soft pretzels: so easy, the kids can join in
Some things in life can actually be easier than they look. Take these soft pretzels. Who would have thought I could gift my friends with soft and chewy homemade pretzels, straight out of my own oven? I mean, these twisty treats are usually reserved for shopping mall meanderings.
Before any assumptions can be made, know this: I’m the mom that chooses sprinkles over frosting because tossing sprinkles onto 3-ingredient shortbread cookies is way easier than frosting anything.
The point is, these homemade pretzels are 100% doable and fun to make, even if you’ve never baked bread in your life. Bonus: if you’ve got a budding little baker in the house, this is a super fun recipe to do together.
Tips for Pretzel Making Success
- Use a digital kitchen thermometer for accurate water temperature, as it needs to be warm enough (but not hot) in order for yeast to thrive.
- Be sure your package of active yeast is fresh.
- Knead dough for the full 5 minutes on floured surface; if it’s too sticky, add a tablespoon of flour at a time. If too dry, add a tablespoon of water at a time. Texture of dough should be like pliable play-dough.
- Younger kids can get in on the kneading fun
- Older kids can help shape the pretzels.
- Everyone can join in the fun of topping pretzels with various options
Toppings and Dips for Soft Pretzels
- Flaky sea salt is classic
- Sprinkle warm pretzels with finely grated/powder parmesan cheese
- This Queso Cheese Sauce stays rich, smooth, and melty without clumping up
- Cinnamon sugar is fantastic for a sweet alternative
- Try this Magic Honey Mustard Sauce for dipping
- Homemade ranch dressing or Creamy Caesar dressing are both delicious as dipping sauce
Common Question and Answers:
Q: What’s the best way to store soft pretzels?
A: Chances are very high that your homemade pretzels will be snatched up before you get a chance to store them. That said, once the pretzels are fully cooled to room temperature, you can store them in an airtight container for a day or two, or freeze them for later.
Q: Can soft pretzels be frozen?
A: Yes, your homemade soft pretzels can absolutely be frozen. Wait until they are completely cooled to room temp, place them in an airtight container, and freeze.
Q: How do you reheat homemade pretzels?
A: If pretzels were frozen, let them defrost at room temperature first. To microwave, place pretzels on a glass plate and loosely cover with damp cloth/towel. Heat for 15 seconds at a time, until desired warmth.
Q: How can I keep my homemade pretzels warm for a party?
A: Let baked pretzels cool at room temperature, while oven cools off. Place pretzels in an oven-safe container with lid, or wrap them up in foil, and place on middle rack of oven set to “warm.”
Other things to Bake and Eat:
- How to Make Flatbread in 15 Minutes
- Crusty French Bread Recipe
- How to Make Olive Garden Breadsticks
- Rustic Rosemary Garlic Bread
- Parmesan Garlic Pull-Apart Bread Rolls
- How to Make Homemade Dinner Rolls in 1 Hour
Try this Amazing Garlic Rosemary Bread, Too:
Easy Soft Pretzel Recipe
- 1 ½ cups warm water, 110-115F
- 2 TB white sugar
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 4 ½ cups flour
- ¾ stick salted butter, melted
- canola, olive, or vegetable oil
- ⅔ cup baking soda, mixed in 10 cups of water
- 2 egg yolks and 1 TB water, beaten together
- Optional Toppings: coarse sea salt, butter, mustard, cheese, cinnamon sugar, parmesan, etc.
- Combine first 4 ingredients in large bowl, mixing it in a little. Let sit until mixture foams. Add flour and butter. Mix until combined, by hand or stand mixer.
- Knead until dough is smooth and no longer sticks to bowl (about 5 min). Put dough into well oiled bowl and turn dough so it is oiled on all surface areas.
- Cover with damp towel and set in warm place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.The actual time it takes to double depends, of course, on the temperature. If the room is cool, I set my dough in the oven, with only the light turned on. If you do that, just make sure you remove the dough before preheating oven.
- Preheat oven to 450F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper, and grease paper with oil.
- Bring baking soda and 10-cup water mixture to a boil in large pan.
- Divide dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each one into a 1 1/2 - 2 ft rope. Lightly oil working surface if needed.
- Making a U-shape with rope, cross the ends over each other and form pretzel shape. Press ends tightly in, so they don't come apart while baking.
- One at a time, carefully lift and place each pretzel into boiling water for just 30 seconds. This gives it that wonderful outer texture.
- Return to parchment-lined pan. Brush tops of pretzels with egg/water mixture. If desired, sprinkle lightly with coarse salt. Bake 9-10 minor until golden brown.
- Remove from oven and brush with butter, if desired. Sprinkle desired toppings onto pretzels. Cool on rack a few minutes before taking a bite.
Did you make this?
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