Holiday Mini Series: Turtle Flan Cake

December got busy y’all! So before I head out to celebrate Christmas, I wanted to write the final installment of the mini series. The holidays aren’t over yet, so if you have a party or family dinner that you need a special dessert for…this post is for you!

I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving and ate lots of food! We were certainly busy, but because I was actually home this year for the holiday I didn’t mind one bit. My holiday consisted of a lot of cooking, a lot of eating, and a lot of family time. I cooked for two meals and started on Wednesday. And I loved every minute of the chaos I created. I made a breakfast casserole and one of my most favorite cakes, which brings me to the topic of today’s post.

I have a MASSIVE sweet tooth. Give me sweet over savory every day. And if you give me something with chocolate and caramel? I’m sold and will be your friend forever. Which is why the dessert I made for Thanksgiving is my most favorite dessert. I’ve given it a couple of names over the years (Tortuga Cake, Chocolate Caramel Flan Cake to name a few. But I’ve finally simplified it: Turtle Flan Cake.

It’s chocolate, caramel, pecans, cake, and flan all rolled into one. Can you say heaven? Now I’ll admit, this is probably the most difficult recipe I’ve shared with you to date (yes, I’m aware that it’s only the third). But, if you follow the directions…it will be the most AMAZING treat you’ve ever had. The cake is delicious on its own, but add the flan on top and the caramel and it’s a dessert that will knock your socks off.




  • 1 cup dulce de leche
  • 1 cup softened, unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup Gold Medal flour
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup and 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup and 2 tablespoons buttermilk


  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp coconut extract


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 and spray bundt pan with oil (I either use Bakers Joy, or just plain butter). Then coat the inside of the pan with extra cocoa powder, not what you’ve already prepped for the cake.
  2. Warm the dulce de leche and spread over the bottom of your bundt pan, creating a nice thick layer.
  3. Mix the cake: beat the butter and sugar together until creamed and light. Add in the egg. Sift together both your flours, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and cocoa. Add half of the mixture to your bowl and then add half of your buttermilk while beating on medium-high. Once combined, add the second half of both ingredients. Make sure you scrape the bowl to get all the flour mixture. Continue to beat for about 2 minutes. Then pour your cake mixture into the bundt pan, spreading it evenly around the pan.
  4. Mix the flan: in a blender, combine the flan ingredients and blend together until completely combined and you have a smooth mixture. This should take about 5 minutes at most. Pour the flan mixture over top of your cake batter.
  5. Place your bundt pan inside of a larger, deep pan. (I usually have a tinfoil roasting dish on hand, it works great!) Add six cups of hot water to the deep pan or enough that about the bottom 1/3 of the bundt is submerged in the water. This is important for your flan to set.
  6. Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes. You want a toothpick to come out of the cake clean, but you’re also looking for a good sturdy cake. If you shake the pan and the cake jiggles, check every five minutes until it is “set”.
  7. Remove from the oven and cool at room temperature for an hour. Then, set in the refrigerator overnight to continue cooling. Do not flip it yet!
  8. The next day, take your cake out of the fridge and flip it onto the serving tray (this year I borrowed my mom’s cake stand-perfect fit). Cover with more dulce de leche and pecans and serve!

Merry Christmas everyone! Stand by for exciting things in the new year!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s