Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - A Family Feast

If you follow us over on Instagram, then you probably know that we just came home from a family vacation at Hershey Park in Hershey, Pennsylvania!  This was our second year visiting the park, and we decided that on this trip we would sign up for the Create Your Own Candy Bar at Hershey’s Chocolate World, located just outside the amusement park.

Each of us had the chance to make a custom chocolate bar – choosing the type of chocolate we wanted as the base, additional ingredients to include such as chocolate or butterscotch ships, pretzel bits and more; we designed our own label for our candy bars; and we got to watch it being made right before our eyes!  Here are a few photos from our fun production tour:

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - A Family Feast

So all of that wonderful chocolate had us craving a sweet treat when we got home – and we decided to make this fantastic Hot Fudge Pudding Cake from the Hershey’s Kitchen website.

This Hot Fudge Pudding Cake is outrageously good – and it couldn’t be any easier to make!  A simple batter (made from Hershey’s cocoa of course) is first spooned into the bottom of a lightly greased pan or baking dish.  Then a dry cocoa mixture is sprinkled on top of the batter.  Finally – right before baking – hot water gets poured over the top of the dry cocoa mixture.  But don’t stir it in – that process creates this fantastic, almost-crunchy topping on this Hot Fudge Pudding Cake as it bakes!

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - A Family Feast

Then – once the Hot Fudge Pudding Cake comes out of the oven, just use a spoon to serve.  You’ll end up with a super moist cake with a warm and fudgy pudding center – plus a sweet crunchy topping!  Served with some vanilla ice cream – this is one amazingly good dessert that any chocolate lover will enjoy!

Disclaimer: I was not compensated by Hershey’s for this post.  We are simply sharing our vacation story with you today as well as the inspiration behind our recipe.

Additional note: We’ve received a few reader comments below complaining that the cake was very runny and not fudgy.  We’ve retested the recipe ourselves and can confirm that it is written correctly. But feel free to bake the cake for a few minutes longer if necessary (ovens may vary), and also make sure that you allow the cake to sit for 15 minutes before serving to give the sauce time to set up.

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - A Family Feast

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x


Recipe adapted from Hershey’s Kitchens



  • 1¼ cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup Hershey’s Cocoa, divided
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1¼ cups hot water
  • Vanilla ice cream, if desired for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Heat a pot of water on the stove to very hot (just under a simmer).
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine ¾ cup of the granulated sugar, flour, ¼ cup of the cocoa, baking powder and salt. Stir in milk, melted butter and vanilla and mix until smooth.
  3. Pour the batter into an lightly greased 2-quart ceramic dish (as shown in our photos) or a 9-inch square baking pan (if it’s a non-stick pan, you don’t have to grease it) and spread evenly.
  4. In a small bowl, stir together the remaining ½ cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, remaining ¼ cup cocoa and mix well. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the batter in your dish or pan. Pour the hot water over the top – but do not stir!
  5. Bake 35-40 minutes if using a glass dish (or 30-35 minutes if using a metal pan) – or until the center is almost set. Remove your dish from the oven and allow it to stand for 15 minutes.
  6. After 15 minutes, spoon the cake into individual serving bowls – making sure to spoon the fudgy sauce from the bottom of the pan over the top of the cake. Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream if desired and serve immediately.

You may also like:

Mexican Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

Mexican Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - A Family Feast

No-Bake Chocolate Cheesecake Pie

No-Bake Chocolate Cheesecake Pie - A Family Feast

Craving Even More Hot Fudge? Check out these recipes from my fellow bloggers:

Slow Cooker Hot Fudge Turtle Brownies – Mom on Timeout

Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce – Brown Eyed Baker

Hot Fudge Filled Chocolate Lava Cookies – Tidy Mom

Nutella Hot Fudge – Country Cleaver

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - This outrageously good chocolate fudgy cake couldn't be any easier!

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake - A Family Feast
  • Meet The Author: Martha

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    What type of comment do you have?

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  • christine wrote:

    This looks like the perfect answer to a sweet tooth craving! We did Hershey Park quite a few years back, great family trip.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Christine!

      • mariah wrote:

        Could you do anything a head of time?

        • Martha wrote:

          Hi Mariah – Other than measuring out the dry ingredients ahead of time, probably not. But – it’s very quick to mix up!

    • Barbara.Radke wrote:

      Just wondering for the hot fudge pudding cake. The recipe says to heat a pot of water. How much water ?

      • Martha wrote:

        Hi Barbara – You will need 1 1/4 cups of hot water. Thanks for your question!

        • Abby wrote:

          I am wondering what happens if you add too much water! 🙁 I am about to find out.

          • Martha wrote:

            Hi Abby – As long as you follow the directions, it should turn out! We’ve made this numerous times following our recipe so I can confirm that it is correct!

    • Liz wrote:

      So I was scrolling through pinterest while eating dinner, and realized that I wouldn’t have to go out and get anything to make this… So I made it as soon as I was done eating. It’s like a messy, gooey pile of I’ve died and Gone to Heaven. It’s amazing!

      • Martha wrote:

        LOL – Thanks so much Liz! (I totally agree!) So glad you enjoyed the recipe as much as we did!

