These easy no-bake rum balls are a fun treat for the snack or dessert table. Bring them to any get-together, and you can pretty much count on them being a big hit!
Rum Balls for Special Occasions
These no-bake rum balls are so good people have asked me to bring them to parties. I usually oblige once, twice, or even more times.
In fact, many years ago, my husband’s assistant requested a second batch after trying one at the office celebration.
Of course, I was flattered enough to bring more. He encouraged me to make more and offered to “take them off my hands.” In case you’re wondering, I made a third batch.
The following year, he reminded me that he loved rum balls. That made me laugh because there was no way I could forget how much he enjoyed them.
Eat Them Responsibly
There isn’t much rum in these rum balls, but since it’s not baked, the alcohol remains.
So I don’t recommend giving them to children … that is, unless you alter one ingredient in the recipe. If you want them to be child-friendly, use rum flavoring instead of the alcoholic version.
In fact, if you want to be really safe, make all of them with rum flavoring. No one will know the difference.
Although these no-bake rum balls are easy to make, they’re pretty messy. As a matter of fact, I think anything with powdered sugar is messy because it’s light as air and drifts.
Any time I use it, I wind up with it all over me. But that’s okay. That’s what a shower is for.
Besides, it’s so worth it. Once you taste them, you’ll agree!
In fact, you might even go back to the kitchen to make some more.
These rum balls are a great party food. You can make them any time of year, but they’re particularly welcome at a holiday party.
If you have time, make one of these 3-tiered platters and display them on top.
Ingredients in No-Bake Rum Balls
In order to make rum balls, you need vanilla wafers, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and pecans.
Those are the dry ingredients. You also need corn syrup and rum.
Make sure you understand that corn syrup is completely different from cornstarch.
So don’t get them mixed up, or your rum balls won’t be moist enough to form them into balls.
The reason I bring this up is that I’ve given this recipe to friends through the years, and it’s happened. More than once, I’ve gotten a call asking why the recipe isn’t turning out.
At first, I couldn’t figure it out, but then one person said, “Maybe I put too much cornstarch in them.” After that, the first question I asked was whether or not they used corn syrup.
For exact measurements of each ingredient and full directions, go to the recipe card at the bottom of the page. You can even print out the card by using the “print” button.
How to Make No-Bake Rum Balls
First of all, you’ll need to crush the vanilla wafers. You can put them in a food processor if you’re in a hurry.
Or if you don’t have a food processor, you can put the cookies in a plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin.
Just make sure they’re finely crushed before you use them. Otherwise, they’ll crumble apart.
Mix the crushed vanilla wafers, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, chopped pecans, corn syrup, and rum.
You can use light or dark corn syrup. Since I couldn’t find the light, I picked up the dark.
Pinch off pieces of the batter and form them into small marble-sized balls. Roll them in the powdered sugar and set them on a plate.
After a few minutes, roll the balls in the powdered sugar again for a second coating.
Allow them to rest for a few hours before serving.
More Great Recipes
These rum balls are wonderful additions to any party snack table. Put them with the desserts, such as these yummy peanut butter cookies.
If you like party food, check out these stuffed mushrooms. Make sure you have at least 3 or 4 per person at the party. They’ll disappear quickly, so maybe you need to make even more.
This spinach dip is another party favorite. You can serve it either hot or cold, so it’s easy to serve for a variety of get-togethers.
We also enjoy these mini stuffed peppers. They’re great for the party table, but they also make a great main course for a meal.
If you’re looking for more sweet treats, check out the recipe for this creamy orange fudge. It is so good! I’m thankful to the person who asked me to make it.
And if you like it, take a look at these 3 fudge recipes that are all super easy to make.
- 2-1/2 cups of crushed vanilla wafers
- 3/4 cup of powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup of chopped pecans
- 3 tablespoons of corn syrup (light or dark)
- 1/2 cup of rum (or 1/4 cup of rum flavoring + 1/4 cup of water - see notes)
- Additional powdered sugar for the coating
- In a food processor, crush the vanilla wafers until they are fine crumbs.
- Combine the crushed vanilla wafers, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, chopped pecans, corn syrup (not corn starch), and rum.
- Stir until mixed. I used my hands because it’s much easier.
- Pinch off pieces and roll them into balls the size of a large marble. Roll each on in powdered sugar.
- Set them aside on a plate. Let them rest for about 10 minutes and then roll them in a second coating of powdered sugar.
- It’s best to wait a few hours before eating. It takes a little while for all of the flavors to bloom.
If you prefer bourbon balls, all you have to do is substitute bourbon for the rum.
If you don’t want the alcohol, you can also use rum flavoring instead, but cut the amount in half. I recommend tasting them and adjusting the amount of rum flavoring because the strength varies.
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Amount Per Serving Calories 250Total Fat 9gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 7gCholesterol 0mgSodium 69mgCarbohydrates 38gFiber 1gSugar 30gProtein 1g
The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.