Soft Pretzels

soft pretzels with cheese sauce

You know when you go to a baseball game and you see the soft pretzels rotating in those metal machines. They look so nice and fluffy with big granules of salt. So you wait in line for 500 hours and subsequently miss the only home run of the game. But it’s okay, because you know you are going to enjoy a nice warm pretzel with hot melty cheese. WRONG. The last time I went to a baseball game my pretzel was hard, and stale, and so disappointing. Especially for $9.50 or whatever Dodger Stadium likes to charge you. Don’t be a victim of pretzel fraud! Just make your own, guaranteed fresh and delicious every time.

soft pretzel



Making your own pretzels is so worth it you guys! After that first bite I was hooked, I’m never buying them at the mall or the baseball game again. They are actually pretty simple to make yourself. There is no kneading, just a tiny little rolling and stretching. I thought making the knot would be hard, and I would have to read the directions over and over again. I hate reading directions, so I was really dreading that part. But I just read them once and I was good to go. Roll out a long noodle, then make a U-shape, and cross the ends. The end. Almost.


To get that perfect golden brown color you got to give them a quick bath in boiling water and baking soda. The alkali solution is what gives pretzels their signature color, if you skip this step you are essentially left with a bagel. Authentic pretzels are made with lye and boiling water, but who the heck has lye? Baking soda does a pretty good job.

soft pretzel



The pretzel recipe is from Brown Eyed Baker. Cheese sauce adapted from The Beach House Kitchen. 

Soft Pretzels
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 8
  • 1½ cups warm water
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (1 packet)
  • 4½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 10 cups water
  • ⅔ cups baking soda
  • 1 egg yolk + 1 tablespoon water, whisked together (for egg wash)
  • Coarse salt, for sprinkling
Cheese Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp (or more) spicy brown mustard
  1. Combine the water, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, until the mixture begins to foam.
  2. Add the flour and butter. Combine with spoon.
  3. Use the dough hook attachment to mix on low speed until all of the ingredients are combined. Increase the mixer speed to medium and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. Remove the dough from the mixer and place in a clean, oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm spot until the dough has doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and spray with cooking oil. set aside.
  6. Combine the water and baking soda in a large pot. Bring the mixture to a rolling boil.
  7. Turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Make a U-shape with the rope, holding the ends of the rope, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place onto the parchment-lined baking sheet.
  8. Place the pretzels into the boiling water, 2 or 3 at a time (or however many will fit comfortably given the size of your pot – don’t crowd them), for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large, flat spatula. Place the boiled pretzels back on the baking sheet, brush the top of each pretzel with the egg wash and sprinkle with coarse salt.
  9. Bake 12 minutes or until dark golden brown in color.
Cheese Sauce
  1. In a medium saucepan, melt 2 Tbsp. butter over medium heat.
  2. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  3. Slowly whisk in the milk and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly, about 4-5 minutes.
  4. Lower the heat and add the cheese and cayenne pepper. Whisk until the cheese is melted and smooth.
  5. Whisk in the mustard until well combined.

10 thoughts on “Soft Pretzels

  1. These are better than any than any pretzels I have ever had, so tasty you don’t need any dipping sauce or even mustard to go with it.

    1. Hm, that is weird, I don’t know why it would disappear. Usually it doesn’t go away until you hit the x. Try again if you can.

  2. Whooot?? Prezels are that expensive over there?? Well, they might cost much more in a stadium over here in Germany too. But usually you’ll find a decent prezel for about $0.80 at a bakery over here.
    These look awesome btw. But the directions scared me a bit I have to admit 😀

    1. Yea, a mall pretzel would probably be $5, but definitely not 80 cents! That’s a bargain! I’m sure they are better over there in Germany too!

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