Recipe Flash: Hot Fudge Sauce

In honor of my impending birthday, dessert week at BGSK plunges on! On today’s menu: hot fudge sauce.
When I was a college student, I found my sanity in wax paper cups of ice cream with hot fudge sauce from Herrell’s in Harvard Square. It was the kind of treat that was small enough not to seem overly unhealthy–my grandma eats ice cream with hot fudge sauce every day, and she’s 93–but large enough to assuage any stress that exams, professors, or snow might contribute to my life. I ate ice cream all winter, all fall, and all spring.
So here I bring to you my recipe for hot fudge sauce, and perhaps the best-ever way to use it, atop a decadent brownie sundae (on a plate on which you may be able to make out the words Happy Birthday):

If hot fudge can be an everyday treat, a brownie sundae is a true extravagance, best left to times of celebration. Like Friday, my 26th birthday. Or tomorrow, moving day. I’m saying goodbye to 25 and to my closet kitchen, where I’ve cooked nearly everything I’ve posted on this blog. I’m saying hello to a beautiful, just-redone cooking space but a few blocks away, and I’m greeting another year–happy!

From my kitchen, albeit small, to yours,



Hot Fudge Sauce
Makes just under a cup

1/2 cup cream
3 tablespoons butter
pinch salt
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup white sugar
1/2 cup minus 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 tablespoons chopped chocolate
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon espresso powder
Combine the cream and the butter in a small, heavy saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted and the mixture has just come to a boil. Stir in the sugars and the pinch of salt and cook for another minute, letting the mixture barely simmer. You want the sugars to be dissolved, and you can test this by spooning a little bit onto a plate and then rubbing it in between your fingers to make sure it’s smooth, not gritty.
Add the cocoa powder slowly, whisking as you go to stir out any lumps. The sauce should be uniformly smooth, thick, and dark.
Take the sauce off the heat. Add the chocolate, vanilla, and espresso powder. Let sit for about a minute, then whisk again until smooth.
Serve immediately, over ice cream or your dessert of choice.
Store in a wide-necked container in the fridge. It will solidify as it cools, so slowly reheat the jar in a bowl of hot water, or microwave in short bursts.

Posted in: Recipe Flash
  • Jessie

    Looks decadent and delicious! Hot Fudge is one of my eating out only foods, mostly because I think it would be too dangerous to keep in the house, but it’s nice to have a solid recipe for it, for special occasions. Happy Birthday, a few days too early :)

  • kate

    And where did you get such a pretty birthday plate? This looks amazing, and because I sadly can’t be with you on your birthday, I think I’ll dedicate Friday to eating all these sweets. I can’t wait to drizzle this on ice cream! xoxo almost birthday girl!

  • Anonymous

    I’ll stop in to say Happy Birthday on Friday, but right now I’ll say I LOVE hot fudge! We are huge fans in this house. Good luck on the move – I hope it’s a bigger place!

  • SeattleDee

    OH MY… hot fudge sauce, brownies, ice cream! This sounds absolutely swoon-worthy, and well worth the pounds I’m going to gain this week as I work my way through a batch. Happy almost birthday.

  • Barbara

    Well, so you’re finally getting a bigger kitchen! Wonderful!
    And Happy Birthday.
    I use a hot fudge sauce from the old Joy of Cooking…..just can’t beat it!

  • Jameslapine

    A totally delicious post, in all ways. Happy birthday, Cara.

  • Mary

    Oh my gosh. I seriously need to make this.

  • Citysister

    I make a simpler version (more like hershey syrup) which is just water, cocoa, sugar, and vanilla.

  • Djonas

    This sounds wonderful

  • Amber Wheeler

    Found this on Pinterest and oh so glad. It’s fantastic! So nice to find one with healthier ingredients like cream and butter opposed to corn syrup as many other hot fudge recipes contain. I used Navitas Naturals Cacao Powder and it was the bomb!

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