STREAMING NOW: No Reservations

Dad's Fudge

Want more from Genius Kitchen?

Watch on your Apple TV, Roku, or Fire TV and your iOS, Fire, or Android device.

Learn More
“Years ago (possibly before I was even born), Dad decided that since he couldn't find a fudge recipe that incorporated the best of all of his favorite features to create his own recipe. This recipe is in response to a request on the boards. I made it today (twice to get the cooking directions written down for 'Zaar) in an attempt to accurately convey the directions, which have always been second nature to Mom and myself, but obviously would be inadequate to someone who had never seen it made. Initially, after discussing this with Mom, I planned to include candy thermometer directions, but after Dad's terminology with respect to candy thermometer terminology (my first batch today), I decided the traditional 'cold water test' we've always used would be best. Cook time does not include time to toast the nuts and is only approximate time of boiling the fudge. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as the 'menfolk' in our family do--they can't stop eating this If you reduce the cooking time to barely holding its form in the cold water test, it will make a delicious fudge frosting as well. Makes 1 8inch square or 8-inch round baking pan.”
1 8inch pan

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 12 cups whole milk
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 12 cup nuts, broken into pieces and toasted (Black walnuts, butternuts, pecans or English walnuts; we prefer black walnuts. approximately 2-ounce) (optional)
  • 18 -20 whole nutmeats, for garnish (optional)


  1. Before beginning to cook fudge, be sure to have an 8-inch square or round baking dish buttered (do not use non-stick cooking spray).
  2. Have hand held electric mixer set up and ready to use.
  3. Have butter, vanilla and nuts measured and ready to add.
  4. If you wish to have the nuts in the fudge, toast them in the oven at 350 deg F for 10 minutes shaking after the first 5 minutes.
  5. Set nuts aside to cool.
  6. Measure sugar, cocoa and salt into a 4-quart heavy bottom saucepan (I use either my aluminum-clad or copper-clad stainless steel dutch oven).
  7. Note: If the saucepan is smaller than this you will need to reduce the recipe or it will boil over!
  8. Blend together dry ingredients in saucepan, then add the milk, stirring until blended.
  9. Bring to a rolling boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon.
  10. Note: If mixture is spattering out of pan, reduce heat slightly.
  11. (Because of spattering, I like to use my long handled wooden spoons.) Boil until mixture forms a soft ball when tested in cold water.
  12. Remove from heat.
  13. Immediately add butter, vanilla and toasted nuts, if desired.
  14. Beat at high speed with electric hand-mixer until fudge begins to stiffen.
  15. Quickly, dump into prepared, buttered pan scraping sides of saucepan and spread evenly.
  16. Fudge will lose its gloss during this last step.
  17. While still warm, cut into desired servings.
  18. Garnish the top of each serving with a whole nut meats if desired.
  19. Attention: If the stiffening and loss of gloss occur simultaneously you have overcooked it.
  20. All is not lost, return to saucepan, add an additional tablespoon butter and 2 tablespoons milk and melt until smooth over medium heat (fudge will still be edible, but will be somewhat sugary if this becomes necessary).

Watch more

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a