Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce

There is nothing quite like a delicious Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce to up your ice cream game but be careful; it’s so good you could finish it off with a spoon!

Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce in a Mason Jar with Sauce Drizzled From a Spoon
I think one of the best things in this entire world is good vanilla ice cream served with a Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce. So simple and yet so perfect. Add some salty nuts to the mix and I’m ecstatic.

As a kid my parents walked all of us to Bergens Dairy in Florissant, MO (my hometown, a suburb of St. Louis) about once a week for an ice cream cone, and a birthday meant we could order something special beyond the standard 2 scoop cone. My male siblings always went for the banana split because it was the biggest thing on the menu but I just wanted a hot fudge sundae with nuts.

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If they would have added just banana? OK, that I like too but long term, it’s the vanilla ice cream and hot fudge sauce that have always done me in.  Of more importance than anything was that sauce and I think that after a fair amount of trial and error that I’ve finally come up with something that rivals that memory from long ago. 

I promise you, this is simply the Best Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce EVER!

Over the years I’ve bought my fair share of hot fudge sauce from the market and yet none ever seemed to compare to those childhood memories of a sauce just rich enough and just sweet enough that dreams were built on knowing one was coming.

It took me a bit but I finally recognized the truth. It wasn’t just a memory that was elevated because of the beauty of childhood rituals; the fact is that you will never find a packaged product in the grocery store that can compare to something like this Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce.

Best Hot Fudge Sauce in a Mason Jar

When the ingredients start with ‘High Fructose Corn Syrup’ and end with ‘Artificial Vanillin Flavor’ I’m sort of nonplussed. Besides…this hot fudge sauce is SO easy; easier to whip up at home than to spend the time even remembering to write it on  your grocery list…perfect right?

I’ve tried several different concoctions to get to what I would call the best too. I’ve used cocoa and corn syrup and different kinds of chocolate but none compared to this one that combines all I think is necessary to make it the BEST!

The key to the success of this Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce? Well, everything. I started with a base of half and half with butter so there is that. Then I add both semi-sweet and milk chocolate, it finds a sweet spot in the middle. Super fan of either one? Then use all semi-sweet or all milk chocolate but please give this a try first?

Brown sugar and vanilla add a richness and a smidgeon of espresso elevates the chocolate just enough. Finished with a touch of sea salt and this is seriously good, and nothing else matches up in my book.

One big change I have made was for a Mexican themed party. I used this recipe and made a Mexican Hot Fudge Sauce version with tequila, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. I love that flavor combination; my favorite pie is this Mexican Hot Chocolate Pie! I’ve included the information for that version in the notes of the recipe.

Best Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce Spooned Over Vanilla Ice Cream with Nuts and a Sugar Cone

When I made this sauce, I used it to make what I call ‘Deconstructed Drumsticks.’ I just spoon some hot fudge over the ice cream, sprinkle with toasted walnuts or pecans and then top with a sugar cone. The kids love them but don’t take my word for how good they are; just trust my neighbor Casey who ate two of them!

Whether you eat this over ice cream, on waffles or even straight from the jar with a spoon (yes, I might have…so??) I know you’ll love it too. I don’t call it the best without good reason!

PIN IT! ‘Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce’

Best Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce in a Mason Jar

Best Hot Fudge Sauce in a Mason Jar with Sauce Drizzled From a Spoon

Best Hot Fudge Sauce in a Mason Jar

Best Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce

Creative Culinary
A combination of dark and milk chocolate with brown sugar and espresso really does make the Best homemade hot fudge sauce.
5 average from less than 50 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Salads, Dressings, Marinades and Sauces
Cuisine American
Calories 309 kcal


  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup half & half
  • 6 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chopped
  • 6 ounces milk chocolate chopped
  • 1 teaspoon espresso
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon sea salt


  • Combine the butter and half and half in a double boiler or a saucepan that you've set over another larger pot with simmering water. Warm until the butter is melted. Whisk together.
  • Add the chocolate, espresso, brown sugar, vanilla, and sea salt to the mixture and bring to a simmer; whisking continuously until smooth.
  • Use an immersion blender (or pour mixture into a countertop blender) and blend until smooth and shiny.
  • Cool.slightly before serving warm over your favorite ice cream.
  • Refrigerate to store; heat in warm water or microwave on low power before using.


Mexican Hot Fudge Sauce

Add 1/4 cup of tequila to milk and butter and boil for one minute to boil off alcohol.
Add an additional 1/2 teaspoon of espresso powder, 1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1 teaspoon cinnamon to sauce when you add the rest of the ingredients. Mix well. I like to serve a sundae with this sauce and crumbled up cinnamon tortillas.


Nutrition Facts
Best Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce
Serving Size
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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  1. Saw this a few minutes ago on Pinterest. I now have This on my ice cream. It is Excellent and easy to make. We are a gluten free family (not by choice!) so I was glad to make this for my family. tfs

  2. You just brought back so many ice cream kid memories for me! I love the espresso addition – I’ve done that with baking, and it does add that special something. And the upside down ice cream cone approach? YES. so much yes.

  3. I like my sundae, just as you do. The last thing I need is a lot of hot fudge, at this moment. But, dang, that sure is a thing of beauty. I’m saving this recipe, for sure (when I’m having a weaker moment).

    1. I don’t need it either so am very grateful for my younger and skinnier neighbors. One is pregnant, I was her savior the other night when she had a craving and I had the perfect response. 🙂

    1. It really is. I might even like those nuts salted a bit but let’s be honest…push comes to shove just give me a spoon and that hot fudge sauce and I’m good. 🙂

    1. Thanks Vicki! I had two finalist recipes; the other was darker and made with just cocoa. It was good and one guy preferred it but the majority loved this one the best. Admittedly…I do love me some milk chocolate so taking it down a notch from all dark was good for me! 🙂

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