Homemade Fudge: 4 Common Mishaps and How to Avoid Them - Wockenfuss Candies (2024)

May 10, 2021

Homemade Fudge: 4 Common Mishaps and How to Avoid Them - Wockenfuss Candies (1)

Hint: one of the best ways to avoid common mistakes in homemade fudge is to leave fudge making up to the experts at Wockenfuss Candies!

Homemade fudge is a creamy, delicious treat. Chocolate fudge is a standard favorite, and there are countless variations and flavor combinations that bring some excitement to the world of homemade fudge. Although some recipes seem relatively straightforward, many home cooks have trouble creating the perfect fudge from scratch. In this blog, we discuss some of the most common challenges people face when making homemade fudge. Of course, one of the best ways to avoid these missteps is to leave fudge making up to the experts at Wockenfuss Candies!

Homemade Fudge Doesn’t Always Set

Traditional fudge is made by heating sugar, butter, milk, and other ingredients until the mixture reaches the soft-ball stage. Home cooks usually use a metal saucepan to do the job, with the final hot mixture spread into a casserole dish or sheet pan to cool. However, homemade fudge doesn’t always set up into a semi-firm, melt-in-your-mouth confection. If your fudge doesn’t firm up after a few hours, you either have too high an amount of liquid to sugar, or your mixture hasn’t reached the soft-ball stage. Using a candy thermometer can help home cooks avoid this problem.

Cooking in High Humidity Can Cause Problems

Just as altitude can create complications when baking, high humidity in the kitchen can lead to significant setbacks when making fudge. Humidity can cause fudge to boil over in the pan or stay soft when set, so try to avoid working on humid days if at all possible. If waiting for a less humid day isn’t feasible, you’ll need to boil your fudge at a slightly higher temperature than usual — or just order some delicious fudge from Wockenfuss!

Why Homemade Fudge Becomes Grainy

Even if your homemade fudge sets up to a nice firm consistency when cooled, you can still run into texture problems. Fudge becomes grainy and sugary when prepared incorrectly. Unfortunately, this is a common issue. To avoid grainy fudge, make sure that the sugar in your mixture dissolves entirely. This can require adjustments to your recipe or stirring technique.

How to Avoid Burning Your Fudge

As with any other confectionery endeavor, burning your fudge is a distinct possibility. Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan (some folks swear by copper pots) and stir the mixture constantly. Never leave your fudge unattended, and make sure to scrape the side of the pan as you stir. It’s hard (if not impossible) to save a burnt batch of fudge. Still, stopping by your nearest Wockenfuss Candies store is a surefire way to save the day!

A Wide Selection of Delicious Treats from Wockenfuss Candies

Head to WockenfussCandies.com and browse our wide selection of chocolates and candies; we promise you won’t be disappointed! Wockenfuss Candies is one of the oldest candy makers in Baltimore. We opened our doors in 1915 and have proudly served the people of Baltimore ever since. If you have any questions about our wide selection of chocolates, please contact Wockenfuss Candies by calling 1-800-296-4414 or email info@Wockenfusscandies.com. When you’re not savoring our sweets, stay satisfied by following us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest!

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Homemade Fudge: 4 Common Mishaps and How to Avoid Them - Wockenfuss Candies (2024)

FAQs

What can go wrong when making fudge? ›

7 Common Mistakes to Avoid for Candy Shop-Worthy Fudge and Caramels
  • Using the Wrong Pan. All candy and confections start by melting sugar. ...
  • Stirring the Sugar. ...
  • Not Using a Candy Thermometer. ...
  • Leaving Out the Parchment Paper Lining. ...
  • Skipping the Cooking Spray. ...
  • Scraping the Pot. ...
  • Using a Cold Knife to Slice.
Dec 16, 2015

What not to do when making fudge? ›

Avoid Stirring Once the Mixture Comes to a Simmer

Another key part of a successful fudge texture is when you stir the mixture. Stirring the sugar and milk during the initial stages of cooking allows the sugar to dissolve. However, once the mixture comes to a boil, it's time to put the spoon down.

What is the secret to good fudge? ›

Don't stir!

Once the fudge reaches soft-ball stage on the candy thermometer, remove from the heat and let the temperature drop to 110°F. Keep that spoon or spatula out of the pot until this happens. If you stir too early in the process, you'll make the sugar crystals too big and end up with grainy fudge.