  • Laura @ Raise Your Garden wrote:

    Oh my, this hot fudge pudding cake looks absolutely Willie Wonkie devine. Or should I say Hersey? I love Hersey Park, haven’t been there since I was a kid. Love reading about your experience, I should take mine! A lot cheaper than Disney too. And much closer to where I live.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Laura! Hershey is much more than I remember growing up…there’s a water park, tons of roller coaster, etc. I’m sure your family will love going there! Thanks for visiting us today!

    • tammy wrote:

      Replacing the water with brewed coffee makes this choc pudding cake even more decadent.

      • Martha wrote:

        What a great idea Tammy! Thank you for your suggestion – I will definitely try that the next time we make this cake!

  • Angela {Mind Over Batter} wrote:

    This is EXACTLY how I want my cake situation. Preferably within the next 30 seconds. Maybe if I wish real, real hard…

    • Martha wrote:

      Wouldn’t that be great if we could reach into our computer monitor or phone and grab any of the wonderful blog food we see? Thanks for stopping by today! 🙂

  • claire @ the realistic nutritionist wrote:

    All of that fudge, holy crap.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Claire! 🙂

  • The Food Hunter wrote:

    It’s been years but I used to go to Hershey all the time!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you get back there soon! It’s completely different with so much more to do!

  • Stephanie @ Back For Seconds wrote:

    Oh my goodness. This is like a dream come true! 🙂

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Stephanie!

  • Carol at Wild Goose Tea wrote:

    Visiting Hershey is on my bucket list. Since I live on the West Coast, it’s a little more planning. This dish is out of my childhood. and what a family favorite it was. Kind of a pre-molten cake. I had forgotten about it. I am going to have to make it again.

    • Martha wrote:

      That is exactly it Carol! Sort of a cross between a molten-lava cake and pudding…it’s been a family favorite of ours for a long time! Hope you get to Hershey one day – it’s a lot of fun!

  • Ashley @ Wishes & Dishes wrote:

    My mom took my brothers and I to Hershey when we were kids! I loved it there! This cake looks so divine!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Ashley!

  • Angie wrote:

    I love pudding cakes, and yours looks so decadent! I would love a bowl, yum!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Angie!

  • Courtney @ Neighborfood wrote:

    Holy cow. This is my love language. Wish I had a giant bowl right now!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Courtney!

  • Amanda @The Kitcheneer wrote:

    My first thought when I saw your pudding cake was ” I want to swim in that”. I still do. It looks amazing!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Amanda! Great idea! 😉

  • Jeni wrote:

    YUM! Totally had to pin this because it looks Fabulous!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you Jeni!

  • Paula – bell’alimento wrote:

    So much fun! Love Hershey’s

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Paula!

  • samantha wrote:

    This looks so amazing. I’m almost drooling! So gooey looking. What a great vacation story!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Samantha!

  • Shelby wrote:

    This is such a wonderful family dessert! So great to take it out of the oven just as dinner is finishing up. Help with clean up is assured! Been making this for about 40 years. A good recipe is a good recipe.(period)

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Shelby – it is very easy!

    • ShariD wrote:

      Shelby and Martha! I saw this posted on a friend’s Pinterest board just now, and it reminded me of “the good old days” when the kids (now grown, and 6th grandchild due imminently) were small and scratch cooking was the rule of the kitchen! Tight budget made eating out a rare treat, but not eating good food! This was a family favorite dessert, coming from my very favorite, and now well worn cookbook, and my husband always complained of being “stuffed to the gills” after eating his fill of it. But that never seemed to stop him! This was also a favorite birthday “cake” request for kid parties ~ serve up in a bowl with a big dollop of vanilla ice cream, or whipped cream and everyone enjoyed! Never any leftovers, but lots of requests for sharing the recipe with their moms.
      What a great reminder of wonderful times past. I may make it for the grandkids one of these days! Very very important to remember NOT TO STIR when you add the hot water too. If you do, that will definitely change the outcome, and might be accounting for the skewed results some are getting. That’s not a misprint ~ don’t stir in the hot water! That’s crucial to getting the crusty, crunchy topping at the end.

      • Martha wrote:

        Thank you for sharing such nice memories with us Shari! This recipe is definitely a family favorite of ours too! And thanks for the advice about not stirring the hot water – it seems like such a strange step but it creates the best part of this recipe! Thanks for taking the time to write to us today!

      • Shari D wrote:

        Martha ~ I have no clue in the world how the name “Shelby” got turned into “Jack”!!! My ” smartphone ” has done some pretty dumb things from time to time, but this literally takes the cake!!! Apologies to both of you ~ I know for a fact I double checked and even corrected the spelling of Shelby’s name when writing my reply above, because when I was typing it, for some reason it didn’t put in the “b” in Shelby. So, I had fixed it!
        (Do you have an edit function for comments so you could change it to what it should be? Otherwise, I guess this response to that very odd reply will have to serve!)
        Sorry about that!
        Shari D.

        • Martha wrote:

          Hi Shari – no problem! I’ll make the edit! 🙂

  • Ginny McMeans wrote:

    You are all so cute! That pudding cake does sound so simple and good!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Ginny!

  • Renee – Kudos Kitchen wrote:

    I remember going to Hershey Pennsylvania when I was a kid and it holds some wonderful memories for me. I’m sure it’s changed a lot but do they still have the Hershey’s kisses street lamps? My memory is pretty foggy (it was a long time ago) but I do remember those 🙂
    Your cake looks incredible! So rich and decedent! Love it!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Renee – They do – they have some of the kisses street lamps around the park as well as in Downtown Hershey! So fun! Thanks for visiting today!

  • Nutmeg Nanny wrote:

    This pudding cake looks amazing! So fudgy and delicious.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you!

  • Angie | Big Bears Wife wrote:

    I’ve always wanted to go to Hershey Park! How neat! Oh I love this hot fudge pudding cake!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Angie!

  • Meseidy wrote:

    Holy moly! I would love a bowl of this warm gooey chocolate goodness!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Meseidy!

  • Jessica (Savory Experiments) wrote:

    No kidding! This looks absolutely amazing. I’ll take ooey gooey chocolate any day of the week!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Jessica!

  • Aly ~ Cooking In Stilettos wrote:

    Love the pics Martha! Hershey has to go on my bucket list now that I live in Philly – heard their hotel spa is to die for and the park is a blast! That cake looks so rich and chocolatey!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Aly! I’ve heard good things to about the onsite hotel – maybe next time!

  • Nicole wrote:

    Wow! I want to dive in face first!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Nicole!

  • Kellie @ The Suburban Soapbox wrote:

    I have visited Hershey so many times I can’t even count them…and I never knew you could make your own candy bar! Looks like so much fun! And this cake….drooling.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Kellie!

  • Kirsten/ComfortablyDomestic wrote:

    A visit to Hershey Park has been on my Bucket List since I was a little girl. What an awesome family vacation. Reminiscing over a little hot fudge pudding cake at home isn’t a bad idea, either.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Kirsten!

  • Carissa @ Domestic Dreamboat wrote:

    Wow, this looks SO good! I want to eat it NOW!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Carissa!

  • Kelly wrote:

    I wonder of this would work with gluten free flour, this is a favorite from my childhood!

    • Martha wrote:

      I don’t know Kelly – but we would love to hear how it turns out if you try it with gluten free flour!

  • Shiloh Barkley wrote:

    This is in the oven right now!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you like it Shiloh!

      • Shiloh Barkley wrote:

        It was fantastic! Great recipe. I’ve been looking forever for a chocolate cake that would rival Shoney’s. My husband thinks theirs is the best. (But they’re all closing because their restaurant sucks.) thank you!

        • Martha wrote:

          Thanks Shiloh – glad it’s a hubby-approved recipe!

  • Michelle wrote:


    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Michelle!

  • Ryan wrote:

    I saw in the description/narrative it’s says to spoon the batter in to a greased pan but the recipe says ungreased, not sure which way to go.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you so much for alerting us to that confusing recipe Ryan! The original recipe called for this to be made in a non-stick metal 9×9 baking pan (ungreased) – but we made it in a round ceramic dish and I did spray it with cooking spray before baking it. I will update the recipe to clarify that! Thank you again for writing to us!

      • Ryan wrote:

        Thank you for replying, I’m making this cake for tonight and can’t wait to try it!

        • Martha wrote:

          Hope you enjoy it Ryan!

  • Serena wrote:

    What will happen if I have leftovers or can’t serve right away? How would you recomend storing?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Serena – I’d recommend reheating it in the microwave just until warm (if you’ve baked it in an oven-safe glass dish – just cover it tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate). If you’ve baked it in a metal baking pan, you’ll need to transfer it to a microwave-safe dish before reheating. Hope that helps!

  • Jennifer wrote:

    This sounds like it would be fantastic with some walnuts thrown into the mixture.

    • Martha wrote:

      I think so too Jennifer!

  • Morgan L wrote:

    This may be a silly question…but do you use Hershey’s UNsweetened cocoa? Or should it be sweetened instead?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Morgan – unsweetened! The sugar in the recipe is enough that you wouldn’t want to use a sweetened cocoa powder!

  • Chelsea wrote:

    This was amazing! Thank you 😉 I’ve made it twice already!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Chelsea! It’s one of our favorites!

  • Sela Amelinda wrote:

    I just tried this recipe and the results were amazing. All members of my family loved it (except for my father, he does not eat sweets). This recipe will be one of my favorite recipes!
    And I wish I could visit Hershey Park someday~

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Sela! I hope you can make it to Hershey Park someday too!

  • barbara hill wrote:

    Dear Martha, i had this recipe ” years” ago and it was one of my favorites… but,alas, i lost the recipe….Thank you so much for bringing it back to me… I promise not to lose this one…. Thanks again…it is a GREAT recipe…. Barbara
    P.S. all of your recipes are great…

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Barb – Thank you so much! This IS a GREAT recipe and I would have been sad if I lost it too…but now you know where to find it just in case you lose it again! Enjoy!

  • Terri wrote:

    OMG this looks amazing! I am making it right now…. I was craving something chocolate, and this looks like the best dessert to satisfy my craving!! 🙂

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you enjoyed the recipe Terri!

  • Dianne wrote:

    I used to make this cake twenty years ago but lost the recipe. It’s so moist, yummy and easy to make. After baking, top with cherry pie filling and cream cheese frosting for a black forest cake.

    • Martha wrote:

      Sounds delicious Dianne!

  • Beverlee wrote:

    This looks scrumptious!! Being pre-diabetic, what could I use (proportion equivalents) instead of regular sugar? Also, can Cacao be used instead of Cocoa? I love “A Family Feast”!! Keep those great recipes, etc. coming!…Beverlee

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Beverlee – We haven’t adapted this recipe with any lower sugar alternatives so I’d really only be guessing! If you try the cacao and/or sugar alternatives, please let us know how it comes out! I’m sorry I’m not much help with your question…Martha

    • jody wrote:

      you can google the equivalent for the sweetener you use – here is the link to the amount of Truvia to sub for sugar:

    • June byrd wrote:

      I have used half sugar and the rest Splenda. It came out very good, but the original recipe is THE BEST. Just use less serving and top with a big scoop of sugarfree ice cream.

      • Martha wrote:

        Thanks for the suggestion June!

  • Danielle wrote:

    I made this cake in a 9×9 but there seems to be too much water because it’s been in the oven for half an hour and it’s still pure liquid on top. Hasn’t even begun to set anywhere. Anyone else have this problem?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Danielle – I haven’t heard of any other similar issues. We also used a 9×9 pan. I’ll put this comment through in case anyone else had a similar issue. Martha

  • Ala wrote:

    can this recipe be doubled into a 9×13 pan?

    • Martha wrote:

      I think so Ala – the cooking time might change a bit so just keep an eye on it while it bakes!

  • jody wrote:

    dear god in heaven…if we could just eat dessert for every meal…

    • Martha wrote:

      LOL – Thanks Jody (This is a very delicious dessert for sure!) 🙂

  • Tamra B Rockford Il wrote:

    Do you know if anybody has tried using gluten free with this recipe and still get the same texture and flavor?

  • becky m wrote:

    I have made the hot fudge cake in a small crock pot many times. I mix the batter and put it in the crock pot, mix the topping just like i would do it in the oven. Turn it on high for a couple of hours. The reason i do it in a crock pot is because i am doing it in my office for parties. Everyone loves it.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for writing to us Becky – We love that this also worked in a crockpot! (I’ve got to try that too…)

  • sarah gavagni wrote:

    We wanted something warm, sweet, and quick and this was the perfect dessert! Thank you for the recipe, we will be making it again soon!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for taking the time to write to us Sarah – and we’re so glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Robin wrote:

    What a disaster this was!

    I made it twice thinking I did something wrong the first time and each time it turned to liquid after about 20 minutes of baking. It looked good at the 15 minute mark and somewhere between that and 20 minutes it liquefied, twice!! I tried it using a le crueset 9×9 pan and again using a regular 9×9 metal baking pan, the results were the same both times.

    I followed the recipe perfectly, except I did not read the comments and after seeing someone else had the same problem I am sorry now that I didn’t. I’m not sure what could have went wrong. Definitely a waste of money and time.

    • Martha wrote:

      I’m very sorry to hear that Robin…I’m afraid I have not idea why the recipe didn’t work for you. I certainly understand your disappointment!

  • Joy wrote:

    My mom, who is now 82, used to make this for the family when growing up. We all loved it. I’ve made similar recipes, but never has one turned out so perfectly. My husband was craving something chocolate. When he finished inhaling (lol) I asked, ‘so, did this do ya for your chocolate fix?’ I ate it, he replied. I won’t hear how great it was until a ways down the road when he asks, “Why don’t you make that chocolate pudding stuff, again?” 😉

    • Martha wrote:

      LOL Joy – I’m so glad your family (husband included) 😉 enjoyed the recipe as much as we did! Thanks for taking the time to write to us today!

  • Steph wrote:

    This is soooo delicious. I made it last night because I wanted something chocolate-y. I accidentally messed up and put in too much sugar (whoops) so it’s super sweet but it still tastes so good. I love the fudgyness.

    Also, just for the record, it’s just as good cold the next day. I will definitely be making this again. Preferably for a crowd so I don’t eat it all.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Steph! (I agree – it is pretty fantastic as leftovers!) Glad you enjoyed it as much as we do!

  • Tamra wrote:

    I have made this three times and cant keep it in the icebox for more thena few hours…….it just seems to fly out of the bowl before I know it. The last two times I made it I mixed 1/4 cup Dark Hershey’s Cocoa powder and 1/4 cup Traditional Hershey’s Cocoa powder before I separated it….. Now I am no chocolate connoisseur and rarely eat chocolate but I can tell you this much ……the savory decadent flavor runs circles around Portillo’s Chocolate cake that I love.
    This is absolutely the bomb in my house. Next I am going to try gluten free flour and if it is a success I will let you know. Thanks for posting this reccipe

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks so much for your email (I agree-this cake IS the bomb!) and I’d love to hear how it comes out made with gluten free flour Tamra! Please let us know!!

  • Darlene Dean wrote:

    Hot fudge pudding cake look so good by the picture. I think it needs a longer cook time as it cannot be toothpick tested. When I took this out of the oven after 40 minutes, it still came out doughy. The middle just fell through when I cut into it. Other then that, very chocolty and sweet.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Darlene – Definitely feel free to bake for longer if needed to reach the consistency you’d like.

  • Robyn wrote:

    This looks decadent. Since it is just my husband and I, would the recipe work if I halved it?

    • Martha wrote:

      Sure Robyn – You’ll want to bake it in a smaller dish and I would imagine the baking time might be different (probably less time than the original).

  • Sara wrote:

    If I don’t have unsalted butter should I hold off on making? Anyone used salted butter?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Sara – usually I’d say hold off but for this recipe I think you will be OK if you only have salted butter!

    • Joy wrote:

      I used salted butter and it came out just fine in my opinion. I’m the type that I like those chocolate candy bars that have the sea salt on top–so perhaps you might just use a tiny pinch less of salt in the recipe if you don’t like that kind of thing.

  • Susan alberti wrote:

    There is something definitely wrong with this recipe. Runny and tasted like raw flour. I did everything right by the recipe and waited at least 15 minutes for it to thicken. My oven cooks correctly so that is not the problem either. I was so disappointed…..really wanted to eat it.

    • Martha wrote:

      Wow Susan – I’m stumped again! We actually made the recipe this past weekend to confirm that it was written correctly (it came out fine for us) – and checked our recipe against the original that appears on the Hershey website and it is correct as written. I’d suggest baking it for a little longer if it’s that undercooked. I’m sorry the recipe didn’t work out for you!

  • Mary wrote:

    My mom used to make this when we were younger. It was so good will need to make this & see if it taste as good as I remember.

    • Martha wrote:

      I hope it is as good as you remember Mary!

  • Tricia wrote:

    Just made this, it was amazing!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Tricia! So glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Sandra wrote:

    OMG this is something unique! It looks like heaven to me 🙂 I can’t even wait for tomorrow, need this today!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you enjoy the recipe Sandra!

  • Anita wrote:

    This looks soo good! I really want to make this but I don’t have enough cocoa powder, would it be ok if I melted some chocolate into the batter?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Anita – not sure but you can try…I would add some extra flour since the cocoa powder helps absorb some of the liquid.

  • Viviane wrote:

    Hi Martha!

    Lovely recipe 🙂

    Just wanted to know if this recipe is still great if you have leftovers. ie cover leftovers, store in fridge, reheat in microwave (or oven), then let sit again for 15 mins before serving.

    Otherwise, I will scale it right down. It’s just that scaling it down for 2 serves is a little difficult.

    Thanks 🙂

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Viviane – Yes! You can store the leftovers in the refrigerator and it reheats beautifully in the microwave (you won’t need to reheat for long – just enough to take the chill off and warm it up a bit). Enjoy!

  • ShariD wrote:

    Martha ~ I’m a big fan of this recipe, and have been for many years, as you will see from a response I left above to a comment left by Shelby, so I will skip background information here.
    Something sort of clicked for me when I was reading through the other comments from folks who were having issues with the cake coming out too soupy, or runny.
    For one thing, sometimes older ovens tend not to get up to proper temperature, even when the dial says it is. Thermostats can fail over time, and need to be replaced. BTDT! Check your oven temperature with a stand alone oven thermometer to be sure it’s coming up to temperature as it should. Even being ten degrees off can create problems.
    The other thing that came to mind right off, was the butter. It is very important that if a recipe calls for “butter” that butter be used ~ not margarine. Even stick margarine contains varying amounts of water, and tub margarine is worse. “Diet” margarine I won’t even discuss! This can add more water to a recipe, as well as less fat, which can make a recipe soupier than desired, and the results much less than desirable.
    So, if any of these issues are what you’re dealing with, and your fudgey cake is leaving you flat, fixing them and trying again will likely render you much better results!
    Unfortunately, if those aren’t the problem, I have no suggestions to offer. Hope this proves helpful for someone. (And remember, DON’T stir in that hot water at the end!)

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for all of your suggestions Shari! (I appreciate all of the time you’ve put into suggesting why the recipe isn’t working!)

  • Saida wrote:


    I have a question 🙂 The temperature…is it in celcius or farenheit? I don’t want to just assume and get it wrong >.<

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Saida – our temps are Fahrenheit.

  • Bernadine wrote:

    Martha, I made this last night when we had a friend over. My husband won’t eat anything made with cow’s milk so I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk and it turned out great! I would have to say, after reading the comments I was expecting something so good I would want to eat the whole pan. It was very good, but not mind-blowing… of course I DID make a few minor alterations, I didn’t use Hershey’s cocoa, I used an organic cocoa powder, and I used coconut sugar in place of the brown sugar, and my butter was salted, so my alterations could easily have changed the outcome. But just in case anyone was wondering about subbing another kind of milk, almond milk seemed to work just fine. 🙂

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for letting us know Bernadine!

  • Martha wrote:

    Hi Martha!
    Can I bake this in a 9in medal pie pan? I don’t have 9×9 square pan =/

    • Martha wrote:

      Yes – as long as it’s a deep dish pie plate. A standard pie plate might be too shallow. Also the bake time might need to be adjusted ?

