peppermint hot fudge sauce

You have all of your holiday shopping done, don’t you? I bet everything is wrapped and in gift bags, and that you know how to tie ribbons into bows without cursing. I suspect everyone but me knows how to… fluff? Is that what they call it? I bet everyone knows how to arrange the tissue paper inside the gift bags so that it looks perfectly festive and even a tad enthusiastic. I have a hunch that your gifts are homemade and hand-lettered; that you made your own cards. Oh, you didn’t? Well, come sit down over here. You’re among friends.

peppermint hot fudge, in parts
ready to melt

I ran to Duane Reade this morning and bought a roll of brown shipping paper and decided at once that the gift wrap theme this year would be “rustic”. I also wiped out the gift bag supply; sorry about that. Then I went home and made my first homemade gift. Yes, I know it is both Hanukah and Christmas week but I don’t like to be rushed. Plus, if you only have time this week to warm hearts and minds with but a single homemade treat, I hardly think this would be an unwelcome choice.

a slow pour

I’ve made hot fudge sauce before; I shared the recipe my mother always made from her worn copy The Silver Palate Cookbook a few years ago. But as it turns out, I have room in my heart and ladled over my ice cream for two hot fudge sauces. This one hails from the late Gourmet (can anyone believe it’s been only two years?) and I decked it out for the holidays with some peppermint extract and some poor candy cane that had an unfortunate run-in with one of the most random but secretly delightful kitchen purchases I’ve made this year. The earlier hot fudge sauce was a bit on the bittersweet side and it could be a tiny bit tricky in that a small amount of overcooking can lead to grittiniess and the dreaded separation (of cocoa solids). This is a less bitter, harder to mess up and reheats wonderfully. Poured over a scoop of ice cream, it stops quickly its tracks and cools to the hallmark fudge sauce stage of slight chewiness. (This is kind of my favorite part.)

peppermint hot fudge sauce

Plus, it smells the way I imagine the Junior Mint factory must, i.e. like the heavens above. I will probably never fulfill my fantasy of sneaking into it unnoticed and falling asleep on a pile of soft blankets under a bubbling cauldron of chocolate and mint, with visions of peppermint patties and layered brownies dancing in my head. But now that I have this in the fridge, I don’t feel as bad about it.

a rare attempt at twee / packed up

Much more to come: I didn’t mean to disappear for a week, in fact, I have a ton of cooking to share — almost enough for daily updates until Friday. I really hope to make it happen; I think you should all have a talk with this guy if it doesn’t. I also hope to have some early cookbook news coming today soon, so watch this space. Whee!

One year ago: Broiled Mussels and Spicy Gingerbread Cookies
Two years ago: Creamed Mushrooms on Chive Butter Toast, Ridiculously Easy Butterscotch Sauce and Mushroom Marsala Pasta with Artichokes
Three years ago: Feta Salsa, Carrot Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting, Zuni Cafe’s Roasted Chicken and Bread Salad and Cranberry Vanilla Coffee Cake
Four years ago: Espresso Chocolate Shortbread Cookies, Peanut Butter Cookies and Austrian Raspberry Shortbread
Five years ago: Winter Panzanella, Orchiette with Cherry Tomatoes and Arugula, Chicken Skewers with Dukkah Crust and Pecan Squares

Peppermint Hot Fudge Sauce
Adapted, just a bit, from Gourmet

Now, not that one needs a reason to embrace hot fudge sauce, I mean, other than it’s Monday and there’s ice cream in the freezer, but one of the things that brought this on was that I found a product called golden syrup on the grocery store shelf when I hadn’t expected to, and this has kicked off a slew of cooking that was usually limited to corn syrup. Golden syrup is a pure cane syrup that can be used instead of corn syrup in most candy and caramel recipes and tastes infinitely better, as it has a slight caramel flavor to it. If you live outside the U.S., especially in the U.K. you’ve probably been using it your whole life but here it’s still a specialty item. I took the fact that Whole Foods on Houston was selling it in two different packages (canned and bottled) as a sign that this is probably slowly changing. (It’s also sold online over here and a bunch of other places Google can point you to, if needed.) If you cannot get golden syrup and don’t wish to use corn syrup, both honey and maple syrup will work as well, but of course impart different flavors.

Canning: Yes, I know I tempted you with tiny jars of ready-to-gift fudge, and I didn’t mean to be a tease, it’s just that products with dairy in them — and this has a ton — are not safe to can. But I see no reason why you cannot simply leave a note that it should be kept in the fridge and used within a week or two, right?

Makes about 2 cups

2/3 cup heavy or whipping cream
1/2 cup light corn syrup or golden syrup (see Note above)
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, ideally Dutch-processed
Heaping 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt or level 1/4 teaspoon table salt
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (or, about 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips), divided
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract, or to taste
Crushed candy canes, for serving (optional)

In a 1 1/2 to 2-quart heavy saucepan, bring cream, syrup, sugar, cocoa, salt (if you’d like the salt to remain slightly textured, add it with the butter and extract at the end) and half the chocolate to a boil. Reduce to a low simmer and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in remaining chocolate, butter and extract and stir until smooth. Cool the sauce to warm before serving it so that it can thicken up. While very hot, it will only slide off the ice cream and pool in the alleys of the bowl and that would be tragic, right?

