Chocolate Bourbon or Rum Balls Recipe

These rum balls are SO much better than the dried out ones that use nuts! These are so decadent they are like chocolate rum truffles! Nut free and chocolate cake based! 

Jump to RecipePinSave to Favorites

Site Index Chocolate Christmas Christmas baking Confections Rum

This post may contain affiliate links. See my privacy policy for details.

We take our rum balls and bourbon balls seriously in this household as they are Mr Magpie’s favourite treat. Which also means that I leave the rum ball making up to him during the holidays! These rum balls are nut free, melt in your mouth, fudgy delights!

a plate with Chocolate Bourbon or Rum Balls

How to Make Rum Balls

Making rum balls in my house is SO EASY. First, I ask Mr Magpie to make them. And second, he makes them! Magic! But honestly, here are the super quick and easy steps to making rum balls.

  1. Prepare your cake. You can make a chocolate cake mix or you can bake up my Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake Recipe. It’s so easy you don’t really need a cake mix to be honest.
  2. Break up the cake and place it into a large bowl.
  3. Add in rum or bourbon and condensed milk.
  4. Make the rum balls, roll them in sprinkles and let sit.
chewy and fudge-like rum balls or bourbon balls rolled in sprinkles

We prefer the rum balls or bourbon balls to be chewy and fudge-like, not dried out like the rum ball recipes that use nuts. Consider these to be rum brownie balls, even, to understand the texture that I am talking about. Take a peek at the photo below, you can tell that these are truly spectacular rum balls! That photo was taken right after I made them, so they are now sitting in my freezer with the flavours melding together until Christmas. The consistency will be the same as shown in the photos.

close up rum balls or bourbon balls rolled in sprinkles

Tips & Tricks for Making Bourbon Balls or Rum Balls

  • Use a good quality rum or bourbon, a dark rum for sure but you could also try spiced!
  • These rum balls freeze exceptionally well and are better after sitting for a while in a container. I make these a few weeks before Christmas and then freeze them until the big day.
  • Once you try my version of rum balls, you aren’t ever going back to those nut filled dry versions but you could add in some walnuts or favourite nut into the mixture if you wanted to. You can really adapt these to your liking!
  • Refrigerate the dough before rolling and wet your hands when you go to form the balls. These are sticky and your hands will get a bit messy making them, so make sure you have everything ready to go before you make them!

Happy baking everyone! I’m sitting here thinking of these babies that are in the freezer and wondering if I can sneak one…



My Favourite Chocolate Bourbon or Rum Ball Recipe

These rum balls are SO much better than the dried out ones that use nuts! These are so decadent they are like chocolate rum truffles! Nut free and chocolate cake based! 
4.96 from 90 votes
chewy and fudge-like rum balls or bourbon balls rolled in sprinkles
Prep Time
30 minutes
Total Time
30 minutes
24 rum balls
Karlynn Johnston


  • one 9×13 baked chocolate cake use a mix or my cake recipe
  • 1/2 cup dark or spiced rum or bourbon
  • 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup chocolate sprinkles


  • Crumble up the baked cake into a medium mixing bowl.
  • Add in the rum and the condensed milk. Mix together until all of the ingredients are combined and the cake is now a dough that can be rolled into balls.
  • Roll the mixture into one inch balls, then roll the balls into the chocolate sprinkles, covering them completely. 
  • Place the rum balls on a parchment lined baking sheet. Freeze them individually first, then transfer to a sealed container to keep frozen.
  • These are best if left to sit a few days in the refrigerator if you are eating them soon, or keep them in the freezer until you are ready to eat.

Recipe Notes

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION is going to vary depending on what cake mix you use or what cake you bake up!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 147kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 4mg, Potassium: 11mg, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 10IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 9mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

Made this recipe?

Share a photo of what you made on Instagram or Facebook and tag me @thekitchenmagpie or hashtag it #thekitchenmagpie.

Please rate this recipe in the comments below to help out your fellow cooks!

Learn to cook like the Kitchen Magpie

A Very Prairie Christmas Bakebook

Vintage Baking to Celebrate the Festive Season!

Learn More

a copy of Flapper Pie cook book

Flapper Pie and a Blue Prairie Sky

A Modern Baker’s Guide to Old-Fashioned Desserts

Learn More

The Prairie Table

Suppers, Potlucks & Socials: Crowd-Pleasing Recipes to Bring People Together

Learn More

Pin this to your Desserts Board or Christmas Baking Board and remember to FOLLOW ME ON PINTEREST for more great recipe ideas!

These rum balls are SO much better than the dried out ones that use nuts! These are so decadent they are like chocolate rum truffles! Nut free and chocolate cake based! #rumballs #christmas #chocolate

Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

Learn more about me

Site Index Chocolate Christmas Christmas baking Confections Rum

Reader Interactions

Comments & Recipe Tips Share a tip or comment!

  1. Lynda says

    Hi, I do NOT like chocolate! I know I am weird. That being said, can I use a white cake mix or another flavor. If so will the results still taste as good? Maybe I should use chocolate, then I won’t eat any.:-))Thanks so much. Merry Christmas!

  2. Susan T. says

    I used the linked Wacky Cake recipe (my longtime go-to recipe for chocolate cake) and it worked out perfectly – did not have to add extra rum or condensed milk and the sprinkles adhered to the balls. I believe the secret is to not over-bake the cake. It’s also not necessary to fully cool the cake – in fact, I think that when it’s slightly warm, it forms a better, stickier dough. I refrigerated the dough for about an hour before forming the balls.

    I’ve had mixed results with other chocolate rum ball recipes – they’re often too dry. Last year, we couldn’t find vanilla wafer or crumbs so I tried a recipe without them and the result was balls of chocolate icing – too sweet! I really like this recipe because it’s easy, moist, chocolatey and not too sweet!5 stars

  3. Marta Roberts says

    For the chocolate cake you suggest a 9 x 13 cake from a mix or your chocolate cake. Your cake is 9 x 9. Will your cake be enough?

    • Karlynn Johnston says

      The wacky cake is a 9×13 cake, it will work!

  4. Margaret says

    These are so very yummy! Definitely a Christmas favourite. Thanks for sharing the recipe.5 stars

    • Jenn says

      I just made this recipe & they are delicious. I have an issue with them being wet on the outside though. The sprinkles and the outside of the ball are wet, but the inside is fine. I did wet my hands when rolling them, could that be what caused this? Thanks!

4.96 from 90 votes (73 ratings without comment)

Leave a Comment or Recipe Tip

Recipe Rating

Enter your email to get this recipe emailed to you, so you don’t lose it and get new recipes daily!