Everyone who's ever read or watched Harry Potter has probably dreamed of the same thing: getting their Hogwarts letter, traveling on the Hogwarts Express, and being welcomed on their first night at the castle by a majestic feast.
You're probably still waiting for your letter, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy a true Hogwarts feast of your own. And because even Muggles should get a taste of magic from time to time, we decided to build a menu based on the books' descriptions of the festivities. For the recipes, we used a combination of our own original creations, plus other favorites from around the internet. (And yes, there's a treacle tart involved!)
Find our full menu below.
"Harry drank deeply. It was the most delicious thing he’d ever tasted and seemed to heat every bit of him from the inside."
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, chapter ten.
You can't have a true Hogwarts feast without a drink in hand first! And what better drink than the most famous food-related Harry Potter creation? To make our own Butterbeer, we used this recipe — which is part of a lineup of eight original Harry Potter-inspired cocktails. This version of the drink is a warm mix of apple cider, homemade butterscotch sauce, and ginger beer (and you can add a splash of bourbon if you want). It's not as sweet as the Harry Potter World version, but it's truly delicious and fits the books' description.
Find our recipe for Butterbeer here.
Now, onto the food!
"The smell of roast beef made Harry’s stomach ache with hunger, but they had barely taken three steps toward the Gryffindor table when Professor Slughorn appeared in front of them, blocking their path."
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 11
The Sunday roast is a staple of British cuisine and of Hogwarts’ dinner tables. Two things to remember when making it: Season your meat really well, and don't overcook it.
Roast beef is traditionally served with gravy and Yorkshire puddings, which are also mentioned in the books and are very similar to what Americans call popovers. Yorkshire puddings are super easy to prepare, but make sure you save them for last as they're best served right out of the oven.
“Goes back to what I said, doesn’t it?” said Ron, who was now shoveling mashed potato into his mouth. “She’s gone a bit funny. Lost her nerve. Women,” he said wisely to Harry, “they’re easily upset.”
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 21
There are all types of potatoes in the Harry Potter books: boiled, roasted, baked, and mashed. We picked the latter because mashed potatoes are the best — and because they go well with gravy. We made a version with roasted garlic.
Find the recipe for garlic mashed potatoes on Food Network.
"Harry thanked the others and accompanied Ron back to their compartment, where he bought a large pile of Cauldron Cakes and Pumpkin Pasties."
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 38
Pumpkin Pasties are actually never mentioned in the descriptions of Hogwarts Feasts. (They're sold by the trolley lady on the Hogwarts Express.) But they sounded so delicious, we couldn't not include them in our menu. We decided to make a savory recipe where the pumpkin purée is mixed with garlic mashed potatoes, cheddar, and little bits of bacon. The result was pretty magical and would, hopefully, receive Harry's seal of approval.
Find our recipe for Pumpkin Pasties here.
"Harry was too used to their bickering to bother trying to reconcile them; he felt it was a better use of his time to eat his way steadily through his steak-and-kidney pie, then a large plateful of his favorite treacle tart."
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 11
Steak-and-kidney pie is an old-school British specialty that's mentioned repeatedly in the books. This is an ambitious and time-consuming endeavor — the whole preparation spans over 24 hours. The recipe we used called for ox kidney but we used beef, which was more easily available and very similar. (Even with the switch we had to call several butchers to finally find one that sold beef kidney, so make sure you plan in advance if you want to make this one!) The dish itself was very hearty — a great addition to a winter feast if you're a meat lover and are not grossed out by kidney.
Find the recipe for steak and kidney pie at BBC Good Food.
"They sat down at the Gryffindor table and helped themselves to lamb chops and potatoes. Hermione began to eat so fast that Harry and Ron stared at her."
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 13.
Lamb chops are delicious, easy to make, and look fancy AF on a feast table. They're also part of the very first Hogwarts feast in the books, so they had to make a cameo on our table.
Find the recipe for lamb chops at Food & Wine.
"They chose the one nearest a gold-colored cauldron that was emitting one of the most seductive scents Harry had ever inhaled: Somehow it reminded him simultaneously of treacle tart, the woody smell of a broomstick handle, and something flowery he thought he might have smelled at the Burrow."
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 9.
Treacle tart is mentioned countless times in the books as Harry's favorite dessert. The British specialty is made of breadcrumbs, golden syrup, and a bit of lemon. We found golden syrup at Whole Foods, but if your local grocery store doesn't sell it, you can get it online. We made the breadcrumbs from scratch — toasting and processing slices of white bread super finely.
The combination of syrup, breadcrumbs, and lemon may seem a bit weird, but this dessert was a real hit on our team and everyone LOVED it. Make sure to serve it with a scoop of crème fraîche to get the best tasting experience: The freshness of the cream perfectly complements the sweetness of the tart. Last but not least, know that you can make this pie as far as 48 hours in advance and it will still taste amazing.
Find Mary Berry's treacle tart recipe at BBC.
"“Treacle tart, Hermione!” said Ron, deliberately wafting its smell toward her. “Spotted dick, look! Chocolate gateau!”
But Hermione gave him a look so reminiscent of Professor McGonagall that he gave up."
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 12
Spotted dick is only mentioned once in the books. But, with a name like that, one appearance is enough to be remembered. The dessert is a pudding filled with raisins or dried currants. It's traditionally made with suet, but we used vegetable shortening, which was easier to find and still gave us great results. (However, if you're a food puritan and can't find suet in your local stores, you can always buy it online.)
The other tricky part in this recipe is the cooking: You need to steam the pudding in a pudding mold, which you can get for $20 on Amazon. But we actually used a thick metal mixing bowl that we covered tightly and it worked pretty well, so if you don't want to invest in a special dish for this recipe, this can be an option!
Find the recipe for Spotted dick at BBC Good Food.
"“You missed the Sorting, anyway,” said Hermione, as Ron dived for a large chocolate gateau."
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, chapter eight.
OK, guys: This is the true MVP of the feast. Chocolate is such a comforting food in the books (it helps fight Dementors-induced depression!) and chocolate gateau is mentioned a couple of times, so it had to be featured here. We decided to go all out and make a super rich, three-layer chocolate cake with a salted caramel-chocolate frosting. It was wicked!
Find our recipe for chocolate gateau here.
So here you go, you now have everything to plan a truly magical night!
Planning a Hogwarts feast? Brilliant! Take a picture and tag it #HogwartsFeast. We want to see your beautiful tables and dishes and know how everything turned out.
Photos by Jon Premosch; styling by Jenny Chang and Justine Zwiebel; and graphics by Jenny Chang
Products: Metallic lace plate (Spotted Dick) by Anthropologie (only available in silver online), gold and white bowl (Mashed Potatoes) by Anthropologie, gold serveware provided by ABC Carpet and Home, terracotta pitcher provided by ABC Carpet and Home, Jane Burtz gold luster plates (Lamb Chops and Pumpkin Pasties) provided by ABC Carpet and Home, copper cup (Butterbeer) from TJ Maxx (not available online), small copper bowl (Butterbeer) provided by Tom Dixon, silver and gold platter (Roast Beef) from Amazon.