Tres Leches Cake


“Very little grows on jagged rock. Be ground. Be crumbled, so wildflowers will come up where you are.” Rumi

The first time I heard about Tres Leches cake was some years ago, and curiously, I heard that it was Macedonian or Albanian – but, the name, it has some seriously Spanish sounding words, I thought. When I tried to do some research I found out that indeed, Albanians are very much claiming this is their traditional recipe that goes back to the time of the Ottomans and that it used to be made with goat milk, cow’s milk and buffalo milk, hence the three milks. I am still to make a connection to the name Tres Leches but alas, I will not dwell on the travel path of this cake, whether it was from Albania to Latin America or vice verse, it is delicious on every continent.

Tres Leches Cake

There is a slight difference between the versions of this cake- I found out that here in the North and South America it is made with whipping cream on top, but the Balkan people make it with caramel topping, specifically the home made one. Another interesting fact about this cake, if you live somewhere in the rocky Balkans, it is quite a feat to find sweet condensed milk in the stores so it requires the extra step of making one yourself.

Tres Leches is basically a sponge cake that is covered with different types of milks, evaporated, whole and sweet condensed milk. It becomes a wonderfully sweet and moist combination of flavors that is very easy to make and even easier to love.

Give this cake a chance, you will be successful on the first try! Unless, like me, in searching for recipes you find ones that call for butter. I strongly suggest do NOT use butter in this cake, it will make the sponge heavy and milk mixture will not be absorbed properly. At first I thought I had put in too much flour, but the butt(l)er did it!

Tres Leches Cake

Recipe by ElmaCourse: Desserts


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour

  • 1 tsp. baking powder

  • 6 eggs, room temperature

  • 1/2 cup of sugar

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 cup of whole milk

  • 1 can evaporated milk

  • 1 can sweetened, condensed milk

  • 1 cup of heavy cream, for whipping

  • 3 tbsp. sugar, for the heavy cream


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a 9 x 13 inch pan with baking paper
  • Separate eggs and beat the yolks with half of the sugar until pale yellow; add vanilla. Add flour and baking powder – gently folding until combined.
  • Beat the egg whites on high speed with the remainder of the sugar until the soft peaks form. Fold egg whites mixture super gently into the yolks and flour batter and pour into the pan.
  • Bake for 30-45 min and allow to cool. Pierce the surface of the cake with a toothpick or a fork several times.
  • Combine sweet condensed milk, evaporated milk and whole milk and pour over the cake. Allow the cake to absorb the milk mixture and in the meantime use the heavy milk and sugar to whip into the cream topping until thick and spreadable. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.
  • Decorate with some caramel or fruit, cut into squares and enjoy!


  • Did you make this recipe? Share a photo and tag Torte and Such!
Tres Leches Cake, easy and delicious!


  1. Matt Preusser

    That looks delicious! Thanks for sharing.

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