These chocolatey confections—popular in the Midwest, especially the Buckeye State, Ohio—are like a Reese's cup with extra filling.
- 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
- 3⁄4 cup smooth peanut butter
- 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1⁄2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1⁄4 tsp. salt
- 6 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
- 1⁄2 tsp. vegetable shortening
Put sugar, peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and salt into a mixing bowl and beat well with a wooden spoon. Roll peanut butter mixture into 1" balls and transfer to a wax paper–lined cookie sheet in a single layer. Freeze until firm, 15–20 minutes.
Melt chocolate and shortening in a small heatproof bowl set over a small pot of simmering water, stirring often. Remove pot and bowl together from heat.
Working with about 6 peanut butter balls at a time, insert a toothpick into the center of a ball and dip about three-quarters of the ball into the melted chocolate, leaving about a I" circle of peanut butter visible at the top. Twirl toothpick between your finger and thumb to swirl off excess chocolate, then transfer to another wax paper–lined cookie sheet, chocolate side down. Slide out toothpick and repeat dipping process with remaining peanut butter balls and chocolate, reheating chocolate if necessary.
Freeze buckeyes until firm. Smooth out toothpick holes left in peanut butter. Buckeyes will keep well sealed in cool place for up to 1 week and up to 2 weeks in refrigerator. Serve at room temperature or chilled.