Homemade Chocolate Syrup Recipe (4 Ingredients) + Video

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This chocolate syrup recipe is easy to make with 4 ingredients! Its rich chocolate taste is delicious in desserts. Make a batch with your kids! Everyone in the house will love the flavor of this homemade syrup! 

4 ingredient chocolate syrup recipe


What could be better than Hershey’s with 4 ingredients that you CAN pronounce? Sugar, cocoa, vanilla, and salt — you’ll thank me later!

The best part about making your own chocolate syrup is that it’s easy to make and tastes to much better than anything that you buy at the grocery store.

This is one of those clean recipes that you’ll love the very first time that you make it – and you don’t have to feel guilty eating it in your favorite way. 


Chocolate Syrup Recipe

There are so many different things that you can do with decadent homemade chocolate sauce like this one.

Drizzle it over ice cream or add it to the top of buttermilk waffles or your next cake. The options are endless to make this easy homemade chocolate syrup! 

Forget about any store-bought brand and all the artificial sweeteners on the shelf and give this wonderful recipe a try.

It’s made with real ingredients without any artificial flavors. Homemade versions of the good stuff are always preferred. 

The steps on the recipe card below show you how easy it is to make this DIY chocolate syrup. I think it’s the best chocolate syrup recipe ever. 

If you want to make another type of dessert sauce, I suggest making Chocolate Ganache

It’s a silky smooth chocolate hazelnut ganache, made with only two ingredients.

Or, my no-fail caramel sauce tastes like caramel with a hint of butterscotch. You only need 4 ingredients and 6 minutes to make it!

chocolate sauce started in the pot

Simple Chocolate Syrup Notes

  • Keep it fresh! Be sure to use fresh, soft brown sugar. If you use hard brown sugar, it will throw off the ratio.
  • It will thicken. The syrup will be thin after it is done boiling. But, it will thicken up as it cools down. 
  • Chill the leftovers. You can refrigerate any leftover simple chocolate syrup, in a mason jar with a lid. 
  • Warm it up as needed. You can reheat homemade chocolate sauce in the microwave if you want to serve it warm.
  • Make a larger or smaller batch. This recipe makes 2 1/2 cups, so you can make more or less homemade chocolate syrup as needed.
  • Swap the salt. If you don’t have Kosher salt, you can substitute regular table salt.
chocolate syrup smooth and chocolaty in the pot

Homemade Chocolate Syrup FAQs

Do you need to refrigerate chocolate syrup?

Yes, you will need to refrigerate the simple chocolate sauce. I find that storing it in a mason jar is easiest.

Just let it come to room temperature after you make the chocolate syrup recipe. Then, store it in a mason jar with a lid. It will thicken up nicely in the refrigerator.

Is chocolate naturally sugar free?

Dark chocolate is naturally sugar-free. However, most commercially prepared chocolate has added dairy, fat, and sugar to improve the taste and make it more meltable.

This chocolate syrup recipe uses unsweetened cocoa powder, which is sugar-free. However, we add sugar to the recipe to make a sweeter syrup.

If you’re concerned about the sugar in this recipe, I have heard that some people replace the sugar with 1/2 cup of Splenda. It’s also possible to use Stevia.

But, you will need to experiment to find the correct ratio for this delicious syrup recipe. Using agave syrup or honey is not recommended. It makes the syrup much too thick and difficult to pour.

How do you use chocolate syrup?

There are lots of different things that you can use this simple chocolate syrup for. When we make this recipe, we use it as a classic vanilla ice cream topping.

But, here are a few other ideas that you might want to try:

Homemade chocolate milk
Top your pancakes or waffles with it
This sauce makes a great dip for churros
Dunk sliced apples in it
Make a chocolate milkshake
Dip your pretzels in it.
Make hot chocolate
Drizzle it over pudding
Garnish for chocolate cake
Make an ice cream soda
Use this easy recipe as a dip for fresh fruits
Drizzle over the top of peanut butter ice cream

How long does homemade chocolate syrup last?

This chocolate sauce will last for up to two weeks. We always make a big batch and then store it in the refrigerator so we can use it throughout the week on our ice cream.

If you are having a party, you can double the chocolate syrup recipe easily.

How do I store leftovers? 

Due to the simple ingredients, this homemade chocolate syrup recipe can be stored in a glass jar or in an airtight container in the fridge. 

When you’re ready to use this recipe for your own homemade syrup, you can dip a spoon in and drizzle a little chocolate syrup over anything that you want. 

Finally, if you want more chocolate dessert recipes, give these a try!

Chocolate fudge cake
Chocolate Mint Oreo cookie trifle


With love, from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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4-ingredient chocolate syrup in mason jar

4 ingredient chocolate sauce in mason jar

Chocolate Syrup Recipe + Video

Donna Elick
This chocolate syrup recipe is easy to make with 4 ingredients! Its rich chocolate taste is delicious in desserts. Make a batch with your kids!
5 stars from 2 reviews
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Sauce
Cuisine American
Method Stovetop
Servings 2 1/2 Cups


  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup Hershey’s unsweetened cocoa powder, in the baking aisle
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract


  • In a cold medium saucepan whisk together salt, sugars and cocoa until they are combined and there are no lumps. Add water and whisk to combine. Turn heat to medium and bring a boil, whisking frequently.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low whisking occasionally. Allow the mixture to simmer until it has slightly reduced and thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla. Pour into a mason jar and allow to come to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate.
  • Enjoy!


