My Collection of Homemade Easter Egg Centers

Not much got my Mom down — except what she described as the “dreary stretch” that descended upon The Coal Region in the weeks immediately following Christmas and New Year’s Day.

If Mother Nature was going to show a mean streak, it was often during January and February she doled out a dose of reality, blanketing the region in a layer of snow or ice. Days are more often over-cast and gray than not. The hustle and bustle of the much anticipated Holiday season has come and gone and the house felt empty and plain after the brilliant lights and greenery of Christmas found themselves tucked away for another year in the attic.

But come the beginning of March as daylight stretched farther into the early evening hours, my Mom experienced a resurgence of her old self. Spring was coming no matter what the skies threatened and that meant Easter was on its way!

Potted lilies bedecked with purple bows would soon line the alter in our tiny church, placed there in loving memory by friends and family of parishioners no longer with us. Plans were made by the supporters of local organizations for the ever popular Easter egg hunts much enjoyed by the children of our Coal Region towns, and a trip to Robert Hall or Town & Country department store was in the works for my annual new coat and Easter bonnet (sigh…)

All these things also signaled our family’s annual homemade Easter egg making day would soon be here. Now, Mom made her signature Easter eggs the same every year because we all loved them. Even though they were “peanut butter”, Mom always added some finely grated fresh coconut to the mix.

Pop was the designated “coconut master”, thunking away with a hammer at the shell of the fresh coconut from the local A&P. His labor produced enough grated coconut for Mom’s eggs and her traditional Coconut Dusted Cake.

Mom was the official “mixer” of the filling and I was the official “taster”. In an effort to frustrate my mother, I would wait until she had “Frankenstein hands” caked with partially mixed “goop” well past her wrists and proceed to tell her a funny anecdote I saved up for weeks just for that moment.

Inevitably, my Mom would be rendered useless from belly-shaking laughter and the two of us often laughed until we cried. Those are the moments I cherish above all the other memories of her Easter eggs. The love that went into them made them “the best” and the ones to which I hold up all others to this day.

Through the years

Throughout the years after my Mom passed, I started to collect recipes for a variety of centers for homemade Easter eggs. I never got to share these with Mom, but I thought it might be time to share them with my readers. Hope you find some that will become the catalyst of great memories in your family.

Tips

Recipes for Easter egg centers are listed in the top of the recipe card and accompanying directions for each are labeled and listed under “directions”.

Amounts for confectioners’ sugar listed are approximate and may need adjustment depending on the moisture content of other ingredients in the recipe. Confectioners’ sugar mixes in easier with fewer lumps if sifted after measuring.

Use salted butter or unsalted along with some salt as specified in recipes. The salt in the sugary centers helps tame the sweetness and enhances flavor.

Most varieties call for allowing the rolled egg-shaped centers to “cure” before coating either by refrigerating overnight or allowing it to air-dry. Follow the instructions in each recipe.

Line baking sheets with parchment or waxed paper to sit eggs on as you dip them.

The food-safe paraffin used to mix with baking chocolate is found in the canning supplies section of your supermarket (often under the “Gulf” brand). Using baking chocolate mixed with paraffin wax to dip homemade Easter eggs goes back generations with cooks in The Coal Region. Use approximately 1/4 to 1/3 block of paraffin wax to 8 ounces of baking chocolate. Keep slightly warm while dipping eggs. If you prefer, eggs can be dipped in melted coating wafers found in candy making and cake decorating departments and stores.



Homemade Easter Egg Centers Collection

Recipe by Lori Fogg, A Coalcracker In The KitchenCourse: Easter, Holidays, Recipes, Sweet ThingsDifficulty: Easy

Assorted homemade Easter egg centers collected through the years.

