Tres Leches Cake Recipe

This Tres Leches Cake recipe makes a delicious authentic Mexican dessert. Make this simple milk cake for any occasion – it’s easy!

The post Tres Leches Cake Recipe appeared first on Brown Eyed Baker.

This Tres Leches Cake recipe makes a delicious authentic Mexican dessert. Make this simple milk cake for any occasion – it’s easy!

A piece of tres leches cake on a plate with a fork.

The Spanish word, Tres leches literally translates to “three milks”, which is exactly what is in the ingredients of this light sponge cake. In Mexico, it is a popular dessert to serve at any celebration.

It’s a beautiful vanilla cake, soaked in a sweet blend of milks, with a topping of luscious fresh whipped cream. This cake is quite possibly the best poke cake on the planet.

A pan of tres leches cake with three pieces removed and on plates.

Ingredients for authentic tres leches cake

For the most authentic flavor, use the ingredients below, without substitutions except where noted:

For the cake:

  • Cake flour — This flour is lighter than all-purpose. It has less protein, so it makes for a fluffy and wonderfully tender cake.
  • Sugar
  • Butter — Use unsalted butter for the best results.
  • Eggs
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Vanilla extract — Use the best quality extract possible; Mexican vanilla is even better.

For the milk glaze:

  • Evaporated milk — This is essentially concentrated milk.
  • Condensed milk — This milk is reduced and then sugar is added. It has a thick, syrupy consistency
  • Half and half – For those not familiar, this is a dairy product in the U.S. that falls between whole milk and heavy cream. If you cannot get it where you leave, substitute half whole milk and half heavy cream.

For the whipped cream topping:

  • Heavy cream — Be sure to use unsweetened heavy whipping cream
  • Sugar — Granulated sugar!
  • Vanilla extract – Again, best quality possible.

Ingredients for tres leches cake prepped and labeled on a counter.

How to make the tres leches cake recipe

This is a pretty simple vanilla sponge cake recipe. You’ll use a creaming method to bring everything together.

Step by step photos of making tres leches cake batter.

Step by step photos of the final mixing of tres leches cake batter and pouring into pan.

  1. Preheat your oven and grease a 9×13-inch cake pan.
  2. Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Beat the butter using an electric mixer on medium speed, until it’s light and fluffy. To make the job easier, be sure to soften the butter first.
  4. Reduce the speed and add the sugar, eggs (one at a time), and vanilla extract.
  5. Add the flour mixture into the mixer in three batches. Be careful not to over mix the batter; it will cause the cake to be dry.
  6. Pour the batter into your cake pan and spread it into an even layer.
  7. Bake the cake. Wait a few minutes after you remove it from the oven, then transfer the cake to a cooling rack for 30 minutes.

After it’s cool, you’ll use a wooden skewer or fork to poke holes all over the top of the cake.

Poking holes and pouring milk glaze over tres leches cake.

Preparing and adding the milk glaze:

  1. Whisk together the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and half and half in a four-cup measuring cup.
  2. Pour the milk glaze evenly over the fully-cooled cake, being sure to fill all the holes you poked into it.
  3. Chill the cake in the refrigerator for at least four hours.

Spreading whipped cream over the top of tres leches cake.

Making the whipped cream frosting:

When you realize how easy it is to make the best whipped cream you’ll ever taste, you’ll never want to buy it again.

  1. Whip the cream, sugar, and vanilla extract in the bowl of an electric mixer on low speed.
  2. Beat the mixture on low until you reach soft peaks.
  3. Increase the speed to medium until the mixture is luscious and thick.
  4. Spread the whipped cream over the cake and refrigerate until serving time.

Pan of tres leches cake with strawberries around the border.

A Few Tips!

