Once you go homemade, there’s NO going back! This Homemade Chocolate Sauce recipe is super easy, uses pantry ingredients, and takes 15 minutes to throw together. And I’m telling you, it’s 1000 times better than the hot fudge sauce you buy at the store. It’s ultra creamy, smooth, and oh so chocolatey. I have a hard time saving it for an ice cream topping. I usually just go at it with my spoon. 

hot fudge sauce

I kept hearing this buzzing sound all morning every time I walked through our hallway. Our hall also leads out to the garage, and there happens to be construction going on outside on our street, so I assumed it was a jackhammer or something and completely ignored it.

Finally, about the 17th time I walked by, I realized it was our Operation board game. One of the other games had gotten jammed into it and was permanently pushing the buzzer. I have no idea how many hours or days that thing was buzzing. This is how you know your tolerance level for background noises is a little too high. Mom life, right?

hot fudge sauce recipe

Another exciting mom life story from this morning, Valentine saw a bee on the ground outside, so I told her not to be scared, if you leave the bee alone it will leave you alone. But apparently I’ve never told her the part about how bees will sting you, because I went out a few minutes later and saw her lounging on the ground on her stomach intently poking the bee with a stick. These tyrannical 2 year olds!! She’s lucky I found her! Poor bee.

chocolate sauce

Today is another one of those cases where I have to write a blog post about a food item that still happens to be in my possession. It’s really a scary thing. Imagine having to think about and write about and edit photos of luscious looking hot fudge all day, and meanwhile that hot fudge is sitting in your fridge, and there is a convenient spoon in your drawer…I have eaten a lot of hot fudge today. I’m not sad about it! No ice cream is safe when this hot fudge is around!

chocolate sauce recipe

How to make Chocolate Sauce

If you have never had homemade hot fudge sauce before, you are seriously missing out. It takes about 15 minutes to throw together, and it is seriously so much better than the store bought stuff. The kind at the store is too gelatinous for my taste. It’s not even that I mind corn syrup (lots of homemade hot fudge sauce recipes use corn syrup) but I feel like the ones at the store rely on it a little too much. This recipe uses no corn syrup, but instead a can of evaporated milk and sugar. It’s SO creamy and velvety. You will love it!

This recipe honestly could not be easier. You don’t have to have an special candy-making skills to do it. Here’s what you need:

hot fudge sauce recipe

First you dump a can of evaporated milk and a couple cups of sugar in a pot. Heat that over medium low until it boils, then stir while boiling for one minute.

(I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m like 99% positive that you could sub the can of evaporated milk with 1 and 1/2 cups heavy cream. You could even try half and half, but it won’t be as rich.)

chocolate sauce recipe

Once you’ve got that boiling, add in the unsweetened chocolate and beat the heck out of it with a whisk until it’s smooth. Add in a bit of butter, vanilla, and salt, and thaaaaat’s it. See, it couldn’t be easier!

chocolate sauce for ice cream

My friend Alli gave me a version of this recipe a couple years ago. Her family calls it “Vat-O-Chocolate,” which you will completely understand once you make it, if the photos have not conveyed the lava-ness of it enough. Instead of using unsweetened chocolate she uses a bag of chocolate chips and only about 1/3 cup of sugar. (Because chocolate chips are sweetened) I haven’t tested it yet so I can’t give you exact measurements, but if you are confident in the kitchen and want to experiment, you could try it out. Let me know how it goes!

homemade chocolate sauce

(Side note: Alli and I met at church, but she is also a blogger! She has an amazing quilting blog called Woodberry Way. She is seriously so talented. If you are into quilting, check her out! She’s on Instagram here. She’s even writing a quilting book right now! So excited for her!)

What to serve with hot fudge sauce

I mean really I don’t even know why you would need suggestions, all you really need is a spoon. And maybe some ice cream. Maybe.

how to make chocolate sauce

But if you really want to die and go to heaven, you could drizzle this over:

Chewy Brown Sugar Snickerdoodle Blondies

Absolutely The Best Brownie Recipe I Have Ever Made

THE Chocolate Chip Pie

Nana’s Famous Homemade Peppermint Ice Cream

No Bake Frozen Peanut Butter Pie with Hot Fudge

chocolate sauce for ice cream

Ice Cream Sundae Bar

And of course, this chocolate sauce would be perfect for an ice cream social. Why don’t we have more ice cream socials?? They are the easiest parties ever to throw. Just buy a ton of ice cream, make this chocolate sauce, a set out your toppings:

  • sprinkles
  • whipped cream
  • chocolate chips
  • chopped strawberries
  • maraschino cherries
  • chopped nuts
  • My Favorite Caramel Sauce
  • M&Ms or other candy
  • chopped Oreos

You really can’t go wrong! Enjoy!

More chocolate recipes you are going to love!

My Mom’s Fudge << it’s the best. For real. One of the top recipes on my blog!

