“Anyway — Harry, a very happy birthday to yeh. Got summat fer yeh here — I mighta sat on it at some point, but it’ll taste all right.” —Rubeus Hagrid


Harry Potter Birthday Cake

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, or you’re just feeling geeky, there are many reasons you might want to whip up the iconic cake given to Harry Potter by Rubeus Hagrid, on his eleventh birthday. According to the book, the birthday cake was a large, stick chocolate cake with “Happy Birthday Harry” written on it in a green icing.  The movie however, presents the cake as bright pink (perhaps strawberry flavored) with green misspelled letters reading “Happee Birthdae Harry”.  Since film is a visual medium, it’s no surprise that the cake was changed to a poppy pink color to contrast the bright green frosting. With that being said, you can choose to go movie version or keep it more authentic to the book.  The choice is yours!

Step 1: Go Shopping!

The first thing you’ll want to do is hop down to the store and pick up some ingredients.

Basics: Now obviously you’re going to need the basics, like round cake pans, a cooling rack, spatula, measuring cups etc.  If you don’t have these you typically find them fairly easily in most stores or on Amazon.

Chocolate Cake:  I’m not a huge baker, so I use devil’s food cake mix.  You can pick up whatever kind of chocolate cake mix you’d like.  When you pick up your cake mix, look on the back and make sure you have what you need to make the cake (often you’ll need eggs and oil).  If you’re feeling ambitious you can make it from scratch.  A really great chocolate cake recipe can be found here.

Icing: If you want to go “book loyal” pick up two jars of chocolate frosting and one jar of white. You’ll also want to get some green food coloring. Walmart and Target both have gel food coloring which is a very pigmented dye that you can mix with the white to get that bright green look.  If you’d prefer, you also order per-colored frosting.  This is often easier, less messy and in some cases cheaper. If you want to make the movie version of the cake get white frosting instead of chocolate and pink food coloring. While you’re picking up the frosting it will be worth your time to get some food coloring bags as well to pipe the letters.  If you don’t have these, never fear- you can use a Ziploc with the tip cut out.  It will be messy looking, but the Harry Potter birthday cake WAS messy looking, so it fits!

Step 2: Bake The Cake

Following the directions on your mix or recipe, make the chocolate cake.  When it’s done you’ll want to let it cool to room temperature on your cooling racks.

While the cake is cooling mix your frosting colors if needed.

When the cake is ready to go, you’ll want to frost the cake and pipe on the words.

Want to know how to frost a cake?  Here are some instructions.

Don’t worry if it’s not perfect.  Hagrid did say he sat on it a bit!


Step 3: Enjoy!