Make sweet or savory homemade baked soft pretzels in under an hour with a simple yeast dough. This easy small batch recipe makes 6 soft baked pretzels that are chewy on the outside and soft on the inside. Finish the pretzels with pretzel salt, savory seasoning blend, or cinnamon sugar.
Homemade seasoned Soft Pretzels Recipe
Pretzels are just for the mall anymore! You know what I’m talking about … and if you don’t, chances are I just aged myself! I love(d) the mall pretzels because they are so soft and chewy, and the variety of variety of flavors available.
The good news here – you can recreate those mall memories right at home with this easy homemade pretzel recipe!
Everything To Love About These Soft Pretzels
- Incredibly Easy To Make – The pretzels start to finish take under an hour. Which makes these great for any snack, football party, or just because!
- Simple Ingredients – You only need a few ingredients to make the pretzels, and you may already have them in our pantry: flour, yeast, salt, and sugar.
- Simple Yeast Dough – This is one bread recipe where you shouldn’t be intimidated about the kneading and proofing process of the yeast dough. Though, if you have already mastered my homemade bagels and flaky croissants, these pretzels will be a breeze!
- Shaping The Dough Is Fun – Making the pretzel shape is easier than tying a bow, and once you have made one pretzel, you’ll be a whiz! But if you are uncertain, I’ve added a helpful link in the recipe.
What You’ll Need To Make Homemade soft Pretzels
- All-Purpose Flour – I have only tested this recipe with AP flour. You can try bread flour to make the pretzels extra chewy – like I do for my chewy chocolate chip cookies.
- Salt – The dough is seasoned with a little table salt. Not to be confused with the pretzel salt to top the pretzels.
- Butter – The butter will be melted to brush over the pretzels after they are baked. It imparts lots of flavor, and also helps the seasonings to stick.
- Yeast – Active dry yeast or dry instant yeast will work. If using instant yeast, there is no need to bloom it in the water. Just mix it in with the flour.
- Brown Sugar – I like to use brown sugar for the pretzels because it imparts a richer flavor into the pretzels.
- Water – Water for the baking soda wash and to activate the yeast.
- Baking Soda – The baking soda is used to wash the pretzels before baking – to give them the color and chewy exterior.
- Pretzel Salt – If you use salt, I highly recommend pretzel salt because of the larger pieces. The little bag will last forever!
- Spices – Use the savory spice blend in the recipe, or get creative with your own mix!
- Dipping Sauce – Use the sweet honey sauce I have included in the recipe. Or, a cheese sauce, hot sauce, or mustard are other great options.
- Mixing Bowl
- Baking Sheet with Parchment Paper
- Small Bowls – To mix your seasoning and dipping sauce.
Seasoning And Topping Flavors For soft baked Pretzels
The seasoning options to top these soft pretzels is almost infinite. The buttery flavor of the homemade pretzel is delicious enough to stand on its own. Or go classic, and top with large, chunky pretzel salt.
Although, the pillowy soft snack is a great canvas to add some flavor toppings – both sweet and savory. Writing this list has me yearning for a few more batches of pretzels …
- Cheese – Broad category but need I say more?!
- Chili and Lime
- Cinnamon Sugar and Orange Zest
- Hazelnut Spread Drizzle (i.e. Nutella!) and Sliced Almonds
- Candied Ginger
- Garlic, Rosemary, and Thyme
- Cayenne, Chili Powder, Cumin, and Oregano
How About A Dipping Sauce For the Pretzels
In addition to the honey lemon sauce I have included in the recipe, I can imagine a number of additional dipping sauces to dunk your soft pretzels:
- Cheese – Melted cheese is good on just about anything!
- Mustard – Another pretzel classic. Make it honey mustard, and we have a winner.
- Melted Chocolate
- Hot Sauce
- Candy Corn Caramel Sauce – Why not go all in with a buttery sweet caramel sauce from the blog!
tips For Making soft homemade Pretzels
- Active or Instant yeast will work – I lean towards active yeast because I like to make sure it is going to work by blooming it in the water. The flip side of that is if the yeast does not get foamy, it could be old or the water could be too hot and killed it.
- If using instant yeast, you do not need to bloom it in water – Just mix the yeast in with the flour.
- You can make and knead the dough by hand or in the mixer – I prefer by hand because I like to feel the gratification of making the dough by hand.
