Bruce Bogtrotter’s Chocolate Cake

This chocolate cake recipe comes from the Roald Dahl book Revolting Recipes. Now of course the chocolate cake featured in this recipe is not itself revolting. It’s actually quite delicious. 

What is revolting is the scene depicted in the children’s book Matilda. The headmistress of Crunchem Hall Primary School, Miss Trunchbull, makes young Bruce Bogtrotter eat an entire chocolate cake as punishment for having eaten a slice of her “personal” chocolate cake. 

Now when I first posted my Bruce Bogtrotter’s cake video on YouTube, many fans said “that’s not Bruce Bogtrotter’s cake! What are you doing?” I had to patiently explain to them that the cake they saw in the 1997 movie was a little different than the one described in the book. 

For one thing, the cake in this recipe is a manageable size, not the enormous, over-the-top version depicted in the movie. So everybody at the party can get a piece, but you don’t have to feel like a glutton when the cake is polished off.

For another thing, this cake is a simple chocolate cake with delicious chocolate icing, not so elaborate as the movie’s version. 

But trust me, if you love chocolate like I do, you’re going to fall head over heels for this cake. My older son requested it specifically for his fifth birthday a few years ago. And we didn’t make him eat the whole thing!

Chocolate cake with chocolate icing with slice removed.

Bruce Bogtrotters’ Chocolate Cake

The chocolate cake with chocolate icing from the Roald Dahl children's book Matilda.
3.94 from 16 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Chill time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes
Course Baking, Dessert
Cuisine British
Servings 8 people
Calories 912 kcal


  • 8 1/2" cake pan 
  • parchment paper


  • 1 pkg semi-sweet chocolate 8 oz
  • 1.5 sticks butter, salted 12 tablespoons
  • 1.125 cups sugar 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons
  • .25 cup flour
  • 6 eggs separated


  • 1 pkg semi-sweet chocolate 8 oz
  • 8 oz heavy cream



  • Preheat oven to 350˚.
  • Melt semi-sweet chocolate in microwave (at 30 second intervals)
  • Prepare cake pan by spreading a little butter on bottom, then lining bottom and sides with parchment paper.
  • Using room-temperature eggs, separate yolks from whites.
  • Add butter to your melted chocolate. Incorporate.
  • Add sugar and flour.
  • Beat egg whites until they're nice and stiff.
  • Add half of beaten egg whites, folding into the chocolate cake batter.
  • Take chocolate cake batter and pour into the remaining half of egg whites, folding it in.
  • Bake in 350˚ oven for 40-45 minutes, or until the center of the cake is set.
  • Chill cake for one hour before frosting.

Icing (or ganache)

  • On med-low heat, add semi-sweet chocolate to heavy cream, mixing until the chocolate has melted into the cream, creating a smooth ganache.
  • To chilled cake, pour ganache evenly over whole cake.


Calories: 912kcalCarbohydrates: 77gProtein: 11gFat: 63gSaturated Fat: 37gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 212mgSodium: 218mgPotassium: 559mgFiber: 7gSugar: 59gVitamin A: 1167IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 96mgIron: 6mg
Keyword chocolate cakes, Recipes from fiction
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


12 thoughts on “Bruce Bogtrotter’s Chocolate Cake”

  1. I read the recipe four times because I couldn’t believe I wasn’t supposed to put in the egg yolks. But it never said to, so I didn’t. When I was halfway through folding in the egg whites, it looked so wrong that I decided to check the post comments, and saw someone else had ruined their cake for the same reason. I put the yolks in at the last minute, but the batter looks awful and I feel sure I’ve ruined my husband’s birthday cake. I wish so much that the post had been updated when the original commenter pointed out the error.

  2. 1 star
    You have several reviews that point out that you missed a crucial step, but you have not corrected it. I wish I had read the reviews first. Not doing so was quite expensive and time-consuming.

  3. 5 stars
    I made this cake for Christmas! Everyone loved it, even those that don’t nornally eat cake!! They said it is like candy!!

  4. 5 stars
    Loved this cake! I made this back in 2018 and I just made it again last night. As always, it comes out delicious! I don’t find it necessary to add the ganache on top as it’s very rich on its own. As many have stated, this online recipe accidentally skipped the egg yolk step— make sure to add it in with your melted chocolate mixture before you fold in egg whites. Luckily, I made the recipe along with Emmy’s video where she does mention this step. Thank you to Emmy for sharing this wonderful recipe!!!

  5. My mom taught me to separate eggs by breaking the egg into a small bowl, letting the white fall into the bowl and catching the yolk either with the shell or an egg separator. Then the white goes into the mixing bowl, the yolk into the bowl for yolks, and do it again. That way if you break a yolk, you mess up only one egg – important if you’re making an angel food cake with a dozen egg whites!

  6. 1 star
    can you correct this recipe? i didn’t read the reviews and obviously missed the egg yolks. as previously mentioned an expensive and disappointing mistake.

  7. 5 stars
    Hello Emmy. I make this cake for every one of my children’s birthdays – I have the a recipe card from around the time the Matilda film was released about 25 years ago! Was looking for the recipe online and came across your fabulous blog. Only came on here to say that I think your metric conversions are incorrect -8oz is 250g, not 340g ??? Shared in a spirit of gratitude.

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