What is more dangerous than a box of Oreos and icy cold milk? More dangerous than that pretty green box of Girl Scout cookies? More dangerous than hot cookies coming out of the oven? Ok, not that dangerous, but definitely covers the first two – Grandma’s Peanut Butter Balls.
My brother and I spent a lot of time at our grandparents’ house, and I don’t recall Grandma ever actually making the Peanut Butter Balls. It’s as if coffee cans full of them would just appear in the freezer. You know, the metal coffee cans they don’t make anymore that Grandma would cover in wallpaper? The coffee cans I would like to have used for my tomato plants, but now I have to beg the cafeteria ladies for their number 10 cans of corn? Yeah, those. Many a treats could be found in those coffee cans.
My dear, sweet Grandma has quite the sweet tooth, and I am pretty sure that’s where I inherited mine from. Not just “a” sweet tooth, but a whole mouth full. My mom and I dropped off a bag of homemade trail mix to Grandma the other day, complete with dried chocolate covered cherries. A few days later, it appeared as if she hadn’t touched it. Oh but wait, she had eaten every single chocolate covered cherry out of that bag, and it would have continued to sit right there where it was had I not picked it up. What good was the trail mix now, the chocolate was gone?!
I can just imagine her making those 300 peanut butter balls now, licking the chocolate off the spoon, and taking a periodic quality check of the finished product every tenth ball. Makes me giggle. So, every year I could look forward to Grandma’s most beloved treat.
Every Christmas Eve, mounds and mounds of Peanut Butter Balls would appear on a plate in Grandma’s living room. Before that plate was empty, Grandma would come around filling it back up again. Definitely a case of the grandkids filling up on peanut butter balls before suppertime. But, grandparents like to spoil, and it was Christmas, so it was okay. I can see Mom rolling her eyes now. Don’t worry Mom, give it five years and you’ll be feeding your grandkids chocolate cake for breakfast too.
Since the holidays are over, we need another reason to make these treats – Valentine’s Day – yup, perfect. Everyone is over the “cake ball” trend, chocolate covered strawberries are definitely good, but Peanut Butter Balls? Home run, my friend, home run. Save a stash in the back of the freezer? Even better. Husbands, make them for your wives? She may even surprise you with that new deer feeder you’ve been eyeing. You know, the one with the built-in game camera. Ok, so I just made that last part up, but that would be cool. Let’s get to rollin’ those balls…
~Peace, Love, and Peanut Butter Ya’ll!
Great Grandma's Peanut Butter Balls
3/4 cup butter
3 cups peanut butter (28 oz total)
1 1/2 boxes powdered sugar
16 oz chocolate chips
4 1/2 cups Rice Krispies
Begin by blending softened butter and peanut butter in a hand mixer. When thoroughly mixed, add in powdered sugar. The mixture gets tough, and you'll have to take off those big ol' diamond rings and finish up with your hands. The mixture will begin to get crumbly. Add in Rice Krispies and mix. Then roll into balls. I like mine tablespoon sized; I think any bigger and they fall apart as you try to eat them. After forming all ten dozen balls or so, place them on a cookie sheet in the freezer to hardened slightly. Next, melt the chocolate in 15 second intervals in the microwave. Stop just before it's completely melted and continue to stir. Be careful not to burn the chocolate. Some people love using Hershey's bars. I have had really good luck with chocolate chips that are "60% cacao." They melt so smoothly, and when rolling the balls, the extra chocolate just drips off. After freezing the balls for 10-15 minutes, dip into chocolate, rolling the ball between two forks. Place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet until firm. Place in container and freeze until ready to consume!