Chocolate Peanut Butter Bonbons Recipe

 Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls Recipe 

These peanut butter bonbons are one of my favorite sweets. My mom used to make them every year for Christmas, so they always bring back great memories. They're perfect for any time of year and can easily be adapted for different holidays or occasions just by using seasonal sprinkles or omitting the sprinkles altogether.  

If giving as gifts, they look sweet packaged in a small box or served up in small candy cups. I've also wanted to try putting them on lollipop sticks for chocolate peanut butter pops.

They freeze well, so I've often put Christmas leftovers in the freezer until Valentine's day...when I can get them to last that long!

My mom's original recipe called these "Chocolate Cookie Balls" and includes ground nuts and coconut. But I've also used a different variation from a vintage Pillsbury recipe book when I couldn't find her recipe. While I prefer the traditional recipe, the one I used here calls for fewer ingredients and is a quick and easy alternative.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bonbons
1 can vanilla frosting
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup butter, softened at room temperature
2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 can any flavor of frosting for dipping (You can also use chocolate chips or candy melts instead)
Combine first can of frosting, peanut butter, butter, and graham cracker crumbs and mix well.  Roll into 1-inch balls and chill in fridge for an hour or until stiff. (If the peanut butter mixture seems too soft at first, you can also chill before rolling into balls).  

Melt second can of frosting by heating over low heat and dip balls to coat, then place on waxed paper to cool.  

Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls before dipping

Peanut butter balls before dipping.

Dipping chocolate peanut butter balls

I used chocolate chips melted in a double boiler instead of the melted frosting. Drop balls in the chocolate, then use two spoons to coat the ball and set on a piece of waxed paper to cool.

You can use a small saucepan inside a larger pan filled with water if you don't have a double boiler. Heat on medium-low or the chocolate may "seize" and become dry and pasty.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls with Sprinkles

Sprinkle with candy sprinkles, colored sugar, chopped nuts, coconut or any other topping immediately after dipping, before chocolate sets.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bonbons with Sprinkles

Set aside to let chocolate harden. Chilling sometimes helps speed up the process, but can also make the chocolate "sweat." I set the bonbons on aluminum foil, but waxed paper would be a better choice to prevent sticking.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bonbons

Serve on a paper doily or place in individual candy cups for a festive treat.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bonbons

Variations:
- Use chocolate chips or candy melts instead of frosting to coat the bonbons. Get creative by using butterscotch chips, peanut butter chips, or white chocolate to vary the flavor.  

- For colored bonbons, use colored candy melts or add a few drops of food coloring to white chocolate. Pastel colors would be great for spring or baby showers.

My mom's original recipe is below.  It calls for paraffin wax in the dipping chocolate, which gives the coating a glossy look and adds a bit of hardness.

Chocolate Cookie Balls
2 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup ground nuts (optional)
1 cup grated coconut (for a finer texture, you can grind the coconut in a food grinder before adding)
1 cup butter, melted
1 or 2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
Chocolate for dipping:
1/2 package (6 ounces) chocolate chips
1/2 package (6 ounces) butterscotch chips
1/4 bar paraffin wax

Mix all ingredients together. Roll into balls, then chill or freeze on cookie sheet. Dip balls in melted chocolate to coat, then cool on wax paper. With spoon, cover marks from toothpick.
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