Strawberry Tres Leches Cake is an easy version of a tres leches cake. This simple recipe uses a cake mix as a shortcut but we’re making homemade strawberry-flavored milk for maximum strawberry flavor. You are going to love this moist and flavorful three milk cake.
Tres Leches essentially means three milks.
Our Strawberry Tres Leches Cake uses three milks to make the strawberry milk.
Making homemade strawberry milk will ensure that there is plenty of strawberry flavor without it being too sweet.
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Key to Success #1 – Allow the Strawberry Milk to Marinate for Maximum Flavor
We’re using a full half-pound of strawberries in our homemade strawberry milk.
Start by removing the stems from the strawberries and placing them in a blender or food processor.
You can slice the strawberries smaller if needed to help them fit in the food processor, but this is not necessary.
Add the granulated sugar to the food processor and then just pulse a few times to make the strawberries smaller.
This will also help cover the strawberries with the sugar so that they will release more juice as they sit.
Allow the strawberries to rest with the sugar for at least 20 minutes.
Next, add in the evaporated milk and blend the strawberries until they are completely smooth.
Remove the strawberry mixture from the food processor and stir in the heavy cream and the additional milk.
Do not blend the heavy cream in the food processor or it will make your strawberry milk too thick.
Cover the strawberry milk mixture and allow it to sit in the refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight.
The longer you allow the strawberry milk to rest, the more strawberry flavor you will have in your tres leches cake.
Key to Success #2 – Add Strawberry Milk When Cake is Cool
For the cake, we’re taking a shortcut by using a boxed mix as the base then we will doctor it up to make it taste homemade.
I prefer to use a Betty Crocker Butter Recipe cake mix because it has a great buttery flavor right off the bat.
To the cake mix, add 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, 1 cup of water, and 3 eggs.
This may be different than the ingredients that are requested on the box. You can make the cake per the directions on the box if you prefer.
Bake the cake and allow it to cool completely before poking holes in the cake.
Unlike a poke cake recipe where you poke giant holes in the cake, we’re poking tiny holes with a fork or a wooden skewer.
When the cake is cool, poke the holes and then slowly pour the strained strawberry milk all over the top of the cake.
Be sure to get the milk all the way to the edge and cover every inch of the cake with the strawberry milk.
Key to Success #3 – Let the Milk to Absorb – Overnight is Best
Once you’ve added the strawberry milk to the cake, you will need to allow the cake to rest so that the milk is fully absorbed to make the cake extra moist.
Cover the cake with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.
I often make this Strawberry Tres Leches cake the day before I will be serving it so that it can rest in the refrigerator overnight.
If you are making the cake ahead, chill the cake without the topping and strawberries on top of it.
You can whip up the whipped cream in just a few minutes on the day you plan to serve your cake.
Adding the whipped cream and extra strawberries right before serving time will ensure that your strawberries don’t release their juice and discolor the whipped cream.
Save this Strawberry Tres Leches Cake recipe to your favorite Strawberry Desserts board or your Cake Recipes board.
For the Cake
- 1 box (15 oz) Betty Crocker Butter Recipe cake mix
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup water
- 3 eggs
For the Strawberry Milk
- 1/2 pound strawberries
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 can (15 oz) evaporated milk
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
For the Topping
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 Tbsp powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 pound strawberries
- Remove stems from strawberries and place them in a food processor. Add sugar and pulse a few times. Allow strawberries and sugar to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes until the strawberries release their juice. Add evaporated milk and blend until completely smooth, 2-3 minutes.
- Pour strawberry mixture into a medium pitcher or bowl and add milk and heavy cream. Stir to combine. Refrigerate for 2 hours to allow the strawberry flavor to develop.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 9x13-inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the butter recipe cake mix, oil, water, and eggs. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour cake batter into greased 9x13-inch baking dish.
- Bake 28-32 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow cake to cool completely.
- Use a fork or wooden skewer to poke holes in the cool cake.
- Use a fine-mesh strainer to strain the strawberry milk into a separate bowl. Slowly pour the milk over the cool cake, making sure to get it all around the edges and fully covering the cake.
- Cover the cake and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight to allow the milk to absorb into the cake.
- Place heavy cream for the topping in a glass or metal mixing bowl. Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Blend on HIGH speed for 2-3 minutes until stiff peaks form.
- Spread whipped cream over the cooled cake.
- Slice remaining strawberries and place them on top of the whipped cream.
- Serve cold.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 447Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 85mgSodium: 367mgCarbohydrates: 53gFiber: 1gSugar: 36gProtein: 5g
Nutrition Information Provided For Educational and Informational Purposes Only.