Slow Cooker Fudge

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It's that time of the year when Fudge is a must. Indulge in a piece of this chocolate heaven!

The next time you have that insatiable craving for chocolate, take a little time to make our decadent yet guilt-free Slow Cooker Fudge. This clean-eating recipe is made with dark chocolate and coconut milk, creating a dessert that’s as nutritious as it is delicious. And, since each bite contains only 114 calories, it makes a perfect portion-sized treat when you need to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Just like most slow cooker recipes, the process is so easy. It’s just a matter of tossing the ingredients in the pot and letting the slow cooker do the rest. You could whip up a batch before you go to bed and they’ll be ready to put away in the morning. Or, start it before you go to work and it’ll be ready to eat when you get home. Because it’s so easy (and it turns out to be so delicious), this Slow Cooker Fudge recipe quickly becomes a favorite for most families. No one will even notice that it happens to be a healthier version of fudge!

The Power of Dark Chocolate

Chocolate gets a bad rap as an unhealthy ingredient. On the one hand, it’s true that sugary processed bars (or, even worse, those that use high-fructose corn syrup) aren’t great for your health. On the other hand, darker, less processed chocolate is actually pretty good for you!

Dark chocolate helps lower blood pressure, increase blood flow to throughout the body, and maintain level blood sugar. Instead of starting with sugary chocolate, we’d recommend you find the darkest chocolate you can buy. Then, sweeten up the fudge with a touch of honey, maple syrup, or coconut sugar: Your choice. That makes our Slow Cooker Fudge perfectly sweet without adding any refined sugar.

If you want to keep things dairy free, you have a few options when it comes to chocolate. There are Enjoy Life chocolate chips, which also happen to be Soy free, Nut free, Gluten free,  Non GMO, Vegan, and Paleo. Talk about a clean chocolate chip! You could also use raw chocolate (sometimes called cacao nibs) if you prefer. But, since cacao isn’t sweetened at all, you may need to add a little more honey in the recipe to make it taste just right.

Why We Love Coconut Milk

As for coconut milk, it’s an excellent alternative to dairy. You’ll find a number of beneficial vitamins and nutrients in coconut milk, including Vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and potassium. It is high in fat, but it contains all the good, healthy fats. Many people say that the medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) fats found in coconut milk help boost your metabolism and promote weight loss!

Plus, coconut milk just tastes really good. When it cooks down in the slow cooker with your chocolate, it creates a rich mixture that has the perfect mouthfeel. You’ll notice it immediately as you bite into one of these rich and decadent Slow Cooker Fudge bites.

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Slow Cooker Fudge

Our slow cooker fudge may be low-calorie, but with such creamy and delicious, chocolaty flavor, you'd never know it!
Yield 20 people
Serving Size 1 piece
Course Dessert
Cuisine American

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups chocolate chips Enjoy Life is a vegan brand
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (canned, not in a carton)
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar (optional honey or maple syrup)
  • dash of sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Add chocolate chips, coconut milk, coconut sugar, salt, and coconut oil, stir to combine. Next, cover and cook on low 2 hours without stirring. It's important that the lid remains on during the 2 hours.
  • After 2 hours, turn the slow cooker off, uncover, and add vanilla. IMPORTANT; Do not stir fudge mixture at this point. Allow to cool to room temperature, or it reaches 110 degrees with a candy thermometer.
  • Once cooled, use a large spoon, stir vigorously for 5-10 minutes until it loses some the gloss.
  • Lightly oil an "8x8" square pan. Pour fudge into pan, cover and refrigerate 4 hours or until firm. This fudge is very rich and meant to be eaten on occasion as a treat.
  • Canned coconut milk can be found in the Asian or organic sections of most grocery stores.

Notes

I used dark chocolate chips because of their health benefits. Ghirardelli is a good brand and works well with this recipe.
 

