Melt in Your Mouth Homemade Fudge
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Best ever homemade fudge recipe. The fudge is melt in your mouth delicious, and the best part is, you don’t even need a candy thermometer! Customize your fudge with chopped pecans or walnuts of sprinkle the top with crushed peppermint candies or flaked sea salt!
I grew up eating all the best fudge.
Just the perks of having a dad who loves chocolate like it’s his job. It may not have been homemade fudge, but it certainly was the best kind of fudge. My favorite fudge is when it’s tender, but doesn’t fall apart, and doesn’t threaten to break your teeth. I’m talking about the kind of fudge that just melts in your mouth and makes you want to eat it all.
Some of my earliest memories are of us getting fudge from this little shop near Niagara Falls. And then again, when we visited this little place in Ohio. Can I tell you where? Absolutely not. All I remember is that the fudge was out of this world. Generous squares of perfectly set chocolatey fudge that as a child, often reminded me of store-bought icing in a tube. I remember it was always during the winter. Plopped on a bench, pulling back my gloves to reveal my fingers, and my dad would break both my brother and me a generous piece that we would consume in no time.
It’s no surprise that most of my fondest memories often involve food.
Though I had nothing but love for my childhood fudge, it was certainly the kind of chocolate fudge that, as an adult, I would find overly sweet. It was so cloyingly sweet that only a child [and my dad] could consume more than a few bites. My mom would often bow out after her initial bite or two. Now as an adult myself (which is still somewhat debatable,) I realize I want a homemade fudge recipe that would certainly satisfy my sweet tooth, but I also don’t want my fudge to be the way it was in my childhood. I want to taste something other than just sugar!
During the holidays, I already make a ton of desserts. There’s pecan pie cheesecake, pumpkin snickerdoodle muffins, Twix shortbread cookies, old-fashioned sour cream coffee cake, chocolate saltine toffee bark, and apple crumble bars but up until now, I hadn’t tried making fudge.
Now I can finally say, I have a melt in your mouth fudge recipe for you to try out too!
What do you need to make homemade fudge?
- granulated sugar
- evaporated milk
- salted butter
- marshmallow creme
- chocolate chips vanilla extract
Can I use marshmallows in place of marshmallow creme?
There are a ton of recipes that use marshmallows in place of marshmallow creme successfully; unfortunately, I haven’t tested this recipe with marshmallows as my goal was to make homemade fudge that is vegetarian-friendly.
What kind of chocolate chips should I use?
You can use a variety of different chocolate chips! If you generally prefer your fudge to be super sweet, use all semi-sweet or even some semi-sweet and some milk chocolate. If you prefer fudge that’s a little more chocolatey and a little less sweet, replace some of the semi-sweet chocolate chips with dark chocolate chips. We use a mixture of semi-sweet and Guittard’s 63% extra dark chocolate chips and love it that way!
Can I replace the evaporated milk with condensed milk?
Evaporated milk is milk that has been cooked to the point where all the water has been ‘evaporated’ out of it. It is interchangeably referred to as ‘unsweetened condensed milk’ in some countries. Sweetened condensed milk however is not a good substitute for evaporated milk in this fudge recipe.
Also, I suggest avoiding 2%, 1%, or even fat-free evaporated milk. You want to use the ‘whole’ kind to make the best homemade fudge.
How to make the best homemade fudge recipe:
- Spray an 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray and line the baking dish with either parchment paper or plastic wrap.
- Melt the sugar, salt, and evaporated milk in a heavy-bottom saucepan over medium heat. I like to use my dutch oven as it retains the heat really well and cooks the fudge evenly. Bring the mixture to a full boil, where it looks like it’s going to boil up and out of the pot. Then, lower the heat to medium-low and continuously stir the fudge and allow it to cook for 5 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat, stir in the marshmallow creme, chocolate chips, butter, and the vanilla extract. You can also flavor it with peppermint if you’d like! Stir until the chocolate melts, and the marshmallow creme and butter all combine.
- Smooth the fudge mixture into the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle with nuts or flaked sea salt if desired. Cover the surface of the fudge with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm. Remove the wrap and cut it into pieces!
Do I need a candy thermometer?
No, you don’t! However, because a candy thermometer isn’t necessary, you want to make sure you pay close attention to the recipe before starting. Once you start making fudge, you want to be sure you keep stirring so nothing sticks or burns!
Can I add nuts, toffee, or flavorings to the fudge?
Yes, you can! Use hazelnuts, pecans, walnuts, or peanuts! The next time I make this fudge, I plan on stirring in heath bits, as those are my favorite! You can even replace the vanilla extract with peppermint extract or orange extract.
TIP: I like to sprinkle on sea salt right before setting the fudge in the refrigerator. But the possibilities are endless!
How long with the fudge last? How do you suggest storing fudge?
You can keep homemade fudge in an air-tight container for up to 1 week in the fridge! I have my doubts that it’ll be around that long though!
The best tip for making fudge at home?
- be patient
- use a heavy bottom pan
- stir continuously
- do not leave the fudge unattended and do not stop stirring!
- allow for the fudge to cool completely before cutting into pieces
- clean the knife in between cuts to get clean cutting lines!
- 1¼ cups of granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅔ cup evaporated milk
- 4 tablespoons salted butter, softened
- 1 cup (3.5 ounces) of marshmallow cream
- 10 ounces of chocolate chips (see notes)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- PREP: Spray an 8x8 baking pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Or you can even line it with plastic wrap.
- COOK: Melt the sugar, salt, and evaporated milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a full boil, where it looks like it will bubble up and out the pot. Then, lower the heat to medium-low and continuously stir the mixture for about 5 minutes over medium-low heat. Remove from the heat, stir in the marshmallow creme, all the chocolate chips, the butter, and vanilla. Stir until the chocolate melts, and the marshmallow creme and the butter all combine.
- FINISH: Pour into the prepared baking pan and smooth the fudge out into an even layer. Cover the surface of the fudge with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours or until firm. You can even just let it sit overnight, I usually do. Lift carefully, remove the plastic wrap. Turn the fudge out onto a cutting board and cut into 16-25 pieces.
- I like to use 6 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chips with 4 ounces ofextra dark chocolate and this makes fudge that isn't too overly sweet for us. If you prefer sweeter fudge, I suggest using either all semi-sweet chocolate or even using some semi-sweet and some milk chocolate chips. If you prefer a super dark fudge, you make want to consider using 6 ounces of bittersweet chocolate and 4 ounces of semi-sweet chips.
- Fudge keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
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