Peanut Butter Balls {Buckeyes}

Classic candy from Ohio. Peanut Butter Buckeyes. Soft peanut butter filling dipped in chocolate! Be sure to make a batch of peanut butter balls for your next party!

Peanut Butter Buckeyes: a soft peanut butter filled candy famous in Ohio. Make a batch today!

Click HERE to save recipe to Pinterest!

I had never heard of Buckeyes until my brother moved to Ohio and married an Ohio gal. I remember the first time I saw a plate of “buckeyes” at a holiday party.

They were odd looking. They looked like a Reese’s peanut butter cup, but NOT. And, they had toothpick marks in the center. But, ohmygosh, they tasted so amazing.

Needless to say, I got the recipe from them immediately, and have been making them for the past 8 years! It occurred to me I haven’t shared the recipe here on the blog yet!

Especially now that I live in Ohio, it’s only fitting that I share this beloved treat. Do people around the country make these? Was I the only one living under a rock?

How to make Peanut Butter Balls

Peanut Butter Buckeyes: a soft peanut butter filled candy famous in Ohio. Make a batch today!

Most Ohioans will leave the toothpick marks in the buckeye. I don’t know if that’s a trademark or laziness. But it offends me, haha!

So after my buckeyes have been dipped in chocolate and all set, I pinch the toothpick mark closed. Is that wrong? Am I offending any traditional Ohio buckeye rule?

How to make Peanut Butter Buckeyes

Anyway, these buckeyes are soft and tender in the middle peanut butter layer, and the crunch of the chocolate coating? Oh my!

I use Ghirardelli Chocolate melting wafers to dip mine in. The original recipe called for “Chocolate and wax, mixed and melted.” Ummm, I’m assuming it’s paraffin wax, but the lack of measurements scared me. So, I went with what I know will work. And will set up beautifully. ENJOY.

Peanut Butter Buckeyes: a soft peanut butter filled candy famous in Ohio. Make a batch today!

Can you freeze Peanut Butter Balls?

Yes you can!

After the chocolate has hardened, slide the peanut butter balls into a ziploc freezer bag or airtight container, in a single layer. Freeze for up to one month.

This is perfect if you want to make them ahead of time for the holidays.

Love chocolate & peanut butter?


Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies


Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies


Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Fudge

Peanut Butter Buckeyes: a soft peanut butter filled candy famous in Ohio. Make a batch today!

More Easy Dessert Recipes:

Peanut Butter Buckeyes recipe and video tutorial:

Yield: 4-5 dozen

Peanut Butter Buckeyes

Prep Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Classic candy from Ohio. Peanut Butter Buckeyes. Soft peanut butter filling dipped in chocolate! Be sure to make a batch of peanut butter balls for your next party!



  1. In a large mixing bowl, blend melted butter, powdered sugar, peanut butter and vanilla extract until fully combined.
  2. Scoop balls and roll them into your hands, making about a 1-1/2 inch sized ball. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and repeat until all filling is used.
  3. Refrigerate for about one hour.
  4. Melt chocolate according to package directions. Using a toothpick, dip bottoms into melted chocolate (leaving some of the peanut butter tops exposed). Place on parchment paper and allow to set.
  5. If desired, when chocolate has set, pinch the toothpick marks closed and pat until smooth. Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks. ENJOY.


**Chocolate candy coating is also known as chocolate almond bark or chocolate Candiquik

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 114Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 36mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 1gSugar: 10gProtein: 2g

*Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Peanut Butter Buckeyes: a soft peanut butter filled candy famous in Ohio. Make a batch today!

Today’s recipe for Peanut Butter Buckeyes was originally published on Shugary Sweets on December 11, 2013.

Peanut Butter Balls (Buckeyes) are a holiday treat that is easy to make. No bake dessert that even the kids can help you create!


About Aimee

Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

Learn more about Aimee.

Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

Get My Free Email Course
Become a Better Baker—no more box mixes! Discovery your new “signature” desserts!


Posted on October 25, 2019

Comments & Reviews

  1. I’ve made these for years, but as one person commented, I also use the semi chocolate chips & Gulf Wax. I live in Kentucky, about 30 miles from Ohio, so we know about these 🙂 I make a Transparent Pie or Tarts that are easy to make but many here have never heard of that either! 🙂 Love the buckeyes!

