Peanut Butter Buckeyes are a sweet peanut butter confection, partially dipped in a chocolate candy coating. These treats are made to resemble the nut of Ohio's state tree, the buckeye tree.
In Ohio, these peanut butter candies are found on every holiday dessert table. You can even find them sold in local candy shops.
If you live elsewhere you might see these fully coated in chocolate, usually called "peanut butter balls". Both versions are well-loved by peanut butter and chocolate fanatics.
The peanut butter filling is sweet, smooth, and rich. The chocolate candy coating is thin and crisp, with the use of chocolate melting wafers.
You'll love this buckeye candy recipe because it's easy, requires only a few ingredients, and no baking is involved.
Ingredients and substitutions
Unsalted butter and salt can be substituted with salted butter.
Creamy peanut butter can be substituted with crunchy peanut butter to make a crunchy buckeye candy.
Melting wafers can be milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or white chocolate. I highly recommend melting wafers as opposed to chocolate chips because chocolate chips do not solidify into a crispy candy coating and will remain slightly soft.
Tips for making buckeyes
Here are a few tips to make sure your buckeye candies are successful.
First, your peanut butter balls should be cold when dipping into your chocolate coating. This ensures that they won't fall off your toothpick, or fall apart in the warm chocolate.
If your peanut butter balls start warming up before you're done dipping them all, simply place them back in the refrigerator or freezer for a few minutes.
Also, try to use a thin, tall vessel for melting your chocolate. The deeper your chocolate, the easier to dip your peanut butter balls. I like to use a 1-cup pyrex measuring cup, but you can also use a small drinking glass or a mason jar.
On that note, if your chocolate begins to cool and thicken, toss is back in the microwave for a few seconds to warm it back up.
I have the most success with hot melted chocolate and cold peanut butter balls.
The great part about this recipe is that you can customize your buckeyes to make them unique. Try dipping some of your peanut butter balls into white chocolate, milk chocolate, and dark chocolate.
Decorate your buckeyes by rolling them in sprinkles or crushed peanuts while the chocolate is still wet.
Or drizzle the tops with a swirl of chocolate, maybe in a contrasting color.
Peanut Butter Buckeyes
- ¾ cup peanut butter
- ¼ cup unsalted butter room temperature
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3 cups confectioner's sugar
- 10 ounces dark chocolate melting wafers
- In a bowl, add peanut butter, butter, and vanilla. Stir until combined and creamy. Add salt and 1 cup of confectioner's sugar at a time until all 3 cups are combined. Mixture will be very thick, like a dough.
- Roll dough into one-inch balls and place onto a wax paper lined baking sheet. Transfer baking sheet to refrigerator and allow to chill for 30 minutes (or into the freezer for 15 minutes).
- In a small microwave safe bowl, heat melting wafers in 30 second increments, stirring every 30 seconds, until wafers are melted and smooth.
- Remove peanut butter balls from the refrigerator. Pierce the center of a peanut butter ball with a toothpick, going about halfway though. Dip the ball about ⅔ of the way into the chocolate, leaving a circle of peanut butter exposed on the top. Lift out of chocolate and gently shake off excess chocolate. Place back onto cold baking sheet. Repeat until all balls are coated.
- Allow to harden on the counter top for 30 minutes, or in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- If you'd like to add sprinkles or crushed nuts, do so immediately after dipping into chocolate, before it dries.
- You'll have the best success when your peanut butter balls are cold and your chocolate is hot and melted. If your peanut butter balls begin to warm up before being dipped, place back in the refrigerator for a few minutes. If your chocolate begins to cool, microwave for 10 seconds and stir.