A Chocolate Fudge Recipe Great for Gifting

Can you believe Christmas is this weekend?! I’m sure there’s some procrastination or last minute gifts that are still left on your list (it’s always the case for me!). Whether it be for a neighbor or a friend, there’s nothing like waiting ’til the last minute right?? Well, there’s also nothing like a homemade gift. I’m excited to share today’s post – a fudge recipe that would be perfect as a last minute gift!

Every Christmas growing up my grandmother used to make her famous chocolate fudge and put it out for everyone to enjoy a piece or two…. or four. This year I decided I wanted to make it myself to try and give it my best shot. Well, when I asked my mom for Grandma’s fudge recipe you’d never guess what she told me. It’s on the back of the Hershey’s cocoa box. I’m sure you can only imagine my reaction – It was on the back of the box the whole time!! I always thought is was some secret family recipe growing up and even though it wasn’t, it was the memories that made it special.

Now, It’s not actually on the back of the boxes anymore so that’s part of the reason why I’ve decided to share it here. There are a few complicated parts to this recipe. I definitely recommend reading everything through so you’re prepared when giving this a shot BUT… Fudge is one of those things where the consistency is purely preference so I’m convinced that you can’t screw that up as long as you follow the directions. I’ll even share a few helpful hints that I’ve learned along the way!

What you’ll need:

  • 8 or 9″ pan
  • aluminum foil
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup Hershey’s cocoa
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk (the original recipe says no substitutes but I’ve definitely used almond milk and it works great!)
  • 1/4 cup real butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

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  1. Line your pan with tin foil and spray with non-stick spray.
  2. In a large saucepan, stir together the sugar, cocoa, and salt.
  3. Add in milk and stir over medium heat.
    • TIP: Make sure you don’t have the saucepan on heat until you mix in the milk. Burnt sugar and cocoa doesn’t make good fudge… and it’ll stink up your kitchen!
  4. Stir mixture constantly, until the mixture comes to a rolling boil.
  5. Boil without stirring to 234 degrees F on a candy thermometer. Make sure the thermometer does not rest on the bottom of the pan so you get an accurate reading. This typically takes about 20-30 minutes.
    • TIP: If you don’t have a candy thermometer – test the mixture by dropping a small amount into very cold water. If the mixture forms a soft ball when it hits the water, and flattens when taken out.. then it’s ready!
  6. Remove from heat. Add butter and vanilla. DO NOT STIR!
  7. DO NOT STIR!! Cool the mixture at room temperature to 110 degrees F, or lukewarm. The original recipe says that this could take about 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
    • TIP: I’ve found that I can wait about 30-45 min in order to get my desired consistency.
  8. Stir or beat the mixture until the fudge thickens and loses it’s gloss. Once the fudge starts to look like frosting, it’s ready to be set into the pan.
  9. Pour the fudge into your foil lined pan. Spread the top if necessary and refrigerate for an hour or more before cutting into pieces.

Gifting Tip: Line a cute box or decorative tin with wax paper for a nice and mess free display!

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Hi! I'm Emma, a twenty-something interior designer living in Charlotte, NC navigating life as a first time home buyer. I love a good house project and cocktails on the patio. I hope you can find some inspiration while you're here!


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