Rich, creamy and bursting with eggnog-y goodness, this eggnog tres leches cake is a festive twist on a favorite classic. While this recipe makes a snack cake friendly 8" x 8" cake, be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom for other size options, including sheet cakes and cupcakes.
If there's one cake you need to make this holiday season, it's this eggnog tres leches cake.
It takes everything you love about a classic tres leches cake and adds a festive, noggy-filled spin.
How to make tres leches cake
First, make the vanilla cake.
In a bowl, whip the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes). It’s important to give the egg/sugar mixture the benefit of a full whipping here as this is part of what will help your cake rise and will lead to a fluffy texture.
While the eggs and sugar are whipped, combine the wet ingredients (oil, milk, sour cream and vanilla extract) in one bowl and the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt) in another.
Pour half of the dry ingredients into the egg/sugar mixture and whisk until just combined. Add the wet ingredients mixing, again, until just incorporated. Finally add the remaining half of the dry ingredients and gently whisk until combined.
A quick tip: If you'd prefer, you can substitute a boxed cake mix for the recipe in this post. I'd recommend using a vanilla or white mix, and you can upgrade it to taste nearly homemade using these boxed cake mix hacks.
Pour the batter into a parchment paper line 8" x 8" square baking pan and bake at 350F for 30-33 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Leave the cake in its pan and allow it to cool until there's only a little bit of warmth left (about 45 minutes).
Second, make the tres leches mixture.
In a bowl, whisk together the eggnog, sweetened condensed milk and milk for the tres leches.
Use a fork to poke a generous amount of holes all over the top of the cake going about ¾ of the way in. Try to keep the holes from going all the way to the pan to prevent the milk mixture from going straight through the cake.
With the cake still in the pan, slowly pour the tres leches mixture over the top.
Cover the cake with plastic wrap (it's okay for it to touch the surface of the cake), place it in the refrigerator and allow it to soak for at least 6 hours but preferably overnight.
Finally, make the whipped cream topping.
In a bowl, whip the heavy whipping cream, vanilla extract and powdered sugar on high until stiff peaks form.
Remove the cake from the refrigerator, cover with whipped cream and garnish generously with ground cinnamon.
- Cake mix substitution: If you'd like to use a cake mix, you can substitute a white or vanilla box mix for the cake recipe in this post.
- Make sure to whip the eggs and sugar for the full 2-3 minutes: This process creates additional leavening, and skipping it can result in a more compact, less fluffy cake.
- Poke the holes ¾ of the way through the cake: Going all the way through can cause the milk mixture to run through too quickly, resulting in an uneven soak.
- Working ahead: The cake can be made and soaked up to 5 days in advance. The whipped cream should be added immediately before serving.
- Storage: Tres leches cakes should be covered and stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator.
Adapting to other pan sizes
This recipe adapts well to other pans and serving sizes. Here are some general guidelines:
- Round pan: Bake in a parchment paper lined 9" round cake pan until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (about 30-35 minutes).
- Sheet cake: Double the ingredients and bake in a 9" x 13" pan until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (about 35-45 minutes).
- Cupcakes: Pour 3-4 tablespoons of batter into a cupcake liner lined pan and bake at 350F for 15-20 minutes. Poke holes in the top of the cupcakes and divide the tres leches mixture evenly between them.
Eggnog Tres Leches Cake
Rich, creamy and bursting with eggnog-y goodness, this eggnog tres leches cake is a festive twist on a favorite classic.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Refrigeration: 6 hours
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 6 hours 50 minutes
- Yield: 12 slices 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
For the cake:
- 2 large eggs
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ⅓ cup milk, 1% or 2%
- ¼ cup sour cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cup all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt
For the tres leches mixture:
- ¾ cup eggnog
- 7oz sweetened condensed milk
- ¼ cup milk, 1% or 2%
For the whipped cream topping:
- ¾ cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp powdered sugar
- Ground cinnamon to garnish
- Whip the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes).
- In a bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients (oil, milk, sour cream, vanilla extract).
- In another bowl, stir together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt).
- Add half of the dry ingredients to the egg/sugar mixture and mix on low until just incorporated.
- Add the wet ingredients, again mixing on low until just incorporated.
- Add the remaining dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.
- Pour the batter into a parchment paper lined 8" x 8" square baking pan and bake at 350F for 30-33 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Allow the cake until there's only a little bit of warmth left (about 45 minutes).
- In a bowl, whisk together the tres leches ingredients (eggnog, sweetened condensed milk and milk).
- Use a fork to poke holes into the top of the cake going about ¾ of the way through the cake.
- With the cake still in its pan, slowly pour the tres leches mixture over the top of the cake.
- Cover, place in the refrigerator and allow to sit, soaking up the tres leches, for at least 6 hours but preferably overnight.
- In a bowl, whip the heavy whipping, vanilla extract and powdered sugar on high until it holds stiff peaks.
- Remove the cake from the refrigerator, cover with the whipped cream and garnish with ground cinnamon.
- Serving Size: 1 slice
- Calories: 302
- Sugar: 23.4g
- Sodium: 101mg
- Fat: 16.1g
- Saturated Fat: 5.9g
- Carbohydrates: 35.5g
- Fiber: 0.4g
- Protein: 5g
- Cholesterol: 54mg
Keywords: eggnog tres leches cake, how to make tres leches cake, tres leches cake
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