Homemade Magic Shell + Video

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Magic Shell ice cream topping will take you right back to your childhood! Make this hard chocolate shell at home with just 2 simple ingredients. 

titled: Homemade Magic Shell Recipe


Magic Shell Topping

Remember that ice cream syrup that formed a hard chocolate shell over your favorite frozen treats?

Now you can make a whole jar full of it and keep it on hand for whenever those cravings strike!

I love using this magic shell recipe for my banana split popsicles — complete with a cherry in the middle.

Not a fan of the crunch? I have more homemade ice cream topping ideas, including rich chocolate syrup, gooey caramel sauce, or sweet strawberry topping that you’re sure to love!

bowls of chocolate chips and coconut oil with an empty mason jar and spoon

Magic Shell Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Choose the right oil. Refined coconut oil has a fairly neutral flavor, while unrefined or virgin varieties will add a slight coconut flavor and aroma.

    You can also substitute sunflower oil if needed.
  • Switch up the flavors. Grab whichever morsels you have handy — dark, milk, semi-sweet, and white chocolate will all work with this magic shell recipe!

    Even butterscotch or peanut butter chips should turn out just fine.
  • Dairy-free tip: Just swap the regular chocolate chips for an allergy-friendly brand!
  • Need a larger batch? Simply double or triple the ingredients and divide the magic shell into multiple jars as needed.

    If your bowl isn’t large enough, you can prepare multiple individual batches and store them together instead.
chocolate chips and coconut oil in a bowl

Different Ways To Use Magic Shell Ice Cream Topping

Homemade magic shell is obviously delicious with ice cream and other frozen treats, but you can drizzle it on something as simple as frozen fruit as well!

Bananas, pineapple chunks, and berries would all be delicious.

It can also be used as a dip for fresh fruit, cookies, and bar desserts!

Keep in mind that sudden cold temperatures are what cause the topping to harden, so you’ll need to chill these or let them sit a bit longer on the counter.

Don’t forget to combine magic shell with more of your favorite ice cream topping ideas!

Sprinkles are an easy way to add color, while chopped nuts provide even more crunch.

spooning magic shell in jar

Hard Chocolate Shell FAQ

What makes magic shell get hard?

The secret ingredient is coconut oil! Because it naturally becomes solid in cooler temperatures, it allows the chocolate to harden when it comes in contact with cold foods like ice cream and popsicles.

Can I use a candy bar instead?

If you’re out of chocolate chips, feel free to substitute a chunk of high-quality or baking chocolate instead. Just chop it up into small pieces so it melts faster and more evenly.

Should I keep homemade magic shell in the refrigerator?

No — doing so will cause it to become rock-hard. Magic shell ice cream topping will firm up as it cools, but it can be stored at room temperature for up to a month.

Then, place the jar in a hot water bath or pop it in the microwave at 15-second intervals whenever you want to use it.

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hard chocolate shell and sprinkles on vanilla ice cream

Homemade Magic Shell + Video

Donna Elick
Magic Shell ice cream topping will take you right back to your childhood! Make homemade hard chocolate shell with just 2 simple ingredients. 
5 stars from 2 reviews
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Condiment
Cuisine American
Method Microwave
Servings 16 makes 2 cups


  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips, or your favorite flavor
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil


  • Combine ingredients in a wide microwave safe bowl, heat at 30 second intervals until chips are almost completely melted. Stir to combine and allow to cool.
  • Transfer to a tall mason jar. Dip into jar or pour topping over frozen treats.
  • Enjoy!



Serving: 1 | Calories: 102cal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 5mg | Sugar: 8g | Calcium: 1mg | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled collage for magic shell recipe

Originally published July 2013, updated and republished May 2023

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  1. All of these sauces look amazing! I've just decided to start using coconut oil and I might just have to make this first!

  2. Do you know if peanut butter, butterscotch, white, or dark chocolate chips would work? I LOVE Magic Shell!

    1. Yes, yes, yes! I have not tried butterscotch yet, but the premise it exactly the same. Let me know how they come out.

      Donna XOXO

    1. True refined coconut oil does not smell or taste like coconut. You can find it really cheap at Wal-mart.

    2. I have not worked with it in this capacity, so I can not be certain. But, it is said to be a flavorless oil. I hope that helps!


