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Going back to my hometown roots today.

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

I may live in Colorado, but I will always be an Ohio girl. I am pretty sure I could never live there again (nope, positive), but it’s where I spent a big chunk of my life and where all of my extended family still lives. So, it will always be apart of me… and I like that. Plus, it’s where I learned all about buckeyes!

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

I don’t know what about Ohio made me think of this random thought, maybe all the farms… and green, but someday I hope to live on a farm. A big farm in the middle of nowhere. Yup, that’s my dream. The simple life, nothin fancy, pick up trucks, tall boots(!!), rows of vegetables, cows all over and trees for miles. Preferably I would love this farm to be in the mountains somewhere, because I really do love the mountains and even when I leave them for a few days I am always excited to see them again upon return. The problem is that farming is not all that conducive as high up as we are. That’s not stopping me from trying to talk my dad into becoming a full on farmer though (wish me luck). We have the land, we have the chickens (who are going to be laying eggs any day now!), we just need a new barn (no – not the one we are renovating for me to move into – a new one) and um, lot’s of animals. Oh, and definitely some warmer temps so all my veggies and herbs do not freeze. That’ll be a tricky one. Ahh well, a girl can dream. Greenhouses are cool too!

Maybe someday though.

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

So anyway, Sunday I was really feeling like buckeyes. The Browns had just won their first game of the season and it was just time to celebrate… err more like it had been too long since I last made buckeyes and everybody in the house was just craving them.

Last year I made this Buckeye Cake that I will remember forever and ever. It’s so flipping good and not to mention a total show stopper. If you want to impress, make this cake. People kind of go “WOW” when they see it.

This year though, I am just feeling a little simpler. It’s this new phrase I have repeating in my head “everything should be simple”. Or well, at least that is what I sometimes have going on my head. It really just depends on the day or even the hour. Truth is, I am all over the place. One hour I am all about simplifying and the next, I’m making something with five different parts. Crazy? Yes, that would be me for sure.

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

Whenever I make buckeyes, I never actually use a lot of powdered sugar. I have always made them on the healthier side, but then I wondered if I could make them even healthier and possibly include some of my favorite seasonal ingredients.

So I tried and believe it or not, my first attempt worked perfectly. So good and not even the pickiest brother knew there was anything different about these buckeyes. They asked though, because they know me. You see they were surprised I was making something so normal, but I fibbed and told them there was nothing very different about these buckeyes. They ate um, loved um, and now they’re all gone.

FYI, the brother test is the test is like feeding a lie detector, it never fails!

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

I am a little scared to tell you what I made these with, but just be open to them. I promise they taste just like any other sugar laden buckeye.

These Healthy Harvest Buckeyes (harvest for the healthy ingredients loaded into these buckeyes) are a combo of beans, applesauce, pumpkin, vanilla, salt and peanut butter. I know, sounds so gross, but I promise you’ll taste zero pumpkin and zero applesauce. The beans just add a creamy texture, no taste at all. DO NOT BE FREAKED. Remember, the brother test never fails.

And then of course, lots of chocolate.

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

See what I mean when I say healthy? Seriously, these have like a zero guilt factor and it’s pretty amazing how good they are. Plus, they are no bake, no fuss, vegan and gluten-free too!

Whoa – I do not even know who I am today.

Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

Healthy (Harvest) Buckeyes.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Refridgerate 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 35 Buckeyes
Calories Per Serving: 79 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.



  • Line two cookie sheets with wax paper.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, add the cannellini beans and puree until mostly smooth. Add the applesauce, pumpkin, coconut oil and vanilla. Puree until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes, scrapping down the sides if needed. Add the peanut butter and salt, process another minute.
  • Scoop 1/2 tablespoon size amounts of dough out and roll into a rough ball. Place on the prepared cookie sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough, cover the pans and place in the fridge for 15 minutes.
  • After 15 minutes, remove the balls from the fridge and roll them once more between your hands to smooth the balls out. Stick a toothpick into the top of each ball. Cover the cookie sheets and place them in the freezer for at least 45 minutes, but not too much longer than an hour.
  • Just before removing the balls from the freezer melt the chocolate over a double broiler or in the microwave.
  • Working with one ball at a time, dip the frozen balls into the chocolate leaving a small opening at the top so the peanut butter can peak out. Place the balls back on the cookie sheet. Repeat with the remaining balls. Store in the fridge until ready to eat. These are best straight out of the fridge with some cold milk!


*I used an organic brand of pumpkin that is very thick and not pourable at all. This helped my dough firm up. If you are using a canned pumpkin that is pourable, you may need to add 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of white whole wheat or regular flour to help the dough firm up. You will not taste they flour at all.
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Healthy Harvest Buckeyes | @hbharvest

Tomorrow though, there is probably going to be a lot of cheese. Just a fair warning.

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  1. I’m totally intrigued by these! I have two questions – 1) Do you think they would freeze ok? Making my Christmas cookies now, so wanting to make sure these would hold up. And, 2) I know this would be breaking the Buckeye traditions, but do you think texture wise it would work to make these as bars? Like “Buckeye Bark” that I’ve found elsewhere on Pinterest. Thanks for the healthful recipe! I look forward to giving it a try!

    1. HI!

      So I am not sure how these freeze. It might work, but it might also affect the texture. I wish I could say for sure, but I have never tried it. I do think bars/bark would be amazing! Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks!

