If you live in Michigan, Ohio or any of the surrounding Midwest states, you are most likely familiar with Buckeyes. For those of you who live in the Southern states, or on either of the coasts, and have never had a Buckeye, you must make these delicious candies a part of your holiday traditions!

The buckeye is the state tree of Ohio. It produces small nuts that have a dark outer shell, but the lighter colored interior of the nut is visible from the top. The candy resembling this beloved nut is made with a creamy peanut butter center and dipped in milk chocolate. The creamy center is visible from the top of the candy. The candy is reminiscent of a peanut butter cup, and is primarily made on and around the holiday season or during the Ohio State football season. Our buckeyes are traditional, but you can mix it up and dip the entire creamy center into the chocolate. Drizzle a bit of melted chocolate on top for a finished look.

Buckeyes make a perfect holiday gift for neighbors, teachers and friends. To make your handmade gift even more special, purchase small candy boxes from your local craft store and finish with a big bow. Add a personalized card or tag and watch the recipients' eyes light up when you gift them with this delicious handmade treat!

The recipe may be traditional, but even traditional recipes are not complete without the addition of vanilla! Our Tahitian vanilla bean paste (3-fold) adds a floral and sweet flavor to the salt base of the chocolate. The vanilla bean paste is visible and the flavor is pronounced, despite the bold flavor of the peanut butter.  Our Tahitian vanilla bean paste is simply the best, with a quality and aroma that is apparent the moment you open the jar!

Buckeye Cookies Recipe

Yields 40-48 candies (depending on size you roll)


  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 cups peanut butter
  • 1 stick softened butter
  • 1 tsp. Tahitian vanilla bean paste (3-fold)
  • 8 ounces 60% dark chocolate (I use blocks of valrhona for easy melting and tempering)


In a large bowl, mix together the peanut butter, Tahitian vanilla bean paste and softened butter. Add the powdered sugar and beat until well incorporated. Using a measuring teaspoon, measure out one teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture. Roll the mixture into a ball using the palm of your hand. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silpat. Chill overnight.

buckeye balls

Chop the chocolate and place in a microwave safe bowl. Heat at 30 second intervals, stirring the chocolate after each 30 second interval until the chocolate has melted. Insert a wooden skewer into the peanut butter ball.

buckeye skewer


Dip into the melted chocolate, remove from chocolate and place on baking sheet. Leave the candy with the peanut butter center visible or remove skewer and, using the skewer, drizzle the melted chocolate onto the candy to cover the hole from the skewer.

buckeye chocolate

Finish remaining chocolates and place in refrigerator until chocolate is set. 4-6 hours.