10-inch square pan, move up to a 9 x 12 or 9 x 13-inch baking pan. The cake will be a little thinner, and may require a shorter baking time, but is a safer option. 
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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