These tasty soft pretzels are easy to make at home and turn out soft and chewy straight from the oven. With minimal resting time, you can have freshly made soft pretzels in less than an hour!
We used to buy these pretzels at Costco when I was young. We ate a LOT of them in our family. They make the best snack, especially slathered with spicy mustard.
Now that I can make them myself, I’m thrilled. They’re way easier to make than you’re probably assuming. Especially if you hear that there’s a baking soda bath involved. Believe me, they’re incredibly simple.
» On a bread kick? Here’s an easy beer bread you can make at home.
How to Make Soft Pretzels
You can make the dough by hand in a mixing bowl or with a stand mixer. The difference is just in time and energy. I usually don’t use my stand mixer, because it’s easy enough to do without it, and I’m lazy.
In whatever bowl you’re using, mix together the warm water, salt, and sugar. Add the yeast, and let rest for 5 minutes until yeast starts to foam.
If your yeast doesn’t foam, it’s likely old or inactive. You’ll need to start again with a fresher yeast. Going ahead without the foam will lead to flat pretzels that don’t rise.
Add the flour and vegetable oil to the bowl and mix it well to form a dough. Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead for 3-5 minutes to form a smooth dough. If you’re using the stand mixer, you can just knead the dough in the mixer with the bread hook.
Put the dough back in the bowl and cover with plastic wrap to rest in a warm place for at least 10 minutes, up to 1 hour. I prefer to rest it for the full hour, if possible, because the yeast has more time to do it’s thing, but if you’re pressed for time, it’s fine to go with less time.
Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C).
Cut the dough into 8 pieces. Roll each into a thin rope about 20 inches long. This is where it sounds complicated, but it’s not, I promise.
Bring the two ends together to form a circle, with the ends facing you. Twist the ends together once. Now it looks a little like an ankh symbol ☥. Fold the twisted ends up over the top of the circle to form a pretzel shape.
To keep the twisted end from coming loose, press the two pieces together where they overlap.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add baking soda. Once the water is boiling, lower a pretzel on a strainer or slotted spoon into the water. Boil each pretzel for 30 seconds per side.
Meanwhile, whisk the egg in a bowl and get your basting brush ready.
Once boiled, transfer the pretzels to a wire rack and brush the tops with the egg wash, then sprinkle with course salt. Morton’s coarse salt is fine. If you’re buying it on Amazon, try this SaltWorks Mediterra Coarse Sea Salt.
Bake for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown. Eat them while they’re hot!
But if you can’t, they’re good for a day or so. You can reheat them in the toaster or oven, to get them nice and warm.
Can I Freeze Soft Pretzels?
Yes, you can freeze soft pretzels. They’ll last for a month in the freezer, if stored properly.
Wrap them well in plastic wrap and put them in an air tight container to keep ice crystals from forming on their surface.
To reheat, place them in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 5-8 minutes.
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These tasty soft pretzels are easy to make at home and turn out soft and chewy straight from the oven.
- 1 1/2 cups water (360 mL), warm
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 packet active dry yeast, 2 1/4 tsp
- 4 1/2 cups flour (565 g)
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup baking soda (120 g)
- 8 cups water (1900 ml)
- 1 egg, beaten
- coarse salt
- In a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the warm water, salt, and sugar. Add the yeast, and let rest for 5 minutes until yeast starts to foam.
- Add flour and oil to the bowl and mix well to form a dough. Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead for 3-5 minutes to form a smooth dough.
- Put the dough back in the bowl and cover with plastic wrap to rest in a warm place for at least 10 minutes, up to 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C).
- Cut dough into 8 pieces. Roll each into a thin rope about 20 inches long. Bring the two ends together to form a circle, then twist the ends together once. Fold the twisted ends up over the top of the circle to form a pretzel shape.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add baking soda. Boil each pretzel for 30 seconds per side.
- Transfer pretzels to a wire rack and brush the tops with the egg wash, then sprinkle with salt.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown.
- If you don't have time to rise the dough for an hour, it can be cut down to 15 minutes. They do turn out slightly fluffier and light with the full hour rise time.
- It's okay to skip the baking soda bath, but that is what gives the dough its chewy texture.
- Once baked, the pretzels can be frozen for up to a month. You can reheat them in the toaster or in the oven.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 321Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 4161mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 9g
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Laura is the founder and editor of the travel blogs Savored Sips and Savored Journeys. She is dedicated to sharing the best information about drinks found around the world.