Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

3.53 avg. rating (70% score) - 15 votes

A quick, no-fail, perfect hot fudge recipe, from the archives of Yankee Magazine. It’s better than anything you can buy in the store.

Usually when you see a headline like this one, the words “This Story Will Teach You How to…” are implied at the front. But I encourage you to take this headline as the exhortation that it is. Make your own hot fudge. Really. It takes all of 12 minutes, requires no skill, and most important, it’s seriously delicious. Much better than anything you could buy.

Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

This particular recipe comes from our old “Recipe with a History” column and it appeared in the magazine about 20 years ago. I love that it’s made without corn syrup and has a cleaner chocolate flavor. Reader Dorene Lengyel of Lynnfield, Massachusetts sent it in with the following story:

In the early 1950s it was tradition in our home for my mother to put a big roast in the oven Sunday mornings before church. Following the service she served the family a grand full-course Sunday dinner. After all the preparation and cleanup she felt supper should be easy. So in the early evening my father would drive to the Brigham’s in Winchester or Medford Square to buy vanilla ice cream and a package of salted pecans while my mother made her famous Fudge Sauce. Every Sunday evening, we ate sundaes while watching ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’ on our seven-inch TV with a magnifying screen in front of it.

Now my family eats a sandwich for Sunday [lunch], makes homemade pizza for supper, and watches a video or golf match on TV. Occasionally we have ice cream, Mother’s warm fudge sauce, and salted nuts for dessert.”

For Dorene’s mother, this sauce was her vacation from having to cook. It’s that easy.

Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

The Ingredients | Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

 Irene’s Hot Fudge Sauce

Ingredients to Make Hot Fudge Sauce

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 squares (2 ounces) unsweetened (baking) chocolate
  • 6 tablespoons milk
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions to Make Hot Fudge Sauce

Mix sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a small bowl. Set aside. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt chocolate with milk and butter, stirring constantly. Bring to a gentle simmer and continue stirring until mixture is thick, about 3 minutes. The sauce will look broken at this point, as if the fat is separating from the chocolate

Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

Don’t worry. It’s supposed to look like this. | Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe


Add the sugar mixture. The fudge will immediately smooth out and look glossy.

Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe

All better. | Perfect Hot Fudge Recipe


Reduce heat to medium low and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla extract. Serve warm over ice cream, ideally with salted nuts. Yield: About 1 1/4 cups sauce


  • Cassaundra

    Oh my goodness. I made this tonight. It was so easy. It was SO good.

  • Hi Maggie-

    I have kept this sauce in my refrigerator for a couple of weeks with good results. And I would say that two weeks is a very safe bet for keeping it in the refrigerator. So my advice would be to put it in a pretty jar with a little tag that has an “Enjoy By…” date on it. I’m sure it won’t last too long anyway once they taste it!

  • Hi –

    Does this sauce have to be eaten immediately? I want to make hot fudge sauce for work holiday gifts and do not want to use my old recipe that includes corn syrup. Can you refrigerate this? And if so, how long does it keep?



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