Homemade Chocolate Syrup Recipe

5 from 19 votes
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With just five ingredients, this is how to make chocolate syrup from cocoa powder – and still get the same delicious taste you would with a traditional chocolate syrup recipe. Plus, there’s no refined sugar, no dairy and it can be made keto.

Pouring homemade chocolate syrup over a drink with whipped cream

Confession: I don’t have a huge sweet tooth. But sometimes I like adding a little more sweetness in the form of syrups. Whether it’s over a fancy coffee, a bowl of ice cream, or just drizzled over fruit, this chocolate syrup will become a favorite of yours.

But, buy it in a bottle from the grocery store and you’re likely to be confronted with a myriad of ingredients you don’t recognize. And a lot of chemicals! Luckily, you can substitute it for my homemade chocolate syrup, which tastes just as good but without any of the nasties.

You may not consider this chocolate recipe particularly healthy, but it comes with some surprising benefits. Chocolate – especially dark chocolate – and cocoa powder are high in polyphenols. It’s a type of antioxidant that has been shown to help regulate blood pressure and support brain function.

Eating chocolate also encourages your brain to produce serotonin. This is one of the “happy chemicals” that make us feel better and can help to reduce stress. Though it’s always worth moderating how much you eat, chocolate can be a really useful part of your diet.

A small pot with homemade chocolate syrup

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Chocolate Sauce Vs Syrup

There are a few key differences between chocolate syrup and a sauce. A chocolate syrup recipe is usually made with water and without any kind of fat (butter, milk, cream). So it’s dairy-free and is often a lot thinner than a sauce.

A homemade chocolate sauce recipe, on the other hand, is made with fat, for a thicker, creamier texture. You wouldn’t generally use milk with chocolate syrup as it would change the overall thickness.

What Is Chocolate Syrup Made of

For my DIY chocolate syrup, you’ll need these simple ingredients:

  • Cacao powder: Use high-quality unsweetened cocoa powder like Dutch cocoa and dark cocoa, though you can use any you prefer. Cacao powder also works.
  • Maple syrup: You can use honey or agave syrup as a substitute in a pinch. You could also use simple syrup.
  • Water: I use filtered water for the best quality. You can use milk or cream, but you’re going to get chocolate sauce, not syrup.
  • Pinch of salt: Just a pinch of kosher salt or table salt will enhance the chocolate flavor.
  • Vanilla extract: Either store-bought or homemade is fine.
Ingredients for homemade chocolate syrup

How to Make Chocolate Syrup

For this simple syrup recipe, start by combining all of the ingredients in a small saucepan. Then turn up the heat and stir thoroughly to combine everything. Whisk well to sure to get rid of any lumps.

Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat slightly to a simmer. Stirring occasionally, allow the mixture to thicken and reduce for around 8-10 minutes.

Once ready, remove from the heat. Then allow the syrup to cool. Finally, decant the sauce into a glass jar like a mason jar or a pouring jar.

The sauce will continue to thicken as it cools. So don’t be too worried if it appears a little thin while it’s still hot.

Steps for making chocolate syrup

How to Store Homemade Chocolate Syrup

Thanks to the ingredients in chocolate syrup with cocoa powder, this homemade syrup has a relatively long shelf life. Without preservatives, however, it will only last 2-3 months after making. Store your syrup in the refrigerator in an airtight container to prevent bacteria.

Uses for Chocolate Syrup

  • Classically, the best use is as chocolate ice cream syrup. And my homemade syrup is perfect for topping over a bowl, cone, or sundae. Try it drizzled over my favorite flavors, Caramel, Coffee, or classic Vanilla ice cream. Chocolate is also great for fruity flavors, like my yogurt raspberry ice cream.
  • Drizzle the homemade syrup over your favorite breakfast treat. I love it over fluffy Japanese-style pancakes or these delicious protein waffles.
  • And, if you’re trying to save money at the coffee shop, you can use this to flavor your favorite drinks. Try it in a Banana or Strawberry milkshake. Or add it to a coffee or tea, like a Mocha Frappuccino, an iced latte, or even bubble tea. You could use it as a drizzle in hot chocolate or on your whipped cream.
  • It also makes a great dipping sauce for a platter of fresh fruit or banana splits. Or use it as a hot fudge sauce.
A bottle filled up with chocolate syrup

How to Make Chocolate Milk with Chocolate Syrup

Chocolate syrup for milk is identical to a traditional chocolate syrup recipe. Once you’ve made your homemade chocolate syrup, pour a glass of cold milk. You can make chocolate milk from any variety of milk you prefer, including plant-based ones.

Add two tablespoons of syrup to the milk. You can add more or less depending on your preference and the amount of milk you’re drinking. Stir until fully combined. Enjoy!


