When it comes to fall desserts, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice reign supreme. And while pumpkin pie may be the go-to choice for many, why not try something a little different this year? Enter the pumpkin tres leches cake, a great recipe.
It’s the perfect combination of fall flavors and decadent indulgence. It’s the fall version of the classic tres leches cake!
It is truly one of my favorite pumpkin desserts of all pumpkin recipes and one of my favorite desserts! If you love my Pumpkin Magic Bars and Pumpkin Fluff, as well as my Pumpkin Pie, then you’ll love this recipe!
Table of Contents
What Is Tres Leches Cake?
This delicious twist on the classic Mexican dessert takes a moist pumpkin cake, soaks it in a spiced rum-infused cream sauce, and tops it with a homemade fluffy whipped topping.
Why You’ll Love It
- It combines pumpkin puree with a classic tres leches cake, with three kinds of milk, including heavy cream, evaporated milk, and sweetened condensed milk in the milk mixture. It adds that lovely pumpkin flavor throughout the cake batter.
- It includes an amazing homemade whipped cream for the topping.
What You’ll Need
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- large bowl, medium bowl, small bowl
- electric mixer
- cake pan
- wire rack
- Measuring spoons
- Measuring cups
- Wooden Spoon
- Plastic Wrap
Below, I discuss the ingredients and possible substitutions if you don’t have a specific ingredient. However, if you are looking for the specific measurements of each ingredient, scroll down to the bottom of this article, just above the comments, for the printable recipe card, which includes all the ingredients and the specific amounts of each one.
- Pumpkin puree – not pumpkin pie filling
- Vegetable oil
- Granulated sugar
- Brown sugar
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Sweetened condensed milk
- Evaporated milk
- Spiced rum – can be omitted, but adds great flavor
- Pumpkin pie spice
- Heavy Whipping cream – You could also use coconut milk if you prefer.
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract – I used a Mexican white vanilla, but you can use regular vanilla that you have on hand.
How To Make Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake
- In a medium bowl, add the pumpkin, oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla.
- Beat with an electric mixture until well combined.
- In a separate bowl, stir the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Slowly add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture until well combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly.
- Bake for 35 minutes. Poke a toothpick into several areas of the cake to check for doneness. Continue baking up to 5 minutes, checking occasionally until baked.
- Remove the cake and use the handle side of a round wooden spoon to poke holes over the cake.
How To Make Rum-Infused Cream Sauce
- While the cake is baking, make the sauce by combining all the sauce ingredients together and whisking until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Remove the cake from the oven and use the handle side of a round wooden spoon to poke holes over the cake.
- Pour the Sauce over the baked cake with the holes in it.
How To Make Whipped Cream Topping
- Beat the heavy cream until very thick.
- Gradually add:
- powdered sugar,
- cinnamon, and
- Continue beating until very stiff. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- When the cake is cooked, spread the whipped topping evenly over the top of the cake.
- Decorate the cake as you like. For example, you can sprinkle cinnamon or pumpkin spice on top.
- Decorate with candies, mini pumpkins, or other Fall decorations.
- Use a wooden spoon handle or something of a similar size to poke the holes in the cake. The holes must be large enough for the milk mixture to fill and soak in. Toothpicks are much too tiny.
- Poke the holes as soon as the cake comes out of the oven, and pour the milk over the cake. This will ensure that the milk soaks into the cake.
- Many stores will carry cute pumpkin candies in the fall. Use your favorites to decorate the cake.
What To Serve With Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake?
- Ice cream – either vanilla or pumpkin ice cream.
- A glass of milk.
- A pumpkin latte
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Yes. You can bake the cake a day before, but pour the cream sauce over it immediately after it comes out of the oven. Then cover and refrigerate until you are ready to frost it with the whipped topping and serve.
Yes. You can freeze a Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake in a freezer-safe, airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. I recommend freezing the cake before adding the whipped cream topping. When removing the cake from the freezer, place it in the refrigerator to thaw overnight before frosting and serving.
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Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake
- Heat the oven to 350° and spray a 9×13-inch pan with cooking spray.
- In a bowl, combine the pumpkin, oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla.
- In a separate bowl, stir the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Slowly add the flour to the pumpkin mixture until well combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for 35 minutes. Poke a toothpick into several areas of the cake to check for doneness. Continue baking up to 5 minutes, checking occasionally until baked.
- While the cake is baking make the sauce by combining all the sauce ingredients together and whisking until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Make the Topping while the cake continues to bake. Beat the heavy cream until very thick, then gradually add the powdered sugar, cinnamon and vanilla to the heavy cream and continue beating until very stiff. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Remove the cake and use the handle side of a round wooden spoon to poke holes over the cake. Pour the Sauce over the cake.
- Let the cake cool completely before spreading the Topping evenly over the cake. Add some cute sprinkles, mini pumpkins, or a sprinkle of cinnamon over the cake.
If you like this recipe, be sure to also check out my most popular recipe, Pumpkin Praline Bread Pudding.
Another pumpkin recipe you may like is my Pumpkin Streusel Muffins drizzled with White Chocolate.
Looking for a pumpkin dessert without the eggs? Try my Eggless Pumpkin Bread.