Old-Fashioned Hot Fudge You Can Make at Home in 15 Minutes

Hot Fudge Sauce
Danielle Leavell/Photolibrary/Getty Images
Ratings (60)
  • Total: 13 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 8 mins
  • Yield: 3 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
3204 Calories
86g Fat
590g Carbs
38g Protein
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This decadent, old-fashioned hot fudge recipe, courtesy of "Kelly Carambula's Eat Make Read," originally comes from the Old Occidental Hotel in Muskegon, Michigan, which opened in the 1860s as the town's main centerpiece in the days of the Old West. It flourished through the decades, a throwback to the time of horse-drawn carriages and a symbol of a thriving Muskegon where the lumber industry made it one of the wealthiest, most desirable cities. A highlight was the hotel's candy shop which sold the best ice cream sundaes around featuring this hot fudge and making the recipe sought after. The Old Occidental remained the town's hotspot until 1975 when the once ornate building was sadly demolished to make way for the Muskegon Mall. (The mall was shut down and a culinary institute now stands in its place.)

Although the hotel is gone, its hot fudge recipe still lives on (assuming thanks to an employee who wrote it down). And with just six ingredients and only 15 minutes, you will be able to taste the old-time flavor of this luxurious sauce in your own kitchen. So pick out your favorite ice cream and sundae toppings, or any other dessert that would go nicely with a warm, chocolatey dose of hot fudge, and ready yourself for a delicious treat.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, and cocoa powder. 

  3. In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, butter, and vanilla over medium heat and cook, stirring, until the butter has melted. 

  4. Add sugar mixture to the milk mixture, while constantly whisking.

  5. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thick and smooth, about 5 minutes.

  6. Remove the pan from the heat, transfer the sauce to a bowl, and let it cool completely.

  7. Use right away, or cover and refrigerate (once refrigerated, it will last a week). 

Tips and Variations

  • The sauce can be reheated in a double-boiler or microwave, as needed.

  • Hot fudge is, of course, delicious served as an ice cream topping, but also consider using it as a dip for fruit, cake pieces, and chunks of cookies. It is also wonderful drizzled over cheesecake, angel food cake, and ice cream cake. If you'd like to add a little twist to the rich chocolate sauce, you can include different ingredients to give your fudge a spicy bite or a little minty flavor (perfect at holiday time). 

  • A small bit of cayenne pepper will spice it up, offering a nod to Mexican chocolate and perfect for those who love a little heat in almost anything. Including a smattering of peppermint extract will provide a magical taste of winter in your mouth, perfect for serving with Christmas desserts. The small hint of extra flavor in these two varieties adds a little-unexpected zing to this sauce.

  • This hot fudge sauce makes for a great, homemade gift for friends and family. You may be hard-pressed to find a family where at least one member does not like fudge. If you use the cayenne pepper and peppermint extract, you can make a trio of sauces—plain hot fudge, spicy hot fudge, and minty hot fudge—to create a gift set.