Let me start by answering the obvious question. Yes, these “Peanut Butter Chocolate Covered Hearts” are also known as Buckeyes. I’ve awarded them the nickname ‘buckeyes in disguise’. Clever, I know 🙂 I used our Buckeye recipe from Christmas to make a new Valentine’s Day treat this year. My Grandma did the same after I shared the idea with her and you know what? I think we decided we like these a little better. My theory is the filling stays creamier when they are completely covered in chocolate versus having some of the filling exposed like buckeyes do which allows for some drying. I’m no food scientist though, so perhaps you’ll have to make both and decide for yourself 🙂
Valentine’s Day is admittedly a favorite holiday of mine. I do agree with the people who say we shouldn’t only show that amount of love on one day because ‘we’re told to’, but I still like the special day to look forward to each year. On the contrary, one day I won’t get on board with is Sweetest Day. This “holiday” truly feels like a hallmark holiday or a wanna-be Valentine’s day that I simply don’t get. Funny enough, my husband and I actually got married on Sweetest Day in 2013. This was by no means planned, but a humorous coincidence nonetheless given my outlook on it!
We’ve been fortunate enough to have my step-daughter on Valentine’s Day for the past few years and will again this year. I love making this day fun for her; I have no doubt she feels extra loved from the minute she wakes up in the morning. We always hang some surprise decorations while she’s still in bed, cook breakfast foods that can be shaped into hearts and shower her with a few small gifts throughout the day to be topped off with a dinner of her favorite foods. She’s the funnest person to spoil, because she always loves everything, compliments our efforts and thanks us repeatedly. With tomorrow being February 1st, I’m moving into planning mode for this year trying to decide how we’ll make this Valentine’s day special. If you have any favorite ideas or traditions I’d love to hear about them in the comments below! I do know it will be an early start to the day since we’ll be celebrating on a school day! This means I’ll have to resist the recurring urge to hit the snooze button on my alarm! It doesn’t help when a sweet puppy is cuddled against you sleeping either! I mean, come on, you can’t possibly get out of bed and leave that cute puppy face at the first sound of your alarm. or the second. or the third. Yes, I’m now referencing the happenings of this morning 🙂
So let’s chat about these ‘buckeyes in disguise’ for a minute. As with most recipes you find on my blog, these are very simple to make. You just need to devote a little time to them, because cutting the dough into hearts does make them a bit more time consuming than traditional buckeyes. The recipe makes quite a few…that’s a modest comment. The recipe makes A LOT and this is actually halved from the one my Grandma follows at Christmas. If you make the full recipe your kitchen will likely mirror a buckeye factory by the end of it! I realize that might be a heavenly sight for some of you who enjoy buckeyes as much as my husband does. So for you folks, double the recipe below 🙂
I recommend doing a mix of milk and dark chocolate to resemble a valentines mixed chocolate box and because both are delicious! My Dad and I are the dark chocolate fans of the family. I’m not sure how white chocolate would mix with the peanut butter filling, but if you find it to be a great third choice to complete the ‘chocolate box’ stop back and let us know! Placing them in mini muffin cups at the end seems like the perfect finishing touch to me. Something as simple as that will always take your desserts to the next level. I’ve heard before that presentation is half of the meal.That’s why we have occupations like Food Stylists. I’ll talk about that more another time, because it’s actually quite fascinating. Until then, happy baking…non bake treats 🙂
PB Chocolate Covered Hearts
- 1/2 pound Oleo (I used Blue Bonnet after my Grandma explained Oleo to me!)
- 1 pound Creamy Peanut Butter
- 1 1/2 pounds Powdered Sugar
- Coating Chocolate (I used milk and dark chocolate, separately)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the oleo and peanut butter and mix well until smooth.
- Gradually add the powdered sugar and continue mixing until all ingredients are blended into dough.
- Lay parchment paper on a cutting or rolling board. Take a section of the dough to ball together and then flatten slightly with your hands on the parchment paper. Place a second piece of parchment paper on top of the dough and gently roll with a rolling pin to flatten to your desired thickness.
- Using a heart shaped cookie cutter, cut out hearts from the dough and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet that will fit in your freezer. If the dough stays in the cookie cutter after pressing down and bringing it back up, use your index and middle fingers to gently press it out onto the baking sheet to keep its shape.
- Once all dough is used, place the baking sheet(s) of hearts into the freezer for about 30 minutes or until chilled enough they will keep their shape when dipping in chocolate.
- Melt your chocolate in 30 second intervals with a power of 70%. Stir between each interval until the chocolate is smooth.
- Drop each heart into the chocolate, flip with a fork to evenly coat and place on new parchment paper to set. Parchment paper is your best friend when baking by the way!
- Once the chocolate has set (this won’t take long since the hearts are so cold) use a sharp knife to cut off any excess chocolate, place in mini cupcake liner and store in an airtight container in the fridge. Enjoy!!
*If you want to garnish with colored sugar as shown in my photos, sprinkle it on immediately after coating in chocolate as it needs to be on before the chocolate sets to stick.
As always, thanks for reading!!