How to Make Tres Leches Cake


Tres leches cake is a cake soaked in a sweet milk syrup and topped with whipped cream. If you want to get really fancy, spoon some diced strawberries and syrup over the cake. It's really moist, delicious, and simple.

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
25 mins
Additional Time:
3 hrs
Total Time:
3 hrs 45 mins
1 10x15-inch cake


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable shortening, or as needed

  • 1 (15.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix

  • 3 eggs

  • 1 cup cold water

  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk

  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

  • 1 cup half-and-half

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 1 tablespoon white sugar, or to taste

  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Generously grease a 10x15-inch baking pan with vegetable shortening.

  2. Combine yellow cake mix, eggs, water, vegetable oil, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl. Beat with electric mixer until very smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Scrape batter into the prepared baking pan. Smooth the top of the batter, shake pan, and tap lightly on counter 2 or 3 times to eliminate air bubbles.

  3. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean, about 22 minutes. Let cake cool in the pan at least 30 minutes. Poke holes all over the cake with a bamboo skewer or the handle of a wooden spoon.

  4. Combine evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and half-and-half in a large bowl; slowly pour milk syrup all over the cake. Syrup will soak into cake. Wrap cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours (or preferably overnight).

  5. Whip cream with sugar and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer until cream is fluffy; spoon whipped cream over cake.

    close up view of a slice of Tres Leches Cake garnished with sliced strawberries on a yellow plate with a fork

Cook's Note:

Feel free to use a 9x13-inch baking pan.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

564 Calories
31g Fat
62g Carbs
11g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 10
Calories 564
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 31g 40%
Saturated Fat 14g 68%
Cholesterol 123mg 41%
Sodium 414mg 18%
Total Carbohydrate 62g 23%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 45g
Protein 11g
Vitamin C 2mg 11%
Calcium 318mg 24%
Iron 1mg 6%
Potassium 366mg 8%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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