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1piece | Calories: 114kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 21mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g |
SmartPoints (Freestyle): 9
Keywords Christmas, dairy-free, Gluten-Free, Holiday, Kid-Friendly, Low-Carb, Plant-Based, Slow Cooker, Vegetarian

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Gale Compton

Gale co-founded SkinnyMs. with a goal to provide women with delicious recipes, fitness routines, and ways to reach their ideal weight. Gale has been featured on the Today Show in which she won a cook off for the best Lasagna. Be sure to search for her winning recipe, Skinny Lasagna Rolls.

Guided by her firm belief in healthy eating and the power of exercise, Gale has written two cookbooks and several fitness ebooks. She earned her Fitness Training Certification from, National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association. Gale loves to run with her dog Maggie and has completed numerous half-marathons.

More by Gale

171 Comments

  1. Do you think that this recipe is "heart healthy" – I haven't quite grasped the healthiness of coconut fat…. I know it is "lite" – but there are so many differing opinions on coconut fat

    1. this has nothing to do with "lite"…plus you should be using full fat coconut milk anyway.

      saturated fats are actually necessary and healthy for us.

      do some REAL research and you will find this…

      1. We're not suggesting you use "lite". This recipe is meant to be eaten in moderation and as a special treat. We recommend one serving.

    1. Where do you buy your dairy and soy free chocolate chips Romonaparsons? I have health issues and can't have soy at all. Thank you!

  2. Coconut fat is very healthy! Fat ist the enemy, your body needs it for all functions. What is dangerously unhealthy are the industrialized fats & oils. Canola, soy, partially hydrogenated( trans fats) oils & fats. Coconut oil/fats, olive oil are examples of traditional foods that when minimally processed are healthy.

  3. Have Been eating clean for 20 days and looking for new recipes! This is a must try for me!!! Love your site!!!

  4. Can I use regular milk? Or low-fat milk? I am in a tiny town in South Korea that doesn't have lite canned coconut milk.

      1. Hi, I'm wondering about this too. I have food allergies and try to stick to regular milk (either low fat or skim). Thanks.

    1. Calories: 114 g Total Fat: 8 g Saturated Fat: 5 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 21 mg Carbohydrates: 13 g Sugars: 10 g Dietary Fiber: 1 g Protein: 1 g

  5. I don't like chocolate…..but have a sweet tooth. What other fudge recipes do you have that does not include chocolate?

  6. Pingback: Pinterest Experiments |
    1. Keep in mind the coconut milk should be canned and not in a carton. Carton coconut milk is not the ‘clean’ version…canned is much healthier.

  7. I also need to know what I can substitute for the coconut milk…I am allergic. I so so want to try this recipe. Thanks JB

    1. We use the coconut milk because it's so healthy. Since you are allergic, you'll need to use a milk with some fat in order to help thicken up the fudge. I'm not a fan of whole fat daily but the best thing to use would either be half & half or whole milk….probably half & half would work best. Please keep us posted! 🙂

  8. I have made this a few times and I love it. Great to bring to friends who have just had babies, or to my brother-in-law who is a health nut. I have added pecans in the mixing phase a few times. It does always turn out a little gooey but not overly so. I just keep it refrigerated.

    1. Maggie, YEAH!!! Add just a little less coconut milk or 1/4 cup more chocolate chips. I use 1 cup coconut milk and it gets really solid. I wonder if it's the humidity?

  9. I tried this recipe last night, and there is one mistake in the steps. When you let the fudge sit after putting in the vanilla it takes more than 1 hour for the fudge to get to room temperature. This might be why it did not get solid in the fridge. We waited 4 hours and then mixed. After a night in the fridge it was perfect.

  10. Hi…I would like to surprise my vegan family with this recipe..would it be possible to substitute something for the honey?

