Soft Pretzel Recipe
Soft Pretzel Recipe – Homemade chewy, super soft pretzels stuffed with melty cheddar cheese & savory herbs, finished off with a light sprinkle of sea salt. Fast, easy and a family favorite!
** PLEASE READ: There isn’t any actual garlic in the recipe!! We originally had fresh garlic in the recipe, but the garlic flavor was overpowering so we used chopped onions and parsley instead, which gives the pretzels a milder garlic flavor!
Introducing: Homemade Garlic Cheddar Soft Pretzels.
These homemade pretzels are dangerously easy. Seriously. Make them once and you will lose all fears of homemade pretzels once and for all. I promise. If we can make them, so can you.
Last week, when we had another wave of snow along with another few days off from school, I decided it would be the perfect time to tackle homemade pretzels. What better way to spend a snow day than experimenting in the kitchen next to the warmth of the hot oven?
Let me just say, these pretzels turned out way better than I ever expected. They’re so fluffy. So soft. So wonderful. So heavenly. And…. SO easy. You’ve GOTTA make these!
1. What makes these pretzels so easy? Instead of the boiling method typically used to create the classic texture to the outer layer, I simply used an egg bath. There is simply no need to go through all the trouble of boiling each individual pretzel. An egg wash is so much easier and less intimidating, yet still leaves you with that glossy outer layer and fluffy inner layer that a soft pretzel is known for.
2. This recipe calls for bread flour. The difference between bread flour and all purpose flour is that bread flour is made from hard, high-protein wheat. It also has more gluten strength and protein content than all-purpose flour. So what does this all mean? It means that bread flour leaves you with a fuller/fluffier/chubbier pretzel.
** For a heartier version, you could do half whole-wheat flour, half bread flour.
3. Use brown sugar instead of white sugar. It gives the pretzels an extra depth of flavor from the molasses in the brown sugar.
4. These pretzels are stuffed with melty cheddar cheese, dried parsley flakes, and dried chopped onion. Even though there isn’t any actual garlic in these pretzels, the onion and parsley mixes with the cheddar and leaves you with this incredible cheesy garlic bread flavor stuffed into this pretzel.
5. Don’t be scared of kneading! Kneading makes bread and rolls light, airy, and chewy. It’s a crucial step in making yeast breads and it so easy to learn… I learned from this video. Watch 0:25-1:10. The video says to knead the dough for 6-8 minutes, but this dough really only needs about 1-2 minutes.
6. Halfway through baking, brush the pretzels you must with melted butter. Brushing the butter on halfway through gives the butter a chance to dissolve so of it’s greasiness and wedge itself into all the nooks and crannies of the pretzel before the pretzels come out the oven.
** Be careful to not knock the sea salt off the pretzels when you brush on the butter.
Shaping the Pretzels
Above is a visual of how to shape the pretzels. There is no rolling pin required.
With a sharp knife, cut ball of dough in half and then into thirds to make 6 smaller balls of dough. Each ball should be a little over 1/2 cup. This measurement does not have to be exact. Use as much or little dough for each pretzel as you wish – the size of the pretzel is completely up to you.
Take each ball of dough and roll into a rope. As even in diameter as you can get it. My ropes were about twenty five inches long. Feel free to make your pretzels as thick or as thin as you wish. I personally like thicker pretzels, but make sure you do not make your ropes too thick because the dough will expand quite a bit in the oven.
These pretzels are quick, easy, and chewy. A perfectly approachable recipe for beginners, adults, kids, and all soft-pretzel lovers. Enjoy! 🙂
Homemade Cheddar Garlic Soft Pretzels
Homemade chewy, super soft pretzels stuffed with melty cheddar cheese & savory herbs, finished off with a light sprinkle of sea salt. Fast, easy and a family favorite!
For the pretzel dough:
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 Tablespoon instant yeast (such as Red Star Platinum Instant Yeast)
- 3 1/2 cups bread flour
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- 2 Tablespoons dried parsley flakes, more for topping
- 1 1/2 tablespoons dried minced onion
For the egg wash:
- 1 large egg
- 2 Tablespoons water
- For the topping:
- sea salt, for topping
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
To make the dough:
- Combine water, yeast, and sugar in bowl of a stand mixer that is fitted with a dough hook, until fairly mixed, about one minute. Some clusters of yeast will remain. Let yeast/water rest for 5 minutes.
