Borrachitos – Rum Balls

“Buen dia” to everyone.  My day has come to an end and to celebrate that fact I am in bed with apple slices, caramel sauce and two borrachitos.  It’s a good end to these past two days.  Have you ever had several days that feel like one big long day?  Those are my Wednesdays and Thursdays.  So, coming home and finding these little chocolate delicacies still in the fridge is quite the lucky surprise.  Living with 8 other ravenous fridge mongers things like these disappear QUICKLY!

They are, in English, “Little Drunkards.”  But, were profoundly popular in the 60s as Rum Balls.  From the blatantly obvious name of the chocolate truffles, it’s clear that they have rum in them.  Of course, there are always options to replace alcohol, you can replace the rum with apple or orange juice.

When I searched for these online, I had the hardest time finding them!  I had first tried these in Arequipa, Peru.  They were in a little bakery hidden in the Plaza de Armas.  It was really an accident that we stumbled upon La Canasta one day and when my eyes locked with a big chocolate ball sitting in the display case I knew I just had to try it.  Yum, yum, yum.  It was food love.  I’m beyond happy that what I made in my kitchen turned out to be exactly what I had from La Canasta that blessed day.

I’m pretty sure these will quickly find their way into stomachs among your household members.  They are rather quick to conjure up as well.  Conjure, sounds witchy, that’s as much Halloween theme you’re going to get out of me here.  But, in all seriousness, which should always be our attitudes in the kitchen…………… yea, these are simply simple and can even be considered a no-baking confection!

Anything that is no-bake, to me, is kind of a cheat.  Sorry to all of you who vie for the other side.  So, I baked a cake, which turned out to be the BEST cake I’ve ever made, let alone at 12,000 feet, and posted an article on it.  It’s The Perfect High Altitude Cake.  It raised up to pretty and looked so nice… it was a shame though because I had to mash it all up into crumbs.

recipe adapted from The Joy of Baking. 

2-3 cups mashed chocolate cake
1 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 cup rum, apple juice or orange juice
4 tbsp corn syrup or honey

melted chocolate
confectioners sugar
cocoa powder
finely chopped nuts

If you click on the link above for The Joy of Baking it will take you to the Rum Ball recipe.  My adapted version is a little different.  There’s also a nice video you can watch.

Basically, my version is cheaper.  Nuts are not inexpensive.  So, I used cake instead of vanilla wafers and nuts like TJOB has listed and I also doubled the recipe because I made a 9×13 cake and had a lot of it to use.

So, mash up your cake into fine crumbs.  I just used my hands.  It’s fun to get dirty in the kitchen.  Then, mix in the confectioners sugar.  At this point you may want to get a wooden spoon, because honey or corn syrup won’t be fun to clean off your hands.  Mix in the corn syrup or honey and then the rum or whatever liquid substitute you decide to use.  Mix well.  If your “dough” turns out looking shiny, then mash in some more cake.  You should have a dough that has a satin look.

Before rolling them you may want to put them in the fridge for about 30 minutes.  They might be too sticky to handle, but I honestly didn’t have an issue with this.  Roll into little balls.  You can make them as big as you want, really.  I made them about 2 inches.

Melt your chocolate, or get your stuff to roll them in ready and make ’em pretty!  I’d have to say that out of all the topping ideas, the chocolate covered borrachitos turned out to be the most delicious, though some of the others were just so darn pretty.

As for dipping them in chocolate, I just plopped them in the chocolate and covered them completely and then fished them out with a fork and placed them on a cookie sheet with saran-wrap.  Let them set in the fridge.

Store these babies in the fridge.  The flavor does enhance and change with time.  So, you may want to make them a few days in advance before you bust them out for a party or what-not.  Try not to eat all of them at once, they are quite the temptation.

P.S. The boxes are origami boxes I made from parchment paper.  I’ve got a clever plan to do more things with these little guys.  You can go here to find out how to make them.

P.P.S. You can follow The Handicapped Kitchen on Facebook!  Go to and click the “Like” button to get the latest news on THK in your news feed!



27 thoughts on “Borrachitos – Rum Balls

    • Hey Maryanna, Thanks for coming by again! It’s interesting how food can connect us with people around us, even when they are no longer around. When ever I think of sweet pickles I think of my grandmother. That’s a rather strange association, but I’m fond of it.

  1. Ok, so I have a random question that really has nothing to do with food (well, kinda, but not really)… what sort of camera do you have? I’m getting increasingly closer to seriously thinking about buying one. And your photos are always gorgeous!! So I’m curious…:)

    • Hey there Anna! Why thank you for your very kind comment 🙂 The camera I use is a Nikon D3000. It’s a rather basic little thing. It’s not even mine really! Just so happens that someone in my house has one, aaaaaand I know more about that camera than they do. OOPS! But, I would definitely recommend that camera. It’s ergonomics are easy to use and I like the ease of it’s focus as well. I hope this helps you make your decision! Let me know what you end up with.

  2. Cool! My sister has a Nikon D5000…very similar I think, but maybe an older model? I’ve enjoyed using her’s a few times. I’ll have to find the D3000 somewhere and check it out. Thanks so much for the info! Blessings!

  3. This is great! I lived in Ancash, Peru for two years and finding the best borrachito became my personal pastime. (FYI- My favorite came from Pasteleria Montserrat in Huaraz and the baker/owner has since moved his bakery to Lima. Check it out!) In the meantime, I want to blow away the competition at an annual holiday bake-off at my work here in NY and this recipe will work great! Thanks!

  4. i have been making these for year i cheat i used boxed cake mix mix in the pan cause it does not matter if cake turns out or not dry or whatever i learnt this from a bakery i worked in how they used leftover cake where put in the crumb pin white or choclate if too much white cake add coco powder i usually roll mine in choclate sprinkles if you do not like alcohol use rum flavor can also be made with grandmanier those are fantanstic

  5. What a great recipe–I cannot wait to make it! Two questions for you: Is the amount of cake here equal to the full cake from a cake mix?
    Also, I have seen other recipes for these that call for a cup or so of finely chopped nuts. Did you intentionally choose to not include those, perhaps to get a different texture? Thank you!!

    • Hi Debra!

      You should DEFINITELY be excited to make these. They are delicious! I don’t believe that it did call for a whole cake from a mix, but it uses the majority of it. I always made the whole cake and then crushed what I needed and the rest was a snack on the side. I think I have seen where they put nuts in these before, but I never put nuts in any of my cakes or brownies. It’s just not for me. 🙂 I hope you have fun making these! They are truly scrumptious, and they are even better the day after when the rum really develops its flavor!

Well, what do you think? Leave a comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s