A simple one step solution phase approach to synthesize copper nanofluids has been developed, involving simultaneous in situ synthesis of nanoparticles and their dispersion in the base fluid. Copper nitrate has been reduced using ascorbic acid in ethylene glycol under thermal as well as microwave conditions. Sodium lauryl sulfate has been used to control the size of the particle as well as to act as a stabilizing agent. The effect of ratio of the reactants, pH, power of microwave, reaction time, and dilution on the size of the particles has been studied using X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, and field-emission scanning electron microscopy. The characterization of the fluids has also been done using Fourier transform infrared spectrometry, ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy, selected area electron diffraction, and energy dispersive X-ray analysis. The thermal conductivity and viscosity of the fluid were also measured at various particle concentrations. The copper particles in the fluid were found to have size less than 50nm and were well dispersed in the fluid. Thus this method was found to preserve the advantages of the polyol process and aqueous chemical reduction method as well. The fluid was stable up to 5 weeks under stationary conditions at room temperature. This method employs fast, inexpensive, extendible process for the synthesis of copper nanofluids and also overcomes the drawbacks of two step process.