Gluten and dairy-free tres leches cake
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Recipe: Gluten and dairy-free tres leches cake

I don’t know where tres leches (three milks) cake came from but it’s very popular in several Latin American countries. It’s basically a sponge cake soaked in a mix of evaporated milk, condensed milk and cream (hence the name). Peruvian dessert queen Sandra Plevisani has a cinco leches version that uses coconut milk and dulce de leche (caramel) in addition. Needless to say, both versions are unbelievably sweet.

While it’s not my favourite cake (I prefer chocolate over anything else), I realise it’s a crowd pleaser. My version is lower in sugar, plus gluten and dairy-free.

Gluten and dairy-free tres leches cake

Gluten and dairy-free tres leches cake

This version of tres leches cake is lower in sugar, plus gluten and dairy-free.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Chilling time 8 hours
Course Dessert
Cuisine Latin American


Sponge cake (recipe from Yoginibear’s blog)

  • 1 1/4 cups almond meal
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 6 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup coconut cream
  • 1 cup almond milk preferably homemade*
  • ground cinnamon to taste


  • Preheat oven to 180°C.
  • Line a loaf pan with baking (wax) paper.
  • Mix almond meal, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk eggs. Add honey and vanilla whisk with an electric mixer (or by hand, if you're game) until pale and fluffy.
  • Using a spatula, carefully fold the dry ingredients into the wet mix.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes or until completely cooked.
  • While cake cools down a bit, mix the milks in a bowl.
  • Place cake in a suitable container (I use a Pyrex dish) and pour the milks on top. Cover with the container's lid or cling wrap and refrigerate overnight to allow the cake to soak.
  • When ready to serve, take the cake out of the fridge, cut in slices, pour the milk that's sitting on the container on top of each slice and sprinkle with ground cinnamon.
  • * To make the almond milk: soak 1/2 cup of almonds in water overnight, the next day drain and rinse them and blend them with 1 cup of fresh water. Drain in a fine mesh strainer. Use the milk for this recipe, and reserve the solids for later use (for example: nut porridge or pancakes, or as facial scrub).
Keyword cake, dairy free, dessert, gluten free

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