  • Cake Flour – Cake flour contains less protein than all-purpose flour and will create a fluffier, more tender cake. Substituting all-purpose flour will affect the texture of the cake. If you do not have cake flour or can’t get it, make this substitution: whisk together ¾ cup sifted all-purpose flour + 2 tablespoons cornstarch for each cup of cake flour.
  • Half & Half – This is a dairy product sold in the U.S. If you cannot get it where you live, substitute equal amounts whole milk and heavy cream.
  • Thin Cake – You’ll notice when the cake comes out of the oven that it is not exceptionally high, but don’t worry! Once it absorbs all of that liquid, it will plump up beautifully.
  • Poking Holes – Try not to hit the bottom of the pan when you poke your holes, which will keep the most liquid in the cake. Some will naturally seep out as it soaks, but by not penetrating the bottom of the cake, you keep the most liquid possible inside the cake.
  • Pour Slowly! – When pouring the milk mixture over the poked holes of the cake, go as slowly as possible. If you rush the process, the cake won’t be able to absorb everything. Even if it takes you 10 to 15 minutes, take it slowly. Drizzle a little bit evenly over the surface, let it sink in, then do a bit more. It is well worth the patience!
  • Serving Suggestions – You can serve the cake as is, chilled of course. In Mexico, an authentic tres leches cake recipe isn’t as sweet as this one, so in Mexico, they serve it with slices of fresh fruit on top; most often, slices of strawberries, peaches, mangos, and pineapple. Toasted coconut and pecans are also popular toppings.
  • Storage: The cake can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 4 days.
  • Make-Ahead – This is a fabulous make-ahead recipe because it needs to chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours after you pour over the milk mixture, and overnight is even better! For the best flavor and texture, I recommend serving it the second day, but leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for another couple of days.
  • Freezing Instructions – You can freeze the plain cake after it has baked, but not the soaked, assembled cake (it would be too mushy). To freeze the cake, cool completely, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then proceed with the recipe to poke holes, pour the milk mixture, and top with whipped cream.

Close up photo of cut tres leches cake in pan.

If you make this recipe and love it, I would so appreciate it if you would take a moment to leave a rating below. Thank you so much!

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Tres Leches Cake Recipe

This Tres Leches Cake recipe makes a delicious authentic Mexican dessert. Make this simple milk cake for any occasion - it's easy!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 20 minutes
resting time 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 5 hours 50 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 589kcal
Author Michelle

Ingredients

For the Cake:

  • cups cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Three-Milk Glaze:

  • 12 ounce can evaporated milk
  • 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup half-and-half

For the Whipped Cream:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Make the Cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13-inch baking pan; set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
  • Beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 1 minute. Decrease the speed to low and with the mixer still running, gradually add the sugar over 1 minute. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl, if necessary. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and mix to thoroughly combine. Add the vanilla extract and mix to combine. Add the flour mixture to the batter in 3 batches and mix just until combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and spread into an even layer. (This will appear to be a very small amount of batter.)
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the cake is lightly golden and reaches an internal temperature of 200 degrees F. Remove the cake to a cooling rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes. Poke the top of the cake all over with a skewer or fork. Allow the cake to cool completely and then prepare the glaze.
  • Make the Three-Milk Glaze: In a 4-cup measuring cup, whisk together the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk and the half-and-half. Once combined, slowly pour the glaze evenly over the cake. Refrigerate the cake for at least four hours, or overnight.
  • Make the Whipped Cream: Using an electric mixer, whisk together the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla on low speed until stiff peaks form. Increase to medium speed and whip until thick. Spread the topping over the cake and allow to chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Leftover cake should be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 day.

Video

Notes

  • Cake Flour - Cake flour contains less protein than all-purpose flour and will create a fluffier, more tender cake. Substituting all-purpose flour will affect the texture of the cake. If you do not have cake flour or can't get it, make this substitution: whisk together ¾ cup sifted all-purpose flour + 2 tablespoons cornstarch for each cup of cake flour.
  • Half & Half - This is a dairy product sold in the U.S. If you cannot get it where you live, substitute equal amounts whole milk and heavy cream.
  • Thin Cake - You'll notice when the cake comes out of the oven that it is not exceptionally high, but don't worry! Once it absorbs all of that liquid, it will plump up beautifully.
  • Poking Holes - Try not to hit the bottom of the pan when you poke your holes, which will keep the most liquid in the cake. Some will naturally seep out as it soaks, but by not penetrating the bottom of the cake, you keep the most liquid possible inside the cake.
  • Pour Slowly! - When pouring the milk mixture over the poked holes of the cake, go as slowly as possible. If you rush the process, the cake won't be able to absorb everything. Even if it takes you 10 to 15 minutes, take it slowly. Drizzle a little bit evenly over the surface, let it sink in, then do a bit more. It is well worth the patience!
  • Serving Suggestions - You can serve the cake as is, chilled of course. In Mexico, an authentic tres leches cake recipe isn’t as sweet as this one, so in Mexico, they serve it with slices of fresh fruit on top; most often, slices of strawberries, peaches, mangos, and pineapple. Toasted coconut and pecans are also popular toppings.
  • Storage: The cake can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 4 days.
  • Make-Ahead - This is a fabulous make-ahead recipe because it needs to chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours after you pour over the milk mixture, and overnight is even better! For the best flavor and texture, I recommend serving it the second day, but leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for another couple of days.
  • Freezing Instructions - You can freeze the plain cake after it has baked, but not the soaked, assembled cake (it would be too mushy). To freeze the cake, cool completely, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then proceed with the recipe to poke holes, pour the milk mixture, and top with whipped cream.
Nutritional values are based on one serving

