TRES LECHES CAKE – A Three Kings Day Treat!

tres-leches-cake-textIt seemed appropriate to post a Tres Leches Cake recipe for Three Kings Day, (aka, the Epiphany). Tres Leches (three milks), three kings. Yeah, okay – it may be a stretch. But it’s still a delicious recipe and you could certainly serve it on the Epiphany…or anytime, for that matter.

It needs to be made a day in advance of serving so that the three milks (evaporated, sweetened condensed, and cream), which get poured over the hot cake, can be fully absorbed. But other than that bit of planning, it’s a very easy cake to make.


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup milk (any kind – I use nonfat)
  • 8 T butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 tsp vanilla, divided
  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 12 oz can evaporated milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream, divided
  • 3 T light corn syrup

Preheat oven to 325º Fahrenheit.

In a bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, heat together the milk and butter, just until the butter melts. Remove from heat.

Into the large bowl of your electric mixer, beat the eggs for 30 seconds on low speed. After 30 seconds, slowly start pouring in the sugar (still on low speed). Once all the sugar is added, increase the mixer speed to medium/high and beat until mixture is pale and glossy – about 5-7 minutes. On low speed, slowly add in the milk/butter and 2 tsp vanilla. Mix in the flour a third at a time.

Pour batter into a greased and floured 13″x 9″ pan. Spread the batter so the center dips down lower than the sides. As the cake bakes, the center will naturally rise. By scooping down the center, this will help ensure you get a flat-topped cake. Bake at 325º F for 30-35 minutes.

While cake is baking, mix together the sweetened condensed milk, the evaporated milk, 1 cup of cream, and 1 tsp vanilla. I suggest you use a container with a spout for easy pouring.

When cake is done, remove from oven. Prick the hot cake every 1/2″ with a skewer or fat toothpick. Very slowly pour the milk mixture over the hot cake. (You’ll have to stop for awhile now and then to allow the milks to absorb into the cake.) There will probably be some pooling on top in spots. That’s okay. Let cake set for 15 minutes after you pour on the milks, then put in refrigerator UNcovered overnight, up to 24 hours.

Before serving, make frosting by combining 1 cup cream, the corn syrup, and 1 tsp vanilla together in the small bowl of your electric mixer. Beat on high until soft peaks form. Spread over cold cake.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s