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Peanut butter balls aka Buckeye Balls

Peanut Butter Balls (Buckeye Balls)

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Peanut Butter Balls, also known as Buckeye Balls, are a delicious treat that combines the rich flavor of peanut butter with the sweetness of chocolate. These no-bake goodies are perfect for holidays, parties, or as a quick snack to satisfy your sweet tooth. Named after the nut of the Ohio buckeye tree, these balls are dipped in chocolate, leaving a circle of peanut butter visible to resemble the nut.

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Ingredients

  • 16 oz peanut butter (creamy or crunchy, based on preference)
  • 1 pound confectioners’ sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • Semi-sweet chocolate chips (use as needed, typically around 2-3 cups)

Instructions

Step 1: Prepare the Peanut Butter Mixture

  1. Combine Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter, confectioners’ sugar, and softened butter. Mix until the ingredients are well combined and the mixture is smooth.
  2. Form Balls: Scoop out tablespoon-sized portions of the mixture and roll them into balls. Place the balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or wax paper.
  3. Chill: Place the baking sheet with the peanut butter balls in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes, or until they are firm.

Step 2: Melt the Chocolate

  1. Melt Chocolate: In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the semi-sweet chocolate chips. Heat in 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. You can also melt the chocolate using a double boiler on the stovetop.

Step 3: Dip the Peanut Butter Balls

  1. Dip in Chocolate: Remove the peanut butter balls from the refrigerator. Use a toothpick to dip each ball into the melted chocolate, leaving a small circle of peanut butter exposed at the top to resemble a buckeye nut. Let any excess chocolate drip off before placing the dipped ball back on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
  2. Smooth the Toothpick Hole: If desired, use a small knife or the back of a spoon to smooth over the hole left by the toothpick.

Step 4: Chill and Set

  1. Set the Chocolate: Once all the balls are dipped in chocolate, return the baking sheet to the refrigerator. Chill for at least 30 minutes, or until the chocolate is completely set.

Tips and Variations

Tips

  • Consistency: If the peanut butter mixture is too soft to form balls, add more confectioners’ sugar until it reaches the desired consistency. If it’s too dry, add a little more peanut butter.
  • Chocolate Melting: Be careful not to overheat the chocolate. Stir frequently to ensure a smooth consistency.

Variations

  • Decorate: For a festive touch, drizzle white chocolate over the top of the set buckeye balls or sprinkle with chopped nuts before the chocolate sets.
  • Flavor Twist: Add a teaspoon of vanilla extract or a pinch of salt to the peanut butter mixture for an added flavor dimension.
  • Different Chocolate: Try using dark chocolate or milk chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet for a different taste.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: How long do Buckeye Balls last?

A: Store Buckeye Balls in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will last for up to two weeks. For longer storage, you can freeze them for up to three months.

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Q: Can I use natural peanut butter?

A: It’s best to use regular peanut butter for this recipe. Natural peanut butter tends to be too oily and can affect the consistency of the mixture.

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Q: How do I prevent the chocolate from cracking?

A: Ensure that the peanut butter balls are not too cold when dipping them in the melted chocolate. If they are too cold, the sudden temperature change can cause the chocolate to crack.

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Peanut Butter Balls (Buckeye Balls) are a delightful treat that brings together the irresistible combination of peanut butter and chocolate. Easy to make and always a hit, these treats are perfect for any occasion. Enjoy the classic flavors and impress your friends and family with this simple yet delicious recipe.

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