Donna’s Notes

Be sure to use fresh, soft brown sugar. If you use hard brown sugar, it will throw off the ratio.
The syrup will be thin after it is done boiling. But, it will thicken up as it cools down.
You can refrigerate any leftovers, in a Mason jar with a lid.
You can reheat dessert sauce in the microwave if you want to serve it warm.
You can enjoy it warm or eat it cold; it’s your choice.
If you don’t have Kosher salt, you can substitute regular table salt.
If your syrup is too thick, you may have cooked it for too long. Double-check the recipe to see what might have gone wrong.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 719cal | Carbohydrates: 181g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 330mg | Sugar: 156g | Fiber: 16g | Calcium: 129mg | Iron: 7mg

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 image for chocolate syrup recipe

Originally published July 2012, updated and republished February 2024

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  1. Oh, I'm so sorry you had such a hard time getting her off the bottle! I know how it feels, although both my kids did fairly well (son, better than daughter) and were off by 12 months. We did have a period where our daughter was not drinking much milk either and it drove me CRAZY! But finally, after about 2 weeks she took to it and has been fine every since.

  2. I'm also familiar with the struggles of a toddler, as my daughter is 4 now. Glad she's adapted.

  3. Oh YUM! Why would anyone buy storebought when they can make this?!!?! My sister refused to drink milk also when she was a baby, but she loved chocolate milk. So that solved that problem. 🙂 Great ideas for getting that calcium and protein to your young one.

    1. I hated milk until I found I could drink it over ice. I guess the milk was never cold enough, but I love it now that I drink it with ice — just like iced tea. Made such a big difference – but don't let the ice melt! Hope it works for others.

    2. I hated milk until I realized I could add ice to my glass of milk! It was a perfect solution for me, and I will love it. Still cannot drink it without ice.

  4. I cannot thank you enough for posting this recipe. My daughters love to drink chocolate milk as their treat. I stopped giving it to them, b/c I could not stomach some of the chemicals/ingredients listed. This is wonderful! Thank you again and many blessings to you and yours! Have a great Thanksgiving.

  5. I have to tell you that I stumbled on this recipe by accident while googling copycat Hershey syrup recipes. Let me tell you that your recipe, by far, makes the best tasting syrup for chocolate milk or ice cream that I ever put in my mouth. I have made it 3 times aleady and today I am making it again and doubling the recipe! Thank you so much for coming up with something that truly IS better than Hershey's syrup! – Karen

  6. Oh, I forgot to tell you. I pinned your recipe on Pinterest too. The world needs to know there are much more delicious alternatives to the syrup in the store!! 🙂 – Karen

    1. I believe the proper answer is 2 weeks in the fridge.

      However, I personally have kept it for months. As it is made with sugar, cocoa powder, salt and vanilla, I feel safe keeping it as long as I need to. Hope that helps.

  7. Thank you so much for this awesome recipe. My 3 years old son is very happy with the results and Daddy is happy for this chocolate alternative syrup. We use it with milk, over ice cream, mocha capuchino and evrything in between so it last for almost two weeks. Well I guess you get it, we love it!
    Happy cooking from my kitchen to yours!

  8. Thank you so much for this recipe. My 3years old son love it and Daddy is happy with this alternative of chocolate syrup. We use it to do chocolate milk, over ice cream, mocha capuchino, with waffles well I guess you got the idea. It last us not even two weeks, we are a family of six.
    Happy cooking from my kitchen to yours!

  9. Great recipe. It took me about an hour start to finish (a lot of simmer time lol) and I was a little disappointed by the yield…didn't even fill up a half-pint jar. This will probably last my boys 3 days tops, but if I make it again I will probably quadruple the recipe. At any rate, thanks for sharing!

    1. It starts with a cup of water and several dry ingredients — and you got less that half a pint? Sounds like you didn't follow the recipe, since the ingredients alone make for more than a pint, depending on how long you decide to cook it. You really only need to cook until all the sugar is dissolved. If you want to reduce it (cook off the liquid) for an hour, fine, but that's not what the recipe calls for you to do.

  10. For years I have just taken the recipe for fudge on the side of the can of cocoa powder and just not cooked it as long so it was a syrup instead of a candy. I have always loved the flavor of real fudge. I did this more to make my own hot fudge sauce for ice cream because the sauces you buy in jars are so sub-par. I learned the technique from my mother in the 50's. This also makes the most heavenly hot cocoa you will ever taste!

  11. I really like the idea of homemade chocolate syrup with simple ingredients. However, I would like to know if it would work using less sugar? I prefer my chocolate less sweet, but am not certain if using less sugar would mess-up the consistency.

  12. I made this today and tried it in my milk. Pretty tasty. After it was cool it was a bit thick so I added some water and warmed it up. I slso then added the vanilla thst I forgot earlier. Now it is the consistency of syrup. I would make it again

    1. The longer you cook it – the thicker it will become. next time just boil it for a minute. It will look thin – but it thickens as it cools.

  13. Oh I just made this and it's amazing!!! In my opinion it takes exactly like the name brand!! YUMM I was able to get a full pint mason jar of it.

  14. Perfect timing. We will begin milking our goats tomorrow and my youngest takes a while to get used to the taste so we put chocolate syrup (a little less each day) in his milk.
    I'll do the strawberry one too.

  15. This is a brilliant idea! Sometimes we have to out smart our little ones. I love this! 🙂

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