My Homemade Pretzel Bites are soft on the inside and chewy on the outside – and make a great game day or party snack. These salty, buttery bites are best served with some cheese dip and a couple of beers!
Try some soft and buttery homemade pretzel dogs next!
Chewy Pretzel Bites
This recipe came about during a past Spring Break, when my college son and his girlfriend were “craving” homemade soft pretzels. So I created a recipe using the ingredients I had on-hand. I have to say, these pretzel bites are AMAZING!
I love a project, and this recipe is a great one to work on together when you have a few extras in the kitchen. One person to prep the dough, another to do the baking soda bath and bake, and then a few others to EAT these bites as fast as you make them. Speaking from experience here.
I recommend DOUBLING this recipe for large groups. They go quick – trust me!
Why This Recipe Works:
- FUN TO MAKE – While there are multiple steps, this recipe is truly a fun one to make.
- SUPER TASTY – Salty, buttery, and absolutely delicious. Need I say more?
- IMPRESSIVE – Whenever I make these, I get all the oooohhs and aaaahhs. Everyone asks, “You MADE these?” Yup. Make them!
Ingredients needed for Soft Homemade Pretzel Bites:
This recipe uses mostly pantry ingredients. It’s a great recipe to whip up on a whim.
- Yeast – I use active dry yeast. Red Star is my preferred brand.
- Sugar – Just a bit to help activate the yeast.
- Water – You’ll need warm water, not hot and not cold.
- Butter – Some melted butter makes these pretzel bites…buttery! 😀
- Honey – I chose to use honey for the sweetener. But you could use regular sugar or even maple syrup.
- Salt – Kosher salt is what I use in most of my cooking and baking.
- Flour – Using a combo of regular all-purpose flour and bread flour makes these nice and chewy. You could, however, use just all-purpose flour.
- For boiling – You’ll need a combo of water and baking soda.
- For Topping – After the pretzel bites come out of the oven, you’ll want to brush with butter and add a touch of sea salt.
How to make Homemade Pretzel Bites:
Activate the yeast. Using a large standing mixer, combine the yeast, sugar, and warm water. Take a spatula and stir it around a couple of times. Then let it sit for about 15 minutes so that the yeast activates. The mixture should turn bubbly when it’s ready.
Continue adding ingredients. Add the melted butter, honey, and kosher salt. Stir again with a spatula.
Add flour to desired consistency. Start by adding the all-purpose flour and about one cup of bread flour to the mixer. Attach a dough hook and let the mixer run, occasionally scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Gradually add more bread flour until you get a nice dough consistency. It should be slightly sticky, but easy to handle.
Let the dough rise. Grease a large bowl with canola or olive oil. Remove the dough from the mixer and form it into a ball. Then place it in the bowl and cover it with a clean dishtowel. Place the bowl in a quiet corner of your kitchen and let rise until approximately doubled in size, about 35-40 minutes.
Prep. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Shape pretzel bites. Use a clean working surface or baking mat, and spread a bit of oil on it. Divide the dough into four sections, and roll out one section at a time into a long tube-like shape. See pictures. Slice into approximately one-inch pieces.
Prep water bath. Combine the water and the baking soda together in a large pot. When you’re ready to make the pretzel bites, bring water to a boil and let the baking soda dissolve.
Boil bites. Gently drop about ten pretzel pieces into the boiling water at a time, and try to make sure they aren’t touching. Cook for 20 seconds, and then start removing them with a slotted spoon, shaking off excess water as you go. Place on the prepared baking sheets, immediately add a sprinkle of sea salt, and continue with remaining dough.
PRO-TIP: Make sure you shake off the excess water after the baking soda bath. You can also strain them in a colander and quickly add to baking sheet.
Bake. Bake bites in a preheated 400 degree oven, until done, approximately 15-20 minutes, or until nice and golden brown. Immediately brush with softened butter, and add a touch more sea salt (if desired).
Boiling your pretzels in a baking soda bath prior to baking is what enables them to develop their distinctive pretzel-like color and the chewy texture. This quick boil will also make the bites immediately puff up.
I recommend using a course kosher salt or a sea salt for pretzels.
You can extra salt in one or both of two places. One, after you do the baking soda bath and before you bake it, and two, after brushing with butter when the bites come out of the oven.
Other Bread Recipes:
- Homemade Brioche Buns – Another soft and buttery recipe, and a great recipe for sandwiches.
- Chewy French Bread – My most popular recipe on the blog. Just five ingredients to the best, easy bread!
- Easy Rosemary Focaccia Bread – The perfect bread for your next Italian meal, soft and delicious.
Kitchen Tools Used: (affiliate links)
- Bosch Universal Mixer – The mixer I’ve used for years, and perfect for bread making.
- Silicone Baking Mat – I love using baking mats for any kind of bread, like this one.
- Scraper & Chopper – This is great for cutting dough and other baked goods.
Try this simple snack recipe next: Honey Roasted Nuts
Homemade Pretzel Bites
- 1 Tablespoon yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 3/4 cup warm water
- 1/4 cup butter – melted
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 cups bread flour – more or less, to desired consistency
- sea salt – for topping
- butter – for brushing on after baking
- 8 cups water
- 8 Tablespoons baking soda
- In a large standing mixer, combine the yeast, sugar, and warm water. Be careful to use warm water, not hot. Mix with a spatula and let sit for about 15 minutes to get the yeast working.
- Add the melted butter, honey, and kosher salt. Mix with a spatula.
- Attach a dough hook to your mixer and add the all-purpose flour and about a cup of the bread flour. Start the mixer and let it run for awhile to get everything well combined, occasionally using a spatula to scrape down the sides of the mixer. Then gradually add more bread flour until you get just the right consistency. You want the dough to be soft but not too sticky. (See blog post for more tips.)
- Grease a large bowl with oil and add the dough. Punch the down into a nice smooth ball. Cover with a clean dishtowel and set it in a warm corner of your kitchen. Let the dough rise for about 35-40 minutes, or until about doubled in size..
- Meanwhile, prep so that you are ready to go after the dough has rested. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Prep pretzel bites. Spread a little bit of oil on a clean surface, or baking mat. Take bout 1/4 of the dough and roll into a long tube-like shape. See pictures. Slice it into one-inch slices (or whatever size you prefer).
- Combine eight cups of water with eight tablespoons of baking soda in a stock pot – and bring to a rolling bowl.
- Place about 10 "bites" of dough into the boiling water. Make sure they aren't touching. After 20 seconds, start removing them, one at a time, using a slotted spoon. Shake off excess water (or you can place in a strainer for a minute or so), immediately add a sprinkle of sea salt, and add them to the prepared baking sheets. Repeat until all the bites are prepped for baking.
- Bake pretzel bites for approximately 15-20 minutes, or until nice and golden brown. Remove from oven, brush with softened butter, and a little more sea salt.
- This recipe should fill two baking sheets. I usually bake one after the other (not at the same time).