While my brother was living in Costa Rica, our whole family became addicted to this stuff! The recipe seems to be Costa Rican, or at least Central American in origin. Enjoy!


  • 1 C. flour
  • 1/2 C. sugar
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1 large can condensed milk
  • 1 large can evaporated milk
  • 1 C. heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 C. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1/2 C. water
  • 3 egg whites


Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add sugar little by little. Add yolks one by one. Beat well while adding the flour. Pour in a greased but not floured 13x9x2 pan and bake at 350 degrees until golden. Let cake cool; mix condensed milk, evaporated milk, and cream and pour over cake. When it is all absorbed, top with merengue made as follows: put sugar, cream of tartar, and water in a pan over medium heat until it forms a syrup. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add to the hot syrup little by little, continuing to beat until well mixed. Spread on cake.

Print this recipe

Submitted 6/13/05.
Source: Cooking in Costa Rica
Submitted By: Susan Cuda
Tres Leches