- All-purpose flour works just fine – Even though this is a chewy bread, we are not using bread flour.
- You can make these into soft pretzel bites too – If you want bite-sized pieces, cut into 1-inch pieces once you have rolled out the dough strips.
- The baking soda wash gives the soft pretzels color and chew – This works much like boiling bagels in a baking soda bath. The baking soda wash assists with the sturdy chewy exterior of the homemade pretzel. Not to mention, it’s much easier!
FAq’s: Easy Homemade seasoned Soft pretzels
I haven’t tried it, but I think it would work fine.
Yes. I like to use brown sugar because it imparts a little more flavor to the pretzel.
You can! Just make sure to use dried seasoning so it doesn’t impact the texture of the dough.
I suppose it isn’t, but if you want the chewy exterior, I recommend it.
I recommend only a couple minutes longer. If they are baked too long, I imagine they will be too hard and chewy to be good – kind of like they are stale.
The pretzels will be fine covered at room temperature. If you are not going to eat them all right away, do not butter or season the ones you are saving. You can reheat the pretzels for a few minutes in the oven at 350F, then brush with the butter and season.
Easy Homemade Soft Pretzels
- Baking Sheet Unlined
- 3/4 cup water, warm
- 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar (or granulated white sugar)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (for brushing the baked pretzels)
Baking Soda Wash
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Sweet Dipping Sauce
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- Preheat oven to 425F degrees and adjust the oven rack to the middle position.
- Sprinkle the yeast and brown sugar on top of the warm water. Stir to mix and let sit for about 5 minutes until the yeast starts to get foamy.
- In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour and salt. Pour the yeast water over the top of and mix with a wooden spoon until the dough starts to come together and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. The dough will be scrappy and should still feel moist to the touch.
- Pour the dough onto a very lightly floured surface. Gently press into a ball and knead for about 5 minutes. The dough doesn't need to be entirely smooth, just kneaded into a tight ball – you will know when you have kneaded enough when you poke the dough with your finger and it bounces back.
- Very lightly oil the bowl you used the mix the dough. Shape the dough into a ball and place in the bowl to proof. Cover with a dish towel, set in a warm place, and proof for 30 minutes, or until the dough has doubled in size.
- While the dough is proofing, make the baking soda wash and pretzel toppings (if using). In a small bowl, mix the baking soda and water. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, add all of the savory seasonings and stir to combine. In another small bowl, add all of the sweet glaze/dipping sauce ingredients, and stir to combine.
- Pour the proofed dough onto your work surface no flour is needed to roll and shape the pretzels). Gently shape into a log and cut with a sharp knife, or bench scraper into 6 equal-sized pieces. Using the pads of your hands, roll the pieces into strips about 18" long.
- Shaping the pretzel – place the dough strip into a U shape. Cross the tops once, then once more. Take the top ends and fold them down onto the bottom of the U. This is a good demo with pictures on how to shape pretzels.
- Place the shaped pretzels on the baking sheet and lightly brush with the baking soda wash. Note – If using pretzel salt or flaky sea salt for your topping, add after you brush the pretzels with the soda wash.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the tops are light golden brown. The pretzels are soft baked. Bake for 1 to 2 minutes longer if you prefer a not-so-soft pretzel.
- Remove from the oven and immediately brush each pretzel liberally with the melted butter. Then top with the toppings. The pretzels are great warm or at room temperature.
- Texture – The pretzels are soft and chewy. Bake for 1 to 2 minutes longer if you prefer a not-so-soft pretzel.
- Active vs. Instant Yeast – If using active yeast, follow the recipe instructions. If using instant yeast: Mix the yeast with the flour along with the sugar. Then add the water as instructed.
- Serving Size – I haven’t tested it, but I think doubling the recipe to make a larger batch will work fine.
- Toppings – Get creative with the toppings! Create your own savory blend, or keep it classic with pretzel salt, or cinnamon sugar.
- Dipping Sauce – Cheese sauce, hot sauce, or even mustard are other delicious options to dip these pretzels.
- Storing – The pretzels can be stored covered at room temperature. However, if storing longer than 1 day, I recommend storing the pretzels un-buttered and un-seasoned. They can then be reheated for a few minutes (warm to the touch) in a 350F oven. Brush with butter and season after heating. To experience the best flavor and texture, I highly recommend enjoying the pretzels the day they are baked.