Homemade Chocolate Hard Shell

If you’ve never tried ice cream covered in chocolate hard shell, then stop what you’re doing and get on it ASAP!.

Chocolate hard shell (AKA “Magic Shell”) is a chocolate dipping sauce that, with a little abracadabra!, hardens when it comes in contact with ice cream, surrounding the ice cream in a crisp, chocolatey shell.

Okay, so it’s not magic. But! It is science; it’s all about fat and temperature. The coconut oil contained in most chocolate hard shell recipes has high amounts of saturated fat. When saturated fat is exposed to cooler temperatures, it hardens, which is why chocolate hard shell solidifies when it’s drizzled/dipped/smothered to cold ice cream.

If that sounds complicated, not to worry! Making this delectable goo is (shockingly) easy. Here’s how to level-up your next ice cream social by making chocolate hard shell at home. 

How To Make Homemade Chocolate Hard Shell 

Like we said, it’s pretty simple . All it takes is about five minutes and two relatively healthy ingredients—no headaches or preservatives required.

First, obtain your ingredients.

According to the New York Times, here are the ingredients you’ll need to whip up a fudgy take on homemade ice cream topping:

These ingredients will yield about ¾ cup of chocolate hard shell, which should be enough to cover roughlyly four to six scoops of ice cream. If you’re planning to serve or nosh on more ice cream than that, (hat’s off to you) just increase the ingredients keeping the same ratio in mind.

It’s also worth noting that different sources call for slightly different ratios of chocolate to coconut oil, so you may want to experiment with the ratios that work best for you. Additionally, some recipes call for the use of cocoa powder in lieu of regular chocolate.

Next, prepare the hard shell.

Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, it’s time to prepare the hard shell. Here’s how to make it happen:

  • Start by chopping the chocolate into small, relatively even pieces.
  • Next, combine the chocolate and coconut oil in a small cauldron (a small bowl will also do just fine). You’ll be melting these ingredients; you may choose to utilize a double boiler or the microwave. (Check out this post for chocolate-melting tips.) Whichever melting method you choose, make sure the chocolate is melted and the coconut oil has fully dissolved. This may take a few minutes.
  • Allow the chocolatey liquid to cool just a bit until it’s lukewarm. Now, on to the good stuff!

Finally, put the hard shell to good use.

Here comes the delicious part! Spoon the chocolate hard shell mixture over your ice cream of choice and give it about 30 seconds to fully harden. You’ll know the hard shell is ready to eat when it makes a hollow, cracking sound when you tap it and when it transitions from having a glossier sheen to a more matte appearance.

If you’re the rare bird who finds themselves with leftover hard shell, make sure to store it in an airtight container. Stir it up well before reusing it as a topping for yet another delectable ice cream dish.