Ingredients

  • FOR ALL CENTERS/EGGS
  • Semi-sweet baking chocolate (like Baker’s)

  • Food-safe paraffin wax (like Gulf)

  • OR

  • Coating wafers, flavors/colors as desired

  • My Mom’s Homemade Peanut Butter Easter Eggs
  • 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar (approximately – have extra in case needed)

  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) salted butter or margarine, softened

  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 12 ounces creamy quality peanut butter

  • 1 to 2 cups finely grated fresh coconut, to your taste (or store-bought unsweetened) OR skip the coconut – you will need to adjust the amount of powdered sugar.

  • Vanilla Buttercream Eggs (and basic variations)
  • 1/2 pound salted butter, room temperature

  • 1 – 8 ounce package regular cream cheese, left room temperature

  • 3 pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted after measuring, or as needed

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract OR

  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon extract such as lemon, orange, strawberry, banana, etc.

  • Coconut Molasses Easter Eggs
  • 1/2 cup salted butter, softened

  • 1/4 cup egg substitute (avoids using raw egg)

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 cups unsulphured molasses

  • 10 cups powdered sugar

  • 4 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut

  • Crispy Peanut Butter Eggs
  • 1 pound confectioners sugar

  • 2 cups creamy peanut butter

  • 3 cups crisp rice cereal

  • 1/4 pound soft margarine

  • pinch of salt

  • Amish Graham Easter Eggs
  • 1 1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs

  • 1 cup shredded coconut

  • 1 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter (not “natural” style)

  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) melted unsalted butter

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (omit if using salted butter)

  • Fluffernutter Easter Eggs
  • 3/4 pound unsalted butter

  • 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, divided and as needed

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 12 ounces peanut butter (not “natural” style)

  • 8 ounces marshmallow cream

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

  • Peppermint Cream Eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated)

  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

  • 2 drops red food coloring

  • 9 to 10 cups confectioners’ sugar or as needed

  • 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candies (about 20 candies)

  • Cherry, Pineapple and Coconut Easter Eggs
  • 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, or as needed

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 (5 ounce) can evaporated milk (not sweetened condensed)

  • 1 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans

  • 1 (10 ounce) jar maraschino cherries, well drained and finely chopped

  • 1 cup shredded coconut

  • 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained very well

  • Maple Cream Easter Eggs
  • 1-1/2 pounds of confectioner’s sugar, or as needed

  • 1/4 pound salted butter, melted

  • 7 ounces of sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)

  • 2 tablespoons of corn syrup

  • 2 tablespoons of maple extract

  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

  • Hazlenut Spread Cream Eggs
  • 12 Tablespoons salted butter, softened (1 1/2 sticks)

