Tres Leches (Three Milks Cake)

Catherine Haury


This has been one of my favorite desserts since childhood. My grandma passed on her sweet tooth and this recipe. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

★★★★★ 3 votes
20 Min
45 Min



2 c
cake flour
2 tsp
baking powder
1/2 tsp
6 large
eggs, separated
2 c
2 tsp
vanilla extract
1/2 c
whole milk


14 oz
sweetened condensed milk
1 1/4 c
heavy cream
14 oz
evaporated milk
2 Tbsp
light rum


egg whites
1/2 tsp
cream of tartar
1/2 c
1 c
light corn syrup
1 1/2 c

How to Make Tres Leches (Three Milks Cake)


  • 1Cake

    Preheat oven to 350°F.

    Grease and lightly flour a 9 x 13 baking dish. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together.

    Separate the egg yolks and whites. Beat the whites until very foamy and frothy. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream the sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla extract with an electric mixer.

    Continue mixing and slowly add the milk. Then start adding the flour mixture, a little at a time, until all the flour is incorporated and the batter is smooth. Finally, use a spatula to gently fold in the beaten egg whites until completely mixed.

    Pour batter into a greased and lightly floured 9 x 13 baking dish. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean. Allow cake to cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes.

    Invert the cake onto a jelly roll pan or a baking tray with a raised edge on it – something to catch the syrup! Use a fork to repeatedly pierce the top of the cake.
  • 2Milk Syrup

    Whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, heavy cream and rum in a mixing bowl, until well blended. Pour syrup over the cake a little at a time, until it soaks through. This is a cake that demands patience! Pour the milk syrup slowly and let it soak in. Use your fork to help it along a bit, piercing here and there through the syrup until it soaks in. Keep doing this until most of the milk syrup is absorbed. Don't worry if there is still a pool of syrup around the bottom of the cake, it will gradually soak in.

    Cover the now syrup-drenched cake in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least three hours before frosting.
  • 3Frosting

    Beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar in a large bowl until they form stiff peaks. Set aside. In a separate pan, mix the water, sugar, and corn syrup. Cook over a high heat, stirring constantly until a candy thermometer reads 230°F. Remove from heat. While beating the egg whites with an electric mixer, immediately pour the hot syrup into the egg whites; continue beating for about five minutes. Let frosting cool in refrigerator. With a wet spatula, spread a thick layer of the frosting on the cake. To serve, cut individual squares, top with a red maraschino cherry, and serve cold.

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About Tres Leches (Three Milks Cake)

Course/Dish: Cakes