Hot-Spiced Bourbon Balls

Recipe from

Southern Living

Recipe Time

Prep: 35 Minutes
Bake: 10 Minutes
Chill: 1 Hours


1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar, divided
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper (optional)
1/4 cup bourbon
2 tablespoons sorghum*
60 vanilla wafers, finely crushed (about 2 cups plus 2 Tbsp.)


1. Place pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan. Bake at 350° for 8 to 10 minutes or until toasted.

2. Sift together 1 cup powdered sugar, next 4 ingredients, and, if desired, ground red pepper. Stir together bourbon and sorghum. Gradually add powdered sugar mixture to bourbon mixture, stirring until blended. Stir in vanilla wafers and toasted pecans; stir 1 minute. (Place a small amount of mixture in palm of hand, and make a fist around mixture, testing to be sure dough will hold its shape. If not, continue to stir in 20-second intervals.)

3. Shape mixture into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in remaining 1/4 cup powdered sugar, and place on a wax paper-lined baking sheet.

4. Chill 1 hour or until slightly firm. Store in an airtight container in refrigerator up to 1 week.

*Molasses, honey, or cane syrup may be substituted.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Hershey's Dutch Processed Cocoa at one tasting and Hershey's Unsweetened Cocoa at another.

Matt Lee and Ted Lee,

from their cookbook,The Lee Bros. Southern CookbookNorton,

Southern Living

December 2007
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