Mom’s easy fudge is a simple old fashioned recipe for chocolate fudge that’s made in a saucepan without corn syrup, marshmallows, or sweetened condensed milk. This homemade candy takes just minutes to make.
mom’s fudge recipe is easy and foolproof
You don’t need to mess with thermometers, corn syrup, marshmallow goop, or canned milk to make fabulous fudge!
This is the fudge I grew up eating every holiday, straight from my mom’s recipe box. it makes the rounds every season in my family. It’s a nice beginner recipe if you’ve never tackled fudge before, because it all comes together in one pan. Just heat and stir until completely incorporated, that’s it! For such a simple fudge this one has a wonderfully chocolatey payoff. The firm texture is perfect ~ it melts in your mouth without feeling greasy or unctuous. That’s because it doesn’t contain any of the offending ingredients mentioned above 😉
most ‘easy’ fudge recipes are not easy at all!
But this one is the real deal. You whip it up with a spoon and a saucepan in minutes. In fact, it’s done in the time it takes the chocolate to melt. Now that’s fast!
Do you love mega squares of fudge, or respectably thin, bite sized pieces? You can customize this fudge to your dessert style just by changing out the pan. For thin slices I use a 9×9 baking pan, but for large chunky cuts, use a loaf pan.
what you’ll need
This is a simple list of pantry friendly ingredients, which I appreciate.
- unsweetened cocoa powder, I used Ghirardelli.
- powdered sugar
- half and half or milk
- vanilla extract
how to make easy fudge
It all comes together with a silicone spatula and a saucepan. I like to use a heavy bottomed pan to prevent any scorching.
- Put the butter and half and half in a saucepan and heat on medium until the butter has melted.
- Add in the sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and vanilla extract.
- Stir with a silicon spoon or spatula to combine and continue cooking over medium heat for just a minute or two, until everything is smooth and silky.
- Turn the fudge into a plastic lined pan (either an 8 or 9 inch square, or a 9×5 loaf pan, or equivalent) The wider the pan the thinner your pieces of fudge will be. Load it into a smaller pan for big fat squares 🙂
- Let set up before removing from the pan and slicing into small squares. You can put the pan in the refrigerator to speed up the process.
best way to store homemade fudge
You can actually store this fudge on the counter, or in the refrigerator, depending on how you like it, either is fine. There’s definitely something to be said for chilled fudge hitting your warm tongue…just saying.
Yes, you can freeze fudge, I like to double wrap it, first in Saran wrap, then in foil, and then put it in a heavy duty zip lock bag.
This particular fudge has a dry surface, not sticky at all, so it can be easily packed for gifting.
why this fudge recipe works
IT’S SO EASY!
YOU DEFINITELY HAVE THE INGREDIENTS ON HAND.
NOTHING DETRACTS FROM THE CHOCOLATE FLAVOR.
THE TEXTURE IS PERFECT
THE RECIPE CAN BE DOUBLED
THIS FUDGE SETS UP QUICKLY FOR INSTANT GRATIFICATION
more easy candy
Grandma Kathy’s Homemade Turtle Candy Recipe
Spanish Peanut Clusters Recipe
Chocolate Hazelnut Torrone ~ 3 ingredients!
Easy Nutcracker Bark (with printable recipe tags!)
Mom’s Easy Fudge Recipe
- an 8×8 square, 9×5 loaf, or equivilant pan
- plastic wrap or foil
- 6 Tbsp butter
- 4 Tbsp milk or half and half
- 1 lb confectioner's sugar. This is about 4 cups.
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder Note: use any cocoa powder you like, as long as it is unsweetened.
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
- Line with plastic wrap or foil. This will make it easier to remove the fudge for slicing later.
- Melt the butter and milk or half and half in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and vanilla and stir constantly until everything is incorporated. Continue stirring and cooking over medium heat for just a minute or so more to ensure that the fudge is smooth and silky. Note: Don't over cook this fudge. Once it's smooth, it's done. If your fudge is not coming together, add a splash more milk.
- Transfer to your prepared pan and smooth out evenly with an offset spatula. Do this quickly as the fudge will start to set up almost immediately. Note: at this point you may or may not want to sneak a taste from the pan, but be careful, it's hot!
- Let the fudge fully set up before removing from the pan and slicing into squares. You can pop it into the fridge to speed up the process.
Questions and Reviews
I had only powdered sugar and half & half, no granulated sugar or evaporated milk.. I was pretty bummed because I really wanted fudge. Then I found your recipe. Woohoo! It rocks! And you are not kidding about the instant gratification. Thank you so much!
So glad you found this recipe! Thanks for the review 🙂
Super quick, easy and delicious. My family were doubters when they saw how few ingredients and steps this fudge took to make, but in less than 24 hours the whole pan of fudge was eaten. Added a few extra drops of milk at end. I am including it in my Christmas goodies trays this year. Thanks!
How can you make this firmer please
Add a bit more powdered sugar to make it stiffer.
My grandmother would always receive a box of Sees’s fudge from my mother each Christmas. A few years ago, I, a non-chocoholic, decided I wanted to learn to make it from scratch, because it’s darned expensive. I’ve tried several recipes, and she liked them all (lol, she *claimed* to). This, however, is the easiest, tastiest, and most successful—made it for the first time this, Grandma’s last, Christmas (she died two nights ago, three days after turning 90). Thank you for sharing your mother’s recipe with us. It is a keeper.
Thanks for sharing this Kari, and so sorry about your grandma. I’m glad my fudge could give her pleasure on her last Christmas.
Okay. This may be great for most, but it did not work with my artificial sweetener (maltodextrin + aspartame). It came out weirdly “gummy”.
What did I do wrong ?? The mixture was so stiff that it was difficult to stir. I stirred for about 12 mins and the mixture then started to get hard in the pot. It was almost impossible to spread it in the fish.
Terry van der Peet
Hi Terry ~ it’s hard to know what went wrong for you, but if the fudge does not come together, you can always add a bit more milk.