Guest Post: Making Buckeyes

I am thrilled to have the fabulous Emma and Keri from Ladies What … on my blog today! They are sharing a guest post on how to make Buckeyes (the Ohioan peanut butter candy that resembles the buckeye – which is a conker, to us Brits). I hope you enjoy this recipe and make some too!

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One of the things that I love most about travelling is finding out all about the foods and recipes specific to the area that I’m visiting.

Now that Molly has moved to the US, I thought I’d take the opportunity to test out a regional speciality from her new home of Ohio.

A bit of research led me to buckeye balls – a chocolate-covered peanut butter candy that resembles the shape of the buckeyes that grow on Ohio’s state tree.

The end result! Yum!

The end result! Yum!

About buckeyes
The buckeye tree – Aesculus glabra – is a common sight in Ohio and it was designated as the official state tree back in 1953. The tree is very similar to the horse chestnut tree that you commonly find in the British countryside.

Local Native Americans used tannic acid contained in the tree for tanning leather. They also mashed roasted buckeye nuts to make a nutritious meal.

Ohio is known as the Buckeye State and in 1950, Ohio State University officially adopted ‘Buckeyes’ as their nickname.

Making buckeye balls

½ cup peanut butter
3 tablespoons of butter
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 1 ½ cups sifted confectioners sugar
2 ounces of chocolate (I used good quality milk chocolate but you can also use dark)

Put the peanut butter, vanilla and butter in a bowl. Slowly add the sifted confectioners sugar a bit at time until the dough is nice and stiff.

buckeye 1&2

Form the dough into small balls, place on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper.
Place the baking tray in the fridge or freezer for at least an hour until they are set – the longer the better as this makes it easier when dipping in the chocolate!

buckeye 3

When ready, melt the chocolate by microwaving in short bursts or by placing in a bowl over a pan of boiling water.

Place a toothpick in the top of each peanut butter ball and dip into the chocolate, leaving a small portion of the top uncovered so they look like buckeyes.

Pop back in the fridge for a short while to set.

What I thought
Making the balls was relatively easy, but my dough was a bit soft (perhaps due to not adding enough of the sugar) so it was a bit difficult to dip them in the chocolate.

However, even though they didn’t end up looking very neat, they tasted amazing! They were really creamy and not too sweet – which I was surprised at considering how much sugar the recipe contained.

I would probably make them as an occasional treat rather than an every day snack but I can see why they are so popular at parties and gatherings across Ohio.

Top tips

  • I found that melting more chocolate than I needed made it easier to dip the buckeyes.
  • Make sure you sift the confectioner’s sugar before you use it – it removes the lumps and changes the volume.
  • Using a toothpick really is the best way to dip the balls – I originally tried to manage without one and it went horribly wrong!

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What do you think – will you try making these? Have you made them before?


10 thoughts on “Guest Post: Making Buckeyes

  1. foodessen says:

    I can’t wait to try this recipe with dark chocolate. Thanks for sharing it Molly! They look delicious, the problem is I’m sure I’ll end up eating most of them myself.


  2. Tina Muir says:

    Hi Molly! I am a Brit living in the States too! I was confused what a buckeye was when I first moved here. Have never tried homemade ones, those would be good! I think its time I gave them a try too! Glad to have found your blog! Look forward to reading more 🙂


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