Torta Chilena (Chilean dulce de leche pastry cake recipe)

The hojarasca cake is one of the most traditional and well-known cakes in Chilean pastry.

This cake is so traditional in Chile that outside the country, it is known as “Chilean cake,” especially among Costa Ricans where it is very popular. This cake, also called thousand-layer cake (torta de mil hojas) is made with the same hojarascas (a kind of puff pastry) used in traditional Chilean alfajores (a type of cookie that is one of the most popular desserts in Latin America) and the Amor cake, in which the sweet filling are layers of manjar (dulce de leche) pastry cream or vanilla cream and whipped cream with fresh raspberries in different cake layers.

Tips for making this torta Chilena recipe:

  • It’s essential that the butter is at room temperature when making the hojarascas; otherwise, you will need more flour to achieve the right dough consistency, resulting in drier hojarascas. If you forget to take it out of the refrigerator, don’t melt it; instead, chop it into pieces to soften it more quickly.
  • Divide the dough into equal pieces before working with it since you’ll use flour to roll it out, and if you roll out too much dough at once, you’ll again be adding more flour than necessary, resulting in a drier cake.
  • Be sure to prick the dough thoroughly before placing it in the oven; otherwise, the dough will puff up and become too fragile.
  • I find it easier to assemble the cake in a cake mold, stacking the layers of pastry and spreading the manjar on them while they are still warm (especially if you’re using very firm manjar). This way, you can press them to compact them, and in case the layers crack, they will be held together by the manjar, and your cake won’t fall apart.
  • Personal preference plays a role here. This cake is often covered with manjar or topped with meringue (like Torta Rogel), but I prefer to leave it as is, without filling.

The torta Chilena recipe includes pisco, and it’s essential to add some liquor because it evaporates quickly, helping the hojarascas become crispier. If pisco is hard to find outside of Chile, in the United States, you can replace it with any liquor you have on hand, such as rum, amaretto, triple sec, or Cointreau, as they impart a mild flavor.

Storage and Shelf Life:

This torta Chilena recipe is tastier if prepared the day before.

It should be stored in the refrigerator because heat can soften the manjar and make the cake runny or tilt. It can last up to 2 weeks, and it’s recommended to keep it in an airtight container or covered with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out.

¿Manjar, dulce de leche or cajeta? 

It may have caught your attention more than once that these products seem very similar, like depending on the Latin American country, the name changes, but if we get technical, there are subtle differences. 

These products stem from the need to preserve milk for a longer period and to do that, this product is made, which is a kind of milk “jam,” slowly cooking milk and sugar (in a ratio of 3 cups of milk to 1 cup of sugar) until it becomes a thick paste that, due to its low water content, can last for months.

In my grandparents’ house, who had a dairy, they used to make homemade dulce de leche or manjar.” If you’re up for making it from scratch, here’s a tip: After finishing making it, let the pot cool down, and with a spoon, scrape the pot. This scraping is the most delicious toffee.

 In Chile, Bolivia, and Peru, it is called “manjar” or “manjar blanco,” and it is made from cow’s milk and sugar (that’s why you can make it by cooking unopened cans of condensed milk, which is concentrated milk with sugar), that why I say manjar.

 In Argentina and Uruguay, it is called “dulce de leche,” and it is also made with cow’s milk and sugar, but the difference is that it also has a touch of vanilla. 

Cajeta is the most different: it is prepared based on goat’s milk and sugar and has a slightly acidic touch.

 Anyway, don’t stress, as there is no problem using any of them in this delicious dessert.

torta chilena recipe
5 from 7 votes

Torta Chilena recipe

The hojarasca cake is one of the most traditional and well-known cakes in Chilean pastry.

This cake is so traditional in Chile that outside the country, it is known as "Chilean cake," especially among Costa Ricans where it is very popular

Course Dessert
Cuisine chilean cuisine
Keyword chilean cake, torta chilena recipe
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 15
Calories 410 kcal


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons pisco a type of liquor
  • 1 lb manjar dulce de leche
  • 2 cups heavy cream refrigerated from the day before
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar icing sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.

  2. In a bowl, mix the flour and butter using your hands, then add the egg yolks, milk, and pisco.
  3. Work the dough with your fingers until all the ingredients are well incorporated.
  4. Divide the dough into 10 equal parts and roll out each part on a lightly floured surface to make the dough as thin as possible.
  5. Cut out circles with a diameter of 8 inches.

  6. Place the circles, one by one, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, prick them with a fork, and bake for 5 to 10 minutes (the time depends on how thin you rolled out the dough) until they are cooked but not golden. Remove them from the oven and let them cool slightly.
  7. Repeat the process until all the circles are baked.
  8. Whip the cream with powdered sugar until it thickens. Set aside.
  9. To assemble the cake: spread a little manjar on one of the circles, place another circle on top, and then a layer of cream. Repeat the process, alternating between a layer of manjar and a layer of cream until you finish with the circles.
  10. If you want to decorate the cake, you can cover it with manjar and sprinkle it with crushed hojarasca pieces.
  11. Let it rest for at least 12 hours, and enjoy!
Nutrition Facts
Torta Chilena recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 410
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

8 thoughts on “Torta Chilena (Chilean dulce de leche pastry cake recipe)”

    • Muchas gracias por tu comentario Maribel.
      Si el dulce de leche es super popular en Chile, pero lo llamamos manjar y no le agregamos vainilla.5 stars

  1. Dulce de leche is one of my favorites ingredients. I love hojarasca cake. It’s the one I always order when we go to a Chilean restaurant. I finally will be able to make it at home! Thanks for the recipe!5 stars

  2. This torta Chilena is delicious.
    I love the thousand-layer cake or torta de mil hojas like we say in my country too. The dulce de leche is the perfect touch. Thanks for sharing this amazing recipe.5 stars


Leave a Comment

Calificación de la receta