Fudge is one of those sweet treats that you can make from the things you already have in your kitchen pantry, but that also needs specific instructions to be followed.
It is one of those recipes that every self-proclaimed home cook wants to master.
There are lots of fudge recipes out there that you can follow, but one of the most important things to make the perfect fudge is the time it takes for the setting process to complete.
We will look at that process in this article.
How Long Does It Take For Fudge To Set?
As a general rule, fudge’s setting time shouldn’t exceed three hours. The method you apply to the cooling process affects the overall time the fudge needs to set.
If you store fudge at the right temperature, you can significantly reduce the amount of time that it takes until the fudge sets.
Remember to add extras such as chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit before setting. If you are making chocolate fudge, the cocoa powder should be added before boiling.
Below, we will look at Different ways to get fudge to cool completely.
Leaving your homemade fudge to set on the countertop is the longest method of allowing your fudge to cool.
When you leave the fudge at room temperature, it generally takes fudge three hours for the confectionary to set fully.
It is also possible to leave your fudge to set in the refrigerator.
Obviously, the temperature is lower in the refrigerator than on the countertop. This means it takes less time to set fudge when it is left in the refrigerator.
In general, it takes about two hours for fudge to set with this method. When you leave your fudge in the fridge, it is important not to let the fudge set overnight.
This is because fudge in the fridge overnight can dry out if it is left uncovered.
If you have a time crunch, it is possible to set your fudge in the freezer. This method will obviously make fudge set faster because of the reduced temperature.
Unlike setting at room temperature which can take at least three hours, if you freeze fudge, you can have perfect fudge in as little as one hour.
Can Fudge Be Set In A Refrigerator?
As we mentioned above, it is possible to use a refrigerator to make fudge harden. The colder temperature of the fridge helps the setting time of the fudge mixture happen more rapidly.
You shouldn’t allow the fudge to be exposed to the air in the fridge for a few reasons. First of all, the cold air can cause your fudge creations to dry out which can affect your perfect fudge.
Secondly, when you leave the fudge exposed to the air, it may pick up the aromas of other food, or the fudge aroma can penetrate other food.
To avoid these issues, make sure your fudge is in an airtight container.
How Long Should Fudge Sit In A Refrigerator?
Other than getting the temperature right for your cooling fudge, it is important to make sure you leave the fudge to cool for long enough.
As a general rule, the fudge will take two or three hours to set in the fridge.
The actual time will depend on how big your pieces are. You should try not to leave your fudge in the fridge for longer than this as it may get too cold.
There are exceptions for places with very warm or humid climates where the fudge should be stored in the fridge for up to two weeks.
How Long Does It Take For Fudge To Set In A Freezer?
If you are in a rush and need your fudge mixture to set as rapidly as possible, you can put it in the freezer. When you freeze fudge, it will set in 30 minutes to an hour.
It is important that you keep an eye on the fudge to prevent it from freezing solid. If you allow the fudge to freeze, it can negate the reason for speeding up the setting process in the first place.
If you are setting your fudge in the freezer, it is important to make sure that you wrap it in plastic wrap before you place it into a freezer-safe container.
This will keep the fudge fresh, tasty, and help prevent freezer burn.
How Can You Make Fudge Set Faster?
Other than placing the fudge in the freezer to make it set in as little as 30 minutes, there are some tips and tricks you can use to make your fudge recipe set faster.
One of the easiest ways to make your fudge set faster is to partition it into the different segments of a muffin tin.
You can also make sure that when you are making fudge, you cut it into smaller pieces that will set faster.
This is easier to do when you are making perfect fudge bites rather than fudge bars, but it can be worth switching to bites to save time.
What To Do If Your Fudge Doesn’t Set
One of the main reasons why fudge doesn’t set is because it needs to be cooked for longer.
During the cooking process, it is the boiling process that allows the sweetened condensed milk to create the smooth, creamy texture.
If you haven’t let the fudge boil for long enough, you haven’t failed fudge yet. This is a common problem for confectioners that don’t use a candy thermometer.
Return your fudge ingredients to your prepared pan and bring them back to the boil. You can maintain the correct boiling point by using a candy thermometer.
Ensure that the candy thermometer reads between 237 degrees and 239 degrees. Maintain this temperature for at least 5 minutes to save your fudge.
How Long Should Fudge Boil For?
As a general rule, most fudge recipes say to keep your fudge boiling for 10 minutes to ensure that it will set properly.
Again, it is important to keep an eye on your candy thermometer to keep your fudge at the correct temp.
If you don’t keep an eye on your fudge while it is boiling, you could end up with grainy fudge, or you could form sugar crystals. Both of these can lead to failed fudge.
Remember to keep a close watch on your candy thermometer to ensure proper temperature control.
Can You Bake Fudge That Didn’t Set?
If your mixture doesn’t set when making fudge, you might be tempted to bake it. However, this can cause a grainy texture and sugar crystals. Doing this can leave you with a mess.
Instead, you should return your ingredients to your prepared pan and heat it again per your fudge recipe instructions. You can then do the soft ball test.
Fill a bowl with cold water. get a teaspoon and place fudge in the water. If it forms a smooth ball it is ready to set.
Fudge making can be fun, but it is safe to say that fudge making isn’t for everyone. If you follow these tips, you can enjoy the process of making fudge again.