Coconut Tres Leches Cake

Traditional Tres Leches cake soaked in three kinds of sweet milk and topped with whipped cream. Super moist and a great make ahead dessert.

To recipe
Delicious and moist this tres leches cake tastes amazing!
Recipe insights & TIPS

Cinco de Mayo is coming! I can hear the pshhht of the Corona bottles being opened and the buzz of the margarita blenders already...okay I don't really (wish I did) but I do hear the squishy moist sound of this awesome tres leches cake. Who in the world came up with sweetened condensed milk? That stuff, when mixed with the other dos leches makes the creamiest, sweetest, most seductive liquid. Tres leches ice cream Ben n' Jerry if your reading....tres leches latte Starbucks?

This tres leches is a little different from others I've made. It has coconut milk in it as well as toasted coconut flakes but this just makes it even more bang-on in my opinion. The recipe comes from Lisa Fain's Homesick Texan cook book. I reviewed this book before it first came out and I've tried many of her recipes, all of which have been awesome. If I could fault this cake in any way it wouldn't be on taste, no would be to say it came out a little dense and heavy. I'm not sure if this was my fault or if my baking powder's whacked? Regardless of it's molecular structure, when three types of milk are combined with sponge, tiny cake shaped pinatas explode on my tongue!

Delicious and moist this tres leches cake tastes amazing!


If your having a Cinco de Mayo blowout this weekend, do yourself a favor and make this cake. It's easy and fast, the hardest part is waiting on the cake soaking up all of that milky goodness overnight, all you want to do is stick your finger in and taste it. You don't even need to plate it up like I did, keep it as a sheet cake and just serve it in slices with the extra milk mixture on the sides for the true leche fiends like myself.Happy Cinco de Mayo.

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Delicious and moist this tres leches cake tastes amazing!

25 minutes
Total TIME:
55 minutes
30 minutes


  • 1 1/2 Cups of flaked coconut
  • 1 Cup AP flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 8 Large eggs
  • 1/2 Cup brown sugar
  • 4 Tbsp melted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the three milk syrup:

  • 1/2 Cup coconut milk
  • 1 12 ounce can evaporated milk
  • 1 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk

For the whipped cream topping:

  • 2 Cups heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1Tbsp lime zest

Ingredient Swaps


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 13x9 baking dish/cake pan.
  3. Toast the coconut in a dry skillet until lightly browned.
  4. Remove from the heat.
  5. Sift the flour and baking powder and add 1/2 cup of the toasted coconut, lime zest, nutmeg and salt.
  6. Beat the eggs and brown sugar in a stand mixer with a wire whisk until light and fluffy, about 10 minutes.
  7. Slowly pour in the melted butter, then stir in the flour mixture until the batter is an even shade of brown.
  8. Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for 20-25 minutes.
  9. Let cool for 15 minutes.Mix the three milks together in a bowl.
  10. Once the cake has cooled, poke holes all over with a fork.
  11. Slowly add the milk mixture, you wont need all of it but you can use the leftovers to add to each persons slice if they like the extra richness...or you could just drink it
  12. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  13. Whip the heavy cream with the sugar and vanilla.
  14. Once whipped into soft peaks stir in the lime zest.
  15. Spread over the cake and top with the leftover toasted coconut.
  16. Store in the fridge where it will keep for several days.
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