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No-bake, chocolate-dipped buckeye balls make the best holiday treat that everyone will love! These peanut butter balls are so easy to make for holiday parties or gifts and this version is gluten-free! They are chocolatey, creamy, nutty, and so good!
The holidays are here, which means lots of delicious treats, hot cocoa, and holiday movies! I have already made these peanut butter buckeye balls a few times. Everyone loved them and nobody could tell they were slightly healthier.
My kids helped me make them and it was a fun little project that they really enjoyed!
Chocolate-covered anything is always a hit like these chocolate energy bites or these chocolate-covered strawberries. The best part is that there is no baking required and you can make them ahead, which makes them the perfect sweet treat for homemade gifts.
What are buckeye balls?
Buckeye balls are bite-sized peanut butter balls that are dipped about 2/3 of the way in some silky melted chocolate. They taste a lot like Reese’s peanut butter cups which makes them super delicious and the perfect treat for the holidays! This version is made with creamy peanut butter, almond flour, maple syrup, vanilla, and chocolate chips.
Why are they called buckeye balls?
Buckeyes got their name from their resemblance to the nut that is grown from an Ohio buckeye tree, making it a very popular dessert in the Midwest.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Quick and easy -It takes only 10 minutes of active time to make, the rest is chilling time.
- Simple – Only requires a few ingredients that you likely already have.
- No-bake dessert – It is an easy dessert that requires no baking!
- Healthy – a lighter, more nutritious treat that is both vegan and gluten-free that kids and adults love!
Ingredients you will need
- Creamy peanut butter – make sure to use creamy and not chunky peanut butter.
- Almond flour – fine-blanched almond flour.
- Dark chocolate – you can also use semi-sweet chocolate. If you need to keep this recipe vegan then use vegan chocolate.
- Maple syrup – real maple syrup to add some sweetness.
- Vanilla extract – pure vanilla extract.
- Coconut oil – or butter to help melt the chocolate and make it looser for easier dipping.
- Salt – used to enhance all of the flavors.
How to make peanut butter buckeye balls
*Be sure to check out the complete list of recipe ingredients and instructions in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Mix the peanut butter dough – In a medium size mixing bowl, mix together the peanut butter, almond flour, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt until it forms a slightly thick but still soft dough.
- Roll into balls – use your hands to roll the dough into even size balls. I used a teaspoon and measured out 2 teaspoons per ball to keep them all the same size. This recipe will yield about 20-25 balls. Insert a toothpick in the center of each ball for easy dipping.
- Chill – place the rolled peanut butter balls into the refrigerator to chill for at least 30 minutes.
- Melt the chocolate. Pour the chocolate chips into a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 30-second intervals, stirring in between each interval. This takes about 60-90 seconds. Once 90% of the chocolate is melted, stir the chocolate to melt the rest of it. Let it cool for 2-3 minutes and stir it.
- Coat – Dip each peanut butter ball 2/3 of the way into the chocolate, leaving a little bit of the peanut butter exposed. That is the “buckeye” part of the recipe. Shake them a little bit to let some of the excess chocolate drip off and place them onto the baking sheet as you dip them. Per the recipe card below.
- Chill again – place the dipped buckeye balls into the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy – Remove them from the refrigerator and enjoy!
These are just the best cute little dessert you can make and have all week long, take to a party, or even keep in your freezer. I kept them bite-size so you can have more but you could also make them larger if you prefer.
Recipe tips for making buckeye balls
- Use creamy peanut butter and not chunky peanut butter. You can also use almond butter but you may need to add a little more flour.
- Make them larger. If you prefer to roll the balls a little bit bigger then go ahead, I just recommend that you measure them so they are all similar in size for the look and to allow the chilling time to be the same.
- Use coconut oil or butter to melt the chocolate. This helps the chocolate get nice and glossy and makes it easier for dipping.
- Use standard-size toothpicks and not larger ones. If one of the balls falls off of the toothpick when you are dipping it, then just fish it out carefully with a fork or spoon. It will be fine.
- You can leave a hole in the center or close it up. Many people leave the hole left from the toothpick in the buckeye balls and don’t bother closing it up. So it is up to you. To easily close up the holes, just lightly pinch and smooth the top of each ball after you are done dipping them in the chocolate.
How long do buckeye balls last?
- They will last up to about 7 days if you store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- To freeze buckeye balls: they freeze really well in a freezer-friendly container for up to 2 months. When ready to eat, just leave them on the counter or in the refrigerator to defrost and soften.
Other no-bake desserts
- Protein cookie Dough Balls
- Monster Cookie Energy Balls
- Healthy Chocolate Protein Shake
- Vegan Chocolate Mousse
- Healthy Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs
I hope you try this buckeye balls recipe. If you do then please leave a rating and comment below. I would love to hear how yours turned out.Print
Easy Buckeye Balls
- Total Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 20–25 balls 1x
- Diet: Gluten Free
These healthier buckeye balls are so simple and easy to make and they are a great healthy treat that everyone will love! They store great, making them a wonderful holiday gift or dessert for parties. These are gluten-free!
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter – I used Skippy’s Natural Peanut butter
- 1 + 1/3 cup blanched almond flour – I used Bob’s Red Mill brand
- 1/4 cup real maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups dark chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon solid coconut oil
- Line a medium size baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium size mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter, almond flour, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt. Mix with a hand mixer or stand mixer until it forms a slightly thick but still soft dough. Add a little bit more almond flour if the mixture is too sticky or wet to roll.
- Use a teaspoon to measure out 2 teaspoons of dough and roll it into a smooth ball between your hands and place it onto the lined baking sheet. Continue until you have rolled all of the dough into 20-25 balls. Insert a toothpick into the center of each ball and chill them in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
- When the balls are ready, it’s time to melt the chocolate. To melt the chocolate, place the chocolate chips into a microwave-safe bowl with the coconut oil. Microwave on high in 30-second intervals stirring in between each interval until most of the chocolate chips are melted. This took about 90 seconds in my microwave. You do not want all of the chocolate chips to melt since they could burn. Once 90% of them are melted, remove the bowl and stir to melt the rest of the chocolate chips.
- Carefully dip each ball into the chocolate about 2/3 of the way leaving a little bit of the peanut butter ball exposed. This is what gives it the “buckeye” name. Let some of the excess chocolate drips off of the balls then place each one carefully back onto the baking sheet.
- Once you have dipped all of the balls, remove the toothpicks and pinch and smooth the top of each ball to close up the holes if you choose to do so. Chill the buckeyes for at least 30 minutes to harden the chocolate.
- Remove and serve cold or at room temperature.
- Add extra almond flour if the mixture is too sticky or wet to roll. I like to add an extra tablespoon if needed.
- Use a small ice cream scoop to roll the peanut butter mixture into balls so they are all the same size.
- To store – store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.
- Prep Time: 10
- Category: Healthy Desserts
- Method: Chilled
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: buckeye balls, peanut butter balls, buckeyes, peanut butter, no-bake
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