Chocolate Peanut Butter Buckeyes (Healthy)

In Desserts/ Recipes

Chocolate Peanut Butter Buckeyes (Healthy) | A Couple Cooks

Chocolate Peanut Butter Buckeyes (Healthy) | A Couple Cooks

Buckeye cookies weren’t part of my childhood growing up in Minnesota, but they’re certainly the rage here in Indiana around the holidays (perhaps because of the proximity to Ohio?). Essentially peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate, they’re little bites of heaven. Any other buckeye fans out there?

Each year for A Couple Cooks, we try to create a “healthier” version of some holiday favorites. Admittedly “healthy” is sometimes a dirty word when tacked onto dessert, but believe me, these buckeyes can stand up to the original. Instead of the traditional butter and sugar, we’ve substituted Medjool dates, those large, chewy and sweet dates that are used to make natural sweets like raw brownies. Add a little peanut butter, and voila — instant buckeye filling. Dipped in a little chocolate, these little bites taste very similar to the original, but without the butter and refined sugar. They’re certainly not a health food, but they’re more natural than most of the treats out there this time of year! Let us know if you try them out and what you think.

Tip: We always make our cookie servings a little smaller than typical – this helps to control portion size!

Note 1: These are a great gluten-free Christmas cookie option and vegan Christmas cookie option (if you use vegan chocolate). They are also refined-sugar free (naturally sweet) and no-bake.

Note 2: Little round balls like buckeyes and truffles are extremely difficult to photograph! We were fairly artistically frustrated until we placed them in the bowl above, which made all the difference. The shine of the bowl also helped to bring in some color and light. Just a tip if you’re into food photography!

Note 3: The concept was inspired by this recipe from our friend Ashley at Edible Perspective — though we do try using dates in many of our dessert recipes!


Chocolate Peanut Butter Buckeyes (Healthy)

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  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Yield: 30 to 40


Medjool dates are a type of date that is exceptionally large and sweet, and are essential for this recipe (do not substitute). Medjool dates are available at many mainstream groceries, and also are available for sale online.


  • 20 Medjool dates
  • 3 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips


  1. Remove the pits from 20 Medjool dates. Place the dates in the bowl of a food processor and process until crumbled. Add 3 tablespoons peanut butter and turn on the food processor; while running, add 2 tablespoons water. Process until completely smooth (stopping and scraping down the bowl as necessary).
  2. Lightly oil your hands (to prevent sticking) and roll the mixture into small balls, about 30 to 40 total. Place the balls on a cookie sheet covered with wax paper and freeze until ready to dip in chocolate.
  3. Fill a large skillet halfway with water and bring to a simmer, then place 1 cup chocolate chips in a metal or glass heat-safe bowl. Once the water is simmering, turn off the heat and place the bowl of chocolate in the water, then stir until melted. (Alternatively, use a double boiler to melt the chocolate.)
  4. Dip each buckeye halfway into the chocolate using a toothpick (then smooth over the toothpick hole). Place the buckeyes back on the cookie sheet and refrigerate until serving.



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  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    December 2, 2014 at 4:11 am

    These look so scrumptious guys! I love buckeyes, and make them every year, but would love to try something healthier (since I usually eat around 6 a day, lol).

  • Reply
    December 2, 2014 at 6:19 am

    I have to confess that I have never made or even tried buckeyes. Why? I have no clue because these look so good!

  • Reply
    Ksenia @ At the Immigrant's Table
    December 2, 2014 at 7:21 am

    Sounds a lot like my healthy chocolate balls! It’s amazing what dates can do in healthy vegan treats.

  • Reply
    shanna mallon
    December 2, 2014 at 9:15 am


  • Reply
    December 2, 2014 at 10:08 am

    These look perfect!!!! I only like “healthy” buckeyes. The originals make my teeth ache, haha.

  • Reply
    Candace @ The Wheatless Kitchen
    December 2, 2014 at 10:52 am

    I love desserts like this! I can’t wait to try these! The photos are beautiful :)

  • Reply
    Amy @ Parsley In My Teeth
    December 2, 2014 at 11:55 am

    Cute and delicious. I could definitely pop more than my fair share of these little gems in my mouth!

  • Reply
    Jennifer @ Show Me the Yummy
    December 2, 2014 at 1:24 pm

    Yay! So excited to try these…buckeyes are one of my favorite holiday treats!

  • Reply
    Rebecca@Figs and Pigs
    December 2, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    I’ve never heard of buckeye cookies before I don’t think we have them in the UK but they sound amazing. I definitely want to try these and love peanut butter.

  • Reply
    Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough
    December 2, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    I’m such a sucker for anything PB + chocolate. Love that these are healthier and so simple to make, too!

  • Reply
    December 3, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    These look and sound great!

  • Reply
    Laura W
    December 3, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    Just made these–they’re delicious! Even better than a regular buckeye, as there’s no stomachache after eating one. I made a few adjustments–I doubled the peanut butter, because 3 Tbs. just didn’t taste peanut-y enough (though it might be that my dates were larger–I got 40 one-inch-diameter candies). I also added a pinch or two of kosher salt to help enhance the nuttiness as well. So good!

  • Reply
    December 4, 2014 at 3:12 pm

    I love the idea of these! Totally trying them this year.

  • Reply
    December 5, 2014 at 11:47 am

    You guys are killing me with these buckeyes! I’ve been craving all the sweets this holiday season and these wholesome treats look like they’d do the job.

  • Reply
    Monique @ Ambitious Kitchen
    December 16, 2014 at 9:53 am

    I’m definitely making these for a holiday party I have coming up this weekend. Hopefully I can find dates at Whole Foods! Excited. :)

  • Reply
    July 2, 2016 at 7:23 pm

    These sound so yummy and super easy too. Thanks.

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