  2. YUM! I had forgotten all about these babies! Originally made them in a Home Ec. class in West Virginia. That recipe had Rice Krispies stirred into the peanut butter balls, then dipped in chocolate. They were soooo good! Can’t wait to try your recipe and THANKS for bringing back an old (I’m not telling HOW old) forgotten recipe Ü

  3. This is a favorite treat at our house! We have started adding our own twist to it – I make the PB balls and put them between 2 mini pretzels and then dip half in the chocolate. So good! We especially make these for Sunday football in the fall but now that there in my head we might just have a batch this weekend 🙂 thanks!

  4. Hi Aimee,

    I’ll be interested to hear what others say! I’m in Illinois and this has been a holiday staple since I can remember. I think if the hole offends you, do buckeyes your way! Laziness will always prevail on mine, lol. I’ve actually been seeing a twist on these the last few years where people are adding Rice Krispies into the mix. Hope that doesn’t cause an Illinois-Ohio rift from the purists out there 🙂

  5. In Ohio, many people leave the hole, not knowing how to cover it up without touching the buckeyes with their fingers and making a mess of it. I make them with a candy dipper prong thingie and avoid the holes. For those dipping the entire thing in chocolate, that is delicious, but will no longer look be a buckeye. The buckeye is Ohio’s state tree – the candies aren’t submerged in chocolate so they look like the buckeye nuts. Any variation is delicious, but unless it looks like a buckeye nut, it isn’t a buckeye.

    Many melting wafers contain some form of wax. The purpose is to make a shiny finish as many people don’t know how to temper pure chocolate. Check if your melting wafers have wax in ’em or not. If you’re using pure chocolate – not Nestle chips – you will want to temper the chocolate for the snap and shine.

  6. How long would these last before you’d have to eat them? Trying to be prepared and make a load for friends. Of course I’ll have to hid them from myself! 

  7. Will these work without any ‘wax’ and just using melted semi sweet chocolate chips?! I sure hope so.. because this recipe is going to a cookie swap tomorrow and I had no idea about the wax hahaa!

  8. Your recipe has been featured here > https://sweetmeetsbakeshop.com/2016/04/14/buckeye-crunch-bars-buckeye-history/

    Happy Thursday and keep on desserting!

  9. Loved this recipe! So did my family! Although I did add one less cup of powdered sugar. Otherwise it was WAY too sweet. Even so, I love it! It was really easy to make.

  10. You all that say it is laziness by leaving the toothpick hole there are all idiots!! And have NEVER lived with CHRONIC PAIN and still made these every year. You that say that are PATHETIC!!!

  11. Yum! My friend in Ohio always sends me a box of these for my birthday, they don’t last long. Now I’m excited to make them year round. Go Bucks!

  12. I grew up eating buckeyes in Ohio, and I was really disappointed with this rendition. I had never tried Candiquik coating before, so it didn’t strike me as a bad idea when I first saw the recipe. But now I know. Candiquik is a poor substitute for real chocolate. Dip the PB balls in melted semisweet chocolate, and you’ll taste the difference. No offense, but these tasted like peanut butter flavored sugar dipped in chocolate flavored sugar. Instead of like a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup in ball form, as it should taste.

  13. You laugh at the “laziness” of the people who make the recipe however you really thought the recipe called for paraffin wax?! It calls for melted chocolate. Hard shell candy coating is blasphemy. Oh- and learn to spell ‘anyway’ – there is NO ‘s’ on the end of ANYWAY!!!!!

  14. Buckeyes are supposed to look like exactly that, buckeyes- so they shouldn’t be covered entirely in chocolate. While the holes aren’t “supposed” to be there, I think its rude to assume its due to laziness! The thing is, by the time you roll them all, the peanut butter is soft and its hard to cover the holes at that time. Then, after freezing, the ball is often too hard to cover the holes. Everyone that makes them should know this! Obviously they’re prettier with the toothpick holes removed and maybe some people are lazy but I don’t assume everyone that makes these wonderful balls is lazy! Also, aren’t you just grateful your SIL even shared the recipe?!!!

    1. I was just kidding about the laziness, which is why I added the “haha” to my comment. I agree they are a bit of work (or maybe I should say time consuming). And yes, of course I’m grateful the recipe was shared with me 🙂

  15. My peanut butter mixture is just slightly different. I would never, ever dream of leaving the toothpick holes !!! I, too, freeze the pb balls after rolling…just long enough to harden, maybe 20 min or so. My chocolate mixture is 12oz Hershey bars with 1/2 bar of gulf wax paraffin. I have a nifty Wilton melting pot that keeps the chocolate mixture at the perfect temperature. Santa always gets Buckeyes at our house on Christmas
    Eve !!!

