Chocolate Sauce Recipe

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This 4-ingredient Chocolate Sauce Recipe is the perfect topping for cake, ice cream, hot chocolate, or any homemade dessert. It’s glossy and luscious, easy to make, and delicious to eat!

Chocolate syrup being drizzled onto vanilla ice cream.


 

A good homemade Chocolate Sauce can take desserts and drinks over the top. It’s delicious on ice cream (or on ice cream on Brownies), of course, but it’s also amazing on lightly sweetened desserts like Pound Cake, Vanilla Cheesecake, and Hot Milk Cake.

Use Chocolate Sauce in a variety of cocktails, too, like a Mudslide, S’mores Chocolate Martini, or an Espresso Martini. And old-fashioned Hot Chocolate doesn’t mind a drizzle for extra chocolate flavor, either.

To take a page out of the 80’s, try Chocolate Sauce on cereal (especially Rice Krispies and Corn Flakes), dip it with graham crackers, drizzle it over a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or mix into your next glass of chocolate milk.

Recipe ingredients

Labeled ingredients for chocolate sauce.

At a Glance: Here is a quick snapshot of what ingredients are in this recipe.
Please see the recipe card below for specific quantities.

Ingredient notes

  • Butter:  I tend to keep salted butter on hand (and I prefer the taste) so that’s what I use here, but unsalted butter is fine too. 
  • Corn syrup: Corn syrup adds viscosity, sweetness, and shine to the somewhat matte, bitter chocolate. It helps to “gloss the sauce.” You may also substitute maple syrup (it will change the flavor). Note, corn syrup is not the same as high fructose corn syrup.
  • Chocolate: Chocolate baking bars are the best option because chocolate chips contain stabilizers to hold their shape. They also do not have as much cocoa butter, therefore the sauce will not be as luscious and smooth. However, if chocolate chips are all you have on hand, you would need 1 ½ cups chocolate chips to equal 8 ounces of baking chocolate.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. In a small sauce pan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add cream and corn syrup and bring mixture to a boil.
Butter, corn syrup, and heavy cream cooking in a metal pot.
  1. Remove from heat, stir in chocolate, and cover for 5 minutes.
Someone stirring ingredients for chocolate syrup in a metal saucepan.
  1. Whisk until chocolate is smooth.
Chocolate sauce on a spoon that is resting over a mason jar of chocolate sauce.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This recipe makes about 2 cups of chocolate sauce.
  • Storage: Store leftover Chocolate Sauce in an airtight container or jar with a lid in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in a bowl in the microwave for a few seconds or on the stove in a small saucepan over medium-low heat before serving.
  • Make ahead: The Chocolate Sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance.
  • Chocolate Fondue: Leave out the butter and the corn syrup, add a splash of vanilla, and you’ve got a tasty Chocolate Fondue for dipping almost any treat under the sun.
  • Flavors: Try adding a teaspoon of vanilla extract, which gives the sauce that bit of sweetness you just can’t get from sugar. A pinch of salt also accentuates the sweetness of the chocolate. If you’re really feeling fancy, a splash of Cointreau will do just the trick as the subtle hint of orange pairs perfectly with the taste of the chocolate.
A piece of chocolate cake with chocolate sauce on top.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is chocolate sauce made of?

There are different ways to make it, but this recipe is made with butter, heavy cream, light corn syrup, and bittersweet chocolate.

Are chocolate syrup and chocolate sauce the same?

These terms might be used interchangeably, and the products can often be used interchangeably, but chocolate syrup is made with water and without fat, while chocolate sauce has fat added (usually in the form of dairy such as butter, cream, or both).

Why do you use corn syrup in chocolate sauce?

Corn syrup adds viscosity, sweetness, and shine to the bitter chocolate. We like to say it helps to “gloss the sauce.”

Put your chocolate sauce to work

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Chocolate sauce being drizzled on a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Chocolate Sauce Recipe

This 4-ingredient Chocolate Sauce Recipe is the perfect topping for cake, ice cream, hot chocolate, or any homemade dessert. It's glossy and luscious, easy to make, and delicious to eat!
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 16 servings (2 tbsp each)
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 150
5 from 8 votes

Ingredients 

Instructions 

  • In a small sauce pan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add cream and corn syrup and bring to a boil.
  • Remove from heat, stir in chocolate, and cover for 5 minutes. Whisk until chocolate is smooth.

Notes

  1. Corn syrup: Corn syrup adds viscosity, sweetness, and shine to the somewhat matte, bitter chocolate. It helps to “gloss the sauce.” You may also substitute maple syrup (it will change the flavor).
  2. Chocolate: Chocolate baking bars are the best option because chocolate chips contain stabilizers to hold their shape. They also do not have as much cocoa butter, therefore the sauce will not be as luscious and smooth. However, if chocolate chips are all you have on hand, you would need 1 ½ cups chocolate chips to equal 8 ounces of baking chocolate.
  3. Yield: This recipe makes about 2 cups of chocolate sauce.
  4. Storage: Store leftover Chocolate Sauce covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  5. Make ahead: The Chocolate Sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance.

Nutrition

Serving: 2tbspCalories: 150kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 1gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 15mgPotassium: 92mgFiber: 1gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 232IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 19mgIron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?Tag @culinaryhill on Instagram so we can admire your masterpiece! #culinaryhill
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Meggan Hill is a classically-trained chef and professional writer. Her meticulously-tested recipes and detailed tutorials bring confidence and success to home cooks everywhere. Meggan has been featured on NPR, HuffPost, FoxNews, LA Times, and more.

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Comments

  1. I find the chocolate sauce recipe very useful. Can I use it in my module? Thank you.

    1. Hi Mary Ann, thank you so much for writing! You can absolutely use my recipe for your module. Credit is appreciated, but not necessary for academic use. Thank you for asking and take care! – Meggan

  2. Should this be refrigerated…how long to reheat in microwave…and how long will this chocolate sauce keep?