Do ahead: Sauce keeps in fridge for a week (according to Gourmet), though we’ve kept it longer, closer to two weeks, and lived to tell about it. Reheat gently before serving, so that it is still thick but just loose enough to pour.

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235 comments on peppermint hot fudge sauce

  1. Ahh, so perfect. I was just cooking dinner wondering if I had the wherewithal in my pantry to make chocolate peppermint ice cream. I suspected lack of peppermint extract would be my downfall, and I was right. Sadly, I dont think crushing the candy canes I won’t let the small one have would be enough peppermint punch, if ya know what I mean. And I suspect you do.

  2. Laura

    You know what? I too bought a roll of brown paper (mine is from the dollar store), declared this holiday season to be “rustic” in theme – and guess what? Everyone keeps complimenting me on how nice my gifts look. The year I stop trying… go figure.
    Sauce looks amazing.

  3. My darling husband, as a child, would sneak down and steal dollops of Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup. But not just any stuff. It was the stuff they stopped making. I have tried every recipe and I can guarantee that I will be trying this sans peppermint. It looks way too good to resist!

  4. Oh my — you are seriously tempting me to carve out a spot in our teeny-tiny freezer for ice cream. There is really nothing better than hot fudge on ice cream and I do think Santa would approve of the peppermint addition . . . (:

  5. Kelly

    Yum! Okay Deb, I’m going to tell you the secret to perfectly fluffed tissue paper, courtesy of my mom. Drum roll please… Unfold the sheet so you have a big, flat square, and then pinch in it the middle, pick it up by the pinched part, and give it a little flick of the wrist. Voila! Happy holidays!

  6. Angela

    I love golden syrup! It’s fantastic on a pile of pomegranate seeds that are just a little bit tarter than usual. I believe it is the basis for treacle tart as mentioned in Harry Potter repeatedly.
    And the fudge sauce sounds very good too.

  7. Meg

    Could this be frozen in jars,so that I could freeze a bunch and take them out as gifts were needed in the coming months? Or do you think the consistency would be off once thawed? Looks AMAZING!!

  8. Kate

    Awesome recipes and self-deprecating holiday humor too? Win win. It’s nice to laugh about not having the perfect inner-Martha crafty gene!

    My aunt has been wrapping in brown craft paper with raffia “ribbon” for years. You’re in good company. :-)

  9. Susan B.

    My family’s traditional Christmas dessert was peppermint stick ice cream with hot fudge sauce. I think I’m going to have to give this a try. Can’t wait for news about your book!

  10. KY

    Welcome to the world of Golden Syrup! As someone with (most) family outside of the US we used to get it shipped from overseas. Luckily we just found it down at the IGA a couple months ago.

    Can’t wait to see how you use it.

  11. Katie

    Deb, if the only thing you can’t do in life is fluff tissue paper:

    a) You have nothing to worry about. Your other skills and graces are overabundant. :)

    b) I or any number of your devoted readers could always easily teach you in exchange for a cooking class/jar of peppermint fudge. (Having re-read the comments, you should send Kelly a jar!)

  12. tree town gal

    Deb, looks so delicious! Cannot wait to hear about cookbook news. I was hoping to prebuy for Christmas so do let us know! I think I will just wrap up a link to your website and tell them it’s coming!!! YEA!

  13. Deb

    I started laughing at the first paragraph. I can rid PCs of nasty viruses in minutes but I CANNOT master the art of putting fluffy tissue paper in gift bags. I guess I don’t have the right wrist-flicking genes :) I was also happy to see the reference to golden syrup, having recently bought some to make Mommukokur (Icelandic gingerbread cookies) for a Yankee swap Christmas gift. I can’t wait to make this peppermint hot fudge sauce for gifts for my co-workers!

  14. Paula B.

    Hot fudge sauce it’s in one of the four major food groups right, I mean the food pyramid, or whatever we use as a guide nowadays? Wonderful recipe (and post), the fudge can only be enhanced by the addition of the peppermint! Making this asap, thanks a bunch.

  15. Ana

    I just made a similar sauce to gift last week! Mine was no corn/golden syrup and all cocoa powder, really delicious from here:, but I may have to try yours next time to compare. Sounds great!

    Also, if you are not a fan of corn syrup but can’t get golden syrup, Not So Humble Pie has a great science-behind-the-sugar post regarding all different types of syrups and what they do in candy/sauce recipes, as well as how to make inverted syrup, an easy corn syrup substitute. Check it out here:

  16. Deb! You can not only fluff tissue paper, but zhoozh it. (I think that word is kind of hilarious because it’s so ridiculous, but it’s quite apt sometimes… you can zhoozh not only tissue paper, but bows, hair, dogs, flower arrangements, pillows… you see where I’m going with this.)

  17. laurie

    Happy Chanukah! I just finished making your applesauce in anticipation of tomorrow’s latkes. Mmmmmm. Hope you have a lovely holiday with your family and friends.

