Holiday Recipe: Peanut Butter Fudge

My 14-year-old daughter made the best fudge ever.
My 14-year-old daughter made the best fudge ever.

Home for the Holidays Series: This year, local reporters and editors are using Thanksgiving week to share our favorite holiday traditions and recipes with you, our readers.

First let me say to readers, I don’t cook. At least, I don’t cook well. Unlike the rest of the women in my family who have inherited the chef gene — passed down by generations of industrious matriarchs who seem to effortlessly concoct gourmet meals at whim on a daily basis — I am a mostly inept human in the kitchen who subsists on cereal and Uber Eats.

However, I have been instilled with a grandiose sense of self-confidence. Thus, this year, my shortcomings on the culinary front didn't stop me from promising to make my grandmother’s famous peanut butter fudge for our family’s annual holiday gathering.

My grandmother, a paragon of feminine strength and a major role model of mine — who has unfortunately passed away — made her famous peanut butter fudge each year for everyone in the family. And to make it all the more special, grandmama would save Hudson’s and Jacobson’s boxes throughout the year to package it.

I thought I could carry on my grandmother’s tradition this year but, of course, I was completely oblivious to the fact that fudge-making isn’t easy.

Aunt Susan sent me the recipe, written in her elegant calligraphy script (the women in my family also have beautiful handwriting, a trait in which I also do not share).


  • 7 1/2 oz. jar of marshmallow fluff

  • 2 1/2 cup sugar

  • 3/4 teaspoon of salt

  • 1/2 stick butter

  • 5 oz. evaporated milk (2/3 cup)

  • 9 oz. chunky or smooth peanut butter


  • Grease a 9" square pan, set aside.

  • In large saucepan, combine first five ingredients. Stir over low heat until blended.

  • Increase heat to medium, bring to full rolling boil. Boil slowly, stirring constantly for 3 1/2 to 5 minutes, which should be soft ball stage.

  • Remove from heat, stir in peanut butter until well mixed. Pour into greased pan and cool. Makes 2 1/2 pounds.

To prep for soft ball stage, fill a small dish with ice water and set aside before cooking. After 3 1/2 minutes at full boil, dribble a few drops of fudge off a wooden spoon into the ice water. In about 10 seconds, you should be able to shape these drips into a small ball with your fingertips. It should be slightly chewy. If so, you're done! Add the peanut butter. If not, boil another 10 seconds.

My grandmother's recipe for peanut butter fudge.
My grandmother's recipe for peanut butter fudge.

My problems started quickly. Did you know, dear reader, that marshmallow fluff is an incredibly difficult product to obtain? Who would've guessed that the marshmallow crème creators have tried to decimate the fluff folks. (See, these are the reasons I don’t cook.)

Simply obtaining the ingredients on the recipe was a major endeavor that consisting of calling every grocery store within a two-hour radius and ultimately having to order the product online. (You can find a peanut butter fudge recipe with marshmallow crème at

At this point, I was exhausted and hadn’t even started making it yet. I would love to tell you that I pushed through my imperfections and made a grand dessert for all to partake in. But after also reading the whole “must constantly stir” part of the recipe, I knew that would be highly unlikely. And so, my heroic 14 year-old daughter, who apparently has also been blessed with the culinary gene from generations past, made the fudge for me.

And, of course, it was delicious and tasted just like my grandmother’s. She even added her own flare by spraying edible glitter on top (I didn’t even know that existed, but highly recommend). I suppose although I wasn’t able to recreate the fudge myself, I was able to raise this girl child who did it easily and with an extra flare, thus passing down the culinary expertise despite myself. It must have just skipped a generation.

Contact reporter Annie Doyle at 231-675-0099 or

This article originally appeared on The Petoskey News-Review: Holiday Recipe: Peanut Butter Fudge