Introduction: 5-minute Chocolate Balls

Picture of 5-minute Chocolate Balls

Quick and delicious Rum Balls recipe (with or without rum!). These tasty treats whip up in no time, and are completely addictive. Whether you need a chocolate fix or a quick gift, these are sure to please.

Step 1: Ingredients

Picture of Ingredients
A food processor will help you cut through this recipe in a cool five minutes or less!

  • 1 1/4 cups (120 grams) vanilla wafer cookies, shortbread, or graham crackers (about 35 Nilla brand wafers)
  • 1/2 cup (55 grams) powdered (confectioners) sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (12 grams) cocoa powder (Dutch processed or regular unsweetened cocoa powder)
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) COLD* liquid: juice; rum; water + rum extract (or your favorite); or whatever else you can imagine -- I did one batch with OJ and one with rum
  • 1 1/2 cups (140 grams) pecans (hazelnuts, walnuts, or almonds can be used - and toasting them beforehand makes them awesome! but will probably result in longer than 5 minutes)
  • 1/2 cup (55 grams) topping - crushed nuts, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, flaked coconut, go crazy
Makes about 2 dozen decent-sized chocolate balls.

*the liquid being cold will help the balling process and reduce or even eliminate the need to refrigerate before shaping

Step 2: Mix It Up!

Picture of Mix It Up!
  • Process the cookies and pecans(opt) in the food processor until finely ground.
  • Add powdered sugar and cocoa powder and process until combined.
  • Add corn syrup and liquid and mix well. Yes, you can do this in the processor too! Blend until it creates one massive lump on the side of the bowl.

Step 3: Form Balls

Picture of Form Balls
  • Grease your hands (trust me on this one) and shape mixture into 1 inch (2.54 cm) balls.
  • Roll the finished balls in the toppings of your choice. (I used powdered sugar and crushed nuts)
If the balls are too sticky for you to work with, you can stick 'em in the freezer for a couple minutes or in the fridge for a few hours. I'm guessing that would work. . . I've never had the patience to find out!

Step 4: Try to Share!

Picture of Try to Share!

If you don't eat them all yourself in one sitting, try to remember to bring them in to share with your colleagues/peers the next day. These are perfect little gifts to give too. A sandwich baggie with a colorful ribbon even makes it look like you put a lot of thought into it!


blackweb (author)2014-04-27

You can add a few drops of food. Olouri g to sugar to add olour to balls

blackweb (author)blackweb2014-04-27

That food. Colouring

dwfred (author)2013-02-09

Check your computer screen for a print logo with a down arrow. Click on arrow and go to print preview. Should bring up all pages individually. When you go to print, you should get choice of print all or choose which ones you want to print.

gramgeater (author)2013-01-07

Why is there not a printer friendly option for these recipes?

etarabas (author)2013-01-06

why can't I print out this recipe ? 5 min chocolate balls Evie here

Renee! (author)2012-12-01

Those look so great! Do you think you could replace the corn syrup with honey and maybe reduce the sugar to balance it out?

pancsi (author)2012-04-14

Perfect recipe! I made them for Easter. Thanks a lot.

EmptyChild (author)2012-01-27

In my house these are called Rum balls.

Glockenator (author)2010-02-18

what in the world are Nilla Wafers?

radarovich (author)Glockenator2011-04-21

small round Va"Nilla" flavoured cookies!

lagniappe4u (author)radarovich2011-12-14

It's a very popular brand name for Vanilla Wafers. At most stores I've been to, they put some by the bananas because folks use them to make banana pudding. But, then again, I DO live in Cajun Country, Louisiana, USA. Other places, I think they just put them in with the cookies.

lagniappe4u (author)2011-12-14

Thanks for this great recipe. I made 3 batches - 2 with Bacardi Orange Rum and one with a walnut liqueur. My only suggestion: as I did the first two batches, I lightly greased my hands with veg oil. I found I had to repeat a lot during the rolling process and that the balls I did (I rolled them in powdered sugar) the oil, even the tiny amount that ended up on the balls, made the powdered sugar disappear after a few hours. I rerolled them and it was fine.

But for the 3rd batch, I used powdered sugar on my hands as I was rolling them in powdered sugar, and not only did it go a lot faster, but worked really well. So I suggest trying that if you are gonna roll them in powdered sugar anyway.

This is a wonderful recipe - so good & easy enough that kids could help.

eviolet (author)2011-11-14

it's look yummy!! i guess i can make it easily?~ well i really hope i can make it well and i'm thinkin' to give this to my friend for her coming birthday!!! hope she like it!! ^^ this is the easiest way and i don't need to buy a thing!!! :)

celina y (author)2011-08-05

thx it's delicious

GenAap (author)2011-05-28

This is Delicious! I'm making these for my sisters open house and THEY TASTE AWESOME! I rolled them in crushed gram crackers, and powdered sugar I made a double batch (only the first batch is shown) and drizzled chocolate on some after I rolled them in powdered sugar. YUM!

webcandyshop (author)2011-03-11

Chocolate are a great snack, Enjoy all of your favorites at

Newton (author)2010-12-30

I made these as an alternative Christmas dessert/snack and they turned out brilliantly. I used chocolate & mint vermicelli for the toppings.

carpe_noctem (author)2010-12-24

this reminds of a recipe i learned called chocolate sausage. basically the same thing, except the mass isrolled into a cylinder, chilled until its more solid, and cut into slices.

Peoplesperson (author)2010-12-22

Would milk work as a liquid? I'm gonna go try it now :)

baglieg (author)Peoplesperson2010-12-23

I think it would. Alternately, you could replace the corn syrup with sweetened condensed milk.