  18. Oh wow, those little jars look so delightful!

    That meat-pounding tool is “out of stock.” (I’m guessing this post may have had something to do with that!) What was it priced at, please? Just so I can keep an eye on my wallet.

    Merry Christmas to you and Jacob and his cute Daddy!

  19. I can’t fluff. Or tie. And it drives my poor mother crazy because she ties the best bows in the whole world. York Peppermint Patties are my favorite candy and I can only imagine that this is 10 billion times better. I know it says to reheat the hot fudge, but I’m guessing I’ll just eat it with a spoon.

  20. alexandra

    this looks delicious! golden syrup is a truly wonderful ingredient, having been raised by a Brit I was taught to always keep some in my kitchen cupboard. It’s easy to find online if you want/need it (I buy mine at & I bet it will be worth it for this recipe!

  21. BunnyMaz

    Now you have embraced the joy that is golden syrup, may this Brit suggest you try a warming Winter treat and cook up a golden sponge pudding? It’s a traditional steamed sponge in a syrup-based sauce and nothing warms you up on a cold day like a thick slab of it.

    Lyle’s golden syrup have a recipe on their website, I believe.

  22. Anna

    I don’t like any kind of mint products except the plant itself and toothpaste but the ice cream and sauce look great. I like the candy cane pieces and colors on top. Looks very ‘holiday’ Makes me wish I liked mint ..

  23. Kirsten

    I’m so happy to have another hot fudge recipe! I’ve been gifting the original you posted and your salted butter caramel sauce all month, but I did have a lot of trouble with separation and will be trying this one both with and without the mint. Thank you!

  24. Marjy

    I can, er, fluff, but mostly because I used to stuff and tie bows on teddy bears for a living, and they taught me the foolproof method. But since it involves a great deal of flipping the berebibboned object around, I don’t recommend it for anything fragile… I’m wondering how this would work with coconut cream (drat this recent respect for my dairy allergy)!

  25. Jo

    Deb, oh my how fabulous! I have to make this sauce, tonight even – tis the season to splurge no? But the reason I’m commenting is because I’m English and a lifelong aficionado of Golden Syrup – as Nigella states, it is a culinary triumph of Britain and whilst yes, you can use corn syrup as a texture/sweet substitute, the Real Deal Golden Syrup is a wonderful taste that cannot be replicated. I’m so happy that the wonderful Hole Foods had some (there is one of these magnificent stores in London and I’ve been lucky enough to go a couple of times on trips there – wow is all I can say!).

    Now you have some of that elusive amber nectar from the gods (and being American, I know you’ll appreciate the PNB element here) you absolutely MUST make this ice cream sauce from Nigella – You can weep with pleasure and kiss my feet for bringing it into your life later ;) xxx

  26. Bern

    Godlen syrup is an iconic Australian (well as far as I know it is Australian but I must check that) sugar-based syrup. Golden syrup dumplings are an Aussie favourite (just Google for recipes). Golden syrup is often used instead of or in addition to molasses, in recipes for gingerbread and other sweets.

  27. heidipie

    I worked at the Junior Mint factory! It was my first job out of college. A lot of overweight people worked there. I was the admin for the engineers who designed and maintained the machines that made the Junior Mints. Thanks to the magic of invert sugar, the centers stayed firm for 48 hours while the coating was sprayed on and the mints were tumbled and shined in what looked for all the world like a front-load dryer. The place could have been Continental Flange, for all the clock-punching and workers’ comp deductions.

    My boss had seen everything–he was one of America’s foremost in chocolate-processing technology, and was due to retire at the end of the year. He said to me one day, “Heidi, we don’t make the good stuff here, you know that, don’t you? But I’ve had the good stuff. Come here.” He led me to his desk, and reached behind the hanging files in the bottom left drawer for his top-secret special stash… of Brach’s foil-wrapped chocolate easter eggs.

    Happy holidays, Deb!

  28. Nicole

    So I bought these charmingly cute cookies at Trader Joes – the tiny waffle ones sandwiched with chocolate and edged with candy cane – and had no idea what to do with them. You know, the culinary version of buying the earrings before the outfit! And now – ta-da! A perfect pairing to serve alongside the cookies – well, to serve with the cookies prettily tucked in just so!

  29. karen

    Yummity. Not that I even have a good excuse like a cute toddler to keep me from production (do cranky teens count?), but I might have to find time to try this: QUICK! I can see tying a candy cane to the jar as the perfect way to suggest how to gild the lily! Happy Holidays, Deb!

  30. I have some leftover candy canes and chocolate coins sitting on the side just begging to be made into this sauce! Not only is it delicious, it also works well in using up unwanted sweets from people’s stockings…perfect :-)

  31. Bea

    Deb, please do a holiday gift idea post/recipe bank! I would love love love to see your favorite collection of gift-worthy treats that package well and would be well received by all! (And this fudge sauce looks divine, but I’ll be travelling with my home-cooked holiday gifts, so liquids aren’t a good idea.)

    1. deb

      Hi Bea — I have one here, but it’s seriously out of date. I’ll see if I have time to tune it up tonight.

      heidipie — Thank you for sharing! It sounds just as heavenly as I imagined.

