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Easy Fudge Recipe made with just four ingredients for a smooth and delicious chocolate treat!
I love to make candy throughout the holiday season. It is a tradition that has been passed down in my family for generations. You could always count on my Grandmother having an assortment of homemade candy like her divinity, peanut brittle, toffee, and of course, chocolate fudge. It makes great gifts for friends, coworkers, and neighbors for Christmas!
This easy homemade fudge recipe is one that I grew up making with my Mama and Grandmother. I love that with just a few ingredients, you can make this easy chocolate fudge recipe that everyone loves. With this basic recipe, you can then adapt it to your favorite fudge flavors! I’ve included some favorite adaptations so that you can make your favorites as well.
What Makes This The BEST Chocolate Fudge Recipe
Easy – This fudge recipe is made with just 4 ingredients and a cook time of fewer than 10 minutes! It makes one of the fastest candy recipes you can make! You simply combine and heat the ingredients until smooth and creamy, pour them into the prepared dish, and refrigerate until hardened and ready to cut. That’s it!
Adaptable – This fudge recipe is so versatile – both in flavors and in how it is prepared! You can use the stovetop or the microwave to prepare this fudge, depending on the time that you have available and your preferred method! And you can make this classic chocolate fudge into so many other flavor combinations based on your tastes from Rocky Road to Peanut Butter Cup!
Make-Ahead – Let’s face it, the holidays are busy! Even though this is a quick and easy recipe, I can make multiple batches and store them in my refrigerator for weeks to share this fudge with teachers, friends, and neighbors throughout the holiday season.
Ingredients for Fudge
For this classic recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients.
- Chocolate Chips. you can use your favorite chocolate chips – dark chocolate, milk chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate chips, or a combination!
- Sweetened Condensed Milk – you can use my homemade sweetened condensed milk recipe or your favorite store-bought.
- Kosher Salt – the salt helps to round out the flavor of the fudge and balances the sweetness perfectly without tasting salty at all.
- Vanilla Extract – you’ll want to use pure vanilla extract in this recipe rather than imitation vanilla flavoring. I love to use my easy homemade vanilla extract for its incredible vanilla flavor.
To this basic recipe, you can also add espresso powder to heighten the flavor of the chocolate if you like, as well as your favorite add-ins for different flavor combinations.
How to Make Chocolate Fudge on the Stovetop
- Melt. Add your chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk, salt, and espresso powder, if you are using, to a medium saucepan over medium heat. As the chocolate chips melt, stir them frequently and once melted, remove them from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and any mix-ins you might be using.
- Pour. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and cover it with wrap.
- Chill. Refrigerate to set. When ready to serve, just remove from the refrigerator, lift out of the pan, cut into individual squares and serve!
How to Make Fudge in the Microwave
- Melt. Add your chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk to a large microwave-safe bowl. Heat in 30-second increments, stirring after each until the chocolate has melted and is smooth and creamy.
- Pour. Pour the mixture into your prepared baking dish.
- Chill. Refrigerate to set. Then, remove from the refrigerator when ready to serve and cut into individual pieces and serve.
How to Make Ahead, Store and Freeze Fudge
To Make Ahead. Chocolate fudge is the perfect make-ahead treat or dessert. They keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
To Store. You can store it in individual squares or as a whole block of fudge. If storing as individual pieces, place waxed paper between the layers of fudge in an airtight container. If storing the whole block of fudge, wrap it well with plastic wrap. Store in a cool place for up to a week or in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
To Freeze. Chocolate fudge freezes beautifully. Simply allow it to harden in the refrigerator as instructed in the recipe. Then, either cut the fudge into individual pieces or freeze it as a whole block. To freeze already cut into pieces, place waxed paper between the layers of fudge in an airtight, freezer-safe container. To freeze a whole block of fudge, wrap it well with plastic wrap and then wrap it well with foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. To serve, remove from the freezer and allow to thaw overnight in a cool place.
