Tiramisu Tres Leches cake is the ultimate dessert mashup of Italian Tiramisu and Mexican Tres Leches cake!! Creamy mascarpone whipped cream slathered on a sponge cake that is soaked in espresso infused milk.
What is Tiramisu Tres Leches Cake?
It is a creative mashup of coffee flavored Italian Tiramisu and Mexican Tres leches cake – A vanilla scented sponge cake is soaked with coffee and rum flavored three milks and then topped with a creamy mascarpone whipped frosting.
If you guys remember this hugely popular Rasamali Tres Leches Cake (which is an mashup of Indian rasmalai sweet and tres leches cake), then this is a similar recipe with an Italian twist!
What is Tres Leches Cake?
“Tres Leches” means three milks. A sponge cake is soaked with 3 types of milk ( authentic tres leches cake recipe includes sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and whole milk) and then topped with whipped cream. It is very popular in Mexico and Latin America.
This cake is unlike any other cake that you will eat. Dripping with sweet milk, it is so soft and moist.
What is Tiramisu?
Tiramisu is a classic no-bake Italian dessert combining espresso-dipped ladyfingers and a creamy lightly sweetened mascarpone cream. With the inclusion of espresso and alcohol, tiramisu is an adult dessert.
Sponge cake - A vanilla sponge cake made with beaten eggs to give the volume and spongy structure.
Three milks - Plain milk, heavy cream and sweetened condensed milk along with coffee and rum to get the classic tiramisu flavors.
Mascarpone whipped cream - Mascarpone cheese, heavy cream, confectioners sugar and vanilla extract beaten until stiff
Cocoa powder - The top is dusted with cocoa powder for that authentic tiramisu look.
Coffee - I use instant coffee granules like in my iced coffee recipe.
How to make Tres leches Cake?
This coffee tres leches cake is not an easy, one bowl kinda cake – It takes two days to make. Don’t you worry. I have included a lot of pictures to guide you along the way. You are all set to make your new favorite cake for birthdays, holidays, parties, get togethers or anytime you wanna celebrate.
First day —> Bake cake. Soak cake with boozy coffee milk.
Second day —> Make mascarpone whipped cream. Finish cake.
More details: You will need a 9 by 13 inch pan. Or the same recipe in two 8 by 8 inch (round/square) pans to make two cakes.
- It is easier to seperate eggs when they are cold. So remove eggs and seperate ’em and leave aside to come to room temperature (1-2 hours before making cake). Remember it is easier to seperate eggs when they are cold whereas room temperature eggs whip to full volume.
- Whisk all dry ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.
- Beat egg whites and cream of tarter until soft peaks form.
- With clean beaters, beat yolks and sugar until very thick.
5. Add milk ( straight out of the refrigerator is ok ), beat for about 30 seconds, until well combined. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold whisked dry ingredients in two additions.
6. Gently fold in whipped egg whites in three additions, taking care not to loose all that air. Pour batter into a greased 9 by 13 inch pan. (refer picture below – right)
7. When is baking, heat milk in stove top or microwave. Take off heat, when warm, stir in instant coffee and let milk cool to room temperature. Mix along with sweetened condensed milk, heavy cream, rum and vanilla extract.
8. When cake is cooled, poke holes all over cake with a fork. Gently pour milk all over cake, cover pan with a foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.
9. Beat mascarpone cheese, heavy cream, confectioners sugar and vanilla extract until it gets thick.
10. Remove soaked cake from refrigerator, spread mascarpone whipped cream on top and dust the top with cocoa powder. Wrap and store cake in refrigerator until serving time.
Seperate eggs when cold and let stand at room temperature for at least one hour - Room temperature eggs whip to full volume when compared to cold eggs. But, eggs are easier to be separated when cold.
Fold egg whites without loosing much of the air – We need all those tine air bubbles intact to soak up the coffee infused milk.
Rum - Plain white rum and not any flavored ones.
Frequently asked questions:
Unfortunately, this tres leches cake recipe is too soft to be made into layer cakes. So, we recommend serving straight out of the pan.
Though I haven’t used it personally, fresh lemon juice / white vinegar is a common replacement for cream of tarter. You will need ¼ teaspoon of lemon juice/vinegar for the ⅛ teaspoon cream of tarter.
Regular brewed coffee will not only thin the milk mixture but also add additional liquid into the recipe which might ruin the recipe.
Absolutely! The quantity of rum in the recipe is much lesser when compared to classic tiramisu recipes. However, you could totally skip rum when feeding children.
The tiramisu tres leches cake can refrigerated (wrap the baking pan tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap) for up to 4 days.
Tiramisu Tres Leches Cake
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 and ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cream of tarter
- ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- ⅓ cup milk
Mascarpone whipped cream
- 1 cup mascarpone
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup plus ¼ cup confectioners sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- Cocoa powder for dusting
- (This cake recipe is a two day process)
- Make Cake - Seperate eggs, place egg whites in a medium bowl and yolks in a large bowl and let come to room temperature, for about 1-2 hours. (Eggs straight out of the refrigerator are easier to seperate when compared to room temperature eggs).
- Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- Whisk together all purpose flour, baking powder and salt together in a small bowl and set aside. Using a hand held electric beater (on high speed), beat eggs whites and cream of tarter for about 2 minutes, until soft peaks form. Set bowl aside, Rinse and dry beaters thoroughly.
- Using the hand held electric beater (on high speed), beat egg yolks for about 2 minutes, until thick. Add sugar in 3 batches and continue to beat for about 4 more minutes, until thick and falls back as ribbons when beater is lifted. Add milk and beat for a few seconds, until mixed well.
- Switch to a rubber spatula and fold in flour mixture in 2 additions. Then, fold in beaten egg whites in 3 additions (be gentle while folding the whites we don’t want to loose all that air).
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Spread batter into an even layer. Bake for about 20 minutes, until slightly golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes clean. 8. Place pan on a wire rack to cool completely.
Make coffee milk in the mean time
- Warm milk either on a stove top or microwave (don't have to come to a boil). Take off heat, stir in instant coffee and let cool to room temperature. 2. Mix cooled coffee milk, heavy cream, sweetened condensed milk, rum and vanilla extract together until thoroughly combined.
- Soak cake with coffee milk - When cake has cooled completely, poke holes all over the cake with a fork (this will help in the milk seeping into the cake and make it ultra moist).
- Gently (and slowly) pour coffee milk, all over the cake making sure it is even (else, some parts of the cake might be dry while another part is dripping with too much milk). Cover pan with a foil or plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight.
- Make Mascarpone whipped creamAdd heavy cream, confectioners sugar, mascarpone, vanilla extract and salt into a large bowl and continue to beat until it is thick and frosting consistency.
- Finish - Spread mascarpone whipped cream evenly on top of the cake and smooth top.
- Using a strainer, dust cocoa powder all over the top (do not add too much, just enough to barely cover the top). Cover pan with a plastic wrap or foil, store in refrigerator and serve cold.
Nutritional information, based on third-party calculations, should be seen as estimates, not guarantees, as various factors like product types, brands, processing methods, and more can alter the nutritional content in recipes.
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