  • 1 cup hazlenut spread

  • 1/2 cup marshmallow crea

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, or as needed

  • Coconut Cream Eggs
  • 2 pounds powdered sugar, or as needed

  • 4 ounces sweetened shredded coconut

  • 8 ounces cream cheese

  • 1/4 pound unsalted butter

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Directions

  • FOR ALL FILLINGS/EGGS
  • Confectioners’ sugar may need to be adjusted to obtain a filling that can be rolled without being too sticky or too dry.
  • Centers should “cure” after shaping/rolling and before coating by either chilling or allowing to air dry as per recipe.
  • Eggs can be coated in coating wafers (found in craft stores and cake decorating supply shops) or the “old-fashioned” method of coating in melted baking chocolate with added food-safe paraffin wax. Place chopped baking chocolate and paraffin in the top of a double boiler and melt together: use 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate and just enough paraffin wax (about 1/4 to 1/3 bar) to allow the chocolate to harden but remain shiny when a small amount is dropped onto parchment or wax paper. Adjust paraffin as needed — start with less and add more if necessary.
  • If using COATING WAFERS, melt over a double boiler, stirring occasionally. Dip using the end of the tines of a fork and tapping off the excess. If using the BAKING CHOCOLATE/PARAFFIN melt over double boiler; dip eggs by using a toothpick or thin skewer inserted in the top of the egg. Mom then went back and added a dab of the melted mixture to “seal” the hole from the toothpick.
  • Place dipped eggs on sheets lined with parchment or waxed paper and allow the chocolate to firm up. Store the finished eggs in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.
  • My Mom’s Homemade Peanut Butter Easter Eggs
  • In a large bowl, cream together the butter (or margarine) and cream cheese until smooth. Add the peanut butter and vanilla and mix until smooth. Add the coconut and mix well. Add the powdered sugar, starting with a couple cups, mix and continue to add powdered sugar as needed to get a soft filling that is not sticky and can be rolled into egg shapes using your palms. Form egg shaped balls in desired size and place on lined cookie sheet(s). Chill. Coat as desired.
  • Vanilla Buttercream Eggs (and variations)
  • In medium mixing bowl, combine butter. cream cheese and vanilla or extract of choice with electric mixer until well blended and fluffy. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar as needed and mix by hand or work until smooth. Shape into eggs as desired. Chill then coat as desired.
  • Coconut Molasses Easter Eggs
  • In large mixing bowl, beat butter, egg substitute and vanilla until creamy. Add molasses, mixing well. Gradually add powdered sugar a little at a time, mixing well after each addition until completely mixed. Add in coconut, mix, cover and chill for several hours. Shape as desired. Keep chilled until ready to dip as desired.
  • Crispy Peanut Butter Eggs
  • In mixing bowl, mix the peanut butter, crisp rice cereal, soft margarine and confectioners’ sugar as needed with your hands until fully blended. Shape as desired. Chill. Coat as desired.
  • Amish Graham Easter Eggs
  • Preheat the oven to 325F, and spread the coconut on a baking sheet. Bake until the coconut is golden brown, stirring after every 2 minutes to prevent burning. Place the toasted coconut in a bowl along with 1 cup of the graham cracker crumbs, peanut butter and 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar. Beat with electric mixer 2 minutes. Add the melted butter, vanilla, and salt. With mixer on low, mix until it is well-blended. Add the remaining powdered sugar 1 /2 cup at a time, adding just enough to make the filling firm enough to shape into eggs; may need to use hands near the end. Roll as desired. Chill, then coat as desired. While the chocolate is still wet, sprinkle the tops of the eggs with the remaining crushed graham cracker crumbs.
  • Fluffernutter Easter Eggs
  • In a large bowl, beat the butter and 1/2 pound of confectioners’ sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the salt, peanut butter, marshmallow and vanilla and mix until smooth. Mix in remaining sugar by hand, adjusting as needed until smooth and rollable. Shape as desired. Chill, then coat as desired..
  • Peppermint Cream Eggs
  • With electric mixer, beat softened butter and sweetened condensed milk together until well blended. Add the salt, extract, and food coloring. Blend well. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar by hand as needed until nearly ready to roll. Work in the crushed candy and adjust confectioners’sugar as needed until smooth and rollable. Shape as desired. Chill, then coat as desired..
  • Cherry, Pineapple and Coconut Easter Eggs
  • In a large bowl, mix or beat together the confectioners sugar, butter, nuts, cherries, pineapple and coconut. Add salt and just enough milk to bind the mixture together. Shape as desired and allow to dry on a lined baking sheet until firm. Coat as desired.
  • Maple Cream Easter Eggs
  • Melt butter in microwave safe bowl until just fully melted. Add the condensed milk, corn syrup and extracts; stir until well blended. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar until smooth and rollable. Shape as desired. Chill and coat as desired.
  • Hazlenut Spread Cream Eggs
  • Beat the butter and Nutella until creamy. Add the marshmallow cream and extract and beat again. Slowly add the powdered sugar until a soft dough forms. Shape as desired. Chill then coat as desired (delicious dipped in white coating)
  • Coconut Creme Eggs
  • In a bowl, mix cream cheese, butter, salt, and vanilla together until well blended and smooth using an electric mixer. By hand, stir in coconut, then gradually add confectioners’ sugar as needed to get a smooth, roll-able filling. Shape as desired. Chill, then coat as desired.