This post is intended for those 21+ years of age. Please enjoy responsibly.
Bourbon balls are a classic holiday treat. These make excellent homemade holiday gifts!
Balls of bourbon-y goodness are what these are. Plain and simple. Depending on where you’re from in the country your version of bourbon balls might look a little different. I think there’s room for all the variations and I’m happy to taste them all. If you’d like to mail me some just drop me a message and I’ll get my address right over. Kidding. Kind of.
There was always some type of boozy ball treat at every holiday dessert table for as long as I can remember. Rum balls, vodka balls, liqueur balls and my favorite – bourbon balls. There was also inevitably one relative that over indulged thinking these were harmless. Um, yeah.
INGREDIENTS TO ADD TO YOUR SHOPPING LIST:
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- DIXIE CRYSTALS POWDERED SUGAR
- UNSALTED BUTTER
- SEMI SWEET CHOCOLATE CHIPS
- WHOLE MILK
- PECAN HALVES
WHAT BOURBON SHOULD I USE?
There’s no cooking out of the alcohol in this recipe so these balls of bourbon pack a punch. Unlike when I COOK with bourbon and the alcohol cooks out, I don’t mind using a lower shelf bourbon. You won’t convince me to use a top shelf bourbon when cooking. I just don’t see the point.
However, since we’re not cooking in this recipe, I go with a good quality bourbon. My favorite, Four Roses. Single. Barrel. No this isn’t a sponsored post, I’m a Four Roses mega super duper fan girl. Forever and ever amen. If I had a tattoo it would probably be a rose, but alas I have a major aversion to needles so I am tattoo-less. It’s the commitment to the idea that’s important here.
EQUIPMENT/TOOLS NEEDS TO MAKE BOURBON BALLS
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- STAND MIXER – no stand mixer? A HAND MIXER works!
- COOKIE SCOOP – you’ll need a SMALL COOKIE SCOOP to scoop out the bourbon balls. This ONE is my favorite.
- RIMMED BAKING SHEETS
- SILPAT MAT – if you don’t have a Silpat mat, PARCHMENT paper works as well. These POP UP sheets are great.
- LARGE BOWL- I’ve had these BOWLS forever and use them DAILY!
HERE’S HOW TO MAKE BOURBON BALLS
- We’re basically making a bourbon buttercream to start. I should mention, this isn’t a quick process. If you’ve ever wondered why store bought bourbon balls are expensive it’s because they’re time consuming.
- Once our filling has chilled we’ll scoop it out using a small cookie scoop and then it back into the fridge to chill again. Are you sensing a them? You can do this in stages over a few days if you like. If you’re patient. I wouldn’t know anything about that though.
- Then it’s time for it’s chocolate bath. You’ll want to do these a few at a time, leaving the rest in the fridge. When they warm up too quickly they could melt. Worse case scenario you put it in a cup an eat it with a spoon. Problem solved.
- While the chocolate is still wet top it with a pecan half. That’s PEE-CAN. I’m from the South and that’s how we say it. If you wanted to get extra fancy you could top it with bourbon soaked pecans or even candied pecans.
MORE RECIPES FEATURING BOURBON TO TRY:
If you’re feeling inspired this bourbon ball recipe, you’ll love these other recipes:
- BRIOCHE BREAD PUDDING WITH BOOZY BUTTER SAUCE
- MAPLE BOURBON CREME BRULEE
- HOW TO MAKE BOURBON FINISHING SALT
- SHORT RIBS WITH BOURBON REDUCTION
TIP: Check out our HOLIDAY COOKIE ROUNDUP for even more holiday treats!
(21+) Bourbon Balls
- 3 1/4 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup bourbon
- 1 stick unsalted butter - melted
- 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
- 3-4 tablespoons whole milk
- 24 pecan halves
- Into stand mixer blend together: powdered sugar, bourbon and butter until smooth. Transfer bowl to refrigerator until it's firm but not hard (approximately 1 1/2 hours).
- Using a small cookie scoop, scoop out bourbon mixture and place onto a rimmed cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Return to refrigerator to chill until firm (approximately 2-3 hours).
- Place chocolate and milk into a bowl and place over another bowl of simmering water (creating a double boiler). Mix until melted and it's smooth and creamy.
- Working in small batches (leave the remainder in the refrigerator while you work). Dip balls into chocolate using a toothpick or the like.
- Place onto a separate baking sheet lined with parchment or silicon mat. Top with pecan half. Continue until all are done.
- Allow bourbon balls to set before enjoying. Store in an airtight container in refrigerator
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OXO Good Grips Small Cookie Scoop
KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red
Silpat Premium Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, Half Sheet Size, 11-5/8" x 16-1/2"
Duralex 100010 Made In France Lys Stackable 10-Piece Bowl Set
Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Commercial Baker's Jelly Roll Baking Sheet
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g
We would love to see them!
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We make these every year, but I love that yours are dipped in chocolate. I need to try this one, too!
Kristen Chidsey says
Surely my husband won’t mind me using some of his good bourbon for these, right?! They look so perfect.
Doesn’t get much better than bourbon + dessert!!
Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet says
Those look so good, I’d have no problem downing several of them in one sitting!
alyssa | everydaymaven says
This is pretty much the most perfect homemade gift I can think of!
Katerina @ diethood .com says
I LOVE these!! Can’t wait to try them!!
OMG! These are exactly what I need for Christmas gift! Look stunning!
Jacque Hastert says
Had my attention at bourbon! These sound simply amazing.
Elizabeth @ Take On E says
Boy do I love that you love bourbon so much. Because I also love bourbon so much. So I love coming to this site and finding YUMMY things to do with my bourbon! Thanks for posting!
Ashley @ Wishes & Dishes says
I can already tell that I’m going to have way too many of these when I make them!
Now I need to go make these! They look so good!
Kelly @ Nosh and Nourish says
You had me at: “Balls of bourbon-y goodness” YUMMM!
Oh, my gosh, these bourbon balls look incredible! I’d have a hard time giving these gems away!!!
Love your balls! (….I am such a juvenile!).
Angie | Big Bear's Wife says
I need to make these and give them out as Christmas gifts this year!
Kim Beaulieu says
Bourbon balls are such a holiday classic. I could eat a million of your little beauties.
This is the only recipe I have seen that has melted butter. Mine have not set up. Help.
Hi Roberta – I made a new batch yesterday and all went well here. Did you use 1 stick of unsalted butter to melt? Then mixed butter with 3 1/4 cups of powdered sugar and 1/2 cup bourbon until smooth? Once that’s smooth I pop it into the fridge to chill. You want it solid enough to scoop out. Depending on your refrigerator this could take 2-3 hours. Hope that helps.
I couldn’t get these to work. Every time the butter mixture was cold enough and hard enough to scoop it melted once I put it on the pan. I even tried doing them in a very cold room, and they still won’t set up without turning into puddles. I must have done something wrong, but I have checked and double checked the portions and instructions and can’t find what I did wrong.