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Tres leches cake was something that I heard of many years ago, but up until recently, I had never tried. I’m not really sure why since I have always thought to myself that I needed to try it one of these days. Cake soaked in sweet milk and topped with whipped cream? Excuse me, but I should have jumped on that the second I heard about it.
But no. Years went by and I never tried it until now when I decided to finally just make one myself. Let me tell you, it was worth the wait! This is adapted from the Alton Brown tres leches cake recipe and it is creamy, soft, sweet, and delicious. Oh yes, you want to make this cake. While it takes some time, it is very easy to do and your patience will be rewarded.
HOW TO MAKE TRES LECHES CAKE
First, cream a stick of softened butter. Don’t rush this step. Cream the butter until it is light, smooth, and fluffy. It should resemble cream cheese frosting more than whipped butter.
Once the butter is creamed, add eggs and vanilla until thoroughly combined. To that, you will then add the dry ingredients: cake flour, baking soda, and salt. Once the ingredients are combined, keep the mixer going for a few more minutes to beat some air into your batter. This will give you a fluffier cake.
Look at that fluffy batter. It’s the kind of batter that you can’t wait to lick off the beater; or is that just me? Pour the batter into a prepared 9×13 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. I use baking cooking spray, but you can use your preferred method to grease your pan.
When the cake is finished it should look like cornbread and a toothpick inserted inside will be clean. Take the cake out and allow it to cool on the counter for an hour or so.
Once cooled, poke holes in it with a skewer, chopstick, whatever you have on hand to make good-sized holes. You want them to be big enough to soak up all of the tres leches goodness.
Tres leches means three milks in Spanish. The three milks in this recipe are evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and whole milk. Mix the tres leches, or three milks together and pour it over your cake.
HOW LONG SHOULD THE CAKE SOAK?
Cover the cake put it in the refrigerator to soak up the milk mixture for a minimum of 3-4 hours to overnight. Again, your patience will be rewarded.
When you’re ready to take the cake out of the refrigerator, make a batch of whipped cream for the frosting. Whip together heavy whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla until there are stiff peaks. I prefer my whipped cream on the thicker side, but you can whip yours to your desired consistency.
By now the cake has soaked up all of that delicious tres leches. Now top it with the whipped cream and spread it liberally. Once frosted, sprinkle a little cinnamon sugar on top, or just cinnamon if that’s your preference. This cake is best served cold, so cover and refrigerate until you are ready to serve.
You may also like:
- Baking cooking spray
- 1 1/4 cup cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 ounces 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 5 whole eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Tres Leches Glaze
- 1 12-ounce can evaporated milk
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup Whole Milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Coat a 13 by 9-inch pan with baking spray and set aside.
- Combine cake flour, baking powder and salt in a medium mixing bowl and set aside.
- Place the butter into a separate bowl or stand mixer and beat on medium speed until fluffy
- Gradually add the sugar over 1 minute.
- Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and mix to combine.
- Add the vanilla extract and mix to combine.
- Slowly add the flour mixture to the batter in small batches until just until combined.
- Pour the batter to the prepared pan and spread evenly.
- Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cake is lightly golden and a toothpick comes out clean.
- Remove the cake pan and allow to cool. Poke the top of the cake all over with a skewer or fork then prepare the glaze.
TRES LECHES GLAZE
- Whisk together the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk and homogenized milk. Once combined, pour the glaze over the cake. Refrigerate the cake 3-4 hours or overnight.
- Place the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla into the bowl and whip with a hand mixer or the whisk attachment of a hand mixer. Mix until stiff peaks are formed.
- Spread the topping over the cake and chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Recipe adapted from: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/tres-leche-cake-recipe.html