Tres Leches Cake in a Cup

I guess it’s more accurate to call it “cake in a mug”, but “cake in a cup” is nicely alliterative.

I dumped one of them out of the mug for serving, since otherwise it wouldn’t have been much of a photo. If you click the image for a larger version, you might be able to see how the cake glistens with all of the moisture from the sauce.

Tres Leches Cake

This recipe makes two mug cakes. Perfect if you’re serving two people, and even if you’re only serving one, it will keep in the fridge for a couple of days – so have one now, and one later. If “later” means 15 minutes later, then so be it.

You could attempt to cut the recipe in half to make just one serving, but then you’ll have to figure out the equivalent of half an egg. I’ve found that a full egg per mug cake is really too much and tends to make the cakes taste more like souffles than cakes. Hmmm. Maybe I need to try souffle-in-a-cup. But I digress.

I based my version on Martha Stewart’s and Pioneer Woman’s recipes. It took a few tries and tweaks (and an episode of molten cake batter lava), but this is what I ended up with:

Tres Leches Cake in a Cup

Makes 2

1 egg
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1/8 tsp vanilla extract (a drop or two is fine)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp milk or cream

1/4 c sweetened condensed milk
3 Tbsp evaporated milk
1 Tbsp heavy cream
Note: If you don’t want to use both evaporated milk and cream, just use 1/4 cup of either one (or even whole milk), and mix it with the 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk.

Whipped cream and strawberries or other fruit as desired

In a small bowl, beat the egg until frothy. Add the sugar, salt, and vanilla; mix well. Add the flour, baking powder, and cream. Stir just enough to combine.

Divide batter between two standard 12-oz mugs. (A scant 1/3 cup batter per mug.) Microwave both mugs together on high for approximately 2 minutes, depending on your microwave. I cooked mine for 1 minute and 50 seconds.

The timing is the hardest part of microwave cakes – they go from underdone to overcooked rubber pretty quickly, but once you figure out what the right time is for your oven, you’re set. I originally set mine for 1 minute and 30 seconds, checked it, and then cooked in 10-second intervals until it looked done and a toothpick inserted in the center came out clean. If the cake is starting to pull away from the sides of the mug, it’s definitely done.

Let the cakes cool a while. Meanwhile, mix up the sauce ingredients in a small pitcher. Poke holes all over the top of the cakes with a fork, or other spiky tool. I used a nutpick. I also ran a knife around the outer edges of the cake, so that the sauce could run between the cake and the sides of the mugs. Slowly pour the sauce evenly over the cakes (1/4 cup per cake). Yes, use it all. Yum.

If you can wait that long, chill the cakes in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. If you can’t wait, that’s fine too.

If you’re feeling all fancy, serve the cakes topped with whipped cream and some sliced strawberries. I didn’t have any strawberries, so I defrosted some frozen mixed berries in the microwave.

Note: This is too much batter for a single 12-oz mug (yes, I found out the hard way), but if you have an extra large mug that is at least 16 oz, it might work.

This is what the cakes looked like after I poured in the sauce and refrigerated them for half an hour – all of the sauce had soaked in nicely:

Tres Leches cakes in mugs

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8 Responses to Tres Leches Cake in a Cup

  1. Marilyn says:

    Oh my. Yummy! And just enough for 2 people and not a whole cake to finish off. Perfect.

  2. Kym says:

    Thanks for the recipe! That looks absolutely divine.

  3. margene says:

    Sounds yummy, but I think I’ll pass. 🙂

  4. Monica says:

    Yum. Now if it were only dairy free!

  5. Stacey says:

    Sounds yum! Now I’m going through my cupboards seeing what I could substitute and still get all the goodness.

  6. pacalaga says:

    I may need this tomorrow.

  7. redsilvia says:

    You are seriously a bad person. I’m trying to cut down sugar and you come by with this. Yummy! Noted for later making.

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