Chocolate Bourbon Truffles

Chocolate bourbon truffles are a brilliant and boozy gift for the chocolate lover who has everything.

A pewter cake stand piled with chocolate truffles.

Like rum balls, chocolate bourbon truffles seem sorta sophisticated and yet they’re ridiculously simple to make. And they have the added oomph of being boozy. We can think of no easier way to get your guests giddy.–David Leite


Why our testers loved this

Our testers loved that these decadent truffles were easy to make, with a “smooth and luxurious” texture. We know what’s on our Christmas wish list this year!

Notes on ingredients

  • Heavy cream–Don’t be tempted to swap in half and half or light cream here; your truffle mixture may not set up firmly.
  • Bourbon–There’s no need to purchase an expensive bourbon for this recipe, but do use one that you enjoy drinking.
  • Bittersweet chocolate–Use good-quality chocolate with a cacao percentage of around 70% for a deep chocolate flavor.

How to make this recipe

  1. Combine the cream, bourbon, maple syrup, and brown sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a bare simmer over medium-low heat. Don’t let the mixture boil.
  2. Combine the butter, chocolate, and salt in a glass dish or bowl. Pour the warm cream over the chocolate and let sit for a few minutes. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.
  3. Chill the truffle mixture for at least 2 hours. Line your storage container with parchment paper, and prepare a bowl of cocoa powder for rolling.
  4. Roll the truffle mixture into balls. Coat in cocoa powder, then store in a sealed container in the fridge.

FAQs

What’s the difference between bittersweet and semi-sweet chocolate?

Bittersweet chocolate has a cacao percentage of around 70%, and contains less sugar than semi-sweet chocolate, which has a cacao percentage of about 60%. As the name suggests, the flavor of bittersweet chocolate is more bitter than semi-sweet.

My chocolate didn’t melt completely. Help!

If your chocolate didn’t fully melt, it’s possible that your cream mixture wasn’t hot enough. To remedy this, set the bowl of chocolate and cream over a pan of simmering water and stir until the mixture is melted and smooth.

Can I make these ahead of time?

Yes. The truffles will keep in the fridge for up to 3 weeks, making them a great gift or easy make-ahead dessert.

Can I coat the truffles in something besides cocoa powder?

Definitely. Try chocolate sprinkles, coconut flakes, chocolate ganache, confectioners’ sugar, or toasted nuts.

Helpful tips

  • To make an orange-flavored variation, swap out the bourbon for Grand Marnier and substitute orange juice for the maple syrup. If desired, add 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest.
  • For easier (and less messy) rolling, ensure that your truffle mixture and your hands are cold. You can stop between batches and run your hands under cold water to help keep them cold.
  • Store the truffles between layers of parchment paper, in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
  • These chocolate bourbon truffles are suitable for a gluten-free diet.

More great truffle recipes

☞ If you make this recipe, or any dish on LC, consider leaving a review, a star rating, and your best photo in the comments below. I love hearing from you.–David

Chocolate Bourbon Truffles

A pewter cake stand piled with chocolate truffles.
Chocolate bourbon truffles are a brilliant and boozy gift for the chocolate lover who has everything.

Prep 1 hr
Chill 2 hrs
Total 3 hrs
Dessert
American
24 truffles
114 kcal
5 from 1 vote
Print RecipeBuy the Holiday Cookies cookbook

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Ingredients 

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons bourbon
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder

Directions
 

  • In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stir together the cream, bourbon, maple syrup, and brown sugar and heat until the mixture comes to a bare simmer.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium glass dish such as a pie plate, combine the butter, chocolate, and salt.
  • Pour the warm cream mixture over the chocolate mixture and let it sit for a couple minutes. Stir gently until the chocolate melts completely and the mixture is smooth. Refrigerate, uncovered, until the chocolate mixture is firm, at least 2 hours and up to overnight.
  • Line a resealable container with parchment paper and place it near your work surface. Sift the cocoa powder into a small, shallow bowl.
  • Using a 1 1/2 teaspoon cookie dough scoop or 2 small spoons, scoop up a small amount of the chocolate mixture and quickly roll it between your palms into a ball about 3/4 inch (2 cm) in diameter.
  • Gently drop the truffle into the cocoa powder, turn to coat it evenly, and then place it in the prepared container. (You can keep the truffles in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 weeks. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.)
Print RecipeBuy the Holiday Cookies cookbook

Want it? Click it.

