This Chocolate Syrup Recipe is so easy to make that you will never run to the store for chocolate syrup again! Plus, you can make it as thick or thin as you prefer. It’s perfect to add to a plate of my Banana Split Nachos or be the star of my Chocolate Syrup Mug Cake!


Pouring Chocolate Syrup into Jar and it Spilling Over Edge

Chocolate Syrup

When you look back in history, chocolate syrup wasn’t used to sweeten your favorite desserts. In fact, in the late 1800s, cocoa was made into a syrup to mask the unpleasant flavors of some medicines! Lucky for us, chocolate syrup soon became packaged for home use (think Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup)  and is now used on all our favorite treats! Even better yet, you can make your own!

Raw Ingredients for Homemade Chocolate Fudge Sauce on White Plate

Ingredients & Substitutions

  • Cocoa Powder – I used standard unsweetened cocoa powder, no particular brand. You can use Dutch Process for a richer flavor.
  • Granulated Sugar – I have not personally tested this recipe with artificial or sugar-free sweeteners, but many readers have stated that it will work.
  • Water – The substitutions for water are vast! We have tried coffee in place of water as well as milk. Some readers have also used carnation milk or evaporated milk. You can really play around with this particular ingredient substitution.
  • Salt – I prefer kosher salt, but if you are using table salt use half the amount listed.

Spoonful of Homemade Chocolate Fudge Sauce that is in a White Square Container

Chocolate Ganache vs. Syrup

Chocolate ganache is generally thicker and shinier than chocolate syrup. It is also usually just made with two ingredients–heavy cream and chocolate. The longer you let chocolate ganache rest, the thicker it will be, which makes it great for cake filling, truffles, and frosting that hardens as it cools. 

Chocolate Syrup will also harden a bit as you let it cool, so it could be used as a dairy-free ganache. It would be an excellent frosting, although I would not recommend making truffles with this recipe.

Pouring Homemade Chocolate Sauce into Milk and Making Chocolate Milk

How to Make Chocolate Milk with Chocolate Syrup 

This chocolate sauce is basically a replacement for Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup!

To make some of the most decadent and rich chocolate milk of your life, just add 2-3 tablespoons to 8 ounces of cold milk. Stir and enjoy it! Easy peasy!

If you want a simpler version of a delicious Homemade Chocolate Milk, <— try this one! 

Looking for More of the Best Chocolate Milk Recipes?

As mentioned earlier, making your own chocolate milk is probably your best bet when it comes to making it fit your nutritional needs. This syrup recipe is great because it can be added to milk in your desired amount. The same goes for my chocolate milk powder. With no preservatives, you know exactly what is going in the powder and you can tweak it as you see fit. 

How to Store the Syrup

Once the syrup has cooled, you can scrape it out of the saucepan and into your airtight container. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. If you start to notice a film on top, discard it immediately.

Can You Freeze Homemade Chocolate Syrup?

Yes! I like to put it in freezer-safe sealable plastic bags and remove as much air as possible. Be sure to label and date. It should last about 6 months in the freezer. To thaw, place in the refrigerator.

More Syrups and Sauces

5 from 24 votes

Chocolate Syrup Recipe

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 3 minutes
Total Time 8 minutes
Make your own homemade chocolate syrup with just a few ingredients but lots of chocolate flavor to add to your favorite desserts!


  • ¾ cup (88.5g) cocoa powder
  • 1 cup (200g) sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • Combine the cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and water in a medium saucepan.
  • Put the saucepan over medium heat. Whisk constantly until the mixture thickens and begins to simmer.
  • Let it simmer for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add in the vanilla. It will thicken as it cools so don't worry if it seems thin.
  • Let the syrup cool before storing it in an airtight jar.

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. This recipe was awesome! I tweaked it slightly for my personal taste but I will never buy chocolate syrup again! I used milk instead of water, reduced the cocoa slightly, increased vanilla and added 1 tbsp of butter. Delicious!!

    1. Here is what it says in the post:

      “How to Store the Syrup
      Once the syrup has cooled, you can scrape it out of the saucepan and into your airtight container. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. If you start to notice a film on top, discard it immediately.”

  2. My grandson loves chocolate sauce on his ice cream so I thought I’d give this recipe a try and for sure I will be making it again. I followed the recipe as it was except I added a tablespoon of butter as one of the other replies did and it was perfect. Depending on the make of the cocoa you use, this sauce will taste different – I used the baking cocoa from Costco and loved it. Thank you for the recipe! Will try it on pancakes as well.

  3. I rarely use chocolate syrup and just needed some for a dessert. So glad I had the presence of mind to Google diy recipe for it, especially after making and testing yours – with about 1/2 Tb of butter. It’s delicious and much more cost effective than buying a large container of the brand name type!
    Thanks for including this recipe (including the options; eg. I’ll be trying coffee next time!) on your site!

  4. Thank you Amanda, there is no recipe that you have posted that I don’t like. They are all amazing. Love you recipe book too.

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