      Marti — I don’t remember the price, but it was a little high. There are less expensive versions on Amazon. I just… it just works so well. You know, until I drop it on my foot.

  32. MIT

    I go to MIT, and there is a Junior Mint factory right by our campus!! I swear the smell is more distinct on cold, winter nights, and it really is a comforting scent. The candy was actually founded here in Cambridge, and is now made by Cambridge Brands Manufacturing, which also makes Tootsie Rolls, Dots, and Charleston Chews.

  33. I made a rum caramel sauce last year for gifts that was so well received that I was a bit worried this year but we’re on the same page and yours looks so good I’m comforted that friends and family will enjoy this just as much. I added a touch of dried espresso to mine; I just think espresso always ups the chocolate intensity just a bit without making it really taste like coffee. Or so I’m hoping! This year, for my family and friends it’s sauce, liqueurs and my most favorite homemade gift of all? Bacon. Yes, that’s right I am gifting home cured and smoked bacon. Crossing fingers they get it when they open it but sure they will once they fry it. :)

  34. Theresa

    Hi Deb, long long time lurker, first time commenter… Question for you, my son doesn’t eat refined sugars and I was wondering if I could sub in Agave for the golden syrup and palm sugar for the brown sugar? Thanks in advance!

  35. I don’t normally go for anything that is chocolate/mint. I tend to think it tastes like toothpaste, ruining the flavor of the chocolate itself. But I can see this sauce being absolutely amazing, especially if you use top quality ingredients. And very Christmasy too!

  36. Catherine

    I was just about to suggest you make Nigella’s peanut butter and chocolate fudge sauce, but Jo beat me to it! I attribute this stuff to my summer weight gain last year (it’s that addictive and glorious). Golden syrup is honestly one of the best culinary discoveries here in the US. I used it in lieu of corn syrup to make your marshmallows (highly recommended). Happy Hanukkah!

  37. S K

    You’re giving me an eye twitch here! After the loads and loads of advance Chanukkah & Christmas baking for people going out of town, I swore I’d never bake another cookie again- but now you give me this and expect me to adhere to my kitchen hiatus? Hogwash. The peppermint meringues I made stole the show, and I’m sure this will go over just as well with that special someone. :) Around this time last year I made the switch from corn syrup to golden syrup and have never looked back. Immense improvement in taste, and surprisingly enough it’s readily available here in Houston even in the mainstream grocery stores.

    *is definitely not cooing in glee over those ickle fudge jars*

  38. Wren

    Does anyone have any idea whether this would hold up in the mail from Arizona to Illinois? Because I think this would make an (extraordinarily) last-minute gift for a friend who’s over the river and through the woods.

  39. Kim

    An excellent way to use golden syrup! Bon Appetit has a great recipe for British flapjacks (granola bar-esque in character) using golden syrup. They’re excellent with tea!

  40. Amy in StL

    I discovered Golden Syrup two years ago when my boyfriend wanted some kind of snack for his trout trip with the guys. I made British flapjacks and they were a huge hit, apparently going well with coffee and with beer. I’ll have to try this sauce since I now always have a bottle of the stuff in my pantry!

  41. Diane

    Deb, I just want to take a second to wish you and yours a happy holiday season, and to thank you for all of your “curated content” over the years. You are my favorite food (and kid) blogger, and I am so grateful for your honest work. Yours will be the first (and maybe only) blogger cookbook I buy. Your recipes have never failed me, nor let me fail them.

    I just moved to CA from TX, and am adjusting to my son’s crappy kitchen, and I haven’t even baked a batch of cookies yet – you are waaay ahead of me this year. Maybe I’ll get it together at the last minute…

  42. This looks amazing! But I have to say – I actually live near the Junior Mint factory and that smell loses its charm after you’ve experienced it for a few mornings in a row…

  43. From the UK:

    Love the idea of the sauce. I’ve just completed all my home-made hampers for this year but maybe this will be a late entrant for some people I won’t see until New Year.

    On the golden syrup: here in the UK, the market-leader is Lyles’ and it comes in the most beautiful tins – part of the pleasure of the product. If you get Lyle’s, it’s made solely from cane sugar.

    I love a small blob on top of my morning porridge. It’s also a vital ingredient in ‘flapjack’, which has nothing to do with US flapjack but translates into USA English as ‘oatmeal bar cookie’.

    Golden syrup is also a standard ingredient in Australia, but there it is a darker colour and has a more strongly caramel flavour.

    Lyle’s also does ‘treacle’, which is similar in taste to molasses but also an invert syrup and comes in a gorgeous red tin.

    Despite its name, ‘treacle tart’, as in Harry Potter, does not contain treacle. It’s filled with golden syrup and breadcrumbs. I think the nearest US thing would be a chess pie but I’ve not yet made a chess pie so I’m not sure.

  44. I love the addition of peppermint to this traditional recipe for hot fudge! chocolate and peppermint is one of my favorite flavor combinations. :) This opens up the possibility for hot fudge of many different flavor infusions!