Notes

  1. Grand Marnier variation–To gussy up these truffles with a citrus tingle, swap out the bourbon for Grand Marnier and substitute orange juice for the maple syrup. If desired, add 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest.
  2. Rolling–For easier (and less messy) rolling, ensure that your truffle mixture and your hands are cold. You can stop between batches and run your hands under cold water to help keep them cold.
  3. Storage–Store the truffles between layers of parchment paper, in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
  4. Dietary–These chocolate bourbon truffles are suitable for a gluten-free diet.

Show Nutrition

Serving: 1truffleCalories: 114kcal (6%)Carbohydrates: 8g (3%)Protein: 1g (2%)Fat: 8g (12%)Saturated Fat: 5g (31%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 16mg (5%)Sodium: 53mg (2%)Potassium: 80mg (2%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 6g (7%)Vitamin A: 172IU (3%)Vitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 16mg (2%)Iron: 1mg (6%)

#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We’d love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

Unleash your inner Lucy Ricardo with these awesome truffles! They are easy to make and result in an oh so satisfying treat for the dark chocolate lovers in your life.

The bourbon (Blaum Bros Knotters Bourbon) is subtle but noticeable. The maple syrup flavor was negligible. I look forward to making this recipe with the Cointreau and orange juice/zest substitution.

The flavor of these truffles are so dark, my tongue can only taste chocolate. Bitter cocoa follows a meltingly smooth confection of chocolate with butter, bourbon and cream lingering on the palate.

So simple to put together, but be sure your kitchen and hands are cool as you form the truffles. I had better success leaving the mixture in the 9-inch pie plate overnight in the refrigerator before forming them.

The texture of these chocolate truffles was smooth and luxurious. I made a variation of the truffle by using Federica Orange Liqueur from Valencia (30% volume alcohol).

I used a teaspoon scoop which I left in boiling water to warm when I was not using it so as to melt the ganache sufficiently to scoop it up easily. I also used disposable gloves to keep my hands free of the chocolate mixture.

This chocolate bourbon truffles recipe seems to be versatile and one could get creative by trying other liqueurs or rolling the truffles in toasted unsweetened coconut, ground pistachios, or finely chopped walnuts. I love making truffles for holiday gifts, so I was excited to try the recipe.

I didn’t have any bourbon in the house, so I used Grand Marnier, but I kept the maple syrup as I thought it would go nicely with the Grand Marnier. I did however, add the orange zest. Have fun with it!

HUNGRY FOR MORE?

#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This recipe could not be easier. I made the bourbon version. I rolled most of the truffles in cocoa powder. But just because I already had it in the house, I rolled a few in chocolate sprinkles. The sprinkles were okay, but I thought they interfered with the creaminess of the truffle.

    I scooped all of the truffles onto parchment paper, then began rolling them into balls. I stopped several times to “chill” my hands under running cold water.

    1. Ah, BBSTX, ye of the Hot Hands Clan. I have the same issue when making truffles or piping decorations on a cake. While I’ll wear gloves while piping, it’s not exactly advisable to that while rolling truffles. Glad you liked the recipe. Happy holidays!

  2. How impossible would it be to travel with these on an airplane? I’d like to make them for stocking stuffers. Equally, I assume they wouldn’t mail well.

  3. These truffles look delicious and so easy to make! I love adding alcohol to chocolate desserts – it’s such a great combination 🙂

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