Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (2024)

by Ashley Manila 103 Comments

This Foolproof Chocolate Fudge is made with semi-sweet chocolate, sweetened condensed milk, butter, salt and vanilla extract. Nuts are optional! A great holiday gift for chocolate lovers!

Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (1)

Chocolate Fudge

It’s the holiday season! And in our house that means so many things… including lots and lots of homemade fudge!

I learned how to make chocolate fudge when I was in first grade! And have been making it ever since. I joke that my mom can credit this easy chocolate fudge recipe for turning me into the chocoholic I am today. It’s rich in chocolate flavor and melts in your mouth! But it’s not crumbly or soupy. It’s truly the perfect fudge recipe! So without further ado, let me teach you how to make it!

Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (2)

How to make Chocolate Fudge

To make this recipe you’ll need:

  • Chocolate: you may use semi-sweet chocolate or dark chocolate. If you want milk chocolate fudge, I suggest using a combination of milk and semi-sweet, so that it’s not overly sweet. But this is up to you! You could also use semi-sweet chocolate chips, but I suggest sticking to high-quality chocolate if possible.
  • Sweetened Condensed Milk: I love eagle brand! Unfortunately I do not have a substitution for this ingredient.
  • Butter: unsalted or salted will work.
  • Salt: to balance out the sweetness! Don’t skip it.
  • And vanilla extract: which enhances all of the other flavors.

You can also add in a 1/2 cup of chopped nuts! Stir in the nuts and vanilla at the same time, if using.

This is what I like to call “shortcut fudge”, because the method doesn’t require a candy thermometer or tons of stirring. Instead the method is super simple and straightforward. You’ll simply combine the chocolate chips, butter, and condensed milk into a large heatproof glass bowl. Then place the bowl over a large bowl of gently simmering water. Essentially you’re making a double-boiler.

Once the chocolate and butter have completely melted, you’ll remove it from heat and stir in the vanilla.

The mixture will be very thick! Use a strong spatula to scrape the fudge mixture into the prepared pan and smooth the top.

You’ll need to place the fudge in the fridge for at least 2 hours! During this time the fudge will set. Once set, simply cut into small squares and serve!

Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (3)

Does fudge have to be refrigerated?

Nope! Almost all fudge recipes will keep at room temperature. So itdoesnotneed to be refrigerated. But you definitely can keep it in the refrigerator! Especially if you enjoy biting into a cold square of chocolate fudge! Just be sure you store it in an airtight container. Because cold air will dry out fudge faster.

Can you freeze fudge?

You sure can! It’s best tofreeze the entire block of fudge. Then slice it into small squares after it has been thawed.To ensure your fudge stays fresh in the freezer, be sure to Fudge tightly wrapped the block in two layers of plastic wrap, then placed in a freezer bag. It will keep for 2 months!

To thaw, place the block of fudge in the refrigerator for 12 hours, then let it sit at room temperature for an hour before slicing.

Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (4)

More Fudge Recipes:

  • 6-Ingredient Butter Pecan Fudge
  • Creamy Kahlua Chocolate Fudge
  • Chocolate Caramel Fudge Sauce
  • Easy Peanut Butter Fudge

If you try this Foolproof Fudge Recipe, let me know what you think! Leave a comment below, and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #bakerbynature on instagram! Seeing your creations makes my day ♥

Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (5)

Foolproof Chocolate Fudge

Ashley Manila

This Foolproof Chocolate Fudge is made with semi-sweet chocolate, sweetened condensed milk, butter, salt and vanilla extract. Nuts are optional! A great holiday gift for chocolate lovers!

5 from 17 votes


Prep Time 10 minutes mins

Cook Time 10 minutes mins

Inactive Time 2 hours hrs

Total Time 2 hours hrs 20 minutes mins

Course Dessert

Cuisine American


  • (1) 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 20 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature
  • Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling, optional


  • Lightly grease an 8 x 8-inch baking pan. Line the pan with parchment paper, allowing the excess paper to overhang the sides, set aside.

  • In a large, heatproof bowl combine the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, chocolate, and butter; set aside. Fill a saucepan with a little water (you want it about 1/4 full) and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to barely a simmer. Place your heatproof glass bowl holding your ingredients on top of the pot. Stir frequently, until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is completely smooth, about 8 minutes.

  • Remove from heat. The mixture will be very thick. Using a sturdy spatula, scrape the fudge into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Sprinkle with sea salt, if using. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

  • Gently run a butter knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the fudge. Remove the fudge and transfer it to a cutting board.

  • Peel off parchment paper, then slice the fudge into small pieces. Serve at once or store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. You may also freeze the fudge, in an airtight freezer safe container for up to two months.