    Thanks so much….sounds wonderful 🙂

    1. llong, I've never frozen but it should be fine. You can also make a refrigerate for a few days before the party. 🙂

  11. I like this recipe because it’s EASY and so very good. I also love how you post the PPvalues for us! thank you!

  12. I like this recipe because it’s EASY and so very good. I also love how you post the PPvalues for us! thank you!

  13. I like this recipe because it’s EASY and so very good. I also love how you post the PPvalues for us! thank you!

  14. I made this exactly as stated and and it turned out very soft and sticky and won't stay in a square shape when picked up. Any suggestions?

    1. Rose, Let’s troubleshoot. First, did you use canned coconut milk as suggested? If you answered yes, try reducing the amount to 1/4 cup. It may be related to climate. I have used as much as 1 cup coconut (canned) milk with great results. Please give it another try as this fudge is phenomenal and much healthier than most versions. 🙂

  15. I tried this today but mine didn't turn out right. It tastes good but it's super gooey and a little grainy. Which I don't mind my concern is the white layer of fat that formed over the top. I'm not sure how it happened, it just kinda peels off, I think it's coconut oil. Did I use the wrong kind of coconut milk? The only change in the recipe I made was I used manuka honey. It's tastes great though, I would love to try again.

    1. Katie, You used coconut oil? Coconut milk must be the canned variety and not carton. Which did you use?

  16. I had the same problem as Katie E… The appearance is gooey and grainy. It appears the oils separated from everything else and will not recombine. Katie didn't use coconut oil, but the oils look like they might be coconut oil that separated from the rest of it during the slow cooker process. I followed the instructions exactly, using coconut milk from a can. Not sure what to do with it now…

    Any thoughts on how it could end up this way? How to fix it?

    1. Ashley, I think it may be the type of chocolate chips used. I’ve made this tons of times and never had that problem. What brand chips did you use? I would try Ghirardelli Chips, Bittersweet if you can do dark chocolate. Are you using gluten free chips?

      1. I was wondering about that too… I used Trader Joe's fair trade extra dark chocolate bars and chopped them up (I usually chop up bars instead of use chocolate chips in baking/etc.) Anyway, I figured out a solution, though! At least, it worked for me. After the four hours sitting at room temp, I poured the gooey, grainy blob into a glass bowl and stuck in the fridge for maybe 10-15 minutes or so. This firmed up the oil a bit (but it wasn't totally solidified), then I mixed it vigorously again for 5-8 minutes. It lost its gloss as you mentioned in the recipe, and the oil incorporated back into the chocolate mixture. I was able to smooth it out into a glass dish and stuck it back in the fridge to firm up a bit more. Worked perfectly, it seems!

        Maybe it was the chocolate or maybe it was that the mixture got too hot and separated the oil and sitting out at room temp wasn't enough to get the oil to start to solidify again to incorporate back in.

        Thanks so much!

  17. What is the reaon for using canned coconut milk instead of cartons. I void using can because of lead ect.

    1. Michelle, Coconut milk in cans are closest to the real thing. Carton milk typically has a lot of additives.

    2. I found your recipe 8 years ago and have been making it annually since. My sister and her friends requested it in their holiday package when they were deployed a few years ago. I’ve passed the recipe along to nearly a dozen friends and it has become part of their holiday traditions too. I just thought you should know how special your recipe is. PS-I like to sprinkle a little course ground sea salt on top-so yummy!

  18. Has anyone tried it with light almond milk? I see the comment above that it's best with coconut milk but wondered if anyone has actually tried it with almond milk. Thanks.

  19. Not sure what I did wrong but this turned out to be like chocolate hard candy. I followed the recipe to the letter. Maybe my crockpot is too big?

    1. Doug, Could be! I would recommend add another 1/4 cup coconut milk. It could also be related to elevation and/or humidity. So many variables can effect recipes, this one included. 🙂

  20. My problem is I would never be able to stop at one piece. I am a weak person when it comes to chocolate. LOL

    1. You can try boiling down your homemade coconut milk to eliminate some of the water, but yes canned is thicker and more condensed so it works better for this recipe.

