This lemon tres leches cake is a bright, refreshing twist on the classic! Fresh lemon flavor adds something wonderful to this decadent cake. It’s light and fluffy yet indulgent at the same time.
I have a perfect slice of cake for your weekend treat!
For this tres leches cake, we’re infusing some lemon flavor to make it completely irresistible! Where are my lemon lovers at?!
While I absolutely love tres leches cake, I know it can be a love or hate kind of thing because of the texture. It’s this delicious spongy cake that soaks up the milks, making the cake part super moist and almost juicy – but in a really good way.
I love it so much that I’ve made a chocolate version too, which might be my all time favorite cake. Seriously… chocolate cake soaked in chocolate milk? I’m here for it!
I firmly believe that there is a time and place for lemon and chocolate desserts. I love both almost equally. I’ve said this for years, but it’s like you’re either in a chocolate mood or you’re in a lemon mood.
You’re either in the mood for something rich and decadent that tastes like chocolate heaven. Or you’re in the mood for something light and bright and almost refreshing. Like lemon!
So here we are!
This lemon tres leches cake is so, so simple. It almost reminds me of my banana cake with coffee frosting in a weird way. It’s a simple, sort of classic cake that can really be made at any time and definitely shines at dessert. There aren’t any fancy toppings and I didn’t even use sprinkles.
It’s THAT simple.
For the cake base, I include lots of lemon zest as well as a touch of extract. That fresh lemon zest is where all the flavor is. No need for the juice. The lemon zest is close to enough, but I find that using a drop of lemon extract also gives it that perfect lemon flavor. One that is so classic and crave-worthy. Both sweet and smooth but slightly tart all at the same time.
Then come the milks! I’ve used an array of milks over the years. I find that sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk are always the way to go. For the third, I use whole milk or coconut milk interchangeably. It always turns out delish!
Every time I make tres leches, I think about another cake recipe that my mom and I found in the newspaper when I was a tween. I mean, we are talking when I was probably 10 or 11 years old. The cake was the better-than-sex cake, and yes, that was the title of the recipe in the newspaper. You baked chocolate cake, poked it with a fork all over and then covered it with caramel sauce. We ended up making this off and on for parties for few years to come! I’m sure it has many different names now, but I always think of it when I poke holes in the tres leches cake!
For the topping, I do an ever-so-slightly sweetened fresh whipped cream. I actually like to use a drop of lemon extract here too! It won’t make or break the recipes, as regular whipped cream on top is fabulous too. But if you’re a lemon-loving freak like me, you will be into it! (more…)