Easy homemade pretzel bites brushed with melted butter and sea salt. This easy pretzel recipe makes the perfect appetizer or snack! Always a big crowd pleaser and gone in minutes!
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Perfect Game Day Appetizer
These easy pretzel bites are a great starting point for beginners because they don’t need to rise and are baked in under an hour. They are definitely worth giving a try!
These homemade pretzel bites are the perfect game day appetizer! You won’t believe how easy these are to make.
The best part about this pretzel bites recipe is that they are made in less than an hour! They do involve a bit of work… but they are definitely worth it. They are so so good.
I bet you have almost all of these ingredients on hand, so you can make these delicious pretzel bites right now.
Find the full printable recipe with measurements below.
- Active yeast: You will want to be sure your yeast hasn’t expired and that it foams when mixed with warm water.
- Sugar: This is necessary to give the yeast something to eat and helps make the pretzel bites airy.
- Salt: I like to use Kosher, but any coarse sea salt will do the trick.
- All-purpose flour:
- Baking soda: This gets stirred into boiling water and gives the pretzel bites their chewy texture.
- Egg: This is to make an egg wash to give a lovely brown color when baking.
- Melted butter: This is optional, but I love to brush butter on the tops after baking and before topping with salt.
How To Make Pretzel Bites
Homemade soft pretzel bites may seem intimidating to make, but they are so worth it! And these homemade pretzels are made in under an hour…win! Just follow the steps below to get started.
- Proof the yeast. Add warm water and yeast in a bowl and let sit for 3 to 5 minutes. Then stir in salt and sugar.
- Knead the dough. Add the flour in a separate large bowl. Then pour yeast mixture on top and knead with a bread hook in an electric mixer (or by hand) for about 5 minutes. The dough should be soft and no longer sticking to the sides.
- Cut into pieces. Separate the dough into 6 sections and then roll each section into ropes. Each rope should be about 15-20 inches long and 1 inch thick. Using scissors, cut the ropes into 1 1/2 – 2 inch pieces. You should end up with about 25-30 pretzel pieces. Optional: Cut a “t” or “x” on the top of the pretzel with scissors to help them expand uniformly.
- Boil pretzels in baking soda bath. In a small pan, bring water and baking soda to a boil. Place about 8 pieces of dough into the water for about 30 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and place the pieces onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. This step will create a brown crust and chewy center.
- Brush with egg wash. Brush the dough lightly with the whisked egg and sprinkle salt on top.
- Bake in oven. Bake at 425°F for 8-10 minutes, or until the pretzels are golden brown. You can turn the oven to broil for the last minute to brown the tops. Remove from oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Brush tops with melted butter if desired.
Dips for Serving
These pretzel bites pair perfectly with so many delicious dips, you can even get fancy and serve them with fondue cheese! We serve them with cheese dipping sauce (Trader Joe’s has a good queso or spicy mustard I like when I need something quick) quite frequently, but they also taste great with the dips below:
- Pretzel cheese dip
- Slow cooker queso blanco
- Queso dip with chorizo
- Spinach artichoke dip
- Buffalo chicken dip
- Nacho cheese dip
- Slow cooker cheesy bacon dip
Tips for Success
- The texture of the dough should be soft and no longer sticking to the sides of your bowl. If it’s still really sticky, add 1/4 cup flour at a time until the desired consistency is reached.
- I’d recommend cutting an “x” on top of the dough pieces before baking. This gives the pretzel bites a direction to expand. Without that, they wouldn’t be uniform.
- Don’t skip the baking soda and egg wash! This is what gives them that wonderful chewy (but soft!), pretzel-like texture.
- Although the dough doesn’t need to rise, feel free to let it sit in the bowl for 15-20 minutes before cutting. This will create a fluffier texture and may increase their size a little.
- Once the pretzel bites are baked and out of the oven, brush some melted butter on top. It adds the perfect touch!
Cinnamon Sugar Version
As if this recipe could get any more delicious – try this cinnamon sugar pretzel bites variation for a yummy dessert! Bake the pretzels (without the salt topping) until they are golden brown. Once cooked, roll them in melted butter and then roll the tops and sides in the cinnamon sugar mixture (1/2 cup sugar (granulated or brown sugar) + 2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon).
The best way to keep pretzels soft is keep them in a paper bag, as it lets moisture escape. They may become stale more quickly than by freezing them or placing them in a bread box, though.
I personally think these pretzel bites are best within the first 2 hours. If you have leftovers, I would store in the freezer vs. refrigerator. They tend to get a little soggy when stored in a bag in the refrigerator.
Pretty much! The two yeasts can be used interchangeably when baking, however active dry yeast needs to be mixed with water so that it can dissolve and instant yeast does not. If using instant yeast instead, simply mix it in with the dry ingredients and skip proofing it in water first.
The baking soda wash helps to give them that chewy, pretzel-like texture.
Yes, but make sure to use 2-3 times more baking