Tres Leches Cake

It’s celebration time! Yesterday was 12th Anniversary / b’day of MariasMenu!! 12 years… WOW!! I don't know what I expected or what I had in my mind about this space, when I started this 12 years ago. One thing is for sure, I didn't expect it to last this long ;)

I’m a kind of person who tends to get bored easily with everything. So sticking with the site for this long is a miracle! Though I’ve come a long way from initial days of blogging, there is scope for it to be more. But the thing is, I’m not a very ambitious person, I tend to be happy with what I have (which can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it).

It was also my b’day on June 6th and coincidentally Vanitha Magazine featured me in their latest edition (check out their article about food blogging). So, all this calls for a celebration and of course you need a cake to celebrate, right?

Vanitha Magazine June 2018
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I’ve been wanting to bake this cake for sometime now. The first time I had this cake was during our trip to Turkey. We had it from a famous Turkish restaurant chain called “Mado”. We had a variety of desserts from there and this was our fav. If you ever happen to go to Turkey, make sure you try the Tres Leche cake from “Mado Cafe”. They have branches throughout the city.

Tres Leches is basically a butter / sponge cake soaked in three different kinds of milk: Condensed Milk, Evaporated Milk and Heavy Cream. So, it’s kinda rich!  The thing is, when I made the milk mixture for the cake and tasted it, it reminded me of Paal Payasam. So I drank half cup of it, since it was my b’day cake n all, I think I can be excused ;)

We’ve already established it’s a rich dessert. It’s yummy too and it’s perfect for any special occasion or a big gathering. If you’re planning for a big party or get together or pot luck, this is a perfect dessert. It easily serves 12-15 people and it can be made 2-3 days ahead!

So, before we head to the recipe, Thank You! Thank you so much for being with us for the last 12 years, supporting and encouraging us by visiting the site, leaving a comment or sharing recipes.

I do hope you will try this wonderful dessert / cake at home and like it too.

Please read the “notes” section, before proceeding with the recipe.

Here is the recipe…

Recipe from here

Tres Leches Cake
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Tres Leches Cake

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Author: Maria Jose Martin



  • 1 can 14 ounce (396 gms) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 can 12-ounce (340 gms) evaporated milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 8 tbsp 1 stick butter, cut into chunks
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs (room temperature)
  • 2 cups sugar ((refer notes))


  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  • To prepare milk mixture, empty the can of condensed milk into a small saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring continuously. Bring to a boil and reduce heat and simmer, stirring constantly until mixture begins to thicken and becomes slightly darker in color. 
    Step 1 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Remove from heat and gradually whisk in the evaporated milk, cream and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Set aside to cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
    Step 2 Tres Leches Cake
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  • For the cake, adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat to 325 F. Grease and flour a 9x13-inch baking pan. Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a medium bowl.
    Step 3 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Heat the milk, butter and vanilla in a small saucepan over low heat until the butter is melted. 
    Step 4 Tres leches Cake
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  • In a large bowl whip the eggs with an electric mixer on medium-high speed.
    Step 5 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Gradually add the sugar; beat 1 minute. Increase speed and whip until the mixture is very thick and voluminous, 4 to 8 minutes longer.
    Step 6 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Reduce mixer speed to low and add the melted butter mixture, beating until combined, about 30 seconds. 
    Step 7 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Add the flour mixture in two additions, beating until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Increase the mixer speed to medium and whip the batter until it is fully combined and smooth, about 30 seconds.
    Step 8 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Scrape batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top and gently tap the pan on the work surface to settle it. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
    Step 9 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Using a skewer, poke about 50 holes in the warm cake (you do not need to poke all the way through). Slowly pour the cooled milk mixture over the cake. Let the cake cool about 15 minutes, then refrigerate until the milk is completely absorbed and the cake has cooled completely, about 3 hours. 
    Step 10 Tres Leches Cake
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  • For the frosting: With an electric mixer, beat whipping cream, sugar and vanilla until soft peaks form. 
    Step 11 tres Leches Cake
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  • Let the cake sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before frosting it. Spread evenly over cake. Sprinkle some cinnamon powder on top of the cake. Decorate with glazed cherries (optional)
    Step 12 Tres Leches Cake
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  • Cake can be covered with plastic wrap and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.


The above qty will serve 12-15 people.
I used only 1 1/3 cups of sugar for the cake , instead of the 2 cups mentioned in the original recipe. Unless you like overtly sweet desserts, I think 1 1/3 cup sugar is enough. 
Also, if you like your cake to be drenched in the milk mixture, you can increase the qty of evaporated milk by 1/2 - 3/4 cup. 
I used a skewer to poke the holes in the cake, but I think it will be better if you use the end of wooden spoon instead. It will ensure in a slightly bigger size holes and ensure uniform distribution of the milk mixture. 
If you want to make it extra special, drizzle some store bought caramel syrup or dulce de leche on top of the cake. 
If you wanna take an easy route, use a cake mix and bake a yellow cake and follow the rest of the recipe ;)
Tried this recipe? Let others know by...mentioning @mariasmenu or tagging #mariasmenu
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9 thoughts on “Tres Leches Cake”

  1. This was a super hit at work. “Best Tres Leches I’ve had since California” was one of the comments by a hardcore foodie. Thanks for the awesome recipe, Maria!

    • Hi Sarah,

      I guess you can use a combination of milk and cream to substitute evaporated milk. For 1 cup evaporated milk, either use half cream and half milk (for a richer version) or 3/4th milk and 1/4th cream. Hope this helps..



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