Rum Balls

Rum Balls Recipe

Boozy chocolate rum balls. All the proof we need regarding the existence of a God. Rich, chocolatey, nutty, and hard to stop at just one. Though these are but subtly boozy, there’s no stopping you from tossing in an extra splash of rum. We certainly won’t tell.–The Chew

LC Rum Balls Recipe Redux Note

Rum balls recipes. God love ’em. And there’s no shortage of ’em. Some rum balls recipes call for crushed vanilla wafers or crumbled brownies. Others call for pecans versus walnuts. But they all share an affinity for the romance of rum and chocolate. And they all can be dressed up with sprinkles for cocktail parties or left plain for tailgating and midnight cravings. So you can’t really go wrong, as far as we’re concerned. Especially not with this (did we mention it’s gluten-free?) rum balls recipe.

Rum Balls Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 1 H
  • Makes 24


  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, toasted and finely chopped (or pecans)
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • Generous pinch fine sea salt
  • Sprinkles, shredded coconut, or more toasted and finely chopped nuts, for decorating (optional)


  • 1. Heat the rum in a small saucepan over medium heat until the booze is reduced by half. Watch it carefully, as it evaporates quickly.
  • 2. Set a heatproof bowl over but not touching a pot of gently simmering water. Add the chocolate and butter to the bowl and wait, stirring occasionally, until they’re both completely melted.
  • 3. Remove the bowl from the heat (careful, it will be hot!) and stir in the walnuts, rum, confectioners’ sugar, and salt. Let cool to room temperature. (You can cover and refrigerate the cooled rum balls mixture for a few hours or even up to a few days, although you’ll need to let it warm to room temperature before you proceed.)
  • 4. Portion the rum balls mixture into 1-inch balls. (If it’s too sticky to easily roll into balls, cover and refrigerate for about 30 minutes. If it’s a little crumbly, try to roll it into balls anyways and if that doesn’t work, let the mixture rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes and try again.) Roll the rum balls in sprinkles of some sort, if desired. Place the rum balls in a parchment-lined container with a lid. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. The taste of the rum will be subtle at first yet will deepen with time. We found the taste after exerting patience for a few days to be perfect.
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:

Hey, there. Just a reminder that all our content is copyright protected. Like a photo? Please don't use it without our written permission. Like a recipe? Kindly contact the publisher listed above for permission before you post it (that's what we did) and rewrite it in your own words. That's the law, kids. And don't forget to link back to this page, where you found it. Thanks!

Recipe Testers Reviews

Recipe Testers Reviews
Testers Choice
Melissa Maedgen

Dec 19, 2014

Bite-size desserts are just the ticket when you need something to take to your office potluck. Think about it. Someone might not be willing to commit to a slice of your amazing pecan pie, but a teeny little rum ball? Everyone will go for that. These are different from other rum balls I've had—more truffle-like than cookie-like. I used a 70% Scharffen Berger chocolate, which was very intense. Next time I would dial it back and use a milder chocolate to let the nuts and rum shine through. Not having any sprinkles on hand, I rolled some of the balls in chopped walnuts and some in shredded coconut. Both good options. The trickiest part of the recipe was getting the temperature of the chocolate mixture right to roll out. After letting them cool to room temperature, I found that they were still a bit too soft. It was going to be a messy job. So I chilled them in the fridge for a couple hours, but then they were too firm to divide into balls. I let them warm up just a bit, and they were perfect. Your hands will warm up and soften the balls as you form them, so you probably want the "dough" to be a bit colder and stiffer than you would think.

Keep in mind when you make these that the rum will not be apparent at first, but the flavor will increase the longer they sit. So try to make them a few days ahead of time to allow them to "age" a bit and reach their full potential. Your friends will thank you for your foresight!

Testers Choice
Steve Dunn

Dec 19, 2014

I must say that I had high hopes for this recipe from the get-go. It promised to be very quick to put together and required ingredients that I already had in my pantry. Add the name RUM Balls, and I mean, how bad could they really be? They turned out to be quite delicious. The rum balls were wonderfully chocolatey with a great texture from the combination of ground pecans and sugar. When it came to forming the rum balls though, the consistency of the mixture was not what I expected, and I thought I'd screwed something up. I didn't have the time to let the mixture cool and form the balls on the same day, so I wrapped the mixture and put it in the fridge overnight to set. The next day, I removed the bowl from the fridge and let it sit on the counter for about 40 minutes to warm up some. When I went to scoop the mix into ball-sized portions, I found it to be quite dry and crumbly, a bit like modeling clay that had been left out too long. I thought perhaps that it was still too cold to work with, so I let it sit until it came fully to room temperature. That helped a bit, but it was still not very easy to scoop. Nevertheless, I worked chunks of the mix with my fingers and by rolling them between my palms, and they pretty quickly formed into nice, shiny rum balls. While they were still warm from my hands, I dropped them into a bowl of finely shredded, unsweetened coconut to coat and then into a Tupperware for storage. I would prefer mine with a little more pronounced rum flavor (don't judge me!), so I may add a little more next time I make them. But even without the extra booze, they're a totally satisfying treat. Next time I'll also make sure I have the time to roll the balls the day I make the mixture and see if it's any easier to do without having them fully set in the fridge.

  1. Julie O'Melveny says:

    Hi! What happened with Ziplist? Will you be associating with another on line recipe box?

    Love you recipes!


    • David Leite says:

      Julie, I’m frantically looking for a replacement that WORKS. ZipList pull the product from all the sites it worked with–from Martha Stewart to us. If you were a subscriber, you should have gotten several messages from them about their untimely demise. But keep an eye out as we look for a substitute.

      • Renee says:

        No emails from them here, but at least now I know to stop looking for the recipe box. :)

        While on the subject of tech, David, your site probably has the easiest, most trouble-free recipe printing of any site I’ve used. I “print” what I need as pdf files. Then, if someone wants a copy of a recipe I’ve made, I can email them the pdf with all the source info and your website info intact. No worries about typos or trying to remember where something came from. Easy-peasy. Thanks.

        • David Leite says:

          Apparently, ZipList wins the Loser of the Year Award. So sorry about that, Renee.

          But thank you for your kind words about our printing feature. Jared, our web dev, and I worked on that for a long time.

      • sundevilpeg says:

        I dunno about anyone else, but I didn’t get any notifications from Ziplist. Bummer.

        • David Leite says:

          sundevilpeg, sorry to hear that. i got mine. But I think they handled things very poorly. They’ve left all of us publishers stuck. We’re all scrambling to find useful substitutes.

  2. adele says:

    looks delish. how long do these keep? thanks.

Have something to say?

Then tell us. Have a picture you'd like to add to your comment? Send it along. Covet one of those spiffy pictures of yourself to go along with your comment? Get a free Gravatar. And as always, please take a gander at our comment policy before posting.


Daily Subscription

Enter your email address and get all of our updates sent to your inbox the moment they're posted. Be the first on your block to be in the know.

Preview daily e-mail

Weekly Subscription

Hate tons of emails? Do you prefer info delivered in a neat, easy-to-digest (pun intended) form? Then enter your email address for our weekly newsletter.

Preview weekly e-mail