Delicious homemade soft pretzels with a chewy exterior and a pillowy soft inside. These pretzels are much easier to make than you may think. Whether you want sweet or savoury pretzels, both options use the same dough and a speedy two-stage cooking process. The best part? You probably already have the ingredients.
What you’ll need to make homemade soft pretzels
To make these tasty soft pretzels, you will need the following basic ingredients:
- Instant yeast
- Brown sugar
- Unsalted butter
- Plain flour
- Bicarbonate of soda (not baking powder, there is a difference!)
How to shape pretzels
You can shape your pretzels however you like but here’s an easy-peasy way to get that traditional pretzel shape. It just takes a bit of practice.
Roll a 90 gram piece of pretzel dough into a long 22 inch rope/sausage shape. Form a circle, twist the ends and fold over.
Et voilà – there’s your pretzel! Easier than you thought, right?
Sweet and savoury pretzel ideas
Classic salted pretzels:
For traditional salted pretzels, simply sprinkle coarse sea salt over the pretzels before baking. You can buy specific salt for pretzels but it’s tricky to get hold of here in the UK. Instead, we like to use Maldon salt.
Cinnamon sugar pretzels:
For cinnamon sugar pretzels, brush your warm, baked pretzels with melted butter and dip in a mix of cinnamon and sugar. We use around 150g granulated sugar mixed with 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon – you can add more or less depending on what you like.
Homemade Soft Pretzels
- 350 ml warm water
- 2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter melted and cooled
- 500 grams plain flour
Bicarbonate of soda cooking water
- 100 grams bicarbonate of soda (not baking powder!)
- 2000 ml water
- In a large mixing bowl, mix the yeast and warm water together. Allow to sit for 1 minute.
- Mix in the salt, brown sugar and melted butter.
- Gradually add the flour and mix with a wooden spoon until a dough is formed. If the dough is still sticky, add more flour. When it's ready to knead, the dough should bounce back when you poke it with your finger.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes. Shape into a ball and cover with a towel. Allow to rest for 10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Line two baking trays with parchment paper.
- Divide the dough into 90 gram pieces.
- Roll a 90 gram piece of dough into a 22 inch rope/sausage shape. Form a circle by bringing the two ends together at the top. Twist the ends together once. Fold the ends back down towards yourself and press them down to form a pretzel shape.
- Add the water and bicarbonate of soda to a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Drop 1-2 pretzels into the boiling water for 30 seconds. Use a slotted spoon to lift the pretzels out of the water and allow the excess water to drip off. Place pretzel onto the prepared baking tray. If making salted pretzels, sprinkle each pretzel with coarse sea salt.
- Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- If making cinnamon and sugar pretzels, melt 50g of unsalted butter and brush the baked and warm pretzels with the melted butter. Sprinkle or dip the tops into a mix of cinnamon and sugar.
- Enjoy! Pretzels will keep for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
Want to bake something different? Check out more of our baking recipes here.