Vanilla fudge in a gift box

Vanilla fudge

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(40 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 40 mins Plus overnight cooling

A challenge

Cuts into 36 pieces

Homemade fudge makes a fabulous gift wrapped up for Christmas or any special occasion. Our recipe for these buttery sweets is well worth the effort

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per piece

  • kcal118
  • fat7g
  • saturates4g
  • carbs13g
  • sugars13g
  • fibre0g
  • protein0g
  • salt0g
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  • 450g golden caster sugar
  • 400g double cream
  • 50g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 1 tbsp glucose syrup
  • 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste



    The sun-dried seed pod of a type of climbing orchid, vanilla has an inimitable soft, sweet…


  1. Line a 20 x 20cm cake tin with baking parchment. Tip the sugar, cream, butter and glucose syrup into a medium to large saucepan. Heat to dissolve the sugar and melt the butter, stirring now and again.

  2. Once dissolved, put a sugar thermometer in the pan, making sure the end is completely covered by the syrup – if not, transfer the mixture to a smaller pan (with enough space for the syrup to bubble up). Increase the heat and bring the syrup to a steady boil. Keep bubbling, stirring occasionally to stop the sugar from catching, until the mixture reaches 116C – this is known as the soft ball stage.

  3. Remove the pan from the heat and leave to sit, undisturbed, for 5 mins, until the temperature drops to 110C. Stir in the vanilla and a good pinch of salt.

  4. Keep the sugar thermometer in the pan and begin beating the mixture with a wooden spoon, quite vigorously, until the temperature cools to about 60C. By this time the fudge will be really thick and will have lost it glossy shine. Remove the thermometer and continue beating for a few mins more. This process is very important when making fudge, as it creates small sugar crystals, which give the fudge its lovely smooth and creamy texture (see 'fudge know-how', below).

  5. Before it sets completely, quickly pour the fudge into your prepared tin and smooth over the surface. Leave to cool at room temperature overnight – don’t put the fudge in the fridge as it will become sticky and won’t set properly. Cut into bite-sized pieces and pop in a box to give as a present. Will keep, in a sealed container, for up to 2 months.

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Comments, questions and tips

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5th Dec, 2016
I have just made this and it has worked perfectly! Can anyone reassure me that it will keep for 2 months in an airtight container? That seems like a long time but i am hoping to give this as little Christmas gifts ... Thanks!
17th Nov, 2017
I tend to coat mine in chocolate if I want it to last longer (plus it tastes amazing).
27th Nov, 2016
Just made this fudge. At the beating stage, I am wondering could it be transferred to my food mixer and stirred very slowly ?? Anybody tried this ??
24th Dec, 2014
Absolutely fantastic, I made this last night so it was ready to eat today (Christmas eve). I was worried I didn't heat it up for long enough - and that I over beat it but it is absolutely fantastic. My family have all said it's the best fudge they've ever tasted - even hubby can't stop eating it. Can't recommend enough.
Jo Tattersall
23rd Dec, 2014
This recipe was my first attempt at fudge and it worked perfectly. I had never used my sugar thermometer before so I was a little terrified but it was really simple. The frantic beating to reduce the temperature was exhausting but it was well worth it tastes fantastic, it really takes me back to my childhood. Great recipe!!
14th Dec, 2014
I decided I wanted to make some fudge to give to as gifts this christmas. I couldn't find any glucose syrup in the supermarket where I live so used golden syrup instead. I was a bit confused by what temperature to start mixing the fudge and in the end I used the temperatures in the recipe (start beating at 110 degrees) and it worked brilliantly, I was slightly worried it wasn't going to set enough but after leaving it overnight it is perfect. I have made 3 batches of it so far and they are all great. I added 2 tbsp of baileys to one batch and that is incredible!
8th Dec, 2014
I wanted to make some gorgeous fudge to give to visitors this Christmas. After reading previous posts and looking at other fudge recipes I changed the method slightly. After the soft ball stage I took the pan off the hob. I left the mixture to cool until it was just below 60C. After adding the vanilla and salt I started beating with a wooden spoon. The mixture separated so I changed to an electric hand held mixer. Eventually the mixture came back together and turned from glossy to dull. It was then ready to put in the tin. The following day the fudge was soft and melts in the mouth. It tastes fantastic and I'm not even keen on fudge!
6th Dec, 2014
Great tasting recipe, nut I'm not sure on the correct temperature to start beating it at. I followed the instructions in the comments and the butter separated from the sugar, a quick reheat and a lot of elbow grease and it all came together well.
22nd Nov, 2014
Wow ... this fudge is beyond good! Followed the recipe as closely as possible as was first time I've attempted it and it turned into the most delicious fudge I've ever eaten. I now have very happy parents, husband, and teenage daughter as they all think it's delicious. I've just had a cube and followed it with a mouthful of Peppermint Tea .. yuummmm .. now I need to rework the recipe to experiment with Peppermint Fudge!!
16th Nov, 2014
Just made it and it is divine. I followed the recipe as far as temperatures go, but I think I beat it a bit longer (had to take the thermometer out to do it, so hard to tell). Don't get scared off by the fact that it's labelled "for the keen cook". It's fiddly but not hard. I would recommend using a narrow but tall saucepan as the mixture more than doubled in volume when it started frothing. The fudge is really creamy and melts in the mouth. It's definitely a recipe I'll be using again and again!


17th Dec, 2014
We are making the Vanilla Fudge as Xmas presents for our daughters Teachers / Friends, could someone please confirm the conversion of 400g of double cream to ml? Is it 300? Thank you.
goodfoodteam's picture
18th Dec, 2014
Hi CM26 thanks for your question - 400ml of double cream should be fine.
9th Nov, 2014
Will this recipe work without the glucose syrup, or could I use a substitute? Thanks! x
goodfoodteam's picture
20th Nov, 2014
You need the glucose syrup to stop the sugar crystals from rehardening. You can find glucose syrup in most supermarkets now.
13th May, 2014
I am making this delicious fudge for my wedding favours but some of the batches are more soft than others. I need the fudge to be harder so i can put it in little bags without the fudge all getting squashed, does anyone know how to do this? Any tips much appreciated.
goodfoodteam's picture
28th May, 2014
When making the fudge you need to make sure that it reaches the correct temperature, a sugar thermometer is best for this, also for best results, beat the mixture until it has almost set, before pouring into the tin and smoothing over.
6th Dec, 2013
I made this recipe to great success with many cries for more and for different flavour. So I was wondering can this be used as a base recipe to which you can add other flavours in stead of vanilla? For instance I have so far had requests for chocolate orange and chocolate and mint?
goodfoodteam's picture
18th Dec, 2013
Hi Sarah, You can vary the flavour, try adding 1tbsp of orange blossom water instead of vanilla and 50g chopped chocolate for chocolate orange. Use mint essence instead for mint, or add 1tbsp of Baileys for a boozy treat.  Have a merry Christmas. 
30th Nov, 2014
I added freeze dried raspberries and strawberries. Delicious.


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