Carmelita Tres Leches Cake

Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Hi there! It's been a while, hasn't it? I attempted to blog the other day, but I just wasn't feeling it. So I unplugged from the blog, Facebook and Twitter for a few days. I need to do that more often. Then I tried to blog earlier today, and decided I'd rather go shopping. And so I did. For art, pillows, tablecloths, vases and lighting.

Anyway, this past week has been full of shopping, fishing trips (I caught eight fish!), birthday parties and new nephews.


I baked this cake a while back... I think for my sister's birthday? It's delicious! It's a chocolate tres leches cake. It's a basic chocolate cake made from cocoa powder and melted chocolate chips, baked in a 13x9-inch pan.

After baking, the cake is poked with a wooden skewer, and sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and coconut rum is poured into the holes. Did I catch your attention with the coconut rum? Yes, I know, I love coconut rum, too.


The milks make the cake extra moist. Chilling the cake in the refrigerator allows the cake to soak up all of that moisture. Whipped cream sweetened with dulce de leche and cinnamon is spread on top of the cake, and sprinkled with toasted coconut.

Amazing. My only criticism is I think I would have liked more chocolate in the cake. So feel free to bump up the amount of cocoa powder or chocolate chips if you decide to make this. You can never, never have enough chocolate.


Carmelita Tres Leches Cake

4 large eggs, separated
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided use
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup cake flour

1 cup sweetened condensed milk
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1 tablespoon coconut rum

1 3/4 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup caramel sauce or dulce de leche
1/3 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 13x9-inch glass baking dish with cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, using a mixer on high speed, beat egg white and cream of tartar until soft peaks form; add 1/4 cup sugar, and beat until stiff peaks form.

In an additional large mixing bowl, beat together butter and remaining 1/2 cup sugar until creamy. Beat in egg yolks, 1 teaspoon vanilla, baking powder and salt until combined. Beat in cocoa powder and melted chocolate until well combined. Reduce mixer speed to low and beat in 1/4 cup cream and flour until JUST combined. Fold in egg whites until just combined. Place batter into prepared baking dish.

Bake 30-35 minutes or until well risen and no longer wobbly. Cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Stir together sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk and rum in a liquid measuring cup. Poke holes all over cake using a wooden skewer. Pour half of milk mixture all over top of cake. Wait 1 minute to allow the milks to soak in. Pour the remaining milk on top. Chill cake for 1 hour before spreading whipped cream on top.

To make the whipped cream, in a large mixing bowl, using a mixer on high speed, beat together 1 3/4 cups heavy cream, vanilla and cinnamon until stiff peaks form. Beat in caramel syrup until well combined. Spread caramel whipped cream on top of cake. Process coconut in a food processor until finely ground; sprinkle coconut crumbs on top of whipped cream.

Cover and chill overnight.

Makes 10 servings

26 comments on "Carmelita Tres Leches Cake"
  1. Aw, so cute! I can't wait to have nieces and nephews. All of the fun without the responsibility :)

    This cake looks delicious. I love tres leches cake, although I've never attempted making it myself!

    - Maggie

  2. I've made tres leches cake several times but not like this. Wow...coconut rum! Sounds like a new take on this cake. Love it!! (love that it is chocolate too!)

  3. Oh, how indulgent! You had me at coconut rum.

    A friend's mom was famous for dousing her cakes in sweetened condensed milk. I was highly skeptical at first but boy did she prove me wrong - her cakes were always moist and perfectly sweet.

    Fantastic flavor combinations you have here. This would be lovely to take along to one of my man's regular family dinners.

  4. Your niece and nephews are adorable:-)...This cake looks wonderful and I love that it is a chocolate rendition of the typical tres leches. The addition of the rum did catch my attention - I love boozy cakes - yum!

  5. It is so nice to be unplugged sometimes. I totally agree with you. This cakes looks pretty good too me, tres leches and chocolate, it can only be good. I'm going to have to read your posts about Boston because I'm going down there in a month, any suggestions???? (food related;)

  6. Your nieces and nephews are adorable, congrats on the new one! And this cake looks amazing!

  7. Whouaw this looks fabulous, the topping is just perfect!

  8. Love it. Love tres leches, love chocolate. Perfect combo.

    I was once holding a friend's baby at work and someone suddenly said to me she had an accident. Sure enough the baby had a bit of milk spitup around her mouth and some of it had made its way to my jacket. Not fun!

  9. Awwwwwe - what a cute little guy!!! Congrats to you and your family on the new addition. I love being an aunty so much :-)

  10. I've had white tres leches cake, I don't think I'll be going out of my way to get there again....but this looks super good and the icing sounds wonderful. What a cool twist to put rum in the milks too.

  11. Congrats on the new nephew! And I'm loving this twist on a tres leches. I've never seen a chocolate version before!!

  12. Oh boy...this is a delightful post...I seriously laughed out loud at work at the picture and your comment "I didn't even mind when this happened." hahaha

    Anywho, I love Tres Leches cake...and I really love, this is lookin like a good combo...thanks!!!

  13. Congratulations on becoming an aunt again! And on taking some time off from blogging and such. You spoil us with the number of posts you do, you know. No one begrudges you some time off!

    I love tres leches cake, it has been one of my favorites. I use evaporated goats' milk instead of cow, it adds a nice tang. Or cajeta (basically dulce de leche made with goats' milk) if I can find it. Haven't tried that with chocolate, but I will next time -- thanks for the idea!

  14. Awww precious nephew - congrats! I love Tres Leches although I probably eat it once every few years because it's so rich. This chocolate version sure looks good, though. :)

  15. Yum! I've never had tres leche cake with rum or cocoa. Sounds delicious! Good luck with the decorating. It'd be nice to have a cohesive them. My apartment is sort of just an assemblage of things accumulated over the years.

  16. wow this looks amazing! Great blog, keep it up! :D

  17. AHHH so cute! You are mostly certainly the best aunt ever.

    Carmelita tres leches cake = swoon.

  18. Seems to be delicious. :)

    Great blog!

  19. So excited to see you nominated in the Foodbuzz blogger awards. Of course I voted for you. Congrats!

  20. Awesome looking cake! I just voted for you... :)

  21. I have never seen a combination like this in a tres leches cake but it looks and sounds divine. And congrats on the birth of your nephew. He looks super cute.

  22. auntie em, auntie em! congrats--i love his adorable little outfit and unique name!
    meanwhile, great twist on a tres leches cake!

  23. What a cute baby, congrats on being an auntie! That cake looks so tasty too!

  24. Awww, your nephews are so cute!! And what a cake - yum!!