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Cooked Fudge Icing

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Super simple and really fudgy, this cooked fudge icing is the perfect topping for brownies, rice krispie treats and skillet cookies!

Stack of peanut butter rice Krispie treats topped with hardened homemade fudge icing.

This easy fudge icing has been a staple since my childhood.  My aunt taught me to make it and we’ve been putting it on everything ever since. 

It is a simple recipe that comes together in a few minutes in a saucepan. Then it can be poured over your favorite dessert.  It sets firm, pours easily and tastes rich and fudgy.

I am going to warn you, this frosting is really good.

Ingredients including milk, sugar, cocoa powder and butter, ready to be made into fudge icing.

The worst part is once you realize how easy it is, you won’t be able to stop making it (and licking the spoon, and the pan, and your fingers…)

I can still remember my Aunt Marlene teaching me this recipe.  I was still in grade school and after I knew how simple it was to make such a delicious frosting, I was armed and dangerous!

recipe written in child's handwriting

It is simple enough to commit to memory and very easily adapts into a hot fudge sauce (try it over peppermint ice cream in the winter… oh my!)

I still remember her teaching me to cool it in an ice water bath if you wanted to use it more quickly.  It was then my contribution to the family cookbook when that came out.

My favorite way to use this frosting is over rice krispie treats, but it also is a great way to take your pan of brownies up to the next level!

This recipe is sized perfectly to give a nice layer of fudgy frosting to a 9×9 pan.  Though I am sure you could easily spread it out over a 9×13 of brownies if you wanted a thin layer of frosting.

9x13-inch pan of brownies topped with thin layer of fudge icing and chopped peanut butter cups.

I have been anxious to make this for you guys as it has been a favorite for so many years, so I finally made a batch of maple peanut butter krispie treats and it was amazing!

Stack of peanut butter rice Krispie treats topped with hardened homemade fudge icing.

Marlene’s Fudge Icing

Servings: 12 Servings
Author: Carlee
Super simple and really fudgy, this frosting is the perfect topping for brownies, rice krispie treats and skillet cookies!
5 from 11 ratings
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 12 minutes


  • ½ cup butter
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder


  • Place all ingredients in a sauce pan and heat over medium low heat.
    ½ cup butter, ¼ cup milk, 1 cup granulated sugar, ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • Stirring occasionally, bring the mixture to a boil. Allow to boil for 3 minutes, then remove from heat.
  • The frosting will be really hot, so you will want to let it cool for a while before you spread it over anything. You can place the saucepan in an ice water bath and stir occasionally if you would like to speed the process.



Serving: 1ServingCalories: 142kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 1gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 64mgSugar: 17g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Cooking With Carlee” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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Recipe Rating


Tuesday 23rd of April 2024

This is the best you must try this!


Wednesday 20th of June 2018

This recipe is something I have to make soon! But I am unsure how to use it. Will it frost a cake? If I put it in a dish of ice water and whip it, will it turn into fudge that you cut into squares? Thanks!


Sunday 24th of June 2018

I usually use it as a frosting for a small pan brownies or rice krispie treats. I have never tried making fudge out of it, but I do use it as hot fudge for sundaes as well!


Tuesday 7th of July 2015

You're mom cracked me up!

This looks good... I've been pinning away all the recipes that I've missed :)



Tuesday 7th of July 2015

She knows me a little too well!


Friday 3rd of July 2015

Are you feeling ok Carlee? It is very unlike you not to suggest doubling the recipe for a 9x13 pan. Fun post and a great recipe. Love that you included that recipe card.


Friday 3rd of July 2015

I guess when you're making new sweets every day, a 9x13 is unnecessary! But it is great doubled for a 9x13! Or just doubled so you can leave plenty in the pan to eat with a spoon!