Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Buckeye Bars - And How They Got Their Name

These bars are not a keto friendly recipe. But they are delicious. Since my friend Stephanie shared the recipe with us several years ago, they have become my daughter's specialty. She often bakes them to take to picnics, and we are often asked to share the recipe.

A note on the name - especially for those who don't live near Ohio.

Buckeye candy is a peanut butter ball dipped in chocolate. I often make them at Christmas. These bars are reminiscent of the candy but much simpler to make. Buckeye candy reminds me of the Hershey Reeses candy so maybe a better name would be Reeses Bars.

Buckeye candy gets its name because it resembles the buckeye nut. This nut, which grows on a tree, was given its name "buckeye" by the Native Americans because the nut resembles the eye of a buck (male deer). The buckeye tree is the state tree of the state of Ohio and Ohio has been given the nickname "Buckeye State."

So from a deer, to a nut, to a candy, to a brownie - you finally get Buckeye Bars. If you live near Ohio, this makes total sense.

For the rest of you, just call them Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars.

Buckeye Bars

Bottom Layer:

1/2 cup softened butter
2 T. olive oil
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup cocoa
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips

Beat butter, oil, and sugar together. Beat in eggs and buttermilk. Add cocoa, baking soda, flour, vanilla, and salt and mix well. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread in greased 9x13 pan. Bake 25 minutes at 350 degrees. Do not over bake. Cool.

Middle Layer:

2 cups 10x (confectionery) sugar
1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup peanut butter

Mix sugar, butter, and peanut butter well and spread over cooled brownies.

Top Layer:

1 cup chocolate chips
6 T. butter

Melt chips and butter together in saucepan on stove over low heat. Spread over peanut butter layer. Cool. Cut into bars.

We like these best when they are refrigerated, but it is not necessary to store in the fridge if you wish.


  1. oh my gosh these look so good,, at first I thought they were Nanimo bars, like we have here in Canada when I saw the photo of your blog post come up on my readers list,, but even better they are Buck eye bars, yummo! Our Daughter married an American fellow and lives in the Eastern U.P so we know what Buck eye balls are, very yummy! I keep your family in my prayers,

  2. These look great. A dear friend, always made the originals. His favorite candy. I've never had the spare time to be willing to spend all that time rolling balls and dipping. These bars though, I will try!

  3. Im assuming 10x sugar is powdered sugar or icing sugar?

  4. they sound wonderful! What better combination than peanut butter and chocolate!
    could you elaborate on the sugar amount for the middle layer?

    1. We use 2 cups of powdered sugar for the middle layer.

  5. I'm from canada and have buckeyes every christmas. These look amazing, like a cross between a ninamo bar and buckeyes

  6. Oh yum! Buckeyes are our favorite homemade candy - can't wait to try this recipe!

  7. Yummy! My daughter loves to bake and can't wait to try these. Interesting background on the buckeye...not sure if my husband (who was born in the buckeye state) knows this story, though he does enjoy the buckeye candy and most definitely will smile when these bars show up on the table.
    Continuing to pray for you all.

  8. Is that 1/2 cup butter for the middle layer?

    1. Yes. These bars are LOADED with butter!

  9. Tell your oldest daughter that Chiara thought of her as she made these today. We sampled them and they are delicous. Thanks for sharing the recipe! Christine Horst

  10. Thank you for this recipe! I have printed it off to try soon! I have never had buckeye candy or bars, but I'm glad to get the recipe and the history!

    We pray for your family every night! Thank you for keeping us updated.


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