Absolutely The Best Brownie Recipe I Have Ever Made << Honestly the only way I feel like you could make Homemade Chocolate Sauce better is to drizzle it on top of one of these brownies with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. YASSSSS

Nana’s Homemade Peppermint Ice Cream << WAIT WAIT, how about the above brownie, with a scoop of homemade PEPPERMINT ice cream, and THEN the homemade hot fudge sauce?? Even better!!!!

Sensationally Smooth Chocolate Cheesecake << This one is decadent!

The Best Chocolate Cake I’ve Ever Had << I am not lying. It is the best.

Chocolate Chip Caramel Swirl Ice Cream from Dinners, Dishes and Desserts

Mint Chocolate Fudge from Wine and Glue

One Bowl Chocolate Fudge Brownies from Melanie Makes

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Homemade Chocolate Sauce (Hot Fudge Sauce)

5 from 3 votes
Prep: 2 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 12 minutes
Servings: 9 (about 3 cups)
Once you go homemade, there's NO going back! This Homemade Chocolate Sauce recipe is super easy, uses pantry ingredients, and takes 15 minutes to throw together. And I'm telling you, it's 1000 times better than the hot fudge sauce you buy at the store. It's creamy, smooth, and oh so chocolatey. I have a hard time saving it for an ice cream topping. I usually just go at it with my spoon. 


  • 1 (12-oz) can evaporated milk*, full fat
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate, broken up
  • 1/4 cup salted butter, (half stick)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt


  • In a medium saucepan, bring the can of evaporated milk and 2 cups sugar to a rolling boil over medium low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon. Babysit the pot a little bit and stir frequently, especially as is starts to come to a boil. It will take several minutes to come to a boil.
  • Stir constantly once it is at a rolling boil (keep the heat at medium low) and let boil for 1 minute.
  • Add in 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate squares. Exchange your wooden spoon for a whisk and beat the chocolate vigorously, turning the heat to low. Beat until the chocolate has smoothed out and no longer looks grainy. The better of a job you do here whisking, the smoother and creamier your chocolate sauce will be.
  • Turn off the heat. Add 1/4 cup butter to the mixture. Beat until melted.
  • Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.
  • Let the hot fudge sauce sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes to cool and thicken up.
  • You can spoon it over ice cream immediately (or into your mouth--don't burn your tongue!) or pour it into jars or a tupperware to save for later. The recipe makes about 3 cups, so a quart jar will hold it all.
  • The mixture will become much thicker in the fridge, but won't solidify completely. To reheat, just stick it in the microwave. The nice thing about this sauce is that you can microwave and refrigerate it several times and it won't separate or go grainy on you. It's the best!


This recipe is adapted from my friend Alli, who's family calls it "chocolate lava." (I mean right? She uses chocolate chips and adds less sugar) It's basically the same recipe that my mother-in-law Kris uses, and she found it years ago in Mable Hoffman's "Chocolate Cookery." 
*You can sub 1 and 1/2 cups heavy cream in place of the evaporated milk.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 333kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 218mg | Potassium: 222mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 48g | Vitamin A: 248IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 113mg | Iron: 2mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 333
Keyword: chocolate, homemade, hot fudge, sauce
Did you make this? I'd love to see it!Mention @thefoodcharlatan or tag #thefoodcharlatan!

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  1. Does this sauce require refrigeration immediately? I am asking because I want to make a batch and give them as gifts for birthdays and holidays.

    1. Hi Cheryl, yes, this sauce should be refrigerated right away. Keep them in the fridge until you’re ready to gift. Enjoy!

  2. I made way too much of this sauce for Thanksgiving (a triple portion) and would like to freeze it for use at Christmas. How would I best freeze it—-or can it be done at all? Thanks for a great recipe.

    1. Hi Rose! This sauce will stay good in the fridge for a few weeks, so you can keep it there, rather than freezing it. Enjoy!

  3. This is absolutely delicious, warm or cold!  It’s probably the best homemade hot fudge I’ve tried, and I LOVE that it’s corn syrup free. 

    1. Hi Sarah! It will last in the fridge for several months if well sealed. It won’t go rancid or moldy for a very long time unless something gets in it (crumbs, etc.) but after a while it will crystallize and not be smooth anymore. The tighter it is sealed, the better. Hope this helps!

  4. I just recently found this recipe, made it and everyone loved it. Being the creative person I am, retired and a lot time on my hands I made another batch replacing the chocolate with milk chocolate chips which gave it a lighter flavor and color. This was also a big success with everyone.

    1. Yay! So glad you enjoyed it Cindy! It’s so much better than the hot fudge you can buy :) Thanks for reviewing!

  5. I heard the same type of buzzing sound years ago and called the fire department, it took awhile but also turned out to be one of the kids game buzzers. I was so embarrased, especially when they had to write up a report.

    1. Oh my gosh, haha!! That is so hilarious Carol!!! I could totally see this happening to me. ha!!

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