  2. I made these tonight for a Halloween party on Friday. Trying something new because a GF friend will be here. This is my first experience making buckeyes. Haven’t tasted the finished ones yet. The filling is good although I did add two heaping tablespoons of PB because they didn’t taste peanut butter-y enough to me. Wondering what the point of the coconut oil is. Could we have just left it out? Will comment back after we’ve tasted the finished ones and the party reviews. Thanks!

  3. Love your site!!

    Like Jillian P I also had to add more peanut butter so they tasted peanut buttery…but like, a lot more. I think I used about 12-15 oz of PB total! All my ingredients were from Kroger, not sure if their PB is just not very PB-y?

    I’ve never had the real buckeyes but love these! Thanks as always for your fantastic ideas and beautiful execution 🙂

  4. I have been waiting to try these and finally got around to it! I just made the inner “dough” and it tastes delicious. I personally had to add a bit more peanut butter (used an all natural one with no sugar) and also had to sweeten it up a bit with agave. Otherwise, I couldn’t really taste the PB and it was a bit drab tasting. Just adding a little bit of both of those helped take it to the right place for me. I guess I have more of a sweet tooth, haha! 😉

    I really appreciate that you made this recipe using beans and no butter! Especially as a vegetarian, I’m excited to know these will be little protein packed power snacks. Thanks for an awesome recipe!

    Also – I’m in LOVE with your photography. It’s insanely good. Brava, girl!
    xx. Jillian

  5. We tried these buckeyes and got mixed reviews from the family. The general consensus was that they are alright. We could definitely tell a difference from original buckeyes.

  6. Okay, I’m convinced I need to make these…like right now! The problem is, I don’t have any cannelini beans on hand—do you think I could sub in chickpeas?

    Thanks for the super awesome recipe Tieghan! I can’t wait to try it out.

    1. Hey Samantha, I am not sure how they would turn out. I would think it would work, but I can’t be sure. Let me know how it goes and I hope you love these! 🙂

      1. I ended up following the recipe exactly and using cannellini beans. For some reason though it turned out so soupy even with a very thick pumpkin puree. I ended up having to add over a cup of GF flour and some powdered stevia to try and thicken it up. After that I even had to let the dough sit over night before rolling it into balls. I must say that they did turn out absolutely delicious and they were a huge hit!!! After reading some other comments though it seems as that for some reason the recipe can end up too runny.

  7. I just made these and they are AMAZING!!! they taste so close to the real thing that it’s almost disturbing. in fact they are even better because you can eat a few of them without feeling sick.

    for other makers: i don’t have a food processor, so i used a combination of potato masher, magic bullet type blender, and immersion blender. instead of the pumpkin i used butternut squash puree which was very solid in the can. the final dough was pretty thin so i added 1/2 cup of flour and refrigerated for 1/2 an hour. then it was thick enough to make into balls, though it was kind of ‘weepy’ [sorry to be gross] so next time i might squeeze the squash out in a cloth to get rid of the extra moisture.

    but as long as you keep them chilled the extra moisture stays solid and you’re good to go. thank you so much for the recipe!!

    1. p.s. i’m from ohio too, and the buckeye recipe we used [from a much-loved church cookbook] made the filling from peanut butter, powdered sugar, and BUTTER. like sticks of butter. and also the chocolate coating called for paraffin wax too, i guess to make it coat thinner and easier. but i mean…paraffin wax!! there are probably still molecules of undigested paraffin wax floating around in my body…

  8. What kind of peanut butter did you use? We have been making buckeyes for years, but always use Jif or skippy. Can you make these with a natural peanut butter (one that must be regrigerated)? Wondering about consistency and sweetness. Thanks!

    1. I used Jiff natural for these, but I would not recommend using any oily peanut butter that needs to be kept in the fridge.Let me know if you have any other questions and I hope you enjoy these! 🙂

  9. I don’t know what I did wrong here – but my “dough” was so runny! Was never able to form a ball from the dough, not thick enough. The end consistency I got was pretty much just like peanut butter or the pumpkin puree. Almost like I needed a dry ingredient to thicken up… bummer, was so looking forward to these! 🙂

    1. Hey Lindsay, I am so sorry these came out runny for you. My guess is that it is the canned pumpkin you used. Was it stirable/pourable or thick? I used an organic brand of pumpkin that is very thick and not pourable at all. This helped my dough firm up. If you are using a canned pumpkin that is pourable, you may need to add 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of white whole wheat or regular flour to help the dough firm up. You will not taste they flour at all. Please let me know if you have any more questions. Hopping the next batch is awesome!

      1. Thanks so much! That is a great suggestion. The flavor was obvi still amazing 🙂 so I got some good spoonfuls out of the deal! Obsessed with everything on your blog, thank you!

  10. These are fantastic!!!! Really! I have been trying cleaner recipes. It can be an acquired taste and / or the recipe can be hit or miss all together. But these… you’ve achieved the ‘wow’ factor; thank you!!!!

  11. Made these yesterday, sooooo good! I have always wised I could make them healthier and you did it! Will be making again very soon!

  12. I lived in Ohio too! Buckeyes are one of my favorite treats and these would be perfect for my nephews. Actually, I should have them make me some from your recipe! The look delicious.