No-Fuss Hot Fudge Sauce

20160725_BlogHotFudge-198When you have an eight month old baby, making social plans can be hard. Especially in the evenings. When I was pregnant, I read Bringing up Bebe and one of the big premises of the book is how the French feel strongly that babies and children can fit into your lives and that you shouldn’t have to change and alter everything to accommodate them. I remember reading the book and thinking: YES! Life will be just as it was, except we’ll have a small baby in tow. Obviously a few things would likely be different, but I didn’t want to change our routines, change the way we cooked or approached time off together, or see our friends any less.

Well of course I’m the fool. Or at the very least, I’m not as French as I thought I was. Today, we very much schedule things around Oliver’s nap schedule and bedtime, but thankfully we have a lot of other friends with kids who get it. Friends who make homemade cookies, own ice cream businesses, and have really great taste in music. Friends who host the kind of occasion that warrants homemade hot fudge sauce and eating dessert first. 20160725_BlogHotFudge-136 Last weekend Kasey and Matt had us over to their house for a little neighborhood ice cream social. They have twins and a toddler, and our friends Ashley and Gabe came with their three kids. Sam showed up fashionably late with Oliver (ahhh, the nap schedule). I figured the kids would all be eager to make sundaes right away, but there was cornhole and wrestling, crawling and scooting — and all manner of more important things to tend to first. Hot Fudge Sauce | A Sweet Spoonful Oliver took his sweet time eating some carrots and practiced crawling (so close! Yet so far!), and I tried not to stress out too much about the fact that we forgot his sunscreen. He’s acquired some little sandal tan lines on his feet and I have to think that a base tan on a baby is probably not a great thing. 20160725_BlogHotFudge-154 Kasey invited Lauren from Seattle-based Sweet Lo’s Ice Cream, and we were all over-the-moon that she was able to make it. If you’ve been around this space for long or know me personally, you know I have some impassioned opinions about cool treats. And if you’re in Seattle and you haven’t yet tried Lauren’s crazy good, small batch ice cream, you’re really missing out. I’m addicted to the Oatmeal Cookie and am a recent fan of the Mint Oreo. Her vanilla is so classic and clean and delicious, and her strawberry is summer, summer, summer. Also, she delivers to your house. Best (most dangerous) news of the season.

20160725_BlogHotFudge-168 With ice cream squared away, we needed toppings. Ashley brought some of her addictive Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies and her new savory salty sprinkles (coming soon!). Kasey picked up cones and rainbow sprinkles. I threw some Marge Hazelnut Cacao Nib Granola in my bag and whipped up a batch of this no-fuss hot fudge sauce. 20160725_BlogHotFudge-172I set out to make the hot fudge sauce for selfish reasons, really. I found myself a little disappointed with so many of the homemade recipes I’ve been stumbling upon. Either they have corn syrup or loads of sugar or they call for a candy thermometer. I wanted a simpler hot fudge recipe without all those things; it’s summer and things should feel easy. 20160725_BlogHotFudge-184

So instead of corn syrup I used brown rice syrup which has a much more subtle sweetness; I used a little brown sugar, too, and a generous handful of dark chocolate. I cooked it down on the stovetop but give pretty clear directions here for how to tackle it without a candy thermometer. And extra bonus: it can be pulled together during one of Oliver’s naps — because let’s be honest: I’m not sure how the French do it (what am I missing?!), but nap time is the only time we get any real cooking or baking done.

20160725_BlogHotFudge-206 This past week, we’ve all been texting and lamenting the fact that afternoon ice cream parties aren’t a reality of everyday life — and I suppose if they were, they wouldn’t feel nearly as special. Next week, we’re hoping to bring some of that spirit over to our place and have more friends over to hang out in the backyard, sprinkler dodging and wondering how it is that August is now firmly at our front stoop.