  21. The calorie breakdown of 114 calories per piece seems off to me:

    2/12 c. choc chips = 800 cal
    1/4 cup coconut milk=138 cal
    1/4 cup raw honey=258 cal
    1 tsp vanilla=12 cal

    This all adds up to 1208 cal, divided by 30 servings = 40.26 calories per piece.
    If i'm right, I'm loving this :-). Please correct me if I'm wrong.
    Thanks!

      1. beancounter’s choc chip cal’s seem low. Below is what I came up with according to recipe. Of course, there will be fluctuation according to product/s used. Either way – looking forward to trying this.
        2-1/2 cups Chocolate Chips 2010 (402 per 1/2 c)
        1/2 cup coconut milk, (canned, not in a carton) 280
        1/4 cup coconut sugar, optional honey or maple syrup 258 (Honey)
        Dash of sea salt n/a
        2 tablespoons coconut oil 234
        1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 12
        Total Calories: 2794
        Divided by number of servings listed in recipe 20
        Approx. calories per serving 139.7

  22. Just made this and it turned out delicious! I used Enjoy Life chocolate chips, since they're dairy, nut, soy, and gluten free. My MIL who doesn't like fudge even loved it! Thanks for an amazing recipe 🙂

  23. Is coconut milk (like the canned lite coconut milk from Trader Joe's) or coconut cream (the thick, full-fat heavy stuff) the best for this? I have both…just don't wanna screw it up! Thanks! 😉

    1. Melissa, If you don’t mind the full fat, use that one. If you prefer lite, use that one. The Trader Joe’s kind is great.

  24. i love peanut butter in my fudge and usually sub half the butter with peanut butter, any ideas how to get some natural peanut butter in this recipe? (i use krema creamy).
    By the way i have NEVER seen so many clean deserts!! i cannot wait to get started!! lol

  25. i love peanut butter in my fudge and usually sub half the butter with peanut butter, any ideas how to get some natural peanut butter in this recipe? (i use krema creamy).

  26. Since you're interested in health (as I am), I thought you'd be interested in knowing Ghirardelli is sadly one of the three large chocolate manufacturer's using GMO cacao. The other two (last I checked in 2012), are Hershey's and Nestle.

    Fortunately for everyone there are organic, Fair Trade, GMO-free 65% dark chocolate chips (Sunspire being the main widely available brand)!

  27. Don't have a slow cooker but I do have a dutch oven. Any instructions on how high the heat should be on for 2 hours if I am doing this on the dutch oven or do you not recommend that at all? Thanks.

  28. Mine turned out kind of crumbly and dry. It's in the fridge for the 4 hour period right now. I'm not sure it's going to turn out.

  29. When you say 1/4 cup of canned coconut milk, do we need to stir up the separated fat with liquid then measure it out?

  30. I tried this with Enjoy life chips, 1/4C coconut milk from a can, raw honey and vanilla. THe results turned out like frosting. It didn't set… Nor did the color turn into the caramel color. Still dark brown.
    Any suggestions??

  31. Found this recipe on Pinterest and gave it a shot today. Mine actually set while still in the crockpot. I used a 6 qt crock pot so I'm wondering if I should increase the 1/4 cup coconut milk to 1/2 cup? Also, do the chips need to be melted when combining the ingredients or just let the crockpot melt it all down during it's two hour cook time?

    1. Linda, I actually use 1/2 coconut milk myself, but a lot of people seem to have trouble with it setting if they use more than 1/4 cup. Yes, just add the chips and allow to melt in the slow cooker. Happy Holidays! 🙂

    1. Barbara, Sure, just add after removing from the heat source. You may need to up your coconut milk to 1/2 cup if adding other ingredients.

  32. It's been a long time since I enjoyed any kind of fudge. I'm looking forward to making some. Looks like a great recipe, short,simple and sweet.

  33. Ayur Veda advises not to heat honey above 42 degrees centigrade which is 107.6 Fahrenheit or the all-important ‘medicinal’ molecular structure of honey is changed irrevocably, making it indigestible (in a sense…toxic!!!). But maybe maple syrup would work 🙂 Looks so enticing.