- In medium bowl combine flour and salt. Add flour and salt mixture to the water and yeast and knead for 2 minutes. If dough is super sticky add small amounts of flour until dough stops sticking to sides. I had to add about 1/4 cup more. Do not add more than 1/2 cup. Add the cheese, parsley, and onions and mix until just combined. The parsley and onions are what give the “garlic” flavor, so don’t be confused that there isn’t any actual garlic in this recipe. 🙂
- Let rest for 15 minutes.
To shape the pretzels:
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Knead the dough for 1-2 minutes (see post for a video explaining how to knead) and shape into a ball. With a sharp knife, cut ball of dough in half and then into thirds to make 6 smaller balls of dough. Each ball should be a little over 1/2 cup. This measurement does not have to be exact. Use as much or little dough for each pretzel as you wish – the size of the pretzel is completely up to you.
- Take each ball of dough and roll into a rope. As even in diameter as you can get it. My ropes were about twenty five inches long. Feel free to make your pretzels as thick or as thin as you wish. I personally like thicker pretzels, but make sure you do not make your ropes too thick because the dough will expand quite a bit in the oven.
- To shape the pretzel, take the ends of the rope and draw them together so the dough forms a circle. Twist the ends, then bring them towards yourself and press them down into a pretzel shape. See above for link to visual instructions.
- In a small bowl, beat the egg and water together and pour into a shallow bowl or pie dish. Dunk the shaped pretzel into the egg wash (both sides). Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and sprayed with nonstick baking spray. Sprinkle the tops of the pretzels with salt and parsley.
- Bake for 10 minutes, remove the pretzels from the oven and carefully brush with melted butter before returning them to the oven to bake for another 5 minutes.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool and enjoy. Serve warm or at room temperature. Pretzels may be stored in an airtight container or zipped top bag for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
Mmm … I love soft pretzels! Thanks for sharing this delicious sounding recipe:)
Thanks, Ginnie! 🙂
These pretzels look FANTASTIC 🙂
We love pretzels but I’ve never tried with cheese and/or garlic
I’m definitely going to try
Thanks, Winnie! Hope you like them 🙂
These look wonderful! I’ve tried making dough in my mixer a few times, and more often than not, it ends up being a long cylinder of dough thwacking around the bowl, looking like it’s going to come over the edge and out of the bowl completely. I don’t think that’s what is supposed to happen. Any ideas of what is wrong? I’m thinking maybe not enough liquid in the dough? Bread baking is not my strength…
Hi Andi! I wouldn’t consider ourselves pro-yeast bakers either, but not enough liquid could be the problem because you want to add just enough flour that the dough stops sticking to the edges of the bowl. (If there is too much liquid the dough won’t come together) The dough will look like a big cylinder at the end, but that’s totally normal. That just means that the ingredients are totally combined. I’m not quite sure about the dough seeming like it’s going to come out of the bowl… that could just be that there is too much dough. Have you tried baking bread after it looks like that?
These look like carb heaven 🙂 I spotted this from the Block Party Link Party at Rae Gun Ramblings. Glad to have found your blog, I’ll be checking out the archives this morning 🙂
Thanks – Hope you like them. I had trouble not wanting to eat every single one….so just warning you 🙂
These look awesome! Soft pretzels are my oldest son’s favorite food! Add some garlic and cheese and I bet they’re over the top. Can’t wait to try these! 🙂
Yum! These pretzels look so perfectly chewy and delicious! Thank you for the tips! I’m def going to use the egg wash method ;). Hope you beautiful ladies are having a blessed week!
Thanks, Min! 🙂 Yes definitely try the egg wash method! It’s so so so much easier! Hope you like them!
WOW! These look so incredible! I want to eat them all NOW…. do you deliver? 🙂
I pinned them and can’t wait to try them!