No-Fuss Hot Fudge Sauce

No-Fuss Hot Fudge Sauce

  • Yield: About 2 cups
  • Prep time: 5 mins
  • Cook time: 6 mins
  • Inactive time: 10 mins
  • Total time: 21 mins

Because it doesn’t have any stablizers (what helps give the storebought stuff its perfect texture), this hot fudge becomes quite firm in the refrigerator and a bit on the thin side when heated too vigorously. So I think leaving it out at room temperature for a few hours or lightly warming it is really the way to go for a smooth, spoonable hot fudge with a deep, dark chocolate flavor.


1 1/2 cups (360 milliliters) heavy whipping cream
1/3 cup (100 grams) brown rice syrup
1/4 cup (45g) dark brown sugar
1/4 cup (20 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
6 ounces (170 grams) bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


In a medium heavy duty saucepan, combine the cream, brown rice syrup, brown sugar, and cocoa powder. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and let simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to avoid clumping or burning.

Stir in the dark chocolate until fully melted. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, stirring and scraping sides until bubbling vigorously, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and whisk in butter, vanilla and salt.

Strain sauce through a fine-mesh sieve into a heatproof bowl. Continue whisking until smooth. You want the consistency to be thick but pourable (but keep in mind it will thicken as it cools). Let cool to room temperature.

You can make this sauce up to 2 weeks in advance: simply store in the refrigerator, covered. Warm before serving. To reheat, microwave for 30-40 seconds until it’s pourable but still thick. Alternatively, warm in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring often and adding 1-2 teaspoons of water if needed to thin.


  1. Shelley

    Such a beautiful recap of what I'm sure was a really lovely evening. There need to be more ice cream parties - love this idea! And thank you, THANK YOU, for this no fuss hot fudge recipe!!

    1. megang

      Hope you enjoy it, Shelley!

  2. Ashley

    My dear, what you're missing is that the French don't make things for themselves--they buy their baguettes from the corner bakery & they go out for ice cream at Bertillon (if they're luck enough to live in Paris, that is) and the crêpes are never, ever from scratch. ;)

    1. megang

      Aha, Ashley. So they are very, very smart!

  3. Vanessa

    Sounds delicious. Do you have to strain?
    Love Aunt V

    1. megang

      Yep, you have to strain it! xox

  4. Ashley

    Haha...we definitely schedule our life around our daughter's nap time. Sometimes it's frustrating because it seems like we can't get much done, but we're coming to terms with it. ;) Believe it or not, one day your baby will be in the kitchen with you! She's old enough now (3 yo) that she can help me in the kitchen and that definitely makes me feel like I'm getting more done.

  5. Heidi - Apples Under My Bed

    Just in the past 2 days it's started to warm up and feel like Spring over in my corner of the world. I am incredibly excited for icecream dates. Had to laugh at the base tan line on a baby thought. And I have wondered if I should read that book or if I'm perhaps a bit past it now... Joan is 1 in less than 2 weeks (!!). She's still napping on me in the carrier mostly (how did that happen?!), so i'm not all that productive besides working on the computer during naps. But this looks like a simple, easy, throw together recipe that I can get done, so thank you! Husband is a big fudge sauce fan and I so appreciate the lack of weird ingredients. Enjoy the rest of your summer. love the new site design x

    1. megang

      How is Joan almost 1?!?! Gosh I remember reading your pregnancy posts as if it were yesterday! How sweet that she's still napping on you. Oliver only does this is he's extremely exhausted and I always wish he did more ... but of course, I suppose the grass is always greener. We have friends with a baby that can only sleep while right next to them in the bed and to me that sounds like a dream as O doesn't cuddle much, but of course to them it's super limiting and they'd kill for their baby to sleep in the crib like Oliver. Hooray for spring and ice cream dates! And thank you for the nice words about the site design. We're happy it's done!!

  6. Margo, Thrift at Home

    I love simple recipes, even during naptime! This looks similar to a hot fudge I have made in the past, although I confess I would often stick a spoon in the jar and eat it straight from the fridge (during naptime). The party you described sounds just perfect and I can't WAIT for the savory sprinkles - what a great idea!

    1. megang

      Oh I'll admit it: I stuck a spoon in the jar a number of times.

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