During the holidays, it’s not uncommon to find me in the kitchen, whipping up a batch of something sweet. I absolutely love to make treats for my family. There’s just nothing like making up a pan of cakeballs or my favorite Candy Cane Cookies while listening to Christmas music. It’s the best.
This year, my dad (who isn’t particularly fond of desserts) requested that I make my buckeyes. The good daughter that I am (seriously Dad, these were “all for you”….) I made up a batch of these delicious candies.
You may call these sweet treats, “Peanut Butter Balls,” but being the world’s biggest Ohio State Buckeyes fan, and having married a man from Ohio, I like to call these treats Buckeyes. They are called Buckeyes because they resemble the nut of the same name. (They look the same….Mine taste infinitely better than a plain old nut!)
The trick to making really great Buckeyes is to create a peanut butter dough that is not too firm and not too sweet. You also need to chill your dough before you attempt to dip in chocolate! I’ve worked on this recipe for years, and found a variation that is just right. I hope you enjoy it!
1 stick salted butter
3 graham crackers
1 cup SKIPPY® Creamy Peanut Butter (*I highly recommend using creamy peanut butter!!)
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup chocolate chips (*I prefer semi-sweet, but a milk chocolate would be fine too.)
1 tsp. shortening
- Beat butter until smooth using electric mixer.
- Using a food processor (*a zipper bag and rolling pin will work too!), grind your graham crackers into very fine crumbs. Add the graham cracker crumbs to the butter and mix well.
- Add 1 cup of SKIPPY® Creamy Peanut Butter. (*If you spray your measuring cup with cooking spray, the peanut butter will slide right out!)
- Add the vanilla. Mix well. Scrape the sides as needed.
- Slowly add in the powdered sugar. Scrape the sides to incorporate.
The dough should be slightly squishy. You want a semi-firm dough that still has some give to it. When your dough is too firm, you end up with buckeyes that are crumbly or mealy.
Form the dough into small balls. Place balls on a cookie sheet or in a glass pan. (I spray mine first to prevent sticking.) The amount of balls you get will heavily depend on how large you make them and how many tastes you hand out! I recommend making these fairly small, as they are rich. Shoot for a ball that can be eaten in 1-2 bites.
Refrigerate the balls for several hours. You will want them to be nice and cold before you attempt to dip them in the chocolate!
Once the dough is chilled, you can start to make your chocolate.
Melt the chocolate chips along with the shortening in a microwave-safe bowl for 1 minute. Stir. If necessary, microwave for another 30 seconds.
Dip the dough balls into the chocolate. I’ve never had much success using the toothpick method, so I prefer to dip with a spoon, and use a second spoon to cover the ball, leaving the signature circle of peanut butter exposed (to make it look like a real buckeye!)
Once all the balls are dipped, put them back into the refrigerator until you are ready to serve. Try your best not to eat them all immediately. You’ll want to!
For even more sweet treats featuring my favorite peanut butter, click HERE.