Fudge is fabulous. It is a decadent indulgence, it is special but not snobby, it makes a lovely gift. You knew all that but did you know that fudge is also incredible easy and quick to make?
This quick and simple fudge recipe is one of my go-to recipes during the holidays. It takes just a few moments to whip up and toss in the fridge. When it’s set, slice it up and you’re all set, too. It’s also really versatile, and you can add in or top it with a few different items to mix it up.
Quick and Simple Fudge Recipe
Combine 1 12 oz. package of Nestle chocolate chips (2 cups) with 1 14 oz. can of Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk.*
Microwave on high for 3 minutes. (This is a good time to line your pan with foil.)
Stir in 1 1/2 t. vanilla extract until mixture is shiny.
Pour into an 8×8 pan lined with foil.
Once you remove it from the foil, I find it is easiest to cut with a knife run under some warm water. I cut the pieces pretty small. A little fudge goes a long way.
It is easy, almost embarrassingly so. After receiving it as a gift, a few people have asked for the recipe and I have the split second of “oh no, they’ll know that this required little time and minimal effort” panic. I get over that, pass it along and they’ve all been thrilled to learn how easy it is.
Mix it up with some fun mix-ins
I also feel a bit less guilty when I’ve mixed in something to make extra festive. Why not gild the
lily poinsettia? Here are some good mix-in options:
– nuts such as walnuts (or whatever nuts make you happy, really),
– crumbled pretzels,
– Heath toffee chunks,
– other chopped candy bars like Butterfinger or Snickers, or
– crushed candy canes or peppermint candies (and a small dash of peppermint extract with half the amount of vanilla, or go whole hog and all peppermint if you’re a big fan)
At Christmastime, though, my favorite is to sprinkle crushed candy cane pieces on top of the fudge before putting it in the refrigerator. It’s pretty and tasty. You can crush the candy canes yourself by them in a bag and going at it with a rolling pin or, if you’re feeling an inordinate amount of holiday stress, a meat mallet. It’s possible that it will make a few holes in the bag but it’s totally worth it. This is also a job you can have your kids do while the microwave is running.
I’ll give out fudge to pretty much everyone – from dance teachers to the UPS guy, it’s a nice addition to a small gift or even just elevates a handwritten notes of thanks and appreciation in a holiday card.
* Let’s talk brands. I don’t know why, but my mom said that when she got this recipe from a friend, the brands were specified and the friend stressed using just Nestle and Eagle Brand. I have made it with different brands and it could be entirely psychosomatic, but really, it just wasn’t quite as good. I can’t exactly pinpoint why. So, feel free to use whatever brand floats your boat or lights the star atop your tree. I’m just passing on the recipe as it was given to me, brands and all. (Also, not sponsored. If Nestle was sending me chocolate, trust me, you’d know. I’d be shouting that career achievement from the rooftops.)
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