  16. Coming from someone that lived their first 25 years in Ohio, I think the toothpick mark is laziness 🙂 My grandma left it, but my mom tries to cover hers up, and so do I. Dipping the chocolate so the edge comes right to the toothpick is an easy way to cover it up, the hole just fills with chocolate! Or I make buckeye ‘pops’, that way you just leave the stick on!

    Probably one of my favorite things ever 🙂

  17. I grew up in Michigan, right near the Ohio border. Buckeyes have been a holiday tradition for as long as I can remember. So imagine my surprise when other states I’ve lived in, they were unknown…but not for long! lol.

    The recipe that I’ve always used calls for graham cracker crumbs in the peanut butter as well.

  18. I loooove me some buckeyes!

    I always patch up the toothpick holes too, but they don’t offend me.
    What DOES offend me is the number of people who say they cover the whole thing in chocolate… that’s blasphemous! The ‘spot’ is the part that makes it a buckeye. Anything else is… tragic. 😛

    It also surprised me that other people don’t know about them. As a native Ohioan, I’d never realized it was a local thing. I guess I assumed that we (as Buckeyes) were way more ‘into’ this particular dessert, but I never realized that they weren’t a common find elsewhere. Interesting!

  19. I didn’t realize how simple this is to make! Only 5 ingredients? I’m in! I can’t wait to make this for my brother-in-law who’s from Ohio. Have you heard of Longhorns? Now you’ve inspired me to share my recipe for the famous treat here in Austin, TX 😉

  20. I have never had these or seen these at a party, but i do love resses so I think these might be right up my alley!

  21. I’m from Ohio and I make buckeyes every year at Christmas time! I never knew it was an Ohio thing…I thought everyone made them…

    And the holes seriously offend me too…they just look undone so I always patch it up. My recipe originally called for paraffin wax, too, but I leave it out because it’s not something I keep on hand.

  22. I want to eat these! I’m in Michigan, so not far at all, but this year (in blogland) is the first that I’m hearing of these buckeyes. I think I might use those new Ghirardelli melting chips I saw at the grocery store the other day. Mmmm.

  23. I have made peanut butter balls for years, My husband brought the recipe hoe from someone he worked with. I was glad it would be something I would not eat because I have never liked Reeses cups. Welllll, much to my surprise I loved them. So much better than the Reeses cups. We cover the whole peanut butter ball with chocolate. My recipe has more peanut butter and sugar. Makes about 80-100 depending on the size. Also have to put in freezer to keep chilled before dipping.

  24. One of my best friends in college was from OH, and she made an enormous batch of buckeyes every year. I think of her every time I see them, and I’ve craved them every Christmas since!

  25. Haha – Love these even without the “hole”, lol. These are a classic, I love how simple they are – they are definitely one of those recipes that I will be making forever!

  26. Buckeyes – the best dessert known to man. I love how easy they are and that they taste like a reeses filling!

  27. I must have been under the same rock. LOL Never had buckeyes, but this recipe looks so simple I think even I can do it. Although I’m not a huge sweet lover, I do like Reeses peanut butter cups and how can you not bake sweets at Christmas. So, I’m adding these to my list of other goodies to make this holiday.

  28. This is one of my favorite holiday treats to make. We use a higher proportion of peanut butter to powdered sugar/butter so we can’t work with it at room temperature – we make the mixture, refrigerate it, and work in small batches to roll the balls. Then we freeze the balls and dip them while they’re frozen, again in small batches. We go so far as to twirl the dipped buckeye over the double boiler until the chocolate sets so that there aren’t any “feet” (we use a different chocolate mix – 1 bag of semisweet morsels with 1/3 bar of Gulf Wax is our ratio), PLUS pinch out the toothpick hole. These treats are WORK but they are by far the most popular 🙂

    We’re Kentuckians and to my knowledge have never had family from Ohio so we must have had a nice Ohio friend a few generations back who showed us their buckeye recipe – my thanks to them, for it’s my favorite!!

  29. I’ve never heard of Buckeyes (I’m from NC), but they look delicious. I think I’ll have to give them a try.

  30. lol as a native Ohio-an, I have no clue if other people know them or not. I assume the toothpick holes are laziness lol

    love em!

  31. I absolutely adore buckeyes…I know that’s the “official” name but I always call them pb balls. And the holes offend me too…I always have to cover the truffles completely…and add sprinkles or chocolate drizzle. Now I’m seriously craving peanut butter!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *