Almond Tres Leches Cake

Recipe by Pati Jinich

Many thanks to Pati Jinich of PBS’ Pati’s Mexican Table for sharing with us her almond-inspired take on the classic Tres Leches Cake. Her version is a show-stopping two-layer cake, using almond and cake flour for extra-tender texture and featuring a surprise filling of apricot jam and toasted almonds, which add crunch to each piece. Finished with lime whipped cream, this cake offers a myriad of flavors — certainly something everyone can enjoy!

45 mins
20 to 22 mins
9 hrs 45 mins
one double-layer 9” x 13” cake
Almond Tres Leches Cake


Prevent your screen from going dark as you follow along.
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease two 9" x 13" pans; line with parchment and grease the parchment. If you only have one 9” x 13” pan, you’ll need to bake the batter in two batches.

  2. To make the cake: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

  3. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the egg yolks until creamy and pale. Whisk in the oil, almond milk, and almond extract.

  4. Fold the dry ingredients into the egg yolk mixture and mix gently until thoroughly combined.

  5. In a separate large bowl, using a whisk or mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the egg whites and cream of tartar and whip until soft peaks form.

  6. Slowly add the sugar and continue whipping until stiff peaks form.

  7. Gently fold the whipped egg whites into the egg yolk mixture, stirring until no streaks of white remain.

  8. Divide the batter among the two pans (about 560g per pan), gently smoothing the top.

  9. To bake the cakes: Bake the cakes for 20 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out moist but has no wet batter clinging to it. Remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool completely.

  10. To make the soak: Whisk together the almond milk, evaporated milk, and sweetened condensed milk. Set aside until you’re ready to assemble the cake.

  11. To assemble the cake: Once the cakes have cooled to room temperature, transfer one layer to a large serving platter. (You can also assemble and serve the cake from a clean 9” x 13” pan if you don’t have a large platter.)

  12. Poke the bottom layer all over with a fork, then slowly pour about 1 cup of the soak over the cake.

  13. Let the liquid seep in for 5 to 10 minutes, then spread the apricot jam over the surface. Sprinkle the almonds over the jam.

  14. Place the second layer on top of the first and poke it all over with a fork.

  15. Slowly pour half the remaining soak over the top layer, letting the liquid seep in for 10 to 15 minutes. Pour the remaining soak on top, cover, and refrigerate the cake for at least 8 hours, or overnight.

  16. To make the topping: Just before serving, whip the cream, confectioners’ sugar, and lime zest until the cream holds a medium peak. Spread over the top of the cake and serve.

  17. Storage information: Refrigerate any leftover cake, covered, for up to one week.