Keto rocky road fudge is a divine low carb sweet treat. Creamy smooth and full of marshmallows and pecans, and no one would ever guess that it’s sugar-free.
Did someone say keto fudge? Wait, hang on. Did someone say keto rocky road fudge? Those words are music to my ears and I bet they are to yours too.
Ever since I perfected my recipe for sugar-free marshmallows, I’ve been dying to try it in some rocky road fudge. Because who doesn’t love their fudge filled with lots of extras like sweet tender marshmallows and pecans?
Remember back when you were a kid, passing by a fudge shop and it practically made you weak in the knees? I always seemed to stumble up on these places on vacation. Every tourist destination seems to have their fair share of fudge and candy stores. And I always wanted the most tricked out fudge, the kind that had lots of tasty inclusions. This rocky road fudge would have been high up there on my list.
But I also shudder to think how sweet that fudge was, and how even a few small bites would have me feeling a little sick to my stomach. So it was definitely time to try to recreate it in a keto friendly way.
I actually made this keto fudge recipe back in December, and I took it to a Christmas party. I was invited to speak at a women physicians keto cookie exchange, and I thought I ought to bring along a sweet treat or two of my own. Do I even need to say what a hit this was? I put it out on a platter and it was gone in a matter of minutes.
Not surprisingly, my kids went wild for it too.
How To Make Keto Fudge
There are any number of approaches for making keto-friendly fudge. Some are easy, some are a little more complex. This rocky road fudge recipe falls into the easier category.
Some keto fudge recipes use cream cheese as a base. This is not my favorite approach, since your fudge tastes distinctly of cream cheese. Which for me, isn’t very fudgy and doesn’t satisfy that craving for the real thing.
I’ve made several variations of fudge using chocolate ganache, such as low carb peanut butter cup fudge and low carb andes mint fudge. Those recipes are super easy but they are definitely on the soft side and need to be kept refrigerated.
I took a stab at the old fashioned method for fudge-making back when I made my low carb peanut butter fudge. It was more work but definitely worth the effort.
One great way to make easy keto fudge is to start with sugar-free sweetened condensed milk. And that’s essentially what I did here, with a few minor modifications. It produces a perfect fudge consistency, without all the extra whipping and paddling that traditional fudge requires.
Tips for Making Rocky Road Fudge
For sugar-free rocky road fudge, you clearly have to put in a bit of advanced prep work. Here are my best tips for success:
Make and Freeze the Sugar-Free Marshmallows
These really need to be made one day ahead, so that they dry out properly. When first made, they are a bit tacky to the touch. It takes about a day, totally exposed to the air, for them to become like regular marshmallows. You then want to chop them up and freeze them so that they will mix with the chocolate, without becoming complete goo again.
Be sure to use vanilla extract in place of the peppermint for this batch of marshmallows. Unless you want peppermint rocky road fudge…
Use a mix of sweeteners
This is important for both the marshmallows and the fudge itself. Just using an erythritol based sweetener like Swerve is insufficient, as it will re-crystallize too much. But using another sweetener alone will make the marshmallows and the fudge too goopy and it won’t firm up properly. Swerve provides the substance and the other sweetener provides the softness. This combo just works!
For your other sweetener, you have a few options:
- Bocha Sweet (this is what I prefer to use)
- Allulose (unfortunately, this upsets my stomach a lot. It apparently doesn’t do so for everyone)
- Xylitol (be forewarned, this is highly toxic to dogs and I don’t recommend if you have pups)
Please please please please do not ask me if you can use Lakanto in place of the Bocha Sweet. You can’t. Even though it calls itself a “monk fruit sweetener”, it is essentially erythritol. That is the main ingredient and just like Swerve, it will recrystallize too much.
Make the Condensed Milk
The base of this rocky road fudge is essentially an extra sweet version of my sugar-free condensed milk recipe. It needs the extra sweetener to stand up to the unsweetened chocolate. I also added a bit more butter for a smoother, glossier fudge.
Remember, you want it to simmer continuously. I find that I have to turn up and down the heat frequently on my gas stove, to keep those little bubbles going along the edge and to keep it from boiling.
Use unsweetened chocolate
This is not the same thing as sugar-free chocolate! Be sure you are purchasing 100% cacao chocolate that contains no sweeteners. Do not use Lily’s or ChocZero here. Unsweetened chocolate contains more fiber than sweetened versions and will help the fudge thicken properly.
I also highly suggest using a good quality unsweetened chocolate like Ghirardelli, Scharffenberger, or Guittard. Baker’s chocolate is more prone to seizing and it’s hard to rescue the fudge if the chocolate seizes.
Use with your favorite nut
I used pecans because I love them. But I’ve seen rocky road fudge made with peanuts or cashews instead. Cashews tend to be a little high carb to be truly keto. You could also try macadamia nuts…now that would be decadent.
What about plain keto fudge?
Don’t feel like putting all the work into making the marshmallows? Prefer plain fudge? No problem! You can totally skip the add-ins here and just make good old keto chocolate fudge. Don’t worry, I won’t be offended.
Want more delicious keto fudge recipes?
Keto Rocky Road Fudge
- ¾ recipe homemade sugar-free marshmallows (replace peppermint extract with vanilla extract)
- 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
- 6 tablespoon Bocha Sweet (can use allulose or xylitol)
- 6 tablespoon powdered Swerve Sweetener
- ¼ cup butter
- 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped (100% cacao chocolate)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups pecan halves
- Make the marshmallows according to the directions, but replace the peppermint extract with vanilla extract. These will need to be made a day ahead in order to dry out properly. Cut the marshmallows into ½ inch chunks and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Place in the freezer for at least 3 hours.
- Line a 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the cream and sweeteners. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Watch carefully as you want it to simmer but not continue to boil. There should be little bubbles along the edges the whole time.
- Remove from heat and add the butter, chopped chocolate, and vanilla extract. Let sit 5 minutes, until the butter and chocolate have melted, then whisk until smooth.
- Working quickly, stir in the frozen marshmallows and the pecans. Spread the whole mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Refrigerate until firm, about 3 hours, before cutting into squares.