Nutrition

Calories: 589kcal | Carbohydrates: 67g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 169mg | Sodium: 220mg | Potassium: 339mg | Sugar: 54g | Vitamin A: 1145IU | Vitamin C: 1.8mg | Calcium: 244mg | Iron: 0.6mg

Recipe from Alton Brown

[photos by Dee of One Sarcastic Baker]

The post Tres Leches Cake Recipe appeared first on Brown Eyed Baker.

Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie

There are a million pumpkin pie recipes on the web. There’s even a perfectly good recipe on the back of every single can of pumpkin purée on the store shelves. So I didn’t want to make just another basic pumpkin pie. No one needs that. Instead, I made a couple simple swaps to fancy it […]

The post Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie appeared first on Budget Bytes.

There are a million pumpkin pie recipes on the web. There’s even a perfectly good recipe on the back of every single can of pumpkin purée on the store shelves. So I didn’t want to make just another basic pumpkin pie. No one needs that. Instead, I made a couple simple swaps to fancy it up just enough to make you go “Oooh…” with that first bite, but not enough that it made what is normally a very easy pie into something complicated. Enter my Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie.

Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie

Overhead view of a Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie with a slice cut out, on a plate, with whipped cream on top.

What Makes this Pie Special?

Brown butter and maple syrup. A magical combination. If you don’t know, browned butter is a magical elixir that makes any baked good even better. It gives food a wonderfully rich and nutty flavor that is unparalleled. I also switched out some of the usual sugar in this pumpkin pie for maple syrup. The results are subtle, but just enough to set this pie apart.

What Kind of Pie Crust Should I Use?

I’m not going to lie, I used a store bought pie crust. Why? Because while pie crust may seem simple on the surface (flour, fat, water), it is a bit nuanced and it’s not something I’m not super confident with yet. Plus, you have to add steps to chill the dough etc., and when it comes to pumpkin pie, I just don’t have time for that. I NEED MY PUMPKIN PIE. Not having that extra work was worth the $0.85 cents I paid for the pre-made crust.

So, you can make your own pie crust or buy a frozen or refrigerated pie crust. Whatever works for you will work for this Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie. Just make sure it’s unbaked and deep dish. If using a frozen pie crust, you can pour the filling into the crust frozen, without thawing first.

If you want to make a homemade crust, a site I really trust for baked goods is Sally’s Baking Addiction. She has a Buttery Flakey Pie Crust recipe or All Butter Pie Crust recipe, both of which look great.

Whipped cream being scooped onto a slice of Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie

Can I Make This Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie Ahead?

Yes, in fact, I suggest you make this pie ahead of time. Pumpkin pie takes a while to cook (almost an hour) and then takes another hour to hour and a half to cool. You’ll want it to be mostly cool before cutting into it, so the custard is well set. If you refrigerate it overnight, it sets even more, and is, IMHO, even better. Just make sure it’s completely cool before refrigerating to prevent condensation.

How Long Does Pumpkin Pie Last?

Because pumpkin pie is a custard (milk and eggs) you will need to refrigerate this pie. Make sure it’s completely cool before refrigerating, then it will last about 4 days in the refrigerator, if it’s not eaten by then!

Can I Make This Pumpkin Pie Dairy-Free or Vegan?