Tried it and loved it?Snap a picture and share it with me on Instagram @Bakerbynature and by using the hashtag #BakerByNature


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Reader Interactions


    Leave a Reply

  1. Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (11)Ken says

    Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (12)
    Great recipe, easy to do, and people love it. I use it as Christmas gifts and people are asking for more. 🙂


  2. Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (13)Sherry Ange says

    In the narrative you add the vanilla after heating the rest of the ingredients. But in the recipe all the ingredients are heated. So which is it? Because I don’t do fudge without walnuts and instructions say add nut with vanilla??? B


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Foolproof Chocolate Fudge - An Easy Chocolate Fudge Recipe (2024)


What is the secret to good fudge? ›

Tips for Making Fudge
  • Monitor the Temperature with a Candy Thermometer. If you end up with soft fudge that turns into a puddle in your hands or hard fudge that is a bit reminiscent of a crunchy candy, improper temperature is likely to blame. ...
  • Avoid Stirring Once the Mixture Comes to a Simmer. ...
  • Beat Thoroughly.
Mar 8, 2023

Is evaporated milk or condensed milk better for fudge? ›

Use Evaporated Milk- Make sure to use evaporated milk and not sweetened condensed milk. If you accidentally use sweetened condensed milk your fudge will be incredibly over the top sweet. Cut up the Butter– Before adding the butter in make sure to cut it into smaller pieces for faster melting.

What is the secret to non grainy fudge? ›

Once a seed crystal forms, it grows bigger and bigger as the fudge cools. A lot of big crystals in fudge makes it grainy. By letting the fudge cool without stirring, you avoid creating seed crystals.

What's the difference between fudge and chocolate fudge? ›

Although fudge often contains chocolate, fudge is not the same as chocolate. Chocolate is a mix of cocoa solids, cocoa butter and sometimes sugar and other flavorings and is hard and brittle. Fudge is a mixture of sugar, dairy and flavorings that is cooked and cooled to form a smooth, semi-soft confection.

What makes high quality fudge? ›

You have to control two temperatures to make successful fudge: the cooking temperature AND the temperature at which the mixture cools before stirring to make it crystallize. Confectionery experiments have shown that the ideal cooking temperature for fudge is around 114 to 115 °C (237 to 239 °F).

How do you keep fudge creamy? ›

So, the key to smooth yet firm fudge, pralines, and fondant is to first bring the mixture to a high enough concentration and then let it cool off somewhat before starting to stir. And once you do start to stir, stir fanatically and without stopping for the finest, creamiest texture.

Why won t my condensed milk fudge set? ›

Fudge Didn't Set

If your fudge turned out super sticky, or it didn't set as it cooled, it probably never got hot enough. This mistake is super easy to avoid if you use a candy thermometer and cook the fudge to the temperature specified in the recipe (usually between 234 and 239°F).

Why won't my condensed milk fudge set? ›

It sounds like your fudge simply wasn't heated enough. Fudge is basically a superconcentrated syrup, and it sets when sugar dissolved in the water (from the butter and milk) comes out of solution as the mixture cools and forms crystals.

Why use evaporated milk in fudge? ›

Evaporated milk is milk that has been cooked to reduce its water content. It is more stable than regular milk and it can be cooked at high temperatures without curdling, a real benefit to fudge. Unfortunately, there is no substitute for it in a fudge recipe.

Should I stir fudge while boiling? ›

Stir the ingredients to dissolve the sugar until the mixture comes to a boil. If your recipe uses milk, stirring will keep the mixture from curdling. But once it reaches about 236–238 degrees F/113–114 degrees C (the "soft-ball" stage), do not stir it or even shake the pan.

What went wrong with my fudge? ›

If your fudge is tough, hard, or grainy, then you may have made one of several mistakes: You may have overcooked it, beaten it too long, or neglected to cool it to the proper temperature.

What happens if you boil fudge too long? ›

The ingredients for fudge are combined and cooked to 234 degrees, cooled to 110 degrees without stirring, then beaten until creamy. Candy that isn't cooked long enough will end up too soft; overcooking makes fudge crumbly or hard.

Which is better chocolate or chocolate fudge? ›

Fudge typically contains more sugar than chocolate, so it may not be the best choice for those looking to limit their sugar intake. On the other hand, dark chocolate is a good source of antioxidants and can provide health benefits when consumed in moderation.

What is traditional fudge made of? ›

At its simplest, fudge is a dense, soft candy, often made with sugar and dairy products like butter and milk. Nowadays, fudge is usually flavored with chocolate, but you can utilize pretty much any flavor, such as peanut butter, pumpkin, even birthday cake.

Why is chocolate fudge so good? ›

Cream or milk, sugar, and butter are slowly boiled down until slightly thickened and light caramel-colored. This boiling-down process not only gives the sauce it's great gooey texture, but also contributes that special “fudgey” taste to the chocolate.

Should you stir fudge constantly? ›

It is important to stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture starts to thicken and its surface starts to look dull or matte. Now is the time to stop beating and pour the fudge into a mould. Another tip: Do not scrape the sides of the pan or the spoon used for stirring.

What does cream of tartar do in fudge? ›

Cream of tartar is used in caramel sauces and fudge to help prevent the sugar from crystallizing while cooking. It also prevents cooling sugars from forming brittle crystals, this is why it's the secret ingredient in snickerdoodles!

What makes fudge softer? ›

The amount of time you cook fudge directly affects its firmness. Too little time and the water won't evaporate, causing the fudge to be soft. Conversely, cook it too long and fudge won't contain enough water, making it hard with a dry, crumbly texture.

Why is my fudge crumbling when I cut it? ›

The ingredients for fudge are combined and cooked to 234 degrees, cooled to 110 degrees without stirring, then beaten until creamy. Candy that isn't cooked long enough will end up too soft; overcooking makes fudge crumbly or hard.

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