Soft pretzels remind us of visiting our beloved Aunt Ruth and our dearly missed Uncle Gary in New York City. While our recipe is smaller in size and not nearly as salty, the shape and flavor are authentic to the original. For a stellar snack, we dip them in homemade hummus.
STEP ONE – Preparations
- Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper and lightly spray with canola spray.
- Get out a stand mixer, a small glass measuring cup, and a large pot.
- Get out a food processor.
- Set up 2 cooling racks.
STEP TWO – Start the Pretzels
1 ½ cups warm water
1 packet active dry yeast
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
Coarse sea salt
- Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and add the water and yeast.
- Whisk to dissolve and let proof for 5 minutes.
- In the glass measuring cup, microwave the butter for 30 seconds and let cool briefly.
- Add the melted butter, sugar, and salt to the yeast.
- Attach the bowl to the mixer and mix on low while you add the flour 1 cup at a time.
- Attach the bowl to the mixer and mix on low as you add in 3 cups of flour, 1 cup at a time. If the dough is still sticky, add more flour until it bounces back when poked.
- Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 5 minutes.
- Lightly spray the mixer bowl with canola spray and return the dough to the bowl.
- Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let rest for 10-15 minutes while you prepare the baking soda bath.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
STEP THREE – Make the Baking Soda Bath
½ cup baking soda
10 cups water
- Fill the large pot with the water and baking soda and bring to a boil. You can move on to the next step while the water is heating.
STEP FOUR – Shape the Pretzels
Instructions (if unclear, watch a YouTube video):
- Cut the pretzel dough into 10 pieces.
- Using a back and forth motion with your hands, roll the first piece into a 20-inch-long rope and bring the ends together to form a circle.
- Twist the ends around each other once, bring the twisted ends toward yourself, and fold down on the front curve of the pretzel.
- Set aside on a lightly floured surface and repeat this process until all the pretzels are shaped.
STEP FIVE – Boil and Bake
- Scoop up 2 pretzels at a time with a spatula and place in the baking soda bath for 20-25 seconds.
- Remove the pretzels with a slotted spoon and let any excess water drip off.
- Place the pretzels on the baking sheets and top with a sprinkle of coarse sea salt.
- Repeat this process until all the pretzels are soaked.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
- Transfer the pretzels to the cooling rack and cool for 5-10 minutes.
STEP SIX – Make the Hummus
1 cup drained and rinsed chickpeas
¼ cup tahini (sesame paste)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- In a food processor or blender, blend the chickpeas, tahini, oil, lemon juice, garlic, paprika, and salt until very smooth.
- Add a little water to adjust the consistency to your preference.
- Dip the pretzels in the hummus for a stellar snack.
Recommended Serving Size: 1 pretzel and 2 tablespoons of hummus
Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 fat