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Tailgate Dessert – Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Footballs

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Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Footballs are a fun game day treat. Creamy peanut butter shaped footballs dipped in dark chocolate and topped with white chocolate “laces”, these easy footballs are the perfect tailgate dessert!

closeup of chocolate covered peanut butter footballs on a plate.

Football Shaped Peanut Butter Balls

If you like peanut butter balls (aka buckeyes), you’ll love them even more when they’re dressed up for game day as footballs!

I am not much for sports but I am a fan of creating a football themed food menu. Give me all the snacks!

After a spread of appetizers and savory (often spicy) game day food, this football shaped dessert is the perfect ending to the meal.

Why you’ll love these Peanut Butter Footballs 🏈

  • They’re adorable – even if you don’t like football, everyone can appreciate football shaped desserts!
  • They’re no-bake, which means they’re easy.
  • They can be made ahead of time.
  • Portable desserts are great for tailgating.
  • Kids and adults love them.
chocolate covered peanut butter football with a bite taken out of it.

Equipment needed to make Football Shaped Peanut Butter Balls

Ingredients for Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Footballs

Below is a list of ingredients to help you prep. Scroll all the way down for the full recipe card.

Peanut Butter – Creamy or crunchy peanut butter, but avoid natural peanut butter. I use Skippy or Jif.
Butter – Unsalted butter at room temperature. If using salted, you may want to omit the additional salt.
Powdered Sugar – Sometimes called confectioners’ sugar or icing sugar.
Salt – To balance the sweetness.
Vanilla Extract – I know it is expensive but try to use a good quality vanilla extract instead of imitation. I buy it in bulk from Sam’s Club or Costco.
Chocolate – You’ll need both dark chocolate and white chocolate. I like Ghirardelli. Candy melts can also be used but flavor will be affected.
Oil – Optional but you may need oil to thin the chocolate for dipping. Use vegetable oil or coconut oil.

overhead shot of labeled ingredients to make peanut butter footballs.

How to make Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Footballs

STEP ONE: First, combine the peanut butter, butter, powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla until it holds together. If crumbly, add more peanut butter. If too loose, add more powdered sugar.

collage of three photos showing a peanut butter mixture.

STEP TWO: Then, using approximately two tablespoons, form the mixture into football shaped and place on a wax paper lined baking sheet. Chill in the fridge for approximately an hour (or the freezer for 30 minutes).

STEP THREE: Next, melt the dark chocolate and dip each football in, letting excess drip off and placing back onto the baking sheet. Move back to the fridge/freezer to set.

STEP FOUR: Finally, melt the white chocolate, place it into a piping bag or sandwich bag, snip the tip, then draw on the laces to the chilled footballs. Let set and then enjoy!

collage of 4 photos showing the process of making football shaped peanut butter balls.

Tips for success

  • Chilling between steps takes a bit of time, but makes the peanut butter footballs easier to work with.
  • Avoid natural peanut butter as it is not as sweet or smooth. I use & recommend Skippy or Jif.
  • Candy melts can be used in place of actual chocolate but it greatly affects flavor and I don’t recommend it.
  • These footballs are best served chilled.

What to serve on a football themed food menu

Alongside these peanut butter footballs, to really fill out the football theme, you could also serve more football shaped desserts like: touchdown brownies, football shaped Oreo truffles, chocolate chip cheeseball, or football puppy chow.

For savory options, a guacamole football, then game day staples like buffalo chicken dip, air fryer chicken wings, homemade tortilla chips, pineapple teriyaki meatballs, and crockpot hot dog chili.

How to store peanut butter footballs

How to store leftovers

Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

Can I freeze them?

Yes, they can be placed in a freezer bag and stored in the freezer for up to a month.

Football Shaped Peanut Butter Balls FAQs

Can I prepare them ahead of time?

Yes, you can prep them up to a month ahead of time. Follow the recipe up until chilling the balls in the fridge. Instead, cover and place them in the freezer until fully frozen. Once frozen, move the footballs to a freezer bag and store up to a month. When you are ready to serve them, proceed with dipping them in chocolate and decorating.

Do I have to let them chill between the steps?

Yes, the peanut butter balls need to chill between the steps so they are easier to work with. I know it’s a bit tedious but it is important that the balls be firm before dipping them in the chocolate.

To slightly speed it up, instead of chilling them in the fridge for an hour, you can chill them in the freezer for a half hour.

After dipping in chocolate, you can place them in the fridge for the chocolate to set faster.

Can I use candy melts instead of dark chocolate?

You can use candy melts but it will change the taste. Candy melts are not chocolate and I prefer actual chocolate.

Need more tailgate desserts? Try these:

Peanut Butter Brownie Bites
Reese’s Stuffed Cheesecake Bars
Kitchen Sink Cookies
Candied Cashews

Click here for my entire collection of dessert recipes.

closeup of chocolate football with white chocolate laces.

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closeup of chocolate covered peanut butter footballs on a plate.

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Footballs

Melissa Williams
Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Footballs are a fun game day treat. Creamy peanut butter shaped footballs dipped in dark chocolate and topped with white chocolate "laces", these easy footballs are the perfect tailgate dessert!
No ratings yet
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 20 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 25 footballs
Calories 274 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups creamy peanut butter
  • ½ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 12 ounces dark chocolate chopped
  • 2 ounces white chocolate or white candy melts
  • vegetable oil or coconut oil if needed to thin the chocolate

Instructions
 

  • Line a baking sheet with wax paper and set it aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the peanut butter and butter and beat together until combined.
  • Add in the powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla. Beat until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. The mixture may be crumbly but should hold together when pressed. If it is too crumbly, you can add some more peanut butter. If it is too liquidy, you can add some more powdered sugar.
  • Scoop approximately 2 tablespoons of the peanut butter mixture and form it into a football/diamond shape. Place it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat until out of mixture then cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator until firm, approximately one hour.
  • Once chilled, in a small microwave safe bowl, melt the dark chocolate by heating in 30 second increments. Heat, stir, heat, stir until fully melted and smooth. If too thick, you can add a bit of coconut oil or vegetable oil to thin it.
  • Dip the chilled peanut butter balls into the dark chocolate, letting the excess drip off, then place back onto the baking sheet.
  • Let them set at room temperature, or move to the fridge to speed up the process.
  • To another small microwave safe bowl, melt the white chocolate in 30 second increments – heat, stir, heat, stir – until smooth. Fill a pastry bag or a zip top bag with the melted chocolate, snip the tip, then pipe the “laces” onto the footballs.
  • Let set again, either at room temperature or in the fridge.

Notes

Best served chilled and can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for about a week. Footballs can be stored in the freezer for up a month.
Brown candy melts can be used in place of dark chocolate, but taste will be affected.
Use either white chocolate or white candy melts for the laces. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 274kcalCarbohydrates: 25gProtein: 5gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 11mgSodium: 170mgPotassium: 206mgFiber: 2gSugar: 20gVitamin A: 119IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 22mgIron: 2mg

Nutritional information is an estimate and provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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