  34. can you anything other than coconut milk? my son is allergic to all tree nuts including coconuts and almonds.

  35. Mine was horrible. I think the chocolate seized because of too much moisture in my slow cooker. Expensive experiment and so sad because I love fudge. Maybe a tea towel under the lid if I try it again!

    1. Dee, It sounds odd, but sometimes you can fix seized chocolate by adding more moisture. Try adding more coconut milk to the mixture. You also may be able to reheat the mix to make our hot fudge sauce https://skinnyms.com/clean-eating-hot-fudge/, adding in more coconut milk slowly while stirring constantly. Chocolate sauce is a great way to save seized chocolate. It shouldn’t be grainy either.

      1. Thanks, I put it in the fridge as I couldn't bear throwing all that chocolate away, chocolate sauce sounds delish and worth a try!!!

        1. Dee, I know, that would have been a shame. Yes, let us know if it works out. Remember to heat on low and stir in the coconut milk gradually. Looking forward to hearing from you:).

  36. Easy to make, beyond delicious. Perfect to satisfy a sweet craving with only a couple of bites. HIGHLY recommend!

  37. I am trying this recipe now ! I'm waiting for it to cool. I make my own coconut milk. It's the best tasting coconut milk!

  38. How is this refined sugar free when there will be sugar in the chocolate chips?
    Do you have any idea how much unsweetened chocolate (in bar form) I could use to replace the chocolate chips?

  39. When you say canned coconut milk do you mean the thick cream on the top. Some cans have thick tops and others just runny coconut milk.
    Thanks

  40. I'm allergic to coconut and most tree nuts. Would this recipe work with coconut substitutions? Such as – soy milk, rice milk, and a healthy oil not derived from coconut?

    1. Angela, The milk has to be really thick. Unflavored soy creamer might work in place of the coconut milk. Or if you get vanilla creamer, just don't add the vanilla. Also heavy cream (dairy) would work. Then in place of the coconut oil, organic palm shortening, butter or canola oil should work.

    1. Gina, Yes you can use the coconut oil to lightly grease the pan. You can also use canola oil or a mild (not extra virgin olive oil) or a spray.

  41. I'm making this fudge now, just finished the two hour portion and added my vanilla. I didn't touch anything but is it normal that my chocolate chips haven't completely melted? By the way, my house smells wonderful!

  42. This looks like a great fudge recipe! I was wondering if other types of baking chips would work like say for example would white chocolate chips work if you want white chocolate fudge? Or peanut butter chips if you want peanut butter fudge (or combination of chocolate and peanut butter chips for chocolate-PB fudge)?

    Also would canned lite coconut milk work? It's still pretty fatty, fattier than the stuff in a carton but not as fatty as canned regular coconut milk. And also: Olivio brand makes a vegan non-GMO coconut oil spread that's not as fatty as regular coconut oil. Would that work or does it have to be full-fat coconut oil for it to set properly?

    1. Joseph, The coconut milk has to be full fat. Not sure about the spread, but I would say use regular full fat coconut oil. Other types of chips should work. Enjoy:)!

      1. I see. Actually in another comment you said to someone else that the milk just has to be really thick. Perhaps fat-free condensed milk would work? I also have a recipe for making your own condensed milk in the crockpot from almond milk (the stuff in the cartons, coconut milk beverage in the carton might work too) plus sugar….and it's less WW points than fat-free condensed milk from the store. As for the coconut oil I could try it with the coconut oil spread from Olivio and if it doesn't set then I at least have a hot fudge sauce I can put over ice cream 😛

  43. One is cautioned not to stir "at this point" after adding the vanilla – does that mean to stir in the vanilla & then no stirring OR just pour the vanilla on top of the mixture so there is no stirring at all at that step? Thanks for this clarification. The fudge sounds decadent & wonderful!

