Crispy Buckeyes – Decadent peanut butter confections studded with crispy rice cereal and coated in semisweet chocolate. A classic holiday treat!
Crispy Buckeyes? Huh? What in the world is that? If you type “what is a buckeye?” into Google, you’ll get over 10 million results! For those of us in Ohio, we’re all too familiar with the buckeye. This small dark brown nut with a light tan patch hails from the buckeye tree, Ohio’s official state tree. (See this post [one of my first!] for a picture of the nut.)
The story goes that buckeyes are so-named because they resemble the eye of a deer. Along the way, a very wise soul (possibly a saint!) came up with the idea to create a divine candy made out of peanut butter and chocolate to look just like a buckeye nut.
In Ohio, it’s almost unheard of to have a Christmas cookie tray without buckeyes. They are absolutely a staple at this time of the year, and they’ve always been one of my favorites. (Duh – chocolate and peanut butter!) For as long as I can remember, my Aunt Kathy has made buckeyes at Christmastime, but hers always stood out because she often included a crispy peanut butter variation that is da bomb!
Several years ago, I e-mailed her for the recipe for the Crispy Buckeyes, and she was more than happy to share. My husband laughs at me because I still have the e-mail printed out and refer to it year-after-year at Christmastime. If it ain’t broke. . .
Each year, I’m often asked for the Crispy Buckeyes recipe because they definitely are not as common as regular buckeyes, yet they may be even better! So today I’m sharing the Crispy Buckeyes recipe with you to enjoy with your friends and family.
I have made a couple tweaks to my aunt’s recipe over the years, and the result is a peanut butter center that is a bit creamier than the original recipe and much easier to roll. Crispy Buckeyes take a few steps, but they are super easy to make.
Ultimately, you combine butter, peanut butter, powdered sugar, and Rice Krispies and shape the dough into balls. Refrigerate the peanut butter balls and then give them a swim in smooth melted chocolate while leaving just a bit of the peanut butter uncovered. Voila – Crispy Buckeyes!
I can’t let this post go without sharing some exclusive behind-the-scenes Worth Whisking coverage. So, because my little men, Ziggy and Chewie, are serious busybodies and like to be in the middle of everything, I usually take the blog pictures behind closed doors. Otherwise, the photos either would never get done, or you’d see a lot of paws and whiskers in every shot! 😛
On the day I was taking these Crispy Buckeyes photos, the natural light was tons better in the room just off the kitchen – which does not have a door. So, I had myself a couple production assistants! They behaved themselves for the most part, but I may have to fire Ziggy. #sleepingonthejob
As you’re planning your cookie tray this year, definitely plan to whip up these yummy Crispy Buckeyes. With or without production assistants.
- ½ pound powdered sugar slightly less than 2 cups
- 1 ¾ cups crisped rice cereal
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter or margarine
- 10 ounces creamy peanut butter
- 1 package semisweet chocolate chips 12 oz.
- ½ tablespoon vegetable shortening
In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the powdered sugar and cereal. Set aside.
Add the butter and peanut butter to a large microwave-safe bowl and microwave until soft; about 1 minute on 80% power. Stir until well-combined.
Add the cereal/powdered sugar mix and stir until well-combined.
Roll the peanut butter mixture into 1-inch balls and place on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Chill in refrigerator at least 30 minutes.
In a double boiler, melt the chocolate chips and shortening.
Use a toothpick to dip each ball into the chocolate, leaving an oval space on top to resemble a buckeye.
Place each dipped ball on the wax paper-lined baking sheet. Use a finger to blend the holes left by the toothpick. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm.
Best when stored in refrigerator.