  • shon wrote:

    Wow… Seriously the BEST RECEIPE ever, truly on point. Restaurant quality!!! My recipes never turn out right. I don’t know these folks just a single mom hoping to be married one day and cook great meals for my son 🙂

    Ps. I ran out of butter so used bananas as a substitute

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for writing to us Shon! And what an interesting substitution – I’ll have to try that sometime! Glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Kathy Marshall wrote:

    I can’t believe out of all the comments and questions i’m the only one to ask, no eggs? 🙂

    • Martha wrote:

      No eggs Kathy. The recipe is correct as written.

  • jenna wrote:

    i just made the pudding and omg i forgot the flour. how can i recuperate the chocolate sauce. tyvm :((

    • Martha wrote:

      I’m not sure Jenna – you might just need to start over…

  • Carol bishop wrote:

    what awesome recipes, Can’t wait to try them!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Carol!

  • Jodi wrote:

    This recipe is a winner everytime! The best ever for salving the wickedest chocolate cravings! Never sticks around very long either- it is just sooo good! Instead of ice cream, I have topped mine with homemade whipped cream ( just a quick whip of heavy cream with your mixer- done while cake is in the oven). Its creamy smoothness better complements the absolute super sweetness of the pudding/ cake beautifully!!! Ahhhhhh!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Jodi! I agree!

  • Thomas wrote:

    Could this be adjusted to be made in a Crock-Pot?

    • Martha wrote:

      I haven’t tried it in the slow cooker – but I don’t think you will get the same crunchy topping. I’ve seen some other recipes specifically for the slow cooker. You might be better off googling to find one of those!

  • Sue wrote:

    I can’t to get my hands on these recipes.

  • niki wrote:

    i’ve made this recipe sooo many times and it always comes out great! but i was just wondering, do you think it would still turn out good if i were to make them in cupcake pans? i don’t know if the cake would come out whole….what do you think?

  • Teresa wrote:

    This has been a family favourite in our house for over 20 years! I first got the recipe from a Betty Crocker cookbook I received as a wedding shower gift. So so good!

    • Martha wrote:

      Wow Teresa – it is for sure a delicious classic!

  • Laura wrote:

    I’m having 8 people around for dinner tonight will this comfortably serve 8??

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Laura – Sorry for the delay in responding – I realize you might already be serving your guests by the time this gets to you! It’s super rich so I think 8 servings is definitely doable – especially served with ice cream on the side. Hope you enjoy(ed) the recipe!

  • Brooke wrote:

    Did you use unsweetened or dark

    • Martha wrote:

      Unsweetened cocoa

  • Sharon K Schumann wrote:

    I’m so sorry to say we didn’t care for this recipe…The cake texture was moist and lovely but the cocoa was so over powering I actually tossed it…Way to much cocoa to enjoy 🙁

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for sharing your feedback Sharon – sorry you were disappointed in the recipe. (It is indeed very rich and chocolaty!)

  • Amy wrote:

    Exactly how much hot water do you pour over the cake?

    • Jack wrote:

      1 1/4 cups

  • Judy Jones wrote:

    Will this recipe turn out ok if doubled and baked in a 9 x 13 cake pan? We have a larger family. Thanks for your help

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Judy – I’m not sure…part of the secret to this recipe is getting that hot water poured on top just before baking to seep into the batter as it bakes, and that creates the hot fudge sauce/pudding in the middle of the cake. A 9×13 doesn’t have the same surface area as two 9-inch square pans…I’m afraid it would come out too soft and liquid. Instead, I’d suggest baking two separate cakes. We’ve made this in both a 9×9 square metal pan as well as a round, glass casserole dish – both worked well! Hope that helps and enjoy!

      • Judy Jones wrote:

        Thank you for the information, I will use 2 9×9 pans. love this site and the posts.

        • Martha wrote:

          You’re very welcome Judy! And thank you for your kind words – they made our day! 🙂

  • Judy wrote:

    When people use Betty Crocker or etc and complain, they are told “bakers who live at high or low elevations have to add or subtract flour to their mixes all of the time”.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Judy!

  • Betty wrote:

    Can’t wait to make this today for Sunday School Social-have you or any one made it with Pecans instead of Almonds we love Pecans.thanks.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Betty – We’ve only made the recipe without nuts, but I’m sure it would be delicious with either chopped pecans or almonds added to the batter. Enjoy!

  • Laurie wrote:

    This looked really good, so I tried it. It was really good! My husband liked it too. But he commented that his mom made something similar, but only vanilla. I was wondering how I could make his mom’s version of this. Any help would be appreciated.

    • Martha wrote:

      Oh wow Laurie – A vanilla version sounds delicious! Was the cake vanilla with chocolate fudge? Or was there a warm vanilla pudding with a vanilla cake? I did a quick google search and found this recipe: (Sounds like she grew up with a similar recipe and sized hers for individual servings.) Hope this helps!

  • Kelly wrote:

    Great recipe, Martha! We’d made something very similar, however we’d used a Ghiradelli boxed brownie mix in a 9×13 pan and began with step 4 only using slightly more ingredients; 1 1/2 cup boiling water, remove from heat and dissolve 1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/2 c granulated sugar, and 1 tsp vanilla in the hot water, gently pour the chocolate liquid over the “cake” so as not to disturb the brownie mix. I’m guessing it will produce the same result so I’m making this tonight to compare notes. Tank you so much for sharing!!! :o)

    • Kelly wrote:

      Thank you.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Kelly! Hope our version is just as good!

