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The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

Newfoundland Snowballs. The most searched for Newfoundland recipe on RockRecipes.com. Soft chocolate fudge balls with the goodness of oatmeal and coconut.

Close up of Newfoundland Snowballs with one cut in half to show the inside with title text added for Pinterest

The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

UPDATE: Here is a revisit of Newfoundland Snowballs, one of the most popular recipes ever featured on Rock Recipes and one of the earliest. This iconic Newfoundland treat is among the most searched Newfoundland recipes on the internet.

Many folks tell me this recipe is how they discovered my website in the first place.

Newfoundland Snowballs stacked on a red plate

The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

This recipe came from my Nan, Belinda Morgan of Port-de-Grave, Newfoundland and has been made in our family for over 50 years. I have sampled these all over the province and have never yet found any as good as her soft, fudgy version.

It is and will always be for me, the perfect and most authentic Newfoundland snowball recipe.

Originally Published on November 7, 2007.

The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

In the weeks leading up to Christmas we will be featuring some family favourites for holiday baking. One of the most popular treats anytime but particularly at Christmas is the Snowball.

Newfoundland Snowballs, an iconic local recipe.

This recipe is virtually a Newfoundland icon. You would be hard pressed to find anyone who has spent any time in this province and has not sampled a Snowball.

Desiccated coconut in white ceramic bowl.

Fine cut dried (desiccated) unsweetened coconut is the type to use in this recipe.

More a confection than a cookie, a proper snowball should be soft, fudgy and slightly chewy. Many people find this recipe to be a bit of a challenge but if you follow the method closely and are precise in your measurements, you should have no problems.

Some crucial tips for success. 

Key to the success of this recipe is the length of time that the base of the recipe is boiled. More precisely, it is the temperature that the mixture reaches when boiling that is critical.

Rolling the snowballs in dried coconut

Roll the chilled snowballs in dried coconut.

 

Newfoundland Snowballs on a parchment lined cookie sheet

Newfoundland Snowballs

Much akin to making fudge, you are looking for the mixture to reach soft ball stage or near soft ball stage on a candy thermometer. Use one if you have it but if not, the five minutes gentle boiling as directed in the recipe is a pretty dependable guideline.

 
The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

It is also very important not to stir the mixture as it boils or you risk the sugar crystallizing and leaving you with a hard, crumbly finished product. I’ve added  the two very short videos below to demonstrate what each stage of preparation will look like.

Don’t worry, chill out!

Chilling the snowball mixture well is also very important. Many people start adding more coconut and/or oats to the recipe when they see how soupy the mixture is when it is hot. That is a mistake to be avoided.

Once chilled the mixture will be easy to scoop and roll into balls. This will take several hours or overnight as is mentioned in the recipe instructions below.

Newfoundland Snowballs mixture in a plastic bowl after it has been chilled

The Snowball mixture after overnight refrigeration.

Looking for more Newfoundland inspired desserts?

Be sure to check out our Best Newfoundland Christmas Cookies Collection. They are definitely worth making at any time of year!

Newfoundland Christmas Cookie Recipes photo collage for Pinterest

Newfoundland Christmas Cookie Recipes

Like this Newfoundland Snowballs recipe?

You’ll find over 200 more like it in our Cookies Category and if your looking for more traditional and traditionally inspired recipes browse our Newfoundland Recipes Category.

Newfoundland Snowballs on a white plate surrounded by Christmas decoration, with title text added for Pinterest
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Newfoundland Snowballs stacked on a white plate with title text added for Pinterest

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Newfoundland Snowballs stacked on a red plate
Yield: 48

The Perfect Newfoundland Snowballs Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Newfoundland Snowballs - the most searched for Newfoundland recipe on RockRecipes.com. Soft chocolate fudge balls with the goodness of oatmeal and coconut. These freeze exceptionally well and my kids actually prefer to eat them frozen, just like I did as a child.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 3 cups large rolled oats
  • 1 cup unsweetened fine coconut
  • 12 tbsp cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cups extra coconut extra coconut to roll the balls, approximately

Instructions

  1. In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, butter and milk. This mixture will foam up while boiling so a larger pot is recommended.)
  2. Boil together gently over medium heat for 5-6 minutes or until mixture reaches about 225 -230 degrees F on a candy thermometer. (The 5 to 6 minutes cooking time is usually quite accurate for me but don't start timing it until the mixture is fully at a rolling boil and don't stir the mixture while it boils.) For the record, my latest batch took exactly 6 minutes at a rolling boil and it was perfect.
  3. Mix together the oats, 1 cup coconut and cocoa.
  4. Add the boiled mixture to the dry ingredients until well combined and chill well in the fridge, until mixture is able to be shaped into 1 1/2 inch balls. The mixture will be quite soft and sloppy while it is still hot. It will not firm up until it is very well chilled.
  5. In updating this recipe I prepared a batch and let it cool down to almost room temperature before covering the bowl and refrigerating overnight. The next day, as can be seen in one of the photos above, the mixture was very easy to scoop and roll into balls.
  6. Roll the balls in additional coconut.
  7. Makes about 4 dozen. These should ALWAYS be stored in the fridge to maintain the soft yet slightly chewy texture. They tend to be too soft at room temperature.
  8. These freeze very well (my kids eat them frozen all the time, just like my siblings and I did as kids)

Notes

The 2 hour total time for preparation is an estimate and includes chilling time before the snowballs are rolled in the coconut. It is not recommended to double this recipe, as the boiling time will not be long enough. You can use a candy thermometer though when doubling the recipe.

 

The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.

Nutrition Information

Yield

48

Serving Size

g

Amount Per Serving Calories 129Saturated Fat 4gCholesterol 8mgSodium 30mgCarbohydrates 18gFiber 1gSugar 13gProtein 1g

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TooFarFromHome

Thursday 1st of July 2021

Love this! I grew up in Labrador and my mom and I would make snow balls all the time! Her timing trick was to let the mixture rise, remove from heat and get it to rise again three times… it always worked… I think I prefer the scientific method of a candy thermometer, especially now that I am living in the states and the ingredients are a little different. I am so happy I found your site!

Marina

Monday 28th of December 2020

Hello can't wait to try these but just want to question the amount of cocoa. Is it 12 tbsp or 2 tbsp? Thanks much.

Paul Lambe

Tuesday 22nd of December 2020

Why does it always take forever to get to the actual recipe?

Ruth

Saturday 19th of December 2020

I just finished a batch of the Newfoundland Snowballs. Perfection! At this 2020 Christmas Season, I have decided to make gift baskets of homemade cookies/small loaves for my neighbours. We need all the positivity we can possibly give each other as we are "chez nous" this year.And I get the "plus" of baking which brightens up these Co-Vid days!

Sherri

Thursday 17th of December 2020

Help! I ended up with a dry, sugary mass. A tasty mass, but not fudgy at all. I used a candy thermometer that I tested to make sure it is accurate. Should I have made an altitude adjustment for Calgary? I will crumble this up and use it for ice-cream.

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