Torta Mil Hojas

Torta Mil Hojas (Cake of 1,000 Sheets) is an amazing Chilean cake that is a real labor of love. Each layer has dulce de leche, and in the case of this cake, whipped cream in between each layer. The recipe makes ten layers, but I only had enough dulce de leche to use 6 layers.


Each ball of dough was somewhere in size between a golf ball and a tennis ball and was pretty easily rolled into a 9-inch circle. However, I had to bake each of these layers individually, so it took about 2 hours and turned into a real labor of love. For this reason I probably won’t ever make this cake again. While in Chile I never witnessed a homemade version of this cake (only bakery-produced) and now I know why.

If you are feeling brave and have lots of time, this is an absolutely amazing dessert that will really wow your guests. My cake made ten servings, but I think my rounds ended up being a bit smaller than the 9-inches recommended in the recipe.

Torta Mil Hojas
Adapted from All Recipes

4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
7/8 cup butter
3 egg yolks
1 cup milk

2 (14 ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
1 pint whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Mix together the flour and baking powder; set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Blend in the egg yolks, one at a time. Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the milk. The dough will be stiff like a cookie dough. Divide the dough into 10 pieces and shape into balls. Roll each ball into a 9 inch circle. Place on cookie sheets and prick with a fork in several places.

Bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden brown. Set aside to cool fully, from 10 minutes up to over night.

Make the Caramel Filling: In a sauce pan, boil the unopened cans of sweetened condensed milk for 3 hours. Monitor the water closely, to make sure there is always water in the pan. Remove can from heat and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

Assemble cake about 2 hours before serving. First, whip cream until soft peaks form. Add vanilla and powdered sugar, then beat until slightly firmer than normal whipped cream. Take first layer, spread first with dulce de leche and then whipped cream, continue stacking and layering until all layers (or all filling) are (is) used. Place cake in refrigerator, remove immediately before serving.


10 responses to “Torta Mil Hojas

  1. Excellent! Do you think I could bake them 2 at a time, on aluminum foil on the sheets, and thus remove them and replace a new set of cakes really fast? If so, I think I could bake off 10 pretty quickly (given that they only bake 12 minutes).

  2. You probably could, but I was a sufficiently nervous Nelly about it that I only baked one at a time.

  3. OK, I think I’m going to treat them as gi-normous cookies and bake them 2 at a time. I showed the recipe to my mother, who also thought it looked ridiculously good.


  4. Has anyone questioned about boiling sealed cans for three hours. Would’t they explode?

  5. I have done it successfully! The only trick is making sure that the water level doesn’t drop below the top of the can. Apparently some people have had success with making it in a crock pot, which would allow you to leave it unattended, although it does take about twice as long.

  6. I have boiled the condensed milk many times and it makes great dulce de leche. It does not explode and it is so simple…

  7. My wonderful host mother – Alicia Jimenez – would make this cake for our family. She was an AMAZING cook and throughout the year that I lived with them she would have made this impressive cake at least 5 or 6 times. In Chile we called the sweet milk, manjar, and my sister would eat it by the container full – what wonderful memories this cake brings!!

  8. The safest way to do it is to poke two holes on top of the can to prevent it from exploding… I do it all the time I have done it without the holes but rather poke the holes just to be on the safe side..

  9. patricia jacobs

    Finally a homemade authentic recipe no frozen puff pastry! This has the right ingredients! A favorite from Chile & Peru! Thank you!!


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