Lettucehead (author)2010-08-08

Yummmm... I will make some of these.

pie popper (author)2010-02-21

could you use water instead of rum? or chocolate milk?

knektek (author)2010-01-08

do you have to use almonds and chopped peacans? or can you just use almonds? only because i have TONNES of them!

kidgeek (author)2009-12-23

Hi. Are we measuring the 1 1/2 cups pecans after they've been chopped? I purchased whole pecans then I noticed in your pic that you had purchased chopped pecans.  I really can't wait to make these and am using Kahlua instead of rum  (Thanks tonathan42100's comment!)  Thanks for posting this!!

dwm924 (author)2009-05-28

It tastes great, but when you get to the 'roll in a ball' part it's not so fun.

scoochmaroo (author)dwm9242009-05-29

Yeah, we should come up with a better way to do it. I had to keep washing my hands in cold water, which did help. Maybe coating your hands in cocoa powder first or something?

Huntman00 (author)scoochmaroo2009-12-09

flour will make it not stick so bad i'm guessing

caeric (author)2009-11-27

I'm just reading this now - Have done this as a pre-step before dipping them in various chocolates.  That way I have like store bought truffles in whatever shape I want them to be, and in complete control of my innards.  Good instructable, making me hungry ;-)

5aliveartist (author)2009-11-26

awww yeah!!! we made these and ate them. wow, good and easy like you said and we are making them for holiday gifts. thank you!

ewitwins (author)2009-11-21

I know this might come off as a silly question but does the alchohol ( what little there is) from the rum extract go away at all? I want to know if I can give this safely to those under 21 :)

scoochmaroo (author)ewitwins2009-11-21

This is a very good question.  Rum extract is perfectly safe.  However, if you were to use straight rum, you would definitely know it!

Solderguy (author)2009-06-09

Your balls are so delicious and moist. Nice instructable!

INSTRUCTUBAL (author)Solderguy2009-07-31

BAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAAHHA sorry, im quite perverted when it comes to things like that :D!

ANTQNUT (author)INSTRUCTUBAL2009-11-14

Bahahahahahahahahahahahaha x2
me too Instructubal me too :3

SoapyHollow (author)2009-06-03

I made these...a little to go with the "Bee Cake" I'm making for my best friend's birthday this weekend. I used 'nilla wafers, honey, hazelnut liqueur, and hazelnuts with cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, allspice and ginger. I ended up having to add another 20 or so nilla wafers to get the texture to be not too wet. I used a #100 scooper (truffle cream sized scooper) to scoop out balls, then shaped them into mini-beehive shape, and rolled them in a gold/yellow sugar/powdered sugar mix. The powdered sugar sort of disappeared, leaving the gold granulated sugar to looks really cool. I'll try to get a picture of them this weekend, when I put the whole cake together. I'll be using these as plate decoration. :)

Speedmite (author)2009-05-31

Is the addiction to them caused by the rum, or the caffeine do you think? Or both? Or maybe they are just that good.

Syko Pyro (author)Speedmite2009-06-01

There is no actual addiction, like there would be with cigarettes or alcohol. But trust me they are DELICIOUS

Speedmite (author)Syko Pyro2009-06-03

I will take your word.

Opaltrinket (author)2009-06-02

oops damn! found them. ;)

Opaltrinket (author)2009-06-02

I missed a step, the ingredient list. I wanna make sure the trinket house has all the stuff.

lemonie (author)2009-05-26

They look great, I should do this and find out how good they taste.


scoochmaroo (author)lemonie2009-05-26

Yeah you should. It only takes five minutes - what do you have to lose?

MegaMaker (author)scoochmaroo2009-05-26

Five minutes.

scoochmaroo (author)MegaMaker2009-05-26

No time spent experimenting should be considered lost!

MegaMaker (author)scoochmaroo2009-05-31

Unless it tastes bad. Or if it doesn't work.

SFHandyman (author)2009-05-29

Use a silicone spatula and a silicone mat. I didn't have to use any oil and had zero sticking to anything - hands included. I'd be surprised if you don't already have silicone cookware scoochmaroo. When the silicone just touched the mixture, it instantly created a smooth and slick surface that felt oiled. Silicone is famous with candy makers because it won't stick to sugar and can handle very high heat, but I've never seen it be such a huge help by itself. You can also line a cookie sheet with a silicone mat and bake cookies right on it. Take it out of the oven, let them cool to solidify, and then just slide them off. The spatula I used is shaped a bit like a flatish square spoon. It has one flat concave surface. Scrape the mixture out onto the silicone mat, with your silicone spatula. Use the spatula and your finger tips to roll it around on the mat. It will form into a smooth shiny lump. Then I used the spatula and cut chunks off. They were already smooth and shiny, I just rolled them between my palms to get them round. As it got smaller I realized it was very convenient to roll it into a thick tube and cut chunks off of that. Not really sure about the flavor, but that is all up to my ingredient choices. I used what was around: vanilla wafers, amaretto and walnuts. The process, and making them up was cool. It seem infinitely adaptable. Thanks.

saskia (author)2009-05-28

My batch never became a big lump in the food processor; it stayed the consistency of a room temp nut butter. I put it in the freezer and was able to make the balls, but they have kind of puddled a bit sitting on the plate on the counter. I did everything dry by weight. I wonder if maybe using shortbread made it too fatty? Any suggestions? Anyway, they TASTE great!!!

tebben (author)saskia2009-05-29

I noticed the same thing. The consistency was just too thin when using shortbread. I added more powdered sugar and refrigerated until it reached the desired consistency.

scoochmaroo (author)saskia2009-05-29

That's an interesting observation! Maybe it did add too much fat. I haven't tried it with shortbread myself, it's just a commonly recommended substitution. Try leaving out the corn syrup?

octopippo (author)saskia2009-05-29

adding short bread adds butter to the mix. 2 things: butter has a low melting point and adding butter adds extra liquid

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