    1. Toni, Good question. The last time you stir the fudge is when you stir in the vanilla when it's still very hot. Once it starts cooling, do not stir it at all.

  44. We just made a batch and love it! I am trying to make some for my sister that has a corn allergy. I need to use 100% cocoa, chocolate chips. I think I should add more sugar to compensate, any ideas about how much?

    1. Thea, You can add a touch of sweetener, taste the batter, and add more as you go to get the level of sweetness desired.

    1. You could substitute whole milk, half-and-half, or goat's milk in place of coconut milk to ensure that the fudge has enough fat to remain solid.

  45. I'm thinking this might work better if it was stirred every 15 mins or so, same as you would do with a dairy based fudge. When I tried it with the 2 hours without stirring it burnt onto the base and sides of the slow cooker (yes it was on low). It tasted nice, I just had to throw part of it away because it was burnt.

  46. Question: What size of slow cooker is recommended for this?

    Also, could we use soy milk instead of coconut? I have an anti-coconut fanatic in the house…

    Thank you!

    1. You can use a 4-6 quart slow cooker. I've never used soy milk in this recipes so I can't say for sure what the results will be. Keep in mind, there does need
      to be some fat in whatever liquid you go with. Keep us posted! 🙂

  47. Making 3rd batch tonight! Love this fudge. It does take about an hour to get to room temperature. Stir & stir until your hand & arm get tired (JK), no glossy chocolate & then put it in a glass 8 x8 pan lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnite. When ready to cut into squares, let pan sit at room temperature for about 15 to 20 minutes. Turn out fudge onto cutting board & cut with sharp knife. It goes farther by cutting each square (20 pieces per recipe) into half & then you have 40 pieces to share. Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate chips are the best. May try honey next time instead of coconut sugar.

  48. I wanted to check under the ingredients list where you listed 1/4 coconut sugar, optional honey or maple syrup – did you mean you could use 1/4 cup of any ONE of those, or to use the coconut sugar and add a dash of honey or maple syrup for added flavor? Thanks! Also, is there a way to adapt this recipe to the Instant Pot? 🙂

    1. Hi Sandra,

      You are correct – choose one of the following: coconut sugar, honey, or maple syrup. You can use a “dash” of the honey or syrup for flavor if you wish, how ever the fudge is already pretty tasty!

      For an Instant Pot, use the “Slow Cook” setting, low pressure, for the same amount of time.

  49. Hi! I’m very excited to try this!
    In the beginning of the article you say that one could put it together before going to work or go to bed. My slow cooker stays on warm after the cooking cooking time. Is it ok for the fudge to stay on warming for several hours? The critical point seems to be the cooling afterwards? 🙂

    1. Hmmmm….I’ve never left it on warm for more than 30 minutes. I can’t say for certain. However, if you do and it hardens too much, add a dizzle of coconut milk, just enough so that it can spread easily when adding to the pan.

  50. This did not work for me. I cooked it 2hrs on low in the crockpot and it burned 🙁 so disappointed. When I stirred the rest that wasn’t burnt onto the crock, it is not smooth. I’m not sure I can even save the rest.

    1. Hi Sarah, you can shorten the cook time if needed. It’s almost important not to stir the chocolate until it has cooled to 110!

    1. We would not recommend using cacao nibs in this recipe. This would changed the way the fudge sets and the fudge would most likely stay a gooey mess.

  51. Turned out perfectly! I omitted the additional sugar, and added chopped up walnuts. My 8 year old twins wolfed it down. Next time I’ll add dedicated coconut to it. A little goes a very long way.

  52. What did I do wrong?
    After the 4 hours in the refrigerator, the fat/oil separated and is sitting on the top of fudge, in a whitish coating. I mixed with electric hand mixer since I have arthritis in my hand and fingers.

    1. Christine, Oh No!!! Perhaps it was a matter of over mixing…hmmmmm. It’s difficult to say what went wrong without having more information. 🙁

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