Once again, Pinterest is amazing. If not for my little virtual bulletin board, I probably wouldn’t have stumbled across these gems. They are peanut butter-pretzel truffles, or as I aptly named them – Chubby Hubby Truffles, after the famous Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. I consumed more pints of that stuff than I care to admit during my college days. It was a staple in our little mini-fridge’s (even mini-ier) freezer. Being the peanut butter lover that I am, there is absolutely no way I could resist chocolate-covered, peanut butter-filled pretzels swirling around in ice cream. Throw in sleep deprivation, lackluster cafeteria food, cram sessions and broken hearts (not only did you wallow in your own relationships gone bad, but you had to help your friend polish off a pint when some boy broke her heart too – that’s what friends do), and I probably should have skipped college and just bought stock in Ben & Jerry’s instead. So when I saw my favorite ice cream in truffle form (and so incredibly easy to make), I whipped them right up. The sweet and salty, smooth and crunchy – it all dances around in one little truffle. I dare you to only eat one. (Hint: It’s impossible, I tried and failed miserably.)
These are made very much like the traditional buckeyes – a mixture of peanut butter, butter and powdered sugar rolled into balls and then dipped in chocolate (a Christmas staple!). The kicker is the crushed up pretzels – they add a kick of salty and a little bit of crunch to what is already an unbelievable treat. And you all know that next to peanut butter and chocolate together, the other thing I can’t resist is a sweet/salty combo. Bonus for me – I get it all right here in one little truffle!
These are super easy to make – no special equipment needed. Just a bowl, a spoon and your ingredients. Be forewarned – you’ll probably “accidentally” leave some of the mixture in the bowl which will require you to not waste it and eat what’s left with said spoon. We don’t want to waste, now do we?
Put the pretzel pieces into a resealable plastic bag and crush into very small bits (a rolling pin works great for this).
In a small bowl, combine the peanut butter, butter, brown sugar and salt. Stir until all of the ingredients are completely blended and smooth. Add the pretzel bits to the peanut butter mixture and mix thoroughly. Add the powdered sugar and mix until completely combined.
Line a small baking sheet with wax paper. Using a small cookie scoop, or about 2 teaspoons worth of peanut butter mixture, gently shape into a ball with your fingertips. Place the ball on the wax paper-lined cookie sheet and repeat with the remaining peanut butter mixture. Place the baking sheet into the refrigerator and chill for at least 30 minutes.
When ready to dip the truffles, microwave the chocolate chips and vegetable shortening together in a small bowl at 50% power in 30-second increments, stirring after each, until completely melted and smooth.
Working one at a time, dip one peanut butter-pretzel ball into the melted chocolate and use a fork to roll it around, ensuring that it is completely coated with chocolate. Let any extra chocolate drip off and place back on the wax paper-lined sheet. Repeat with all of the peanut butter-pretzel balls.
Return the baking sheet to the refrigerator and again chill for at least 30 minutes. Garnish with a drizzle of melted peanut butter and crushed pretzels, if desired. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.