  • Lesley wrote:

    So I’ve made this cake many times and love it! Today I had many interruptions while making it and put the whole 1/2 cup cocoa in batter! So I cut back on cocoa on top mixture to hopefully balance it. Here’s hoping it turns out ok. Anyone else make this mistake?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Lesley – Hope the recipe still worked for you!

  • Jan wrote:

    This was absolutely deee-lish!!!! Two thumbs up!!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Jan!

  • Maria Plagwitz wrote:

    What does ‘until center is almost set’ mean??? Do you stick a toothpick in it?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Maria – I’d touch the center with the back of a spoon – you don’t want it cooked completely through to a firm cake – you still want some softness from the hot fudge sauce. Hope that helps!

  • Chocolate Lover wrote:

    I just could not take it ….and so I had to bake it..right away !
    It’s sitting in the oven. I did not have butter so instead used margarine.
    I just hope it won’t make a big difference..or will it ?

    • Martha wrote:

      I think it should be OK with margarine!

  • gina anderson wrote:

    Oh my gosh. You have become my newest, best-est friend. lol….
    I have been searching for this recipe for the past 5 years or so.
    I just did another search for it and
    kaboom! There it is. yay. Thank you for sharing…Gina Anderson-Howard

    • Martha wrote:

      We’re glad you found us Gina! Enjoy!

  • Heather wrote:

    This cake was very yummy! It’s definitely a keeper!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Heather!

  • Joy wrote:

    Wow, was this yummy! Even better than the chocolate fudge sundae cake recipe in my Betty Crocker cookbook. I think it may be the melted butter and the vanilla? Not sure, I’ll have to compare.
    I skimped just a bit on the sugar, added a teensy pinch of salt to the topping (I love salted chocolate bars), and used salted butter, and it came out perfect for my tastes. Oh, and a tiny pinch of nutmeg, too. It’s so rich, a small bowl was all I could handle. I think this will quell my chocolate cravings for at least one night! 😉 But tomorrow is another day! Thanks for the recipe.

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re very welcome Joy! Love the idea of making this a ‘salted’ chocolate dessert!

  • Susan wrote:

    Do you use light brown or dark brown sugar? I usually use dark brown because it has more flavor, but I am curious to what you use.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Susan – We used light brown sugar but dark brown sugar will work just fine.

  • Theresa wrote:

    Made it lovely! How do I double up recipe? Double of everything?

    • Martha wrote:

      Yes – double everything. I’d suggest baking it in two separate pans to ensure the correct proportion of sauce to cake.

  • Jason wrote:

    The best recipe ever!

  • Irma Francis wrote:

    Hi Martha
    Love the way your cake is photographed. I had been drooling over the pictures for a couple days now and couldn’t take it any longer. What an easy cake to whip together!! Smells amazing and tastes soo darn good!
    I literally don’t have any of my baking equipment out since I moved to a new place. Only have a bowl and whisk. Bowl was dirty. So I just whisked the flour mixture directly in the cake pan. Topped it with the sugar mixture and hot water. No dirty bowls to wash afterwards. Lol. I think I will do it this way even if I have a bowl to work with.
    Sorry about the rant. Thank you for the recipe! I am sooooo happy to have found something this simple and divine! Will try with coffee instead of coffee next time. Five hearts out of five 😊
    Now off I go to explore the rest of your beautiful website.

    • Martha wrote:

      What a great idea Irma – I can definitely see that this would work as a ‘one-bowl’ recipe! So glad you found us and are enjoying the recipes!

  • Diane wrote:

    This sounds like a recipe I had many years ago but lost. I am going to keep this one. Thanks

    • Martha wrote:

      You are very welcome Diane! I hope this recipe is as delicious as the one you remember!

  • Elisa jimenez wrote:

    Is it possible to use a Pyrex dish rather than ceramic?

    • Martha wrote:

      Yes – no problem at all using a Pyrex baking dish for this recipe Elisa!

  • Jessica Willis wrote:

    I love chocolate🍫

    • Martha wrote:

      We do too Jessica! 🙂

  • Dianna wrote:

    I have used this recipe several times. Always a big hit. Thanks for sharing

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re very welcome Dianna! So glad you enjoyed it!

  • DeeDee wrote:

    This looks amazing! You had me at hot fudge!! Someone suggested coffee instead of water? That actually sounds pretty good.

    • Martha wrote:

      I agree DeeDee – swapping in coffee does sound pretty good! It’s a great complementary flavor to chocolate…thanks for writing to us today!

  • Bonny wrote:

    OMG, I made this for dessert for tonight!!! Can’t wait to taste it. I just happen to have ice cream and cold milk.

    • Martha wrote:

      Enjoy Bonny! (I think you’ll love this dessert!) 🙂

  • Ren wrote:

    So the pudding-y bottom is ahhmazing but the cake-y part tastes like raw flour and despite the amount of chocolate in this recipe (I even added chocolate chips) I don’t get that chocolaty-ness I’m craving! It’s defintely sweet enough, I don’t know it just feels like something is missing!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for sharing your feedback Ren!

