Rum Balls Recipe
Rum Balls Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Rum Balls Recipe

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Rum flavor comes through nicely in these traditional, soft Christmas cookies. Roll half in powdered sugar and the other half in crushed vanilla wafers for visual appeal. —Audrey Larson, Bloomington, Minnesota
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 40 min.
MAKES:42 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 40 min.
MAKES: 42 servings


  • 2-1/2 cups crushed vanilla wafers (about 75 wafers)
  • 1 cup ground pecans
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons baking cocoa
  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • Additional confectioners' sugar or crushed vanilla wafers

Nutritional Facts

1 ball: 69 calories, 3g fat (0 saturated fat), 1mg cholesterol, 26mg sodium, 9g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 1g fiber), 1g protein.


  1. Mix together wafer crumbs, pecans, confectioners' sugar and cocoa. Combine rum, honey and water; stir into crumb mixture. Shape into 1-in. balls. Roll in additional confectioners' sugar or wafer crumbs. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 3-1/2 dozen.
Originally published as Rum Balls in Taste of Home Christmas Annual

Reviews for Rum Balls

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rmbarr059 User ID: 4046105 258737
Reviewed Dec. 27, 2016

"This was my first time making rum balls. I wanted to add something different to my holiday cookie trays that I give out as gifts; based on the amazing reviews I decided to give this recipe a try. I have to admit that I was disappointed. I added a little extra rum in place of the water as some other reviewers did, but other than that followed the recipe. I didn't have any problems, I just didn't think they were that good. I will most likely not make these again."

KristineChayes User ID: 1441542 258345
Reviewed Dec. 19, 2016

"These Rum Balls were easy to make and are delicious -- I just finished making them today. I added 1/4 cup more baking cocoa and 2 tablespoons more rum and encountered no problems. I make Rum Balls every year and this recipe is definitely the one I'll be using in the future. Thank you for sharing it!"

Ycclsc User ID: 8255991 257626
Reviewed Dec. 3, 2016 Edited Dec. 13, 2016

"I just finished making my first batch. I pretty much stuck to the original recipe with two changes: I upped the rum and wafers slightly and used corn syrup as suggested in some of the other reviews. I used 100 proof Captain Morgan's Spiced Rum and rolled them in the remaining ground pecans (got that from another review also). I now have have them 'stewing' (also suggested by a reviewer) in an air right container in the fridge for a party in 7 days. I had my husband try one now and he said it was really good. I will come back and update my review after the party. :)

I do have a food processor and the recipe was extremely easy to follow and complete.
Rum Balls were a big hit. The rum flavor snuck up after the ball warmed up in your mouth. Very tasty and simple recipe. I highly recommend!"

amehart User ID: 1464390 256239
Reviewed Nov. 1, 2016

"Loved by all. I used Southern Comfort in place of the rum and they were very "smooth" - great recipe and makes a great gift too!"

Weisslee33 User ID: 8614959 239835
Reviewed Dec. 20, 2015

"These were a big hit at my girlfriends annual Christmas cookie swap! :-)"

Jaxmamma User ID: 8041033 220783
Reviewed Feb. 18, 2015

"Could you substitute Apple pie Moonshine in place of rum?"

kanasf User ID: 8181672 215823
Reviewed Dec. 24, 2014

"Awesome simple recipe. Nilla wafers came in smaller boxes now so account for that,, short of heavy on rum. Will do with walnuts next time around. Good excuse to kick the bowl of excess dough"

Margethesarge User ID: 8142329 214169
Reviewed Dec. 6, 2014

"I used a half cup of Amaretto Di Saronno and 1.5 cups ground almonds. Belissima!"

arcollins User ID: 6214134 214049
Reviewed Dec. 5, 2014

"I have made these on multiple occasions and have never had any issues with this recipe. I do add just a smidge more rum, but the batter still ends up just fine. I have also rolled them in the ground pecans and those end up being the favorite."

JuniperSpring User ID: 8133629 115905
Reviewed Dec. 1, 2014

"Gotta be honest - to save others the work. This recipe did NOT work at all. Could NOT taste the rum at all, recipe needs twice as much rum to even get a hint of the flavor of rum. Since you have to add more rum, you have to add more cookie crumbs - otherwise the rum-balls are too gooey. I had to drive to the grocery store to get another box of cookies! The recipe has other problems, it says ground pecans - NOT good to grind them because their flavor and texture is lost in the dough. I thought this would be a simple recipe, but it took hours to make this recipe! Having to crumble the cookies, plus I had to keep adding and adjusting the recipe, and after all was done, still could barely taste the rum - hard to get the right mixture of dry ingredients and wet - the cookies don't taste like good rum-balls should. I've had MUCH better rum-ball recipes. Also, the amounts of ingredients in the recipe wouldn't yield anywhere near 3-1/2 doz. even if you make the rum-balls small. In my book - this one's a flop."

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