    1. deb

      Heather — I found them online. I was so sure I was going to be on top of things this year, I grabbed a bunch of small boxes (for cookie gifts), clear plastic gift bags, etc. etc. so I’d be ready, for once. And then, ultimately, I turned back into my last-minute rushing, disorganized self. I always do. :)

  45. For the last three years, Goodberry’s Peppermint Frozen Custard topped with a homemade peppermint hot fudge sauce over brownies was our go-to Christmas dessert for my mom’s side. This year we did something different, and I sorely missed it. Maybe I’ll bust out this awesome version for Christmas Eve!

  46. Elisa

    First, Happy Channukah to you and your family!!

    I’m so excited about this hot fudge. I made hot fudge the other day with fluff and it came out, well, not so “hot” if you get my drift. This looks divine.

    Word to the wise,if it looks REALLY easy to make something that you think shouldn’t be, don’t make it!!! LOL

  47. Elaine

    I’m having people over next Sunday afternoon for delivered Chinese food, aka, Jewish Christmas. I will go to the VAST trouble of making this sauce and offering it with ice cream for a homemade dessert worthy of all holidays.

    Never have I so looked forward to a cookbook as to yours. I feel as if it were written by a friend. A friend who is a terrific cook, and understands small kitchens and no time.
    I still miss Gourmet magazine myself.
    Best wishes for Kwanzaa, Chanukah, Christmas, and the New Year.

  48. Mame M.

    I am so so so GIDDY for your cookbook!!
    This looks delicious – I am so excited I just made your peanut butter cookies for a cookie exchange tonight!!

    p.s. WOOPS – the link for your freaking cute tags doesn’t work?

  49. huw

    Of the three cookery blogs I ve followed you are the only one that still gives recipes as well as lovely writing. Thank you.
    I ll stick with you as long as the recipes keep coming – the other two can just go whistle.

  50. delurking because i just have to say wow – i ALSO just discovered this about the syrup – which my mother and her college roommate (it’s been around a LONG TIME) used to always call ‘dead lion syrup’ !! i am so excited to try this.. and caramels… and well all sorts of things formally off limits in an effort to avoid corn syrup *happydance*

  51. Char

    THIS LOOKS AMAZING. I’m all about peppermint ice cream during the holiday season, and this looks like the -perfect- thing to spoon over the top!

    Also, two years ago I gave hot fudge sauce as gifts, and it worked well. I just made a label for the jar, saying it needed to be refrigerated. Easy peasy and everyone loved it!

  52. Arti

    Deb–Thanks for your quick reply. They are adorable. Happy holidays to you and your family. You have made our lives sweeter everyday quite literally.As grownups we allowed ourselves to eat the brownie cutout cookies and cold milk for dinner this week :) I told my husband I would go meet you when you came to Seattle for the book signing (hint, hint- please do!) and he was surprised that I would –I don’t do book signings but for yours, I will stand in a queue.

  53. Amanda

    Walked in the door from work and went immediately to the kitchen to make this. Less than a half hour later my holiday gifts for the office are cooling on the counter and I’m snuggling into bed for some reality TV. THANK YOU!!

  54. Sarah

    Deb- Do you think it’s too much dairy to withstand shipping for 3 days? Will it spoil? My sister is a major peppermint patty fan and I know she would love this, but sadly for me she doesn’t live next door, but thousands of miles away. Advice?

  55. April

    Re: Freezing:
    Deb and Meg, I make the hot fudge by Wendy Kalen from Fine Cooking and have always frozen it in half-pint canning jars with no change in texture at all. The recipe I use has more corn syrup, chocolate, and butter than this recipe, so you could try freezing a small amount for a couple of days to be sure. I leave a little empty space at the top of the jar because it expands when it freezes, and thaw overnight in the fridge. I microwave it to rewarm, then stir. Thanks for the recipe!

  56. jessica

    thanks for posting this…at just the right time! the perfect, simple homemade gift! i just made a batch and the consistency is spot on. i’m not sure if my peppermint extract is on the weak side (definitely possible), but next time i make this i’ll definitely add more peppermint to the batch.

  57. *stepho*

    For anyone who lives near a Fresh & Easy — you can buy Golden Syrup and other delish UK items there. All conveniently in the same aisle!

    Deb, thank you so much for posting this recipe!!! Totally solves my last minute gift stress.

  58. Rose

    I didn’t have golden syrup or corn syrup so I used maple syrup (milder grade A) and it is fantastic! I was afraid it would taste too maple-y and conflict with the peppermint, but it didn’t at all. The maple isn’t identifiable, but just adds goodness. Great, easy recipe.

  59. Note about golden syrup: fresh and easy markets have golden syrup for a very fair price…
    I spied golden syrup in whole foods a couple months back and it was WAY more expensive.
    Sadly, raised on Price Is Right as a child these are the small things I inexplicably remember. And oh yes, golden syrup is divine.

  60. Pattyk

    I use Lyle’s golden syrup in my pecan pie, and it is so delicious. The syrup flavor is so perfect with butter and pecans. Thanks for this recipe.

  61. UGH!!! Just when I think I’m done with gifts…all caught up on sales, canned drunken cherries tied up with ribbons and labels, presents wrapped and bowed beautifully ( I prefer boxes because tissue paper is my nemesis), cookies baked and waiting to be eaten…along comes a fudge sauce that screams YOU MUST MAKE ME TO GIVE TO YOUR FRIENDS BECAUSE I AM PERFECT AND THEY WILL LOVE ME!!
    yup….I know what I’m doing tonight.
    :-) Happy Hannukkah!

