Looking for an easy candy to share at your favorite holiday party? These easy Peanut Butter Balls are a family tradition that we make for every holiday through out the year. In fact, our kids will call me out if I do not make a few batches. This fun treat is easy to customize with different colored sprinkles.
I realized this week that I have never shared our favorite recipe for peanut butter balls with you. I have been making this easy no bake candy recipe for years.
My brain is extremely visual which means I have to see things to really understand them. So, I got thinking that maybe some of you are like that.
Sure I could say use this recipe to make a batch of no bake peanut butter balls, but if you are staring at bunnies and pumpkins, it could be difficult to see past the holiday treat.
So, when I made a batch of these Peanut Butter Balls for Christmas last year, I had to add some pizzaz to a few of them and photographed them, so I could share the plain recipe with you.
Ingredients for Peanut Butter Balls:
- Butter – make sure you set it out ahead of time so it is softened
- Creamy Peanut Butter – needed because it is a peanut butter recipe. Feel free to use crunchy if you want a crunch in your truffles.
- Marshmallow Cream – my secret ingredient to give the dough a fluffier consistency
- Vanilla and Salt – adds flavor
- Powdered Sugar – provides the sweetness and thickness
- Chocolate Melting Wafers – white and dark chocolate add a fun flair to the homemade candies
I couldn’t resist dipping half of them in white chocolate with white and gold sprinkles for New Years Eve and half of them in dark chocolate with chocolate sprinkles for Christmas. It made the bowl of easy Peanut Butter Balls look so pretty.
Of course, I knew these white ones would never make it to New Year’s Day because our boys go absolutely bonkers for these quick and easy Peanut Butter Balls. That just means another batch needs to happen again very soon.
How to make Peanut Butter Balls:
- Beat the softened butter, peanut butter, vanilla, salt, and marshmallow cream until nice and creamy.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar and mix until a soft dough forms.
- Roll the mixture into 36 small balls and place on a pan lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Melt the chocolate wafers according to the package directions. Use a toothpick to dip each candy into the chocolate. Tap the excess chocolate off and place back on the parchment paper.
- Twist out the toothpick and cover the hole with a little bit more melted chocolate. Top with sprinkles and let set.
Peanut Butter Balls vs. Buckeyes:
You may know these Peanut Butter Balls as Buckeyes. Buckeyes are a popular candy in Ohio because the Buckeye is the state tree.
Buckeye balls are only partially dipped in chocolate though. The tops are left uncovered to resemble the nuts from the tree. Peanut Butter Balls are completely dipped in chocolate.
Getting the right texture for the dough is important in rolling out the buckeyes. Every type of peanut butter is different, so it will make a difference in your candy dough. Depending on the brand you use, you may need to adjust the recipe slightly.
If the dough is too crumbly, add a little more peanut butter. If it is too sticky, add a little bit of powdered sugar until it resembles a dough. You should be able to roll the dough without it sticking to your hands or falling apart.
Tips and tricks:
- Refrigerate the peanut butter candies for at least 30 minutes or longer. Only remove a few at a time to dip. They stay on the toothpicks better when they are cold. I do not like to freeze them, because the frozen ball and the hot chocolate react and cause cracks in the chocolate.
- Use a toothpick to dip each ball in the chocolate. I also use a spoon to get the chocolate all over the tops of each ball. Then tap on the side of the bowl very gently to remove the extra chocolate. Place on a parchment paper lined tray and twist the toothpick out. Dab a little bit more melted chocolate on the hole and add sprinkles to hide it.
- Keep your chocolate warm. The warmer it is, the better it coats the balls. I usually keep my chocolate in microwave safe bowls, so I can pop it in for 20 seconds at a time when it starts to cool off.
- Refrigerate the homemade candies if you are not going to eat them within a day or two. I personally prefer them room temperature, but I know others who like them cold. Do what you like best here.
- Peanut Butter Balls with Rice Krispies – add 1/2 cup cereal to give it some crunch
- Peanut Butter Balls with Graham Cracker Crumbs – add 1/2 cup crumbs for a different flavor
- Peanut Butter Balls with Oats – 1/2 cup rolled or quick oats will change up the candies
How long do Peanut Butter Balls last?
These homemade peanut butter candies will last 1-2 days in a container on the counter or 2 weeks if stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator. Of course, ours never last more than 24 hours, so good luck with that.
Can you freeze No Bake Peanut Butter Balls?
They sure can. Place the chocolate-dipped candies in a single layer on a baking sheet or plate and freeze for at least 30 minutes. Transfer the frozen candies to a freezer-safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight pin the refrigerator over night before serving.
What kind of chocolate is best for homemade candies?
- High quality chocolate is best for dipping candies. A good quality chocolate will melt smoother and creamier and is better for dipping. I prefer to use Ghirardelli melts because they taste great and melt smooth.
- You can melt the chocolate wafers in a double boiler over boiling water. Just be careful to not get any water in the melted chocolate because that will cause it to seize and clump.
- You can also melt the chocolate wafers in a bowl in the microwave. Heat for 20-30 seconds, stir and repeat. Be careful not to overheat the chocolate because it will burn and you will have to throw it all away.
- Melted chocolate chips or almond bark can also be used to dip the candies in. You may need to add some oil, butter, or shortening to the chocolate too thin it out for dipping.
Other easy homemade candies:
- Homemade Key Lime Coconut Patties
- Peppermint Cream Patties
- Caramel Pretzel Cookie Dough Bites
- Peppermint Crunch Oreo Truffles
- Reese’s Sweet and Salty Bark
- Peanut Butter Buckeye Buttons
- More Fudge and Candy recipes
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- 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1/4 cup marshmallow cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 - 10 ounce bag dark chocolate or white melting wafers
- sprinkles, optional
- Beat the butter, peanut butter, and marshmallow cream until creamy. Add the vanilla and salt and beat again.
- Slowly add the powdered sugar until a soft dough forms.
- Roll the dough into 36 even balls. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Melt the chocolate melts according to the package directions.
- Remove a few peanut butter balls at a time from the refrigerator. Use a toothpick and spoon to dip the balls in the melted chocolate.
- Place the balls on a parchment paper lined tray and twist the toothpick out. Dab a little bit of chocolate over the hole and top with sprinkles. Let set.
- Store in a loosely sealed container on the counter for 1-2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 36 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 112Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 27mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 1gSugar: 11gProtein: 1g
Nutrition facts are an estimate and are not guaranteed to be accurate. If you need special diet advice, please see a registered dietician.
*The post for Peanut Butter Balls was first published on December 27, 2014. The post and photos have been updated and republished on November 18, 2019.