Tres Leches Cake

This Easy Tres Leches Cake is a delicious yellow cake that is soaked with a combinion of three different milks, sweetened condensed milk, whole milk, and evaporated milk. It is topped with a homemade whipped cream and a sprinkling of ground cinnamon.

Tres Leches Cake is a great cake to make as part of a Cinco de Mayo celebration, or as a part of a birthday celebration or special family dinner. 

A single serving of Easy Tres Leches Cake on a plate

A Cake Soaked With Three Milks

I never thought that pouring the equilivant of over 6 cups of milk over top of a cake would ever be anything other than complete mush. However, I had tried these Tres Leches Muffins several years ago and decided that since they were a hit, then I should at least give this three milk soaked cake a try!

This reipe for Tres Leches Cake is a yellow cake base that is super easy to make. It is egg heavy, making it more of a sponge than many other cake recipes. 

Baked cake in cake pan with holes poked over the entire surface and milk pooling around the edges.

Tres Leches Cake: The Milk In The Recipe

Evaporated Milk is a stablized cow milk product that has had 60% of the water removed. It is similar to sweetened condensed milk with the exception of sugar. It is a milk used in a lot of baking and was very popular during the time before the time of refigeration.

Sweetened Condensed Milk is very similar to evaporated milk, except it has added sugar. It goes through the same process of having 60% of the water removed and is also shelf stable. It is a popular ingredient in a lot of baking recipes. One of my favortite recipes with this ingredient is 7 Layer Cookie Bars.

Whole Milk is milk as it comes straight from the cow before it is processed (pasteurization and/or homogenization).

Overhead shot of baked and frosted easy tres leches cake.

Equipment Needed To Make Easy Tres Leches Cake

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Electric Hand Mixer, I have this brand (and have used it over 30 years!)

Mixing Bowls, you will need a large mixing bowl to mix the cake and another for the whipping cream.

9×13 cake pan, I use a glass cake pan like this one. I love it has a lid so I can bake and store the cake without transferring it to another dish.

Table fork 

Tips and Substitutions

  • When making the whipped cream, be sure the bowl is clean and chilled. A metal bowl is best as it will hold the chill while mixing the cream.
  • Be sure the cake is completely cooled before poking the holes.
  • A table fork is great for poking the holes into the cake. Poke several holes (see photo) to ensure the milk seeps down into them all over the cake.
  • Allow the cake to sit at least 4 hours or longer (if possible) before serving. The longer the cake sits, the more the milk will absorb.
  • There may be some milk in the bottom of the cake pan. This is ok, it will continue to soak into the cake as it sits.
  • Top the cake with the whipped cream just prior to serving.
Single serving of Tres Leches Cake on a white plate with the whole cake dish in the background.

Other Easy Cake Recipes You May Enjoy

Apple Upside Down Cake

Banana Cake with Browned Butter Maple Frosting

Banana Pudding Poke Cake

Blackberry Upside Down Cake

Classic Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Cranberry Upside Down Cake

German Chocolate Bundt Cake

Jello Poke Cake

Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

Salted Caramel Apple Cake

Southern Diner Cake

One piece of cake on a single serving plate.

*If you made this Easy Tres Leches Cake recipe, please give it a star rating*

A single serving of Easy Tres Leches Cake on a plate

Easy Tres Leches Cake

A delicious sturdy homemade cake soaked with 3 milks and topped with homemade whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
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Course: Desserts
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Easy Tres Leches Cake, Tres Leches Cake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Refrigeration Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 50 minutes
Servings: 20
Calories: 307kcal

Ingredients

  • cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 12 ounces evaporated milk
  • cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a 9×13 inch baking dish.
    greasing and dusting the cake pan with flour..
  • In a small bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder. Set aside.
    sifting together flour and baking powder.
  • In a medium sized mixing bowl, using a hand mixer, cream together the butter and the sugar until fluffy.
    creaming together the butter and sugar with a hand mixer.
  • Add the eggs and 1 teaspoon of the vanilla. Mix until smooth.
    beating in the eggs and vanilla.
  • Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture, mixing until well combined and smooth.
    adding flour mixture to egg mixture.
  • Pour the cake batter into the baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
    cake batter spread in the baking dish.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and cool completely. Pierce the cake with a fork over the entire top surface.
    piercing holes in the cake with a fork.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the whole milk, sweetened condensed milk, and evaporated milk.
    mixing together the three milks.
  • Pour the milk mixture over top of the cake. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
    milk mixture poured over top of the cake and soaking.
  • Prior to serving, using an electric hand mixer, whip the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until fluffy and the cream holds its shape. Spread over top of the cake and sprinkle lightly with cinnamon. Store in the refrigerator.
    cake with whipped cream topping and cinnamon sprinkle.

Video

Notes

Tips and Substitutions

  • When making the whipped cream, be sure the bowl is clean and chilled. A metal bowl is best as it will hold the chill while mixing the cream.
  • Be sure the cake is completely cooled before poking the holes.
  • A table fork is great for poking the holes into the cake. Poke several holes (see photo) to ensure the milk seeps down into them all over the cake.
  • Allow the cake to sit at least 4 hours or longer (if possible) before serving. The longer the cake sits, the more the milk will absorb.
  • There may be some milk in the bottom of the cake pan. This is ok, it will continue to soak into the cake as it sits.
  • Top the cake with the whipped cream just prior to serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 307kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 97mg | Sodium: 100mg | Potassium: 200mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 604IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 162mg | Iron: 1mg

About the Author: Shelby Law Ruttan

Shelby is the author/owner of Grumpy's Honeybunch. Established in 2007, she shares and preserves family recipes as well as recipes for cooking light and keto. She is an experienced, self-taught home cook who loves to share recipes with others. You can see her work on websites such as Veal Made Easy, Parade, Community Table, SoFab Food, Yummly, and FoodGawker.

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Shelby Welcome! I'm Shelby, author of Grumpy's Honeybunch. I have been sharing family favorite recipes since 2007. I started the Keto Diet in October 2017 and since then I have been creating Keto ... read more

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