  62. Mary

    I made this last night! It is delicious. I had no golden syrup so I used a 1/4 cup of light corn syrup and a 1/4 cup of dark corn syrup…that’s sort of golden, right? Anyway it is a very very good sauce.

  63. Darlynne

    Re: canning and dairy. I admit I’m a little freaked out about the perils of combining the two. Does the same apply to your dark caramel sauce? I made a batch for gifting and was going to include this sauce, too, but perhaps that’s not a good idea?

  64. Lucy

    This looks great and it’s so good to see you embracing golden syrup – a standard staple in the UK, as you point out, both in cooking, and on toast and crumpets. Does this mean we can use golden syrup when your other recipes specify corn syrup?! Happy Christmas!

  65. I’ve found Lyle’s golden syrup inconsistently in Southern California, but it is far superior in flavor to corn syrup. For a more healthful option, I love using brown rice syrup which is very easy to find in most Whole Foods stores. It has somewhat of a butterscotch flavor and I love it in pecan pie, granola, rice pudding and granola bars.

  66. Marie M.C.

    I am closing my eyes to the to-die-for pictures of your hot fudge sauce. There. Closed. I’ve already used up my calorie quotient for the month of December and we still have ten days left. Yes, they would make wonderful gifts but how could I have the will power to give them away? No way, Jose. (I’m making fresh Cranberry Relish — I think. After all, I still have four days left, right?) The picture of Jacob in his Fair Isle sweater is adorable. I think I see Mommy’s chin? Sooo cute and that hair! Happy Hanukkah! Merry Christmas, all!

  67. Stephanie

    Oh how I miss Golden Syrup. A semester in Samoa is the only time I’ve had it/seen it. Could not resist spoonfuls straight out of the can. I will now start stalking Whole Foods and every specialty store around until I can find it. Or might order, as you kindly provided links :)

    Was there for Passover (the two Jews in the program doubled the resident Jewish population of the country!), and will never forget our “loli popo” to replace macaroons. Coconut freshly scraped using the dedicated coconut scraping bench, dropped in scoops into boiling Golden Syrup and then set out to cool.

    Now another use for it when I get hold of it!

    Happy Hanukkah!

  68. Raj

    Wow, this looks and reads so tasty. I am planning this couple of days of break to try some new desserts and this has been added on. Can;t wait to get my hands…wait my mouth on this. :-)

  69. Lee

    I’ve been doing brown wrapping paper for years–it’s my signature. I think it looks so lovely and sophisticated in a sea of busy patterns and colors. Plus it shows off pretty ribbons and bows, or twine. This year I have brown paper with thin lines printed on it. So pretty.

  70. We don’t like to be rushed, either… My son’s preschool teachers will be getting “Happy New Year” gifts.

    After school starts back in January.

    And I genuinely love the rustic look. I may go for this hot fudge sauce instead of my usual hot chocolate mix. Looks yummy!

  71. Bethany

    Debated with much angst about trying this new-to-me recipe, as my mom already makes a wicked good chocolate syrup, albeit without peppermint. But then my dad told me ‘less soul searching, more chocolate’. I DID make yours this morning, and it’s SOOOOO GOOOD! But you know that. ;o) Thank you, and Happy Hanukah, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year (oh, and my 2-yr old says, simply…’more!’)!!!

  72. Hi,
    First things first.
    I am from India and a keen admirer of your blog.
    When I see more than 150 comments on your pages, I am plagued with the thought, you are not going to see mine at this rate.

    But I want to appreciate your blog and say that you have a follower from here!

  73. Lori

    Made this last night with chipotle chocolate chips and left out the peppermint extract. Yumm over vanilla ice cream and I intend to try it out on dulce de leche ice cream as soon as I have a chance. My family has spent many Christmases in southern Mexico so this tasted like Christmas to me!

  74. Colleen

    Deb, I love all things peppermint and will be making this hot fudge sauce soon and I am sure frequently. Also I love the golden syrup find, as I am trying to cut the corn syrup sweetener out of my life, so I wonder if this product works as a light corn syrup substitution in hard candy.

  75. Naomi

    Oh, thank you! Now I have something to give to my gluten free friends, and to family members I had no idea what to give last minute. This looks yum and I can’t wait to make it.

  76. This is one of those ideas that’s so deceptively simple, you wonder why you didn’t think of it first! I love peppermint in everything this time of year– coffee, hot cocoa, mixed drinks, you name it– but never even considered adding it to hot fudge. Of course now I’m trying to concoct a peppermint hot fudge adult beverage for these cold holiday nights…

  77. Kara

    This sauce is so good! I just made it. Didn’t have peppermint extract, so I broke up a candy cane and melted it in with the cream. So yummy. Thanks!

  78. Tamara

    I can’t believe how ridiculously simple this was (why did I think it would be hard?!). I made with light corn syrup and it was delish. And then, of course, I found the golden syrup at the local grocery store ( Giant Eagle) So I guess I have to make another batch- poor me..heehee. Thanks, again!

