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The Best Tres Leches Cake Recipe

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Inside: Tres Leches cake is an authentic Mexican dessert that is full of delicious flavor and perfect for Cinco de Mayo or other gatherings.

Best Tres Leches Cake Recipe

Tres Leches cake is an authentic Mexican dessert that is full of delicious flavor and perfect for any party or other gatherings.

September is a busy and exciting month for our family. Not only are the kids back in school, but we also have two birthdays to celebrate every year! My two oldest sons were both born in September, so they get pretty excited this time of year.

I enjoy talking to them about how they want to celebrate, and I always try to make it as special as possible for them. Part of that means making their favorite cake, which is tres leches cake.

“Tres leches” translates literally from Spanish to mean “three milks”, and that is because the cake is soaked in three different types of milk – sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and regular milk.

This gives it a delicious, moist texture that is complemented by the amazing homemade whipped cream frosting. I will talk more about the process below.

Tres leches cake from above



Not only do I love this drink when we are celebrating birthdays, but it is also a great choice for sending to school for my kids’ lunches. They love it, and there are so many flavors so they don’t get bored with it.

How To Make Tres Leches Cake

If you are wondering how to make tres leches cake, now I am going to show you.

First, you need to make the basic sponge cake following the recipe below.

tres leches sponge

Next, you will want to poke some holes in the sponge with a fork, so that the tres leches mixture is absorbed into the cake.

tres leches poke holes

Finally, you will want to pour the tres leches mixture over the sponge, letting it absorb while under refrigeration for at least 3 hours.

Tres leches pouring leches

After you complete the base of the tres leches cake, you can decorate it however you want. In Mexico, it is common to frost with a homemade whipped cream, and then to top it with fruit. Other options are to add melted chocolate and even nuts.

tres leches decorated

I hope that you enjoy this recipe as much as my family does. It is great for any occasion, including Cinco de Mayo, Christmas, and Easter.

Let me know in the comments below how it turns out.

Other Desserts that You Will Love

Best Tres Leches Cake Recipe
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3.88 from 114 votes

Tres Leches Cake

Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Cooling Time3 hrs
Total Time4 hrs
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: bundt cake, food, mexican dessert, tres leches
Servings: 14 Slices
Calories: 413kcal


  • 12 Large Eggs
  • 1 1/2 Cups sugar
  • 2 1/2 Cups Flour divided into three equal parts.
  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract


  • 2 cups milk whole
  • 10 oz condensed milk
  • 8 oz evaporated milk
  • Whipped Cream
  • Strawberries


For Sponge Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • Beat the eggs in a stand mixer at medium speed, slowly adding the sugar. Continue beating for about 10-15 minutes. When you are ready for the next step, this mixture will have a creamy texture, almost like whipped cream. 
  • Remove the bowl from the stand mixer, and slowly fold in the first part of the sifted flour and slow mix by hand with a whisk until the flour is incorporated. Repeat with the remaining two parts of the flour. 
  • Add the vanilla and oil and stir slowly with a spatula until completely incorporated. 
  • Add the batter to your cake pan of choice. This amount will fit into two 8 inch circle pans, or one 9 x 13. 
  • Bake for 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. 
  • Remove from oven and let cool until completely cooled. 
  • Poke small holes along the surface of the sponge cake. 

For Tres Leches Mixture

  • Combine the sweetened condensed milk, the evaporated milk, and the whole milk and mix well. 
  • Pour the above mixture over the sponge cake, covering the entire cake. 
  • Leave cake in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, and then decorate with homemade whipped cream, strawberries, or other fruit of your choosing. 


Serving: 1Slice | Calories: 413kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 163mg | Sodium: 117mg | Potassium: 302mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 420IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 186mg | Iron: 1.9mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @mylatinatable or tag #mylatinatable!

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Sunday 14th of February 2021

Hola! I'm considering making this recipe but I'm not sure how much I should make. How many servings does this dessert have? I'm making this dish for about 13 people. I'm having almost all of mi primos over and I know we all love Tres Leches. Do you suggest doubling this recipe?

Hanan Hamideh

Wednesday 2nd of December 2020

Thanks for the recipe! The recipe does not mention baking powder. How many spoons is needed?

Rebecca Plaza

Monday 20th of July 2020

I made this cake for the first time for my son's 19th Birthday. It was a hit! Everyone loved it! I did add the full can of condensed milk and evaporated milk and it was perfect. This will be my go to recipe for tres leches cake.

Nag HR

Friday 17th of April 2020

I see a bunch of recipes which use butter and do not separate the eggs - which differs from your recipe Any reason why you separate the eggs and do not use butter?

Nicole Long

Tuesday 6th of August 2019

What types of flour? All purpose, self-rising, cake?

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