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+ servings
homemade pretzel bites on white tray with cheese sauce
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5 from 8 votes

Homemade Buttery Soft Pretzel Bites

These buttery soft pretzel bites has everything you get in regular pretzel and it’s much easier to make. No fancy twisting! All the goodness of pretzels in bite sizes!
Prep Time50 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 195kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups warm water
  • 2 ¼ teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter melted (should not be scorching hot)
  • 4 to 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour plus more for counter surface and adjust dough consistency if very sticky
  • 2 quarts or 8 cups water
  • cup baking soda
  • 1 egg beaten
  • Coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Instructions

  • The first step towards fail-proof pretzels starts with the dough. There’s a short cut way for pretzels, using store bought biscuit dough but we will be making it from scratch.
  • Note: Use stand mixer! It’s makes your work easier! If you don’t have stand mixer, use your hands to make dough or use hand mixers.
  • In this recipe I’m using my hand mixer.
  • In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment mix warm water, melted butter, active dry yeast and light brown sugar for few seconds. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes.
  • Switch to dough hook attachment. Slowly add flour in parts (1 cup at a time) and kosher salt mix on low speed until well combined.
  • Increase the speed and continue to mix. If dough is very sticky add 1 tablespoon flour at a time and keep mixing it. Continue mixing dough for about 5 minutes or until smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Poke the dough with your fingers and if it bounces back, dough is ready. Transfer smooth dough to a big bowl greased with vegetable oil. Cover with greased cling wrap or cloth. Set it aside to rest for 30 minutes in warm place until it is doubled in size.
  • If you used hands to make dough you have to knead the dough to make it smooth.
  • Lightly sprinkle flour on clean dry surface. Remove dough from the bowl on to the surface. Knead dough for 3 to 5 minutes or until smooth.
  • Then transfer dough to big bowl greased with vegetable oil. Cover with greased cling wrap or cloth. Set it aside to rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour in warm place until it is doubled in size.
  • While dough is resting pre heat oven to 425 degree Farhenheit (or 220 degree centigrade). Line a baking sheet with greased parchment paper or silicon mat. Or generously spray oil over baking tray and bake directly on it.
  • In a large pot bring 8 to 9 cups of water to boil.
  • Punch down dough that has doubled in size. Knead it for a minute.
  • With sharp knife divide/cut dough into 8 equal sections.
  • Roll each section with your hands to form long ropes.
  • Cut the rope into 1 ½ inch bite size pieces.
  • When pretzels are cut and ready to cook, carefully add baking soda into boiling water.
  • Watch your hands while adding baking soda into boiling water. It will boil and pour out depending on the size of the pan used.
  • Using slotted spoon drop 10 to 12 pretzels into boiling water for a quick boil of 20 seconds. Remove pretzels immediately from boiling water and drain as much as you can. Transfer to greased/lined baking sheet. Make sure the bites aren’t touching. It will stick to each other and break even if left for few seconds.
  • Arrange pretzel bites with gap into them. Don’t over crowd the tray.
  • Repeat above step for remaining pretzels.
  • Beat a large egg with 1 teaspoon water.
  • Brush beaten egg over each pretzel. Immediately sprinkle coarse sea salt on top of each pretzel.
  • Bake in pre heated oven at 425F (or 220C) in batches for about 15 minutes. Rotate baking tray 180 degrees half way during the baking for even browning.
  • Once golden brown, remove baking tray from oven. Immediately brush generous amount of melted butter on each pretzels.
  • Serve it immediately with cheese sauce.
  • If you have leftovers, transfer to air tight containers and store it at room temperature for 3 days.

Video

Notes

Yeast – This recipe uses active dry yeast. You can switch to rapid rise or instant yeast instead if available Make sure your yeast is not past it’s expiry date.
If expired yeast is used dough will not rise and pretzels will be hard.
Water Temperature – water should be luke warm while adding it to yeast. If it’s scorching hot it’ll kill the yeast.
Dough Consistency – different brands of flour and humidity in your kitchen can affect the consistency of the dough. Check for dough consistency while mixing. After adding in all flour mentioned in the recipe if dough is still too sticky, add few tablespoons of flour at a time.
To check if dough is ready to knead – in the stand mixer dough will pull away from the side of the bowl. And if you poke the dough with your fingers, it should bounce back.
Dough Resting Time – you want to rest the dough until it’s doubled in size. Time will vary depending on the room temperature, humidity in your kitchen, the flour quality. If it’s hot day outside, your dough will rise much faster.
Knead The Dough – I love to give my dough a little massage or knead both before resting it and after it have doubled in size. This will smoothen the dough and makes it easy to work with it. I bet the texture of pretzels gets better too with a gentle knead.
Boiling Water – use stock pot or very large pan for boiling water.
Baking Soda – Make sure you add baking soda to boiling water very slowly. Because it will bubble up. Watch your hands when you add baking soda into the pot.
Alternatively stir together water and baking soda in large pot and then bring it to boil, so you don’t have to be concerned.
Don’t skip the baking soda bath -  A quick dunk in boiling water-baking soda mixture will give the pretzels it’s authentic golden brown color. Dunking it for a brief 15 to 20 seconds is what would give their pretzels it’s characteristics taste and the authentic pretzel color.
Yes, it’s ⅓ cup. You won’t taste the baking soda. If you skip on dunking in pretzel bites into baking soda bath, your pretzel bites won’t taste much like pretzels at all!
I strongly recommend you use the full amount of baking soda in water.
Coarse Sea Salt Sprinkle – Use salt grinder to sprinkle sea salt evenly on pretzels (can use hands to sprinkle if you don’t have salt grinder)
Use Middle Rack Of The Oven – pretzel bites will cook slowly and evenly in middle rack. If it’s on low rack, pretzels will brown faster as it’s warmer towards the bottom on the oven. Chances are that pretzels will stick to the parchment paper or baking tray if your rack is low.
DON'T SKIP Melted Butter –I recommend putting melted butter on top, after they come out of the oven. It gives it a more Auntie Anne’s flavor.
 
Nutritional Info – Please keep in mind that nutritional information provided is only a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.

Nutrition

Calories: 195kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 1123mg | Potassium: 77mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 49IU | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 2mg