soft pretzels from heaven. not the mall.

pretzels are friends of beer, so pretzels are friends of mine.

if you like eating soft pretzels, you should make these! maybe you’re an experienced baker, or maybe if you’ve never worked with a yeast dough before; either way, these couldn’t be easier to pull off. every time i make them — every time! — i find myself thinking, “oh YEAH. these are almost no work at all.” make a batch yourself and have some friends over. we did, and the pretzels disappeared so fast that i didnt get to photograph them alongside their other friend, mustard. (so, i made another batch.)

these are super-great for making ahead and bringing to parties, too. where you’ll make new friends. who will want to bring beer over to your house, if you promise to have homemade pretzels around.

i don’t hate it!

these are as chewy and flavorful as they look… i could eat them every day. i recommend a spicy-brown mustard accompaniment, but a cheesy-sauce option would not be amiss.

there isn’t a lot else to say except get to the recipe.


soft pretzels

recipe from
makes 16
obviously, i am not proficient at shaping pretzels… so i usually just make them into pretzel rings. (just as delicious!) i’ve also shaped them into little donut-holes, bite-sized to feed a crowd.
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for kneading
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine
  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • kosher or pretzel salt, for finishing

in a large bowl, whisk  sugar, salt and yeast together, then add the water and let it sit for about 5 minutes. add flour and melted butter, and stir until combined. turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 5 minutes, until smooth and elastic.

shape into a smooth ball and let rise in a lightly oiled bowl, covered tightly with plastic wrap, for one hour in a warm, draft-free place.

preheat oven to 450. fill a large skillet about halfway with water, and bring baking soda and water to a boil. meanwhile, divide the dough in half; then divide each portion in half again, repeating until there are 16 even portions. roll each portion into a rope 6-ish inches long and shape into pretzel twists. gently place 4 or 5 pretzels at a time into the boiling water; when they float, flip them and boil another 60 seconds. remove with a spider or slotted spoon and arrange on parchment-lined baking sheet (i needed two sheets for all the pretzels). sprinkle with salt, and bake for 10 – 12 minutes, or until a deep brown.

best served slightly warm, in my opinion. store in an air-tight container at room temperature — reheat in a warm oven to bring back their original chewy softness.

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8 thoughts on “soft pretzels from heaven. not the mall.

  1. Bethany F. says:

    Casey thanks you. He’s been bugging me to make soft pretzels for years!

  2. Jennifer says:

    Yeah. I’m making these tomorrow. (One handed pretzel shaping. Should be interesting :)
    Great photos, btw!

  3. I hate reading your posts late at night because now I’m hungry and it’s too late to bake these! I am the worst baker ever, but this week I’m going to try these! I love pretzels!
    Thanks Sophie!

  4. beautiful! I was justing wondering yesterday about how hard would it be to make pretzels after seeing a picture in the food52 email :-)

  5. i tried making pretzels once. i bombed. i think it was because i couldn’t shape them into proper pretzel shapes and that messed with my confidence and it showed. yours, however, look lovely.

  6. Sophie33 says:

    I never tasted pretzels before but I also live in Belgium! :( I must make these beauties to know what they taste like! :) They look glorious & ooh so appetizing too!

  7. These look delicious!

  8. Sandi says:

    Oh, YUM!!! What a great idea…my kids would love these!

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