There was a shop that sold buckeye balls arranged on a tree around Christmas time when I was working and going to college. I had never had one before until a company Christmas party and since then I've been hooked. Buckeye Balls are pretty much homemade Reese's cups with more peanut butter! But they look like little buckeyes! They are pretty simple to make and they are great for giving to friends, neighbors or coworkers as a Christmas treat.
You want to start by sifting your confectioners sugar. The original recipe called for 4 cups but it is too dry that way. I used 2 cups and they were perfect. You want them to melt in your mouth. Then mix peanut butter, butter, and vanilla with hands to form a smooth stiff dough.
Shape the dough into balls and then place them on a parchment paper lined tray and then place them in the refrigerator to harden.
Melt shortening (or coconut oil) and chocolate together in a double boiler until smooth and well blended. The oil will make the chocolate extra smooth so that it coats it instead of clumping onto it.
Remove balls from refrigerator. Insert a wooden toothpick into a ball, and dip into melted chocolate. You don't want to cover the ball completely. Leave a circle of peanut butter showing. Return to wax paper, chocolate side down, and remove toothpick.
To get rid of the hole, wet your fingers with water and smooth the toothpick hole until it is flat and no hole is visible.
Refrigerate the buckeyes until the harden. Hide them because they will be eaten fast.
photo credit: pascalephoto
- 1½ cups creamy peanut butter
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups sifted confectioners sugar
- Chocolate coating
- 6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons shortening
- Line a baking sheet with waxed paper; set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mix peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and sifted confectioners sugar with hands to form a smooth stiff dough.
- Shape into balls using 2 teaspoons of dough for each ball. Place on prepared pan and refrigerate.
- Melt shortening and chocolate together in a metal bowl over a pan of lightly simmering water.
- Stir occasionally until smooth, and remove from heat.
- Remove balls from refrigerator. Insert a wooden toothpick into a ball, and dip into melted chocolate. Return to wax paper, chocolate side down, and remove toothpick.
- Wet fingers with water and smooth the toothpick hole until it is flat and no hole is visible.
- Repeat with remaining balls.
- Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set.