Can you freeze chocolate syrup?

Yes – though I recommend freezing them in a large ice cube tray so you only thaw and consume what you need!

Can you use chocolate syrup instead of melted chocolate?

No. The chocolate syrup has a higher number of calories. Plus, it differs in consistency from melted chocolate. 

Can chocolate syrup be heated?

Yes. Microwave on high for one minute if it was refrigerated. Stir until smooth then pour into a serving dish or use as desired.

More Chocolate Recipes

If you try this homemade syrup recipe, let me know how it goes in the comments below. I’d appreciate a recipe card rating and would love to see your recipe recreations – tag me on Instagram @Alphafoodie!

Homemade Chocolate Syrup Recipe

5 from 19 votes
By: Samira
With just five ingredients, this is how to make chocolate syrup from cocoa powder – and still get the same delicious taste you would with a traditional chocolate syrup recipe. Plus, there's no refined sugar, no dairy and it can be made keto.
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 32


  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1/2 cup water
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract


  • Combine all of the ingredients in a pot, turn up the heat, and stir well to thoroughly combine and get rid of any lumps.
  • Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat slightly and, stirring occasionally, allowing the mixture to thicken and reduce for around 8-10 minutes.
  • Once ready, allow to cool and then decant into a pouring jar. Note that the sauce will thicken slightly as it cools, so don’t be too alarmed at how thin it is when hot.

How To Store

  • This syrup can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for between 1-2 months.



  • You could also add in a few coffee grounds (just a pinch) and that will also help to enrich the chocolate flavor and add depth of flavor. Add more if you want to make a “mocha” style sauce.
  • You can adjust the amount of sweetener used according to your tastebuds. Start by adding half of my suggested amount and then increasing as needed. Make sure to do this while the sauce is still hot, so the sweetener dissolves into the mixture.
  • For a thicker sauce, you can reduce it for longer while heating or add a little cornstarch to thicken it.
Course: Condiment, Dessert, DIYs
Cuisine: American
Freezer friendly: No
Shelf life: 2 Months


Serving: 0.5Tbsp, Calories: 17kcal, Carbohydrates: 4g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 1mg, Potassium: 32mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Calcium: 7mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

5 from 19 votes (16 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. Jacque says:

    I pour this on Quinoa, cooked with banana and mixed with peanut butter(or almond butter), while still hot. Makes the best desert/treat ever.

    1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

      Sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing, Jacque!

      1. Sandra says:

        I’m definitely making this. Store-bought sauces/syrup/ice cream toppings etc are all disgustingly sweet and not chocolatey enough.
        Just an FYI…there’s a small typo in your post. The later part when you mention making the syrup sweeter if desired,,,”Make sure to do this while the sauce is still hot, so the sweetener probably dissolves into the mixture” Am guessing it should say PROPERLY, not PROBABLY. 😀

      2. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Hi Sandra,
        Thank you so much for your comment and for pointing out that typo. Indeed, the sweetener needs to PROPERLY dissolve 🙂 It’s been updated.

  2. Debra says:

    Hello! How do you decant?

    1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

      Hi Debra,
      You need to pour the chocolate syrup from the pot into a clean jar or bottle. I hope this helps.

  3. Katie says:

    5 stars
    LOOK NO FURTHER, this is literally the best choc sauce recipe ever. It’s ingredients are astounding for how good it tastes, I really didn’t expect it to be this good. I feel like the more times you have it, the tastier it gets too!!
    Thank you so much for this recipe, it is our now the staple for ice cream topping / any choc sauce ever

    1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

      Thank you so much for your comment, Katie. Glad you’ve enjoyed the chocolate syrup recipe 🙂

  4. Kris says:

    5 stars
    Simple and delicious!!!

    1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

      Thank you for your comment, Kris.

  5. Lindsey Marie Zuber says:

    5 stars
    AHHH. The easiest, quickest, perfect, put on EVERYTHING SAUCE that doesn’t sacrafice an ounce of flavor! I make this every 2 weeks now. I put it in my coffee everyday. I put it on French toast this morning. Super fancy but like the easiest hack ever. My girlfriend thought I bought her a coffee the other day and I told her it was the new sauce i’ve been using! It made me feel so validaded annnnd like I don’t HAVE to buy a mocha! I can just add this to my milk and coffee in the morning. Thank you for this wonderful recipe I feel like I should have known all along but haven’t had until now. I’ll be making this ’til I die. I added cinnamon in it today, not sure I will put it into the mixture in the future i’ll just garnish on top of my bevies

    1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

      Thank you so much for your comment, Lindsey. Glad you are enjoying the chocolate syrup 🙂