Favorite Fudge Flavors
Roasted Nuts – Add a cup of chopped, roasted nuts. Great options are roasted pecans, roasted peanuts, cashews, almonds, walnuts, pistachios or even a mixture of your favorites.
Salted Caramel Fudge – Stir ¼ cup of salted caramel into the mixture before chilling. Once chilled, top with flaky salt to enhance the flavor even more!
Rocky Road Fudge – Add miniature marshmallows and roasted pecans or another favorite nut.
Oreo Fudge Recipe – Stir a cup of roughly chopped Oreo cookies before chilling.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge – I’ve been told this recipe tastes like a peanut butter cup, and it’s super easy to make too! To enhance that flavor, you can add chopped mini peanut butter cups.
Peppermint Fudge – I have shared my favorite peppermint fudge recipe previously that uses this classic recipe with the addition of peppermint. Peppermint perfection!
I think you will love sharing any or all of these delicious variations with your friends and family!
Here’s my favorite Easy Fudge Recipe. I hope you love it as much as we do!
Chocolate Fudge Recipe
- 2 (12-ounce) packages chocolate chips
- 1 1/2 cups sweetened condensed milk homemade or store bought
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon espresso powder optional
- Optional mix-ins: ½ cup roasted nuts, candies, cookies, or fruit
- Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper and set aside.
- Add chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk, salt, and espresso powder (if using) to a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat. Melt the chocolate, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Stir in any optional mix-ins if using. (see fudge flavor variations in note)
- Add chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk to a large microwave-safe bowl. Heat at 30 second increments, stirring after each, until the fudge mixture is melted, smooth, and creamy.
- Pour into prepared baking dish and spread with an offset spatula or a rubber scraper if needed. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours to set. Remove from refrigerator and remove from baking dish. Cut into 24 or 48 individual squares.
- Store in layers with waxed paper or parchment dividing in an airtight container on the counter for up to 7 days, in the refrigerator for 3 weeks, or the freezer for up to 3 months.
Favorite Fudge Flavors (Optional Mix-ins)Roasted Nuts – Add a cup of chopped, roasted nuts. Great options are roasted pecans, roasted peanuts, cashews, almonds, walnuts, pistachios or even a mixture of your favorites. Salted Caramel Fudge – Stir ¼ cup of salted caramel into the mixture before chilling. Once chilled, top with flaky salt to enhance the flavor even more! Rocky Road Fudge – Add miniature marshmallows and roasted pecans or another favorite nut. Oreo Fudge Recipe – Stir a cup of roughly chopped Oreo cookies before chilling. Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge – I’ve been told this recipe tastes like a peanut butter cup, and it’s super easy to make too! To enhance that flavor, you can add chopped mini peanut butter cups. Peppermint Fudge – I have shared my favorite peppermint fudge recipe previously that uses this classic recipe with the addition of peppermint. Peppermint perfection!
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The recipe for the Homemade sweetened condensed milk involves waiting a WEEK??!!
Can’t we substitute a can from the store??
Sorry if that wasn’t clear. The sweetened condensed milk can be used as soon as you have it made. If you do not use it all, it keeps in the refrigerator for up to a week. So no, no waiting a week to use it! 🙂
Yum! This fudge looks delicious!
I’m going to make this next weekend for our super bowl party.
Gosh, it looks so yummy!
Am request for a Christmas cake, Chocolate fudge, white chocolate cake recipes. Thanks.
Looks simple enough but do you cook this for 5 minutes or do you use a candy thermometer to gauge how long to cook this fudge. You might want to include this information in your instructions. Your recipes definitely make me want to spend the day in the kitchen. Thanks. kat
The fudge looks delicious. Can’t wait to try it.
Can I sub coconut full fat for the milk?
If I use the stove top method, I only keep it on the heat until the chocolate is melted? Doesn’t have to boil or reach a certain temperature? Would like some clarification before I make later today.
No, this does not boil; just follow the directions. Mix all the ingredients except the vanilla and other add-ins and heat until the chocolate chips melt. Remove from heat and add vanilla and any other add-ins like nuts.