Hot fudge makes a delicious topping for cakes, brownies, and ice cream. But it usually contains dairy. Fortunately, dairy-free and vegan hot fudge sauce is easy to whip up, and it tastes as good as the original. This version is also sweetened solely with maple syrup for a refined sugar-free treat. And it includes a vegan carob sauce option. Either one makes a wonderful topping for enjoying a dairy-free ice cream dessert on National Hot Fudge Sundae Day and beyond.
Vegan Hot Fudge or Carob Sauce Sweetened Purely with Maple Syrup
I have a few tips and substitute ideas to make this saucy recipe even more perfect for you!
We recommend the carob version. Though it might sound unconventional, we actually prefer the carob version. Carob is naturally less bitter, and little malty, which goes nicely with maple syrup. It’s also caffeine free!
Other sweeteners will work. Maple syrup was made for this recipe, but you can substitute agave nectar, coconut nectar, and possibly another liquid sweetener in a pinch.
This can be a very allergy-friendly recipe. Not only is this vegan hot fudge sauce top allergen-free, it’s also coconut-free and optionally chocolate-free! And since you aren’t using melted chocolate, you don’t need to worry about the hassle of finding a “safe” chocolate brand.
It will thicken as it cools. In fact, it will thicken up more atop your sundae. Because it is a cornstarch base, you must let it cool to room temperature before covering and refrigerating it. If you don’t, the steam will cause the starch to break down and it will liquefy. The sauce will set up more in the refrigerator, but you can gently reheat it to enjoy it again.
You can swap another starch. Cornstarch is the most seamless option, but arrowroot starch and possibly tapioca starch will also work in this vegan hot fudge sauce or carob sauce.
Special Diet Notes: Hot Fudge Sauce or Carob Sauce
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, plant-based, and vegetarian.
- ½ cup carob powder or cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoon non-GMO cornstarch
- 1¼ cups dairy-free milk beverage
- ½ cup maple syrup (add more, to taste, if using cocoa powder)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Put the cocoa or carob powder and cornstarch in a small saucepan and whisk to combine. Add about ½ cup of the milk beverage and whisk until smooth. Add the remaining milk beverage and maple syrup, and whisk until smooth.
- Place the saucepan over medium heat, and bring the sauce to a simmer. Cook, while whisking, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until it forms a thick sauce.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the vanilla.
- Serve warm. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and gently reheat to serve.