  79. If you ever come to Cambridge, MA, there is an actual Junior Mints factory between Kendall Square and Central Square. If you’re in just the right place, you breathe in, and you get this wonderful smell of mint. (and the vents from the T. But mint+vents >> just vents).

  80. Susan B.

    Best. Hot. Fudge. Sauce. Ever. I made it for Christmas without the peppermint extract (for those in my family who prefer their hot fudge straight up, but served it with peppermint stick ice cream for those who like mint) and it was amazing. I found the Lyle’s golden syrup in the grocery and used Ghiradelli’s Double Chocolate chips for the bittersweet chocolate. I will be making this again. Definitely a keeper! Thank you so much for the recipe.

  81. BPalto

    I recently saw Lyle’s Golden Syrup at ShopRite in White Plains, so I assume all the stores have it. I didn’t check the price because I still have a big jar from Kalustyan’s in Manhattan. It’s wonderful – I’ve been using it instead of corn syrup in everything. The sauce looks great – next on my list to make.

  82. *stepho*


    Just wanted to say I made 2 double batches (one with and one without peppermint extract) of this hot fudge sauce and gave it away as holiday gifts…it was always met with delight and excitement! It even ended up gracing a couple holiday party tables. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

  83. Thanks Deb! I ended up boiling mine because my husband is a germaphobe. Haha! Anyway, this was a great idea, everyone who got the little jars loved them. Per usual, you were a huge hit!

    Happy New Year to you and your family!

  84. Kara

    This looks absolutely delicious. I will be making some as-is, but…

    I’m planning on making homemade oreos for a Valentine’s Days gift and would love to make a solid-ish at room temp version of this stuff. Can you suggest a modification?

  85. Oh my goodness, what a fantastic gift idea. I will have to add this to my list of things to make next year. Good call on the brown shipping paper. I use it every year and a roll usually lasts me through birthdays too.

  86. OMGosh! I stumbled upon this link a week or so before Christmas and realized I had just about everything needed to make this in my pantry. I was already baking that day and decided to make this, too. It has been such a hit! I gave it as gifts and kept some for myself. My hubby was unimpressed when I first told him what it was, but THEN he ate it. He loved it! He has been so excited to have ice cream! Thank you for this magnificent, delicious and simple recipe! It is a keeper and will be made again and again in our house!

  87. Ida Copenhagen

    Dear Deb

    Thanks for a wonderfull blog with so much cooking-joy and inspiration! Latest this sauce which I´m eating right now from the can, cold, with a spoon (or what was left of it in the fridge from yesterday) – tastes like peppermint truffels.
    -Works SO well on this gray dark scandinavian rainy january day..

  88. Peppermint extract is always a welcome addition to hot fudge, in my book. I do the cheap version of this – pour a drop or two of extract into a bowl of chocolate chips, whopped walnuts and a little but of butter, then nuke it for about a minute. Hardens up over the ice cream like magic shell, though not nearly as rich and silky as this looks!!

  89. Tracy

    The Gourmet recipe is my favorite hot fudge sauce – it’s awesome! I can’t do mint though because my hubby despises chocolate/mint combos, so I serve this for guests over peppermint ice cream. I had to laugh about your shipping paper! I forgot to get birthday paper for my cousin’s 6th birthday last month and the gift was too big for any of the gift bags I had on hand. (yes, I waited 10 minutes before we had to leave for the party to wrap it) I didn’t want to look cheap or tacky by using Christmas paper, so I desperately scrounged for something, and came up with a remnant of shipping paper. I let my 3 year old color it with crayons to make custom paper. I was totally shocked that it would receive a ton of compliments!

  90. I made this last night for a family party and we ate it on homemade vanilla ice cream. Everyone loved it, and more than one person was eating it by the spoonful sans ice cream. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

  91. Annette

    I made this (no peppermint extract) AND your chocolate toffee bit cookies yesterday. I chopped the chewy cookies into fairly large pieces, sprinkled some on the bottom of a bowl, then some vanilla ice cream, then lots of syrup and finally topped the whole thing off with some more chopped cookies and some whipping cream. The crowd went wild!

  92. Le

    I’m pregnant and had a huge craving for hot choc fudge, I made this with semi sweet choc and without peppermint (couldn’t find it at the shops) and it was the most wonderful thing ever, I am so satisfied now. It was so so good!

    Love your blog, thanks! Le

  93. CarolH

    I made this without the peppermint and it was amazing! Such good flavor and the perfect texture. Gets a little chewy with the ice cream. Very delicious !!

  94. luvmychaos

    It’s FATE I tell you! ! Decided today that I MUST try to recrea te Bob’Big Boy Hot FUDGE cake and have been scouring internet for copycat recipes. Of course can’t find one. so I decided to use your chocolate cake recipe from the peanut butter ganache glazed behemoth of a choc cake as a base and stumbled on your previous recipe for hot fudge and then this one.The fate part is that I randomly bought a jar of golden syrup the other day with no real reason why,other than I vaguely remembered seeing it in a few recipes lately,so a hot fudge cake makin I will go! ! So it will now be a Smitten Kitchen version of a Bob’s Hot Fudge Cake! !