  • JEanne Cope wrote:

    My Grandmother made this as a treat during the Great Depression. My mother made it during our hard times for a treat while we were growing up. I make it now because it is the best.

    • Martha wrote:

      I agree Jeanne – this is one of the best classic recipes! Thank you for sharing your memories with us.

  • Julie wrote:

    My grandmother ad this recipe for years. The difference is that instead of butter, you put 2 tbsp. of Crisco that has been melted. Hers also had chopped walnuts.

    • Martha wrote:

      We love the idea of adding nuts Julie! Thanks for sharing.

  • Joanne Riordan wrote:

    Can you use regular cocoa powder? We live in France and so no Hershey’s

    Many thanks

    • Jack wrote:

      Yes – any unsweetened cocoa powder will work! Enjoy!

  • Phyllis wrote:

    I have been baking this cake for 20+ years. It so easy to make and delicious.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Phyllis!

  • Catherine wrote:

    This was perfect! I used a good Dutch chocolate since it is main ingredient.
    I have been looking for a recipe like this since restaurant charge $8.
    My grandson and I made it so it was easy. Must have Good Vanilla bean ice cream to top off.

    • Martha wrote:

      I totally agree Catherine! So glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Julia wrote:

    Hi, can I use cadburys milk chocolate instead as Hersheys due to it being hard to come by in England. Plus I cant use dark chocolate due to migraines. This dessert looks to amazing to miss out on. Thank you for sharing with us.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Julia – I think any brand of unsweetened cocoa powder will work for this recipe. (I’m not sure if your Cadbury is powdered or a candy bar like it is here in the U.S.?) We hope you can find the cocoa powder!

  • William wrote:

    Oh my gosh, I am like a small child when it comes to this stuff – after reading this I really want to go to the Hersheys park. Thanks for the recipe, looks amazing and will be using it this long weekend!

    • Martha wrote:

      We hope you love the recipe William! (And we hope you get to Hershey Park one of these days…)

  • Brenda wrote:

    One of my husband’s favorites!

    • Martha wrote:

      Mine too Brenda! 🙂

  • Bianca wrote:

    Love it!!! Thank you for the amazing recipe

    • Martha wrote:

      You are very welcome Bianca!

  • Ann wrote:

    Can this be doubled for a 9 x 13 pan?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Ann – Yes – the baking time will need to be adjusted however and you may not see the same proportions of cake and sauce underneath.

  • Lindsey wrote:

    Has anyone adapted or tried this in a slow cooker? I know there are slow cooker recipes out there this one just sounds the best!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Lindsey – We haven’t but hopefully someone will read your comment and respond! (I’m not sure you’ll get the same baked cake on top consistency in the slow cooker…)

  • Mo wrote:

    Worried about amount if water I should heat in the PAN?
    How much water should I put in the pan ?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Mo – You can just use 1 1/4 cups of very hot tap water. But if you prefer to heat it in a pan, I’d suggest the same amount and as soon as it starts to steam that will be hot enough. Hope that helps!

  • BizzyLizzie wrote:

    This was a spectacular failure for me. I followed the recipe in order to make a great for my daughter and son-in-law but it stubbornly refused to set. Even after an hour in the oven it was still liquid! Not surprisingly, it ended up going down the drain.

    • Martha wrote:

      Oh no! I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t have good results with this recipe Liz!

  • liz wrote:

    found it! I made this or many years and lost the recipe. I saw the pic and knew immediately it was what my kids wanted me to make again.


    • Martha wrote:

      Yay! I know the feeling of a long lost recipe – finally found again! I hope the pudding cake is as good as you remembered! Enjoy!

  • teresa wrote:

    never went to hersey,pa but my mom made this recipe when i was a child it was as amazing now as it was then

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Teresa – so glad this recipe brought back some nice memories!

  • Olivia Hodgson wrote:

    Prepped dry ingredients day before and this was so easy! Checked at 30 min and top was crispy but it was still watery- covered in foil and baked another 8 min and it was PERFECT. Crowd pleaser for sure!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Olivia – So glad the recipe was a hit!

  • Marty cain wrote:

    Can you double this recipe?

    • Martha wrote:

      Sure Marty – You could use a 9 x 13-inch baking dish or one that is slightly larger. The baking time will probably be longer.

  • Judu wrote:

    Is there a high altitude recipe for this cale?

  • Dylan ward wrote:

    That homemade baked chocolate pudding looked really good and yummy.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you Dylan!

  • Jennifer Veeder wrote:

    Do you have to use Hershey’s cocoa can I just use cocoa powder?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Jennifer – You can use any unsweetened cocoa powder.

  • Christine @ myblissfulmess wrote:

    Oh what fun!! I’ve always wanted to visit Hershey, PA but I haven’t yet. I didn’t know you could make your own candy bar. How cool is that!? Love the photos. And this cake, OMG! Look at that ooey gooey goodness! Can’t wait to give it a try. Thanks for sharing!

    • Martha wrote:

      It was a lot of fun! Hope you enjoy the recipe Christine!

  • A Family Feast ® is a registered trademark of A Family Feast, Inc. All content, including recipes, text, visual elements, and photographs are copyright © A Family Feast, Inc. 2012-2018, unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved.

    Back to Top

    A Family Feast®