What is the secret to smooth fudge that is not gritty? ›

Once a seed crystal forms, it grows bigger and bigger as the fudge cools. A lot of big crystals in fudge makes it grainy. By letting the fudge cool without stirring, you avoid creating seed crystals.

Can you stir fudge too much? ›

Brush the sides of the pan with a wet brush at the beginning of cooking to dissolve sugar crystals stuck to the sides. Never stir the mixture during cooking or sugar could crystallize again. The mixture may seize and become grainy.

What happens if you over mix fudge? ›

Beating the cooled batter is one of the crucial steps of fudge-making, but overbeating can turn fudge hard as a rock. Pay close attention to the change in appearance and only beat the fudge until it loses its glossy sheen.

What makes high quality fudge? ›

You have to control two temperatures to make successful fudge: the cooking temperature AND the temperature at which the mixture cools before stirring to make it crystallize. Confectionery experiments have shown that the ideal cooking temperature for fudge is around 114 to 115 °C (237 to 239 °F).

What to do with failed fudge? ›

OPTION 1) Depending on how runny it is, you can either use it as a frosting for cakes, or a sauce for ice-cream. OPTION 2) Freeze it overnight. Cut it into squares. Cover each square thickly in melted chocolate, ensuring no part of the fudge is exposed.

What does cream of tartar do to fudge? ›

Cream of tartar is used in caramel sauces and fudge to help prevent the sugar from crystallizing while cooking. It also prevents cooling sugars from forming brittle crystals, this is why it's the secret ingredient in snickerdoodles!

Do you stir fudge while it is boiling? ›

Stir the ingredients to dissolve the sugar until the mixture comes to a boil. If your recipe uses milk, stirring will keep the mixture from curdling. But once it reaches about 236–238 degrees F/113–114 degrees C (the "soft-ball" stage), do not stir it or even shake the pan.

Is evaporated milk or condensed milk better for fudge? ›

Use Evaporated Milk- Make sure to use evaporated milk and not sweetened condensed milk. If you accidentally use sweetened condensed milk your fudge will be incredibly over the top sweet. Cut up the Butter– Before adding the butter in make sure to cut it into smaller pieces for faster melting.

Why won't my 2 ingredient fudge set? ›

The main reason is that your Fudge has not reached the optimum temperature. If your mixture only reaches 110 or 112 degrees Celsius it will always be soft. That's why we recommend investing in a sugar thermometer. Another reason your Fudge is not setting is that the ratio of liquid to sugar is too high.

What went wrong with my fudge? ›

If your fudge is tough, hard, or grainy, then you may have made one of several mistakes: You may have overcooked it, beaten it too long, or neglected to cool it to the proper temperature.

Why did my fudge turn out like taffy? ›

If the fudge is very soft and slightly chewy then it is possible that it did not quite cook to soft ball stage and next time the mixture should be cooked to a slightly higher temperature (soft ball is 112-116c/235-240F and a sugar or candy thermometer can help).

How to make fudge more solid? ›

How do you fix fudge that is too soft? Bring the fudge back to a boil with 1–2 US tbsp (15–30 ml) of cream. If your fudge is soft or runny, it probably didn't come up to a high enough temperature while it was cooking. Put it back into the saucepan and add 1–2 US tbsp (15–30 ml) of 35% fat whipping cream.

Why would fudge not set up? ›

The main reason is that your Fudge has not reached the optimum temperature. If your mixture only reaches 110 or 112 degrees Celsius it will always be soft. That's why we recommend investing in a sugar thermometer. Another reason your Fudge is not setting is that the ratio of liquid to sugar is too high.

How can you tell if fudge is bad? ›

If fudge experiences a change in temperature, it can melt or develop a slimy texture on the surface. If it is exposed to air, it can dry out and become hard. Specific add-ins to fudge have the potential to grow mold or give off a bad odor, and at that point, the fudge should be avoided.

Was fudge made by mistake? ›

That appetite for fudge dates back more than a century. Food historian Joyce White says fudge is based on a recipe for chocolate caramels, which was very similar. "What probably happened is that there was someone in Baltimore, messed it up, or 'fadged' it," she said. "Fadge is a word that means you messed up.

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