    3. True Coconut oil should have the taste of Coconuts. Costco coconut oil taste just like coconut and I love it.

    4. Coconut oil has a low melting point at 76 degrees, that is why it works the best for cooling quickly and making a shell. It should not influence the taste too much. The flavored chips will over power it.

    5. I did this with butter,high quality coco powder and sugar and it comes out well. I use a double boiler as there is no microwave in my house, thank you. coconut oil sounds like a good option though

  3. I love that I can make this dairy-free! You have no idea how exciting that is 🙂 Thanks so much!!!

    1. I am dairy allergic also and I miss milk chocolate. However, when I add a little maple syrup to sweeten the dark chocolate, I find it even better than milk chocolate.

    1. I think coconut oil is always the same (for the purpose of how it works in recipes, anyway). It's always solid or liquid depending on the temperature. For example, here in Florida, when the indoor temperature is fairly warm, the oil is liquid, but in the winter when it's a bit cooler, it turns solid. This is why it makes a "shell" when you pour it onto ice cream.

  4. Tried the Homemade Magic Shell and had a problem. Used dark chocolate and the solid coconut oil. Made it according to recipe and it turn solid when cooled. Is there a liquid coconut oil? All I found was the solid. Help!

    1. Once the chocolate cools completely it does become firm. You can either put it in a hot water bath to liquify or put it in the microwave for about 15 seconds at a time (stirring in between). Let me know if that helps. Enjoy!

    2. Of course it turns solid! That's why it's called magic shell, is has to harden at some point. Just reheat to soften again.

    3. I think what the person was pointing out was that UNLIKE magic shell which does NOT harden, this recipe does. I believe they made a quantity – not just one serving and it hardened when stored. Magic Shell stays liquid in the bottle until cooled by the ice cream.

    4. Maybe you need a higher oil to chocolate ratio for dark chocolate? As far as I know all coconut oil is liquid when warmer and solid when cooler. Mine turns to liquid in the pantry during summer and then solidifies when the weather cools.

    1. You can dip anything, but keep it mind it is the cool temperature that encourages the quick hardening. If you leave them at room temperature it will take much longer. Enjoy.

    1. It really depend on the end result you are looking for.

      Magic Shell – You can dip anything, but keep it mind it is the cool temperature that encourages the quick hardening. If you leave them at room temperature it will take much longer.

      Plain melted chocolate can be used to dip, but it will harden and crack if you try to cut it or eat it.

      I would recommend 1 tablespoon coconut oil to 2 cups chocolate chips melted together, it will help keep the chocolate from drying rock hard.

      Hope that helps!

    2. I dip cookies in melted dark chocolate Candy Melts. Wilton makes them and you can find them at WalMart Michael's. or JoAnn Fabrics. They are specifically made for working with candy, like dipped chocolates or truffles. They are very easy to work with.
      They have white chocolate, milk chocolate, peanut butter, dark chocolate, etc.

    1. That's a loaded questions Stephanie. 🙂

      I love Nestle, Hershey's, Lindt, Pernigotti, Ghirardelli so many chocolate brands. It really depends on the chocolate 'flavor'. White Chocolate: Lindt or Nestle. Milk Chocolate Hershey's or Nestle. Semi-sweet Ghirardelli or Nestle. Hope that helps… LOL.

    1. You could get red Candy Melts and a Cherry Oil to flavor it. Candy Melts are made by Wilton, and are carried at WalMart, JoAnn Fabrics, and Michael's, in the cake decorating aisle. If none of these stores carry a Cherry Flavored Oil, you can find it online.

    1. I store it on the counter, but you could leave it either place. You will just have to warm it a little before use. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.

  5. The homemade chocolate shell was absolutely amazing! Had quite a bit left over after having company over so will probably half the amounts next time. This stuff could become habit forming very quickly. I may or may not have spooned some out of the jar today. #whistlesinnocently

    1. Theoretically it should work, but I have never tried it. It is the coconut oil that makes it hard when it gets cold. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.

  6. Can you mix chocolate syrup (e.g. Hershey's, etc) to coconut oil, or will that not work for any reason? All of the recipes I've seen mix melted chocolate to coconut oil, but I love the chocolate syrup, so if I could mix that with coconut oil to make it harden, that would be sweet (literally). Anyone know if this would work?

  7. If I mixed the ingredients in a 1 qt small crock pot and put it on low, would that keep it from getting hard while dipping ?

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