Thanks Erin…..glad they caught your eye 🙂
First, these look fantastic. And after reading the recipe and instructions, I feel that they should be fairly easy to make. I do have a question though. Where is the GARLIC in your “cheddar garlic soft pretzels?” I read through the ingredients and even skimmed the instructions 2-3 times. Where does the garlic come in? Is it a garlic powder that gets mixed into the dough? Is it minced garlic that gets added to the top before baking? Is is garlic oil brushed over the top? Or is it garlic mixed into the butter? And along those lines, how much garlic do I use? I really want to make these, but I want to do them correctly and have them turn out as beautifully and deliciously as yours.
Hi Sherry! I’m so glad you want to make these! There actually isn’t any garlic in the recipe because the dried onion and parsley give that garlic flavor without the need of any actual garlic! Hope that helps! 🙂
Okay, this is just crazy how much I love your blog and your recipes!! These pretzels look absolutely delicious! My boys would flip for these! Thanks for sharing on Saturday Night Fever – PINNED and can’t wait to make!
Thank you so much, Jen!! That means so much coming from you! We love all your recipes and tuning in every. Saturday night! 🙂
Just curious as to where the garlic is?
Hi Sara! There actually isn’t any garlic in the recipe… We originally had garlic in the recipe, but the flavor was too strong so we substituted chopped onions and parsley to get a milder garlic flavor! Hope that helps 🙂
Hello! I am featuring you on my Tasty Tuesday hop tomorrow! Make sure you come back over and grab a featured button and link up some more great recipes!
Julia @ Mini Van Dreams
Thanks so much, Julia!
I love this recipe! AND so informative. Loved your whole post, read the whole thing (big for me). I can’t wait to make these. I make soft pretzels all the time and do a baking soda wash, I will try the egg wash. I will definitely be making these very soon.
Yay!! Thanks, Rachel!! 🙂 The egg wash version is SO much easier!
I made these yesterday. I added pancetta to have some protein. We had them for our “meal” before Sunday night worship. Let me say these are a million times easier than the other recipe I have tried before. I was even able to whip a second batch because of unexpected but totally welcomed visitors. I love the spices in these and all the children really enjoyed them. My second batch I made was plain and they were the bomb!! My family bragged about how awesome they were. You have a great base recipe and can pretty much add whatever to it. Thanks for an awesome “keeper”. I love pleasing my family and this did the trick 🙂
Hi N! Thank you so much for your feedback and we are so happy you and your family liked them!! It always makes my day to know that our recipes can bring others happiness! 🙂 And yes you’re right… you can add all kinds of things to this pretzel base or even just leave them plain!
What if you don’t have a dough mixer… can you knead dough with your hands? Like they did in the olden days? 😛
We’ve never tried it like that, but I’m sure it could work 🙂
I sure hope it can be done without one of those Mixer – Things. I do not have one.
ALSO,….There is a typo, OR something that confuses me,…. in the Instructions. See below.
“In medium bowl combine flour and salt. Add flour and salt mixture and knead for 2 minutes.”
Sorry about that! It should have said add the flour and salt to the water/yeast mixture. Fixed it!
hi, did you use hands to knead dough or you used a machine ?
I always LOVE making something new and different. These exceeded my expectations! There’s not much that I cook that I don’t put garlic in so of course this recipe was no different. I think if I remember right I put about 5 fresh, crushed cloves in. I also put about 3/4 tsp.of oregano in. They didn’t last long! So good! So Easy!
Making these today for Super bowl party with a beer/cheese dip. The guys can’t wait!
After having the pretzels in the oven for 15 min , do I leave them in for another ten minutes in a oven that’s turned on or off?
I just updated the directions to make them a little bit more clear… but you bake them for 10 minutes, remove from oven and brush with butter, then bake for another 5 minutes, remove from oven and cool. So there is 15 minutes of baking time in total!
These look delicious! Would also like to make plain pretzels. Could I use this recipe leaving out the cheese, parsley and onion and end up with delicious plain pretzels? Would I need to change any of the amounts of the other ingredients to accomplish that?
These are amazing! My husband ate so many and gave himself a sore tummy lol I’ve never made pretzels with cheese before but I will most definitely continue doing so! YUM!
There are amazing! Thank you!
Thank you, undoubtedly this is the best recipe. It’s quick and easy to make and my family loved it. Thanks for the recipe.
Yay!! So happy you loved it 🙂