The Best Tres Leches Cake features a light sponge cake soaked in a mixture of three milks and topped with toasted meringue. Ultra moist, fluffy and delicious, this authentic Venezuelan dessert is to die for!
For the Cake:
- 5 eggs, divided
- 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/8 tsp kosher salt
For the Milk Mixture
- 1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
- 1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
- 1 1/4 cup whole milk
For the Meringue Topping
- 3 egg whites
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
Make the Cake Batter:
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF (175ºC). Grease and flour a 9×13-inch cake pan.
- Separate the eggs gently cracking the egg and transfer the yolk back and forth between the shell halves until the white separates into a bowl.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the egg yolks, vanilla extract and granulated sugar until smooth and double in volume.
- Fold in the flour, salt and baking powder into the egg yolk mixture. Do not over mix.
- In a clean, dry bowl, whisk the egg whites on high speed, until stiff peaks form and the mixture is glossy. About 6-8 minutes.
- Fold the whipped egg whites into the cake batter until no streaks remain.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and spread it evenly. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the top is golden brown.
- Once cooled, use a skewer or fork to poke holes all over the top of the cake.
Make the Milk Mixture:
- In a large bowl or jar, combine the evaporated, condensed and whole milks. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Soak the Cake:
- Pour the milk mixture, one cup at a time, until it begins to soak. Refrigerate, covered with foil, for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight.
Make the Meringue Topping:
- In a bowl, combine the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar until well mixed. Place the bowl over a small saucepan with simmering water and cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and reaches 160ºF.
- Beat the eggs whites with a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, until stiff peaks form and meringue becomes glossy.
- Spread the meringue evenly over the soaked Tres Leches Cake.
- Use a kitchen torch to lightly brown the meringue.
- Slice and serve.
- Make Ahead Instructions: you can prepare the Tres Leches Cake a day or two in advance. I suggest adding the meringue topping just before serving.
- Storage: store Tres Leches Cake in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 3 days.
- Freezing Instructions: the sponge cake can be frozen for up to 3 months tightly wrapped in plastic wrap. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before adding the three milks.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Cuisine: Hispanic
Keywords: pastel tres leches, sorta tres leches, 3 milk cake, tres leches, best tres leches cake recipe