November 29, 2018

Vegan Buckeyes

Chocolate and peanut butter combine in cute little balls for delicious fruit-sweetened Vegan Buckeyes -- made with only 5 plant-based ingredients!

Vegan Buckeyes

I've lived in Ohio (almost) my entire life therefore it's inevitable that I'd create a sweet little recipe for Vegan Buckeyes. If you're not familiar with these yummy treats, Buckeyes are peanut butter covered mostly in chocolate with a hole left open to expose the peanut butter. They look like a Buckeye nut!

Traditionally, Buckeyes are filled with butter and powdered sugar. Not healthy :( When my sister decided to go to Ohio State for college, I knew I needed to create a healthy version to celebrate her decision.

These Vegan Buckeyes are so easy. They require no baking whatsoever and store well in the fridge or freezer. Perfect for making a large batch and pulling a couple out when you want a treat!

Vegan Buckeyes

Ingredient Notes

When I first started testing this recipe, I wanted to make sure I replicated the taste and texture of traditional Buckeyes as closely as possible. After some trial and error, I found the perfect combination of a few simple ingredients.

  • Creamy Peanut Butter: make sure the only ingredients are peanuts and salt.
  • Peanut Powder: You can find this in the peanut butter section of the grocery store. Make sure the brand you choose has no added sugar.
  • Date Syrup: This is pureed dates - no refined sugar here! You can sub maple syrup.
  • Date Sugar: This is ground dried dates. Again, no refined sugar. And it helps create a perfect texture!
  • Unsweetened Dark Chocolate: For a sweeter buckeye you can mix in some additional date/maple syrup or choose a sweetened vegan chocolate.

Vegan Buckeyes Ingredients

How to Make Vegan Buckeyes

The peanut butter filling comes together easily. Simply mix the ingredients together. If the mixture seems really dry, add a bit more date syrup. As long as you can easily roll the peanut butter filling into balls, you're fine!

Speaking of peanut butter balls, that's the next step. Roll the peanut butter filling into little balls. I like to make smaller Buckeyes, around the size of a heaping teaspoon. Traditional Buckeyes are a little bigger though, closer to 1/2-2/3 tablespoon. You can do any size you want!

Then place the peanut butter balls into the freezer to firm up while you melt the chocolate. You could use a double boiler to melt the chocolate, but I'm not super fancy around here, so I just use the microwave. Make sure you microwave on 50% power and note my detailed instructions below to ensure you don't burn the chocolate. (Trust me, it's not fun.)

Once the chocolate is completely melted, stir in some date syrup. You can adjust the sweetness of your chocolate by adding additional date syrup. Note that after you add enough date syrup the chocolate will lose its shine and will become less sticky. At that point, you can use your hands to shape the chocolate, instead of a toothpick.

Now, the fun part! Roll each peanut butter ball in the chocolate. Use a toothpick to coat most of the peanut butter ball in chocolate, leave a small circle uncovered for a traditional buckeye.

Then, place the Vegan Buckeyes in the freezer for at least an hour to firm up. When you're ready to eat one just pull it out of the freezer and let it sit for 10 minutes (so you don't break your teeth!)

Vegan Buckeyes store well in the freezer and can be kept for several months. Or you can store them in the fridge for up to two weeks. Pull one out whenever you're feeling like a treat! Enjoy!

Vegan Buckeyes

Recipe Prayer

Jesus thank you for the state of Ohio and our yummy nut-themed treats. Help us celebrate the little things in life with these healthy Vegan Buckeyes.

Tried this recipe?

Please leave a review in the comments section below. You can also stay in touch with me on social media by following me on Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok or by subscribing to my newsletter.

Vegan Buckeyes

Chocolate and peanut butter combine in cute little balls for delicious fruit-sweetened Vegan Buckeyes -- made with only 5 plant-based ingredients!















