This Puerto Rican-style Flancocho is a rich dessert made with layers of caramel, vanilla cake, and flan. It’s baked in a bundt pan for that signature flancocho shape, and combines the custard-like texture of flan with a spongey vanilla cake.

flancocho on a white plate
a slice of flancocho on a plate

Why You Will Love This Cake

Flancocho is the perfect Puerto Rican recipe to share at birthday parties, potlucks, and family gatherings.

This delicious dish combines two of the most popular sweets (flan and vanilla cake) baked together into a spongey yet creamy cake with impressive layers.

If you enjoy Puerto Rican desserts like this one, be sure to check out my recipe for chocoflan, a version of this recipe made with chocolate cake instead of vanilla. You will also love this budin recipe, a Puerto Rican-style bread pudding.

bowls of salt, eggs, sugar, and more

Ingredients

Here’s everything you will need to make this flancocho:

For the Flan:

  • evaporated milk
  • sweetened condensed milk
  • vanilla extract
  • eggs
  • a pinch of salt

For the Vanilla Cake:

  • vanilla cake box mix
  • any other ingredients required for the box cake mix

See recipe card for quantities.

Step by Step Instructions

Tip: Make sure to use warm water (it can be from a tea kettle) in your water bath, to jumpstart the baking process.

What to Eat it With

If you’re looking for some drinks to serve with your vanilla flan cake, here are my favorites:

flancocho on a white plate

Other Types of Flancocho

Because the base of this dessert is a combination of flan and box cake, the variations are endless. I recommend checking out the box cake isle at the grocery store for inspiration. Here are some ideas for other flavors of flancocho you can explore:

  • Chocoflan
  • Red velvet flancocho
  • Funfetti flancocho

Check out this selection of box cake mixes online to get started with planning your own spin on this dessert.

a slice of flancocho being cut

Special Tools

To make this recipe you will need a few special tools:

  • A blender to make the flan batter – alternatively use a hand mixer or stand mixer
  • A bundt pan to bake the flancocho – you can also just use a traditional cake pan if you don’t have a bundt
  • Nonstick spray or butter to prevent the cake from sticking to the pan

Aside from those, make sure you have a mixing bowl to mix together the vanilla box cake and a pan to make the caramel.

flancocho on a white plate

Here are some more Puerto Rican desserts to try:

Storage

Flancocho can be made the day before and stored covered with plastic wrap in the fridge before flipping to serve.

Once flipped, make sure to store in an airtight container in the fridge. It should keep for up to 5 days.

a piece of flancocho on a plate

Baking Tip

Make sure to check the vanilla cake box ingredients you will need for the batter before leaving the grocery store! Box cakes can sometimes require additional oil, water, and sometimes eggs.

Buen Provecho,

the name Salima
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flancocho on a white plate

Puerto Rican-Style Flancocho (Vanilla Flan Cake)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Salima Benkhalti
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 90 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Puerto Rican, Latin
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This Puerto Rican-style Flancocho is a rich dessert made with layers of caramel, vanilla cake, and flan. It’s baked in a bundt pan for that signature flancocho shape, and combines the custard-like texture of flan with a spongey vanilla cake.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • nonstick spray or butter, to grease the pan

For the Flan:

  • 1 (12oz) can evaporated milk
  • 1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs
  • a pinch of salt

For the Vanilla Cake:

  • vanilla cake box mix
  • any other ingredients required for the box cake mix


Instructions

  1. Make the caramel. Pour the sugar into a pan and melt over medium heat. Shake the pan occasionally to make sure the sugar doesn’t stick or burn. Once melted, carefully pour into the bundt pan, moving the pan around to get an even layer at the bottom.
  2. Prep the bundt panPreheat the oven to 350° F/ 176° C. Once completely cooled, grease the walls of the bundt pan with butter. Set the pan into a dutch oven or baking dish.
  3. Make the flan batter. In a blender combine all ingredients for the flan and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour the flan into the bundt pan over the caramel.
  4. Make the vanilla cake batter. In a mixing bowl, make the cake mix according to the directions on the box. Gently pour the batter over the flan batter.
  5. Bake the flancocho. Add hot water to the baking dish the bundt pan is sitting in. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and carefully transfer to the oven. Bake for 60-90 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the cake.
  6. Cool, flip & serve. Let the flancocho rest in the water bath for 20 minutes before removing from the water bath and setting aside to cool (this can take up to 2 hours). Carefully loosen the sides of the cake with a knife and flip onto a platter. Serve with the caramel drizzled over top. 

Notes

Make sure to check the vanilla cake box ingredients you will need for the batter before leaving the grocery store! Box cakes can sometimes require additional oil, water, and sometimes eggs.