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How to Make Buckeyes with Protein Powder

In case you’re unfamiliar, buckeyes are soft peanut butter balls that have been coated in chocolate. As all things chocolate peanut butter, they’re absolutely delicious and make a great treat. My spin on this classic makes kinda healthy buckeyes with the addition of protein powder and a powdered sugar substitute. While they’re not the most macro friendly dessert on my blog, each one has 5 grams of protein with only 7 grams of carbs.

I’ll walk you through the recipe below and cover a few ingredient substitution questions as we go. If you’re familiar with my protein powder recipes, you can probably skip down to the recipe card.

Step 1: Mix peanut butter, light butter, and vanilla extract in a food processor or blender.

mixing peanut butter, butter, and vanilla in a food processor

The recipe calls for creamy peanut butter and light butter (Land O’ Lakes), but you could probably get away with whatever you have on hand for these buckeyes. Just stick to the amounts called for and you should be fine.

Step 2: Add protein powder and powdered sugar, blending until crumbly like wet set.

adding protein powder and powdered sugar to the peanut butter mixture

I use PEScience Select for my protein powder recipes. This is a blend of whey and casein protein, making it a bit thicker and absorbent than a whey-only protein powder. Protein powder substitutions can be tricky, so you may need to make slight adjustments to get your consistency just right. Compare yours to the photos here for reference.

And to make life easier, you can order sample packs of PEScience Select if you’re new to their products. Order a few and try recipes like my skillet monkey bread, air fryer apple fritter, and protein powder pancakes. You’ll be sold so when you order a full size tub, you can use my affiliate discount code ‘mason’ to save 15%.

Step 3: Use a rubber spatula to press the dough together before dividing into 16 balls and freezing for 15 minutes.  

finished buckeyes dough before forming into balls

If your mixture is too dry, you can add a bit of water. On the other hand, if it’s too moist, you can add a bit more protein powder or powdered sugar. You should be able to easily handle it and form into balls.

Step 4: Melt chocolate chips for dipping. 

melted chocolate chips in a bowl

If you’d like perfectly tempered chocolate with a glossy shine, be my guest. I find the microwave gets the job done just fine for something like these buckeyes.

Step 5: Use a toothpick to dip each peanut butter protein ball into the chocolate. Use a finger to smooth the hole in the center after dipping.

dipping the peanut butter balls in the melted chocolate

Don’t be fooled by my photos. We chose the best of the best to go on display. Not every buckeye will be pretty!

If you’re having trouble dipping, you may need to freeze your buckeyes a bit longer. And if for some reason you just can’t get the toothpick method to work, dip them using a spoon.

holding a buckeye with a bite taken out of it

Okay, short and sweet. I think that about covers it. If you have a recipe question I missed, leave a comment at the bottom of the post. You’ll find the printable recipe card below.

holding a buckeye with a bite taken out of it

High Protein Buckeyes

Yield: 16 Buckeyes
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Protein powder peanut butter balls dipped in melted chocolate.


  • 2/3 C (174g) Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1/3 C (74g) Light Butter
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 scoops (62g) Vanilla Protein Powder*
  • 1/4 C (36g) Powdered Sugar**
  • 1/2 C (112g) Dark Chocolate Chips


  1. Mix the butter, peanut butter, and vanilla together in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Add the protein powder and powdered sugar and blend/mix until crumbly. The mixture will be slightly dry, but you should be able to use a spatula to press everything together. (If your mixture is too dry, add 1-2 teaspoons of water.)
  3. Divide the mixture into 16 small balls, 21-22g each. Roll each ball between your palms to smooth and place on a parchment lined baking sheet that can fit in your freezer. If a ball is crumbly or falling apart, squeeze it together in your hand and continue working it together until you can roll into a smooth ball. Freeze the balls for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Microwave chocolate chips in a small bowl in 15-20 second intervals, stirring at each interval, until melted and smooth.
  5. Stick a toothpick in a peanut butter ball and dip in the chocolate. Smooth the toothpick hole with your fingers after removing.
  6. 6.Refrigerate and serve chilled.


*I used PEScience Select, which is a whey and casein blend. Other protein powders may require slight adjustments to reach the desired consistency. You can use my affiliate discount code 'mason' to save 15% on PEScience products.

**I used Swerve Confectioners, which is a zero-calorie powdered sugar substitute.

Each buckeye has 4 WW SmartPoints (blue).

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Buckeyes Serving Size: 1 Buckeye
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 130Total Fat: 10gCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 5g

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Sydney Peters

Thursday 19th of August 2021

These are great. I add a dash of cinnamon to the peanut butter mixture and I use Lily's stevia sweetened dark chocolate chips to bring the carbs down even more. It feels like a really indulgent treat but actually fits my macros pretty well.


Saturday 10th of October 2020

These were really great! They are really rich and satisfying and didn't have any of the gumminess of some protein desserts I've tried. I had a lot of melted chocolate left over, so I drizzled it over the top to not waste it. I would probably halve the amount in the future.


Wednesday 7th of October 2020

Loved the recipe!!!! I swapped out the vanilla for chocolate peanut butter protein for even more chocolate peanut butter flavor


Wednesday 7th of October 2020

These are delicious and I love having a healthy version. I swapped normal peanut butter with PB2 and still enjoyed them! You have to be very careful to slowly add the water to the PB2 to ensure you get a true peanut butter texture otherwise it’s too runny and won’t hold. Enjoy!


Wednesday 7th of October 2020

These were very tasty but a little too dry. Maybe due to not using the right protein powder.

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