Chocolate Syrup

This amazing homemade Chocolate Syrup -- made with five simple ingredients in about five minutes -- is a scrumptious topping for ice cream and makes perfect chocolate milk! It's economical and easy to make using real, straightforward ingredients.

The Best Chocolate Syrup with text overlay.


In case you've never noticed, I've got quite a thing for making my own kitchen staples. There are dry mixes for the pantry, of course, from chili mix to pancake mix to cornbread mix. But I also like to stock my refrigerator with natural, homemade versions of what I used to buy at the grocery store, from barbecue sauce to honey mustard to coffee creamer. So it's only expected that l I should add a delectable Chocolate Syrup recipe to the list, dontcha' think?

Awhile back, I shared a recipe for my to-die-for Homemade Caramel Sauce that whips up in just FIVE minutes with only FIVE ingredients.

And guess what?

Today, I've got a 5-ingredient, 5-minute, homemade Chocolate Syrup recipe for you! It's reminiscent in flavor and consistency to the classic brand that's sold in those famous dark brown bottles and cans...but without any of the crazy ingredients!

Now this is not a thick fudge sauce, mind you. It's a thinner syrup that you can stir into milk or drizzle over ice cream for that perfect banana split.

Chocolate Syrup recipe in a labeled 
glass bottle.

Why Make Chocolate Syrup?

I stopped buying the “traditional” brand of Chocolate Syrup several years ago in an effort to feed my family real foods made with simple and natural ingredients.

Over time, we’ve tried a few organic brands, but they never tasted quite as good as our old standby. And they could be quite expensive.

But this recipe?

Not only does it taste better than the original, but it's also economical. It's totally cost effective to make it in small batches or big batches.

But best of all, you know exactly what's in it!

Close-up of ice cream with chocolate syrup.


I love being able to control what goes into my Chocolate Syrup. And you can't get much more straightforward than just FIVE simple ingredients!

Aerial view of labeled ingredients.
  1. Water. The base.
  2. Sugar. Combines with the water to form a simple syrup.
  3. Cocoa powder. You'll want to use a regular cocoa powder here, not Dutch-processed. As far as the brand, go with Hershey's cocoa powder if that's the brand of syrup you're trying to imitate, or a "fancier" cocoa powder for a more gourmet outcome.
  4. Vanilla. I recommend using a good-quality pure vanilla extract, since the flavor will shine through.
  5. Salt. It might seem counterintuitive to add salt to a sweet recipe, but just a tiny bit makes the chocolate flavor pop.
Chocolate Syrup being drizzled over ice cream.

How to Make Chocolate Syrup

I think you will love having this easy recipe (that can be ready in mere minutes!) in your arsenal.

Here's how to do it:

  1. Make a simple syrup. Dissolve the sugar into the water and cook for a few minutes while occasionally stirring.
  2. Stir in the cocoa powder and salt, and cook for a couple more minutes.
Aerial view of sugar and water simmering.
Cocoa and salt being stirred into simple syrup.
Aerial view of pot on stove.
  1. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Your Chocolate Syrup recipe will be pretty runny at this point, so you'll need to refrigerate it in order for it to thicken further.
Vanilla being added to pot.
Close-up of whisk stirring pot.
  1. Enjoy it warm or allow it to cool for a bit and then transfer to a bottle or jar and pop in the fridge until chilled.
Dispenser of homemade chocolate syrup recipe.


Please keep in mind that this is homemade Chocolate Syrup -- not fudge sauce. So while it will set up a bit more once chilled, it is never going to turn overly thick or gloppy.

Yield and Storage

This recipe makes about a pint.

And it should keep in the refrigerator for three to four weeks...if it lasts that long!

Close-up of Chocolate Syrup being drizzled.

Ways to Enjoy It

While there are traditional ways to enjoy this recipe, there are some additional creative ideas that are equally delicious!

  • Pour over ice cream.
  • Drizzle over brownies or cookies or bread pudding.
  • Stir into milk to make chocolate milk.
  • Use as a fruit dip for strawberries or bananas.
  • Use as a (non-fruit) dip for pretzels.
  • Blend into milkshakes.
  • Enjoy as a decadent syrup for pancakes or waffles.

Of course, my preferred application is perhaps sneaking it straight out of the jar with a spoon... 🙂

Chocolate syrup recipe stirred into glass for chocolate milk.

So the next time you're craving some yummy Chocolate Syrup for your favorite way to indulge, I hope you'll remember this recipe and give it a try! This is one of those EUREKA-type recipes that makes me wonder why I didn't try it sooner.

It's a cinch to make, it's all-natural, it's economical, and it's delicious.

You can whip it up in mere minutes with ingredients that you most likely already have on hand.

I'm telling you, friends...your family will deem you brilliant. 😉

Chocolate syrup over ice cream in glass bowl.

More Sweet, Made-From-Scratch Kitchen Staples

Close-up of Chocolate Syrup over ice cream.

Chocolate Syrup

This amazing homemade Chocolate Syrup -- made with five simple ingredients in about five minutes -- is a scrumptious topping for ice cream and makes perfect chocolate milk! It's economical and easy to make using real, straightforward ingredients.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 16 (2-tablespoon) servings (entire recipe makes 1 pint)
Calories: 86kcal
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  • cups water
  • cups sugar
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  • In a small pot set over medium-high heat, mix water and sugar until dissolved. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 3 minutes, stirring regularly.
  • Stir in cocoa powder and salt, and continue stirring and simmering for about two more minutes or until cocoa powder is all dissolved and mixture is smooth and slightly thickened. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Store chocolate syrup in a jar in the refrigerator.



  • This syrup will thicken as it cools and should have the consistency of store-bought chocolate syrup once chilled. It is not supposed to get thick like a fudge sauce.
  • In a tightly-sealed jar or bottle, it will keep in the refrigerator for three to four weeks.


Calories: 86kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 39mg | Potassium: 82mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 19g | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 1mg
Made this recipe? I'd love to see on IG!Mention @FiveHeartHome or tag #FiveHeartHome!

Originally published March 10, 2014, and updated on May 3, 2020, and January 11, 2022.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Easy to make and took very little time. It hasn't thickened up after 5 minutes of being without heat. We'll see what it does when it cools all the way off.