Fudge Cookies (An Heirloom Recipe from My Family)

Kathleen Hagood


Since Father's Day is approaching, I have been thinking about my daddy and the recipes we enjoyed together around the table. I can remember my mother making these when I was only 4. As a child-baker, I later made them for my daddy too. They were his mother's (Grandmother Zonie Bell Love Powell's) recipe, which means that they can be made with just a few ingredients (because she cooked foods that way, having lived through The Depression). My dad is gone, but the recipe and memories remain. This heirloom recipe is pure comfort food. These are called cookies, but they are a bar like a brownie.

pinch tips: How to Melt and Soften Butter



makes a 13 X 9 metal cake pan


10 Min


30 Min



Blue Ribbon Recipe

Notes from the Test Kitchen:
This recipe brings back so many memories. When I saw that Kathleen's mother used lard in the original recipe, I knew I had to try it (my grandmother used lard in all of her recipes too).

These lived up to my expectations! When this was enjoyed in the Test Kitchen the universal comment was "what gives this the crunchy texture?" I did have some cracks in them - to me that is success! I know that my grandad would have loved these.


2 c
granulated sugar
3/4 c
shortening like crisco, do not melt it (we used lard when i was a child.)
4 Tbsp
hershey's cocoa
1 c
flour (all purpose)
1 tsp
we sometimes added 1/2 to 1 cup of pecans when we had them on hand although it wasn't in grandmother's original recipe

Directions Step-By-Step

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Pour all ingredients into a bowl and mix by hand (all at once). (In other words, do not cream sugar and shortening first.)
Place in greased and floured 13 X 9 metal pan, and bake in 350 degree preheated oven for about 30 minutes.
Note: I remember when we made these with lard that the tops of the fudge cookies would crackle much like the ground does after a heavy rain and pieces of the ground crack and turn loose from the rest of the ground. I loved these crackly, crunchy flakes. It doesn't do quite the same thing (to the same extent) with Crisco, but they are still good. Now, that everyone worries about the type of fat consumed, lard is long gone from many people's pantries. I think if we worked physically like my maternal Grannie did, we could probably still consume lard (and her favorite--bacon grease). She lived to 99, had no cholestrol or blood pressure issues, and was happy.

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Cookies
Main Ingredient: Sugar
Regional Style: Southern
Collections: Father's Day, Gifts to Give
Other Tags: Quick & Easy, For Kids
Hashtags: #easy, #fudge, #bar-cookies