For the Peanut Butter Filling:

  • 1/2 Cup Peanut Butter (make sure the only ingredients are peanuts and salt)
  • 1/2 Cup Peanut Powder (make sure the only ingredient is peanuts)
  • 2 Tablespoons Date Syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons Date Sugar

For the Chocolate Covering:

  • 4 oz Unsweetened Dark Chocolate
  • 2 Teaspoons Date Syrup


  1. In a medium sized bowl, mix all the peanut butter filling ingredients until the mixture comes together. If it is too dry add a little date syrup to help it stick.
  2. Roll the peanut butter filling into 1/2 tablespoon sized balls. Place in freezer while you prepare the chocolate.
  3. Break up the chocolate into chunks and add to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on 50% power for 1 1/2 minutes. Remove and stir for at least a minute -- this is what helps melt all the chocolate. If the chocolate isn't completely melted after extensive stirring, place in the microwave again at 50% power for 30 seconds. Stir again for at least a minute, repeating until the chocolate is completely melted.
  4. Stir the date syrup into the melted chocolate.
  5. Use a toothpick to pick up each peanut butter ball and coat it in chocolate. To make the traditional buckeye design, leave a small opening of peanut butter on one side.
  6. Freeze for at least an hour. When ready to serve, remove from the freezer and let thaw for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Vegan Buckeyes can be kept in the freezer for several months and the fridge for two weeks.

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January 16, 2022
Tracy Henry
Made this tonight. Absolutely delicious Elizabeth. You got this one just right!
Oh yay! I'm so glad you enjoyed it :)
January 16, 2022
L Collins
Hi Could you please confirm two things:1. The amount of salt. Seems like too much. 2. The directions say there is lemon juice in the dressing but it’s not listed under ingredients. ThanksL.
Hi there! Confirming that the two teaspoons of salt in the dressing is correct. I didn't salt the cauliflower when roasting it or the salad after it was done, so this amount of salt was perfect. If you're concerned about it you can decrease the amount of salt in the dressing and then add more at the end if you need it. As for the lemon juice, SO sorry about that! It was a typo in my directions and I've removed it now. Hope this helps :)
December 20, 2021
This looks lovely! Do you have a recipe for the red pepper hummus also? Thank you!
Hi Martha! I don't have a recipe for red pepper hummus on my site. I suggest taking a traditional hummus recipe and blending in roasted red pepper.
November 22, 2021
Amanda J Lehmann
I tried these and they were delicious! A bit dense but flavorful and the "buckeye" blend of peanut and chocolate was on point! Recommend!
Yay! I'm so glad you liked them! -- Elizabeth
December 6, 2021
Hi, these look amazing. I was wondering, could I used powdered peanut butter in place of creamy for the recipe? thanks
Hi Grace! There is already some powdered peanut butter in this recipe, so adding more might make the texture more gluey. Also, the real peanut butter adds some fat, which helps create flavor. That said, if you want to use powdered peanut butter, I would suggest mixing it with a high-fat liquid like coconut cream and then measuring out 2/3 cup. Hope this helps! Let me know how it goes :) -- Elizabeth
November 15, 2021
You mention using vegetable broth in your introduction but it isn’t included in the recipe
Hi Becky - thanks for pointing this out. I have removed mention of vegetable broth from this post. You do not need any vegetable broth. The mushrooms will release natural liquid which will prevent any sticking. -- Elizabeth
September 23, 2021
Tracy Henry
Hi Elizabeth, LOVE you recipes. Please keep them coming. :)I was wondering, can you share what is the vegan chocolate bar you used in this recipe?
August 28, 2021
Henry (Hank) Mader
thank you for the oil free recipe. I'm getting introduced to wild Bolete mushrooms here in Colorado, and everyone sautes Bolete's in butter or olive oil. I'm on a veggie, oil free regimen for heart health reasons. and your recipe suggestion may fill the bill. I can't wait to give it a try.
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This is so fun! Loving your creamy photography :)
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This looks incredible! So yummy and pretty photography