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Soft Pretzel Recipe

This soft pretzel recipe is SO EASY. With a few basic ingredients you can have warm, soft, buttery pretzels ready to enjoy!

Soft Pretzels

I have officially jumped on the bread making bandwagon. We have been on a serious snack kick and pretzels were requested by the little guy. How can I say no to a need for carbs? 

Pause to let you all know that my track record with bread is not great. I have more fails than successes, however THIS recipe is no fail. 

First attempt was gold. Small minor changes and we have ourselves a go-to soft pretzel that is incredibly soft, has that slight chewy exterior, and is incredibly easy to make. I could not wait to share. 

Homemade Soft Pretzels

Rolling pretzel dough

Ingredients you need to make big soft pretzels:

I mentioned earlier, this recipe uses all pantry staples. You should have most of all of these already on hand. That means you can make pretzels TODAY!

  • Yeast– Here’s the deal… I used active yeast the first time and instant the second. Both work. I’ll walk you through the steps for each below.
  • Water– Regular ol’ h20. It is best to have this room temperature or lukewarm. 
  • Sugar– Granulated sugar. Just a small amount.
  • Salt– Two types. Regular baking salt for inside the dough and a more coarse salt for the top. 
  • Flour– All-purpose is what I recommend. I have not made this recipe with other dough varieties. 
  • Baking soda– Surprise! The baking soda actually does not go into the dough. We will talk about this a little later on.
  • Butter– Optional, but very yummy addition.

Difference between instant yeast and active dry yeast:

Essentially, both versions of the yeast work the same way. They activate and help create the light and fluffy bread we know and love. The big difference? Instant yeast is mixed directly into the dry ingredients while active needs to be dissolved in water before you use it. 

Dissolving the active yeast activates it allowing it to do its thang and create bread magic. Do not skip this step!

boiled pretzels waiting to be baked

What is an alkaline water bath and what does it do for pretzels?

There are so many components to this recipe. Once you have tried it you will realize it is incredibly simple. It only seems daunting at first. But you are looking at an hour and a half from start to finish. That also includes about 45 minutes of resting time. 

One of the big random things is the baking soda “bath.” This is also known as an alkaline bath. What this does for your pretzels is creates that beautiful chewy outside and also stops your pretzels from puffing too much. Essentially, it gives you that classic pretzel flavor. 

Pretzels being brushed by butter

How to make buttery soft pretzel recipe:

  1. Dissolve your yeast in warm water in the bowl of an electric mixer, allowing it to sit for up to 10 minutes or until foamy. 
  2. Slowly stir in the sugar, salt, and flour until the dough starts to come together. 
  3. Switch to a dough hook, or turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. 
  4. Knead 5 to 7 minutes or until the dough becomes smooth. 
  5. Cover with a clean towel and allow to dough to rest for 30 minutes or until it has risen to double in size. 
  6. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces. 
  7. Roll each piece into 20 inch ropes. Twist into that classic pretzel shape. 
  8. Combine the 1 cup boiled water with the baking soda until somewhat dissolved. Pour into a shallow 9″ dish. 
  9. Working with 3 to 4 pretzels at a time, place in the baking soda mixture for two minutes. Spoon some of the water onto the top of each pretzel.
  10. Remove and place on a baking tray. Repeat with the remaining pretzels. 
  11. Allow the pretzels to rest and somewhat dry for about 10 minutes.
  12. Sprinkle with coarse salt if desired and bake at 470 degrees for 8 minutes. 
  13. Brush with butter and serve.
Buttery Soft Pretzels

Make ahead and freezer instructions for this Soft Pretzel Recipe:

Too many pretzels? You can make these ahead and freeze them!

  1. Make the recipe as stated. 
  2. Once your pretzels have cooled, wrap each individually in plastic wrap and place in a freezer safe container or zip top bag. 
  3. Freeze. 
  4. When ready to use, heat in an oven at 350 degrees for roughly 10 minutes or until heated through. 
Homemade Soft Pretzels

More Bread Recipes:

Soft Pretzel Recipe

Soft Pretzel Recipe

Yield: 8 pretzels
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 28 minutes

This recipe for soft pretzels is SO EASY. With a few basic ingredients you can have warm, soft, buttery pretzels ready to enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2-1/2 + 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • coarse salt, optional

Instructions

1. Dissolve your yeast in 1 cup warm water in the bowl of an electric mixer, allowing it to sit for up to 10 minutes or until foamy. Slowly stir in the sugar, salt, and flour until the dough starts to come together. 

2. Switch to a dough hook, or turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead 5 to 7 minutes or until the dough becomes smooth. 

3. Cover with a clean towel and allow to dough to rest for 30 minutes or until it has risen to double in size. 

4. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece into 20 inch ropes. Twist into that classic pretzel shape. 

5. Combine the 1 cup boiled water with the baking soda until somewhat dissolved. Pour into a shallow 9″ dish. 

6. Working with 3 to 4 pretzels at a time, place in the baking soda mixture for two minutes. Spoon some of the water onto the top of each pretzel. Remove and place on a baking tray. Repeat with the remaining pretzels. 

7. Allow the pretzels to rest and somewhat dry for about 10 minutes.

8. Sprinkle with coarse salt if desired and bake at 470 degrees for 8 minutes. 

9. Brush with butter and serve.

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This recipe for soft pretzels is SO EASY. With a few basic ingredients you can have warm, soft, buttery pretzels ready to enjoy!

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