Unfortunately there aren’t any easy swaps for this one to make it dairy-free or vegan. Custards can be quite finicky and swapping out the evaporated milk or eggs (or brown butter for that matter), will have a massive effect on the texture. There are vegan pumpkin pie recipes out there on the web, though. So if that’s what you’re looking for I suggest following a recipe from someone who has already tested and perfected that technique (I have not).

Overhead view of a baked Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie, uncut with whipped cream, mini pumpkins, and leaves on the side.

 

Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie

This Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie is the perfect special touch for your Thanksgiving dinner, without adding a lot of extra work or unusual ingredients.

  • 4 Tbsp butter ($0.39)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup ($1.20)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar ($0.16)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon ($0.10)
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger ($0.05)
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves ($0.02)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • 2 large eggs ($0.47)
  • 1 15oz. can pumpkin purée ($0.79)
  • 1 cup evaporated milk ($0.65)
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch deep dish pie crust ($0.85)
  1. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Cut the butter into four tablespoon-sized chunks, then add them to a small skillet. Heat the butter over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the butter solids turn deep brown and develop a nutty aroma (it will first become foamy, then the solids will sink to the bottom and turn brown). Remove the butter from the heat immediately to prevent burning, and carefully pour it into a mixing bowl.

  2. Add the maple syrup, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt to the bowl with the brown butter. Stir to combine.

  3. Add the eggs and pumpkin purée to the bowl with the butter and spices. Whisk until smooth. Lastly, add the evaporated milk, and whisk until smooth again.

  4. Place the pie dish with pie crust on a baking sheet for easy transport in and out of the oven. Pour the pumpkin mixture into the crust. Transfer the filled crust to the oven.

  5. Bake the pie for 15 minutes at 425ºF, then turn the heat down to 350ºF and continue to bake for 35-40 minutes more, or until the pie is slightly domed on top, lightly browned around the edges, and the center is no longer liquid, but jiggles just slightly when you shake the baking sheet. If the crust begins to brown too much as it bakes, you can cover the crust with foil to stop the browning.

  6. Remove the pie from the oven and let cool at room temperature for about one hour. Once cool, cut and serve, or cover with foil or plastic and transfer to the refrigerator for storage.

Scroll down to see the step by step photos!

A slice of Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie close to the camera, whole pie in the background.

 

How to Make Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie – Step by Step Photos

Brown butter in a skillet

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Cut the butter into four one-tablespoon chunks and add them to a small skillet. Heat the butter over medium heat, stirring continuously, until the butter solids sink to the bottom, turn deep brown, and take on a nutty aroma. The butter will become quite foamy before this happens, but eventually you’ll be able to see, as you stir, the browned solids on the bottom. Remove the butter from the heat immediately to prevent burning and pour the hot butter into a mixing bowl. For more detailed directions on how to brown butter, see my tutorial: How to Make Brown Butter.

Brown Butter, Maple Syrup, Brown Sugar, and Spices in a bowl

Add 1/4 cup maple syrup, 1/4 brown sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground ginger, 1/8 tsp ground cloves, and 1/4 tsp salt to the browned butter, then whisk until combined.

Eggs and pumpkin in bowl with butter and sugar mixture

Add two large eggs and one 15 oz. can of pumpkin purée to the butter and sugar mixture, then whisk until smooth.

Evaporated milk being poured into the bowl.

Lastly, add 1 cup evaporated milk, and whisk until smooth again.

Pie filling being poured into a pie crust

Place your 9-inch deep dish pie plate with pie crust on a baking sheet for easy transport in and out of the oven. Pour the pumpkin pie filling into the crust, then transfer to the preheated oven.

Baked Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie

Bake the pumpkin pie for 15 minutes at 425ºF, then turn the heat down to 350ºF and bake for an additional 35-40 minutes, or until it’s domed in the center, slightly browned on the edges, and the center is no longer liquid, but still jiggles just slightly when you shake the pan. If the crust begins to brown too much as it bakes, you can cover the crust with foil to stop the browning.

Baked Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie with mini pumpkins in the background

Although it may be hard, let the pie cool for at least one hour before slicing and serving so the custard can set. Once cooled, you can serve your Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie or cover and refrigerate to serve the next day!

Overhead view of a Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie with a slice cut out, on a plate on the side with whipped cream.

The post Maple Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie appeared first on Budget Bytes.