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Mom’s Best Fudge Icing

One of best times I had as a child, was learning to cook with my mom. She had some of the best recipes around town.  Now that she has passed away, I have all her cook books and scraps of paper with her recipes on them. I hope you enjoy this fudge icing recipe as much as I do.

You can put this fudge icing on any kind of cake, cup cakes or brownies.


Mom’s Best Fudge Icing


Preparation Time : 15 minutes

Difficulty Level : Easy


  • 1 Stick butter
  • 1/2 Cup cocoa
  • 1/2 Cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 Cup milk
  • 1 Tsp. vanilla
  • 1 Cup powdered sugar


Preparation Instructions

  • Melt butter and cocoa.
  • Heat milt to hot.
  • Add cocoa and butter to sugar in mixing bowl.
  • Add hot milk to spreading thickness desired.
  • Remove from heat and immediately stir in vanilla and cocoa powder. Beat until icing is smooth and starts to lose it’s shine. Immediately pour onto cake. Allow to cool before serving.

This is so good on just about any kind of cake or cookies!


Mom’s Best Fudge Icing


  1. Malini says

    Hi, what’s the quantity of 1 box powdered sugar?

    1. Timothy Davidson says

      I apologize for the late answer. 1 cup powdered sugar will be enough for this recipe.
      Thanks for your patience

  2. Cheryl says

    Linda…a box of powdered sugar? Seriously? How much is a box? How many ounces or cups? Malini asked this same question, but you have not yet replied, leaving us hanging. So here I am in the kitchen in the middle of making this frosting (I should have read the recipe first) and I get down the list and read “a box of powdered sugar.” Is it 8 ounces?
    In a recipe, nothing is ever measured by cans or boxes or jars. All I can think of is going online to my local grocery store and finding a picture of a box of powdered sugar, zoom in as close as I can to see how many ounces it is, and hope that is correct.

    1. Timothy Davidson says

      I apologize for the late answer. 1 cup powdered sugar will be enough for this recipe.
      Thanks for your patience

  3. G L Swit says

    When do you add the vanilla?

    1. Timothy Davidson says

      Remove from heat and immediately stir in vanilla and cocoa powder. Beat until icing is smooth and starts to lose it’s shine. Immediately pour onto cake. Allow to cool before serving.

    2. Lynda Stacy says

      On the mom’s best fudge icing when you put cocoa what do you mean what kind of cocoa I know about cocoa powder

      1. Kate says

        What is cocoa? Vs cocoa powder? Cocoa like chocolate bars?

      2. Holly says

        What is cocoa vs. cocoa powder?

  4. Janet says

    What is difference between cocoa and cocoa powder? I do a lot of baking and can usually figure these out but I’m a little confused on this one. Are you just adding cocoa powder at two different times? Thanks

    1. Timothy Davidson says

      We use cocoa in the first and last step. written this way cause not to be confused

  5. Sandee says

    Are cocoa and cocoa powder the same thing?

    1. Timothy Davidson says

      Yes, same

  6. Jaime says

    Is this icing good for piping versus “pouring over cake”?

    1. C says

      I am not the original publisher but it sounds like it can be used for both, it just depends how much hot milk you add, I.e. the more milk you add the thinner it will be and then you can pour it on a cake.

  7. Michelle says

    I found I had to only use about half the milk called for but that was probably personal preference. But I am really happy with the way this turned out and how it easy it was (after the misunderstanding with the cocoa/powder) and how yummy it is! So, thank you!

    1. Connie says

      Do you need to refrigerate cake, once icing is on it?

      1. Leah says

        If you sub evaporated milk for the milk, can leave out around 3 days. Real milk is refrigerate cake only

  8. Dukediesel says

    The pictures are confusing because you have two different cakes with two different chocolate fudge frostings on them and one title with recipe ingredients used for both. The frostings look very different so how can the recipe be the same for both? The lower cake in the picture is the frosting I wanted but when I made it, it came out like basic chocolate frosting. Please clarify, thank you

    1. Debbie says

      The reason they show two different ways is because this icing after being cooled to room temp can be whipped in to a frosting. So yes, this one recipe can yield two different results.
      This is a fantastic fudge icing or whipped frosting recipe

  9. Sue says

    What is the difference between cocoa and cocoa powder?,

    1. melanie says

      she said Nothing it is the same ingredient.

  10. Es says

    You have cocoa and cocoa powder what’s the difference ?

    1. Jane says

      I read the recipe and I went online regarding cocoa and cocao powder. There is definitely a difference cocoa powder cannot be heated which is why you add it last. Cocoa you heat in the pan with the other ingredients. Both are unsweetened. I hope this helps. I’m going to try it with both cocoa and cocao.

    2. melanie says

      she said nothing it is the same ingredient. If you go back up to the top someone else ask that question & she said they were the same thing.

  11. Me says

    Do I use 1 cup of cocoa since you have 1/2 cup listed twice? Or is it 1/2 hot cocoa drink and 1/2 cup cocoa powder?

    1. Peggy Collins says

      Can you use chocolate morals instead of cocoa?

  12. Denise says

    Very confusing recipe written by Linda, a professional writer, who’s now answering questions by the name of Timothy.

    1. Kate says

      My thoughts exactly

  13. Rebecca says

    Is the cocoa and cocoa powder unsweetened or sweetened? Please!

    1. melanie says

      I’m assuming it would not be sweetened as I haven’t saw it sweetened before plus you are adding sugar to the recipe. when I go to make it I will be making it with unsweetened.



  15. dawn says

    I think they mean maybe chocolate, like the bar chocolate you would use in baking – chopped up and measured to 1/2 cup, then melted. I’m not sure about the sweet or unsweet, that was a good question, I think I’ve seen both. Just a guess though, looks fantastic, I’d love to try it. Thank you for posting it.

  16. Felisa says

    I agree, the ingredients and instructions are poorly written and confusing. Looks lovely but frustrating to try to understand.

  17. Louise says

    I can see there is a lot of confusion regarding this recipe and can see why! Incase this helps anybody this is what I think the method may be trying to say:

    Measure 1 cup of powdered sugar into a bowl and set aside. Measure 1/2 cup cocoa in a another bowl and set aside. Melt 1 stick of butter and 1/2 cup of cocoa in a medium sauce pan. At the same time in a small separate pan heat 1/2 cup milk until hot (not boiling).
    Gradually add the premeasured sugar to the warm cocoa and butter mixture and stir until begins to thicken (it will be quite grainy) then add the hot milk and stir continuously until smooth, shiny and silky (and until reach desired thickness). Remove from heat and stir in 1tsp vanilla and the other 1/2 cup of premeasured cocoa powder. Beat until icing is smooth and starts to lose it’s shine. Immediately pour onto cake. Allow to cool before serving.

  18. Lupe says

    No issues with the ingredients or instructions and recipe was Perfect love it, thank you

  19. Brian Lavigne says

    What is the difference between cocoa and cocoa powder? I never saw anything like this in any recipe. I’m confused.

  20. Melanie Franceschi says

    This recipe I have made it is similar to other icings I have made from a 1945 cook book.
    Here how it goes: Heat milk to hot, set aside. Melt butter on top of stove add cocoa to melted butter until combined., add this mixture to sugar, then additional 1/2 unsweetened cocoa powder and vanilla. then add hot milk to consistency wanted
    . It looks like she is , cocoa powder, which is unsweetened and regular cocoa , which is equal to 1 cup mixed one at the beginning and cocoa powder unsweetened at the end.
    The recipe as it stands was not explanatory enough.

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