  95. Cheryl

    I’ve had a craving for hot fudge and since the nearest McD’s is 40 minutes away, I decided to make my own. I had all the ingredients, except golden syrup (I usually do have it and I hope they don’t revoke my Australain citizenship!) and we don’t use corn syrup here. I used real Canadian maple syrup instead and no peppermint. OH MY GOSH!!! It’s divine. Probably not quite as thick as it might have been with golden syrup (or let it cool down more), but delicious just the same. So quick and easy!

  96. Aswaddell

    Made this today (sans the peppermint) to go over David Lebovitz’s maple walnut ice cream–so so good. I used brown rice syrup for the corn syrup, and coconut sugar for the brown sugar; worked perfect! Always love your recipes/posts–thanks once again :)

  97. Kathy in St. Louis

    Hey, wow, I adore this recipe. For anyone still making last-minute gifts and gathering others’ experiences here: I used two drops of peppermint essential oil instead of extract and got a gentle, clean, complimentary flavor. (Added vanilla extract as well.)

  98. Susan

    Made this tonight. Just wanted to let you know that it works beautifully using half and half instead of the heavy cream. Would probably work using regular whole milk, as well. Delish!

  99. Homemade chocolate sauce is the best. I used to beg my Mum to make it as a kid. We used to make a thinner sauce rather than fudge. I think it was just cocoa, milk, butter, and sugar. It was still delicious!

  100. Shruti

    I’m looking for a fudge sauce to drizzle into the ice cream maker when making chocolate ice cream. I love fudge rippled ice cream! Would this work for that?

  101. Randi

    I have been dreaming about this recipe since you posted it approximately eleventy hundred years ago and this is finally the year! I’m so excited I can hardly stand it! Little baby quilted jelly jars will be on the way to my work friends next week! Yay Christmas! Happy Hanukkah!

  102. John

    I tried this and the cocoa butter separated and the chocolate became a giant lump in the pan. What went wrong? I followed the directions exactly.

  103. Susan B.

    This is our go-to hot fudge sauce. I made it again for Christmas dinner this year. I don’t put the peppermint extract in but give guests the option of peppermint stick ice cream for dessert. Thanks for the recipe, Deb!

  104. Randi

    That comment of mine about making this in 2014, we have actually just eaten some of ours from then and we’re still okay. I’m going to try the next batch with coconut oil instead of butter and coconut extract! For summery fudgy eating! YUM! Chewy goodness.

  105. Jan

    My tradition is Peppermint Ice Cream with Hot Fudge Sauce. I’m going to make my own this year since the local one I would buy is pepto-bismal pink. Peppermint and chocolate: a match made in heaven!

  106. Jen

    I made a double batch of this as a christmas gift for several family members and it’s so delicious! Intensely chocolatey and rich from the butter and cream. I poured it into 4-ounce canning jars and got 8 jars plus a tiny bit extra for the cook. I didn’t do the peppermint because I wasn’t sure if everyone would enjoy that flavor as much as I do, so instead I just added a splash of vanilla (maybe a tsp for the double batch?). I used a good quality bittersweet chocolate so it’s not overly sweet. If you like your hot fudge sweeter I’d go with a sweeter chocolate, like semi-sweet. (Or possibly add more sugar? Would that change the chemistry of the recipe at all?) Thanks once again for an amazing recipe, Deb!

  107. Amber Young

    Just made this for friends tonight! Obviously everyone loved it. One friend was sticking her spoon in post-ice cream. This was after our delicious chicken pot pie dinner – also yours. Thanks Deb for another wonderful recipe!

  108. Helena Iansdottir

    I know this post is old now but please please tell me you have since made flapjacks and matilda cake using golden syrup Deb! x

  109. darcylewandowski

    I’ve been making this hot fudge for years (usually without the peppermint) and I LOVE it- it’s like warm brownie batter! I was thinking of using it instead of just melted chocolate in mint ice cream to make stracciatella. Is there any reason to think that it wouldn’t freeze correctly in the ice cream maker to do that? I’d hate to mess up a batch of ice cream OR this delicious hot fudge! Thanks for the great recipe!

  110. Ann

    I made this with what I had on hand – 1/4 cup corn syrup and the rest honey – and no peppermint extract in case the recipients don’t care for it. It is absolutely delicious! The batch filled three little IKEA Korken jars to the brim, with a bit leftover for tasting.

  111. Wendy+Osborne

    The New Yorker interview is wonderful. Only thing missing is my favorite picture of a pudgy toddler hand touching something yummy! Plus I trust your enthusiasm for sweets now that I see you are not a svelte, coiffed blonde.

  112. Amy

    I am wondering if there is a recommendation for “best tasting” peppermint extract. The mainstream commercial brand I used recently tasted too artificial! I am wondering if homemade might work better…?

    1. deb

      I’ve never made it from scratch but I have three different bottles right now (don’t ask) — Fresh Direct (our grocery brand), McCormick, and Nielsen Massey and I’d say the second two are clear favorites, and I lean a little more towards the McCormick, which seems less harsh.