Peanut Butter Buckeyes

Buckeyes #recipe by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

I absolutely love Christmas baking, and it will probably come as no surprise to you that my very favorite Christmas recipes involve the combination of chocolate and peanut butter, namely peanut butter blossoms and these peanut butter buckeye candies. I’ve adored them ever since I was a kid; how could you not love something that is basically a homemade version of Reese’s peanut butter cups? These buttery, sweet peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate are so easy to make and the recipe yields a TON, the combination of which makes them absolutely perfect for holiday baking.

This is my cousin’s recipe, and I follow it to a T, with the exception of adding vegetable shortening to the chocolate so that it coats the peanut butter balls a bit better. It makes for a super smooth coating and I highly recommend using it, but if you’re opposed to using shortening, you can substitute refined coconut oil in its place.

There are still plenty of baking days left before Christmas next week, and I highly recommend you add these to your to-do list!

Buckeyes #recipe by @browneyedbaker :: www.browneyedbaker.com

Peanut Butter Buckeyes Recipe

Yield: 7 to 8 dozen buckeyes

Prep Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour

The classic! Sweetened balls of peanut butter dipped in chocolate.

Ingredients:

1½ cups creamy peanut butter
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
4 cups powdered sugar
4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
¼ cup vegetable shortening

Directions:

1. Line cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper; set aside.

2. In a large bowl, stir together the peanut butter, softened butter, vanilla extract, and salt with a wooden spoon. Add the powdered sugar a little bit at a time, stirring it into the peanut butter mixture until it is completely incorporated.

3. Roll the peanut butter mixture into 1-inch balls. Set them on the prepared cookie sheet and insert a toothpick into the top of each ball. Chill in freezer until hard, approximately 30 minutes.

4. In a heatproof medium bowl, combine the chocolate chips and shortening. Place the bowl over a small saucepan with 1 inch of water placed over low heat. Stir occasionally, until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Keep the bowl over the saucepan of barely simmering water. Using the toothpick as a "handle", dip the peanut butter balls into the chocolate, leaving a small circle exposed on the top of each ball. Place the balls back on the cookie sheet and refrigerate until the chocolate is set, approximately 2 hours.

5. Once the buckeyes are set, remove the toothpicks and if you'd like, you can use your finger to smudge the peanut butter dough together on the top of the buckeye to cover the hole where the toothpicks were. Store the buckeyes in an airtight container with wax paper between layers in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.