Giving out family secrets here, folks!   Well, not quite.  While this is a recipe handed down to me from my mom, I’m not sure where she originally got it from and I’ve since changed it slightly anyway.  The original recipe calls for 1/4 cup of rum.  Let’s just say I didn’t think that had enough of an impact.  These rum balls can make a nice gift for the holidays too, just make sure you refrigerate them for at least a day before serving or gift giving.  You can also substitute the rum for whisky.

Rum Balls are very easy to make plus no baking!  Funny little story - I made them last year for an arts and craft fair I was attending and some older women, seeing them on my table, came up to me and said, oh rum balls, yes I make those myself, silly little girl.   Ok they didn’t call me silly little girl but I could tell they were thinking it!  However, after trying them, they (and their husbands) kept coming back for more, admitting mine were better than theirs.  Vindication!  Honestly,  I don’t know if they are better;  I think it’s the rum. 

 Not Yo’ Momma’s Rum Balls

1 box vanilla wafers

1 cup walnuts

1 cup powdered sugar, plus more for rolling

2 tsp cocoa powder

2/3 cup rum

3 tbsp light Karo syrup

I now use my food processor to process the Nilla wafers and the walnuts.   But prior to my owning a food processor, I would place the wafer in a large ziploc bag and using my rolling pin, crush all the wafers until they were pretty fine, and I would chop the walnuts by hand.  So a food processor saves time, but isn’t totally necessary for this recipe.  After processing the wafers and nuts, place into a large mixing bowl.

Process 1 box of Nilla wafers
Processed vanilla wafers and chopped walnuts

Add to the mixing bowl the rest of the ingredients – powdered sugar, cocoa powder, rum, and Karo syrup.

Add all ingredients

Mix until well combined.

Combined ingredients

Using your fingers, pick up a small amount of dough and roll into balls in the palms of your hands.   Place some powdered sugar in a shallow bowl and roll the rum balls in the powdered sugar. 

Roll in powdered sugar

Shake off a little of the excess and place on a flat surface, like a baking sheet or large flat tupperware. If you place them on top of each other, they can lose their shape or even get stuck together initially. Once they’ve been refrigerated for at least a day, you can move them to a different container if you desire.  Refrigerate for at least a day before serving.

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