Chuy’s Tres Leches Cake is by far and away my absolute favorite restaurant dessert. Usually around my birthday – I treat myself and just get a piece of it to-go. One time at work – they got me a whole pan of it for my birthday! NO MORE!!! Cuz I learned how to make it at home! This Copycat Chuy’s Tres Leches Cake will now be your favorite too!
Tres Leches means “three milks” in Spanish – and it’s served with a little moat of these three milks around the cake. The interesting part to me has always been that the cake doesn’t fall apart or get soggy – but it’s so delicious to spoon up a bite with some of the tres leches! Yum!
I’m really not much of a baker – I don’t love the exactness of it all – but I really like this cake and have wanted to make it for a long time. There some things that are specific to it – the strawberries on top, it’s served cold with that yummy milky moat around it.
Is Tres Leches cake soggy? Served cold?
No – it’s totally not soggy and yes – it’s served cold! The sogginess is something I’m sensitive too – I don’t like soggy bread so I’m always surprised at how not soggy it is. And then be sure to refrigerate the cake and the leftovers – that way your milks won’t get funky!
How do you make Tres Leches cake?
It’s a very light and fluffy cake – and you want it to stay that way. First – making it is really simple!
Mix together egg yolks and sugar with a hand held mixer. Then add flour, baking powder, vanilla and milk – beat again. Separately, beat the egg whites with salt until they form soft peaks – this will take a couple of minutes. Then, FOLD egg whites into the cake batter – be delicate – this keeps the cake light.
Bake at 350 for 50 minutes. The cake really pops out of the baking dish but then when you let it cool – it deflates a bit – still very light and fluffy.
The last step is the most important – after the cake cools – poke holes in the cake with a straw – or even a knife (make slits). Then mix together in a separate bowl evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk and heavy cream. My suggestion is about an hour before serving – pour the “tres leches” over the cake. I did it overnight and it made the cake pretty dense – I like a lighter cake.
Don’t feel like you need to use all the milk – pour about half over the cake and reserve the rest for serving. Then with every piece, spoon a little milk moat around and top with a drizzle of caramel sauce and sliced strawberries.
Food Hussy’s Favorite Desserts!
I have quite a few favorites – so what are some other desserts I love? Here are my faves:
Copycat Chuy’s Tres Leches Cake
- Sliced strawberries
- Caramel sauce
- Preheat oven to 350
- Crack the eggs and separate the whites from the yolks. Place the whites in the fridge for later.
- In the bowl with the yolks, add the sugar and beat with hand mixer until smooth
- Add flour, baking powder, vanilla and milk. Mix with hand mixer until mixed.
- Remove the whites from the refrigerator. Add salt and beat them with the hand mixer on high for 2-3 minutes until soft peaks form.
- With a rubber spatula, GENTLY fold egg whites into the cake batter.
- Grease the bottom of an 8×8 or equivalent baking dish (I used an 8×11 rectangle dish) with the butter
- Pour cake batter in dish and bake at 350 for 50 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Let cake cool for 10-20 minutes
- While cake is cooling – in a bowl, mix together the "tres leches"
- Poke holes with a straw or make small slits with a knife throughout the cake
- If serving right away, pour 1/2 the milk mixture over the holes in the cake and let rest for 30-60 minutes. When serving, cut a piece of cake and serve with a moat of the remaining milk around the cake on the plate.
- If serving later that day or next day, pour 1/3 of milk mixture over the cake. Cover and refrigerate. Refrigerate remaining milk mixture separately in an air tight covered bowl. When ready to serve, remove from the fridge, slice pieces and serve by pouring more of the milk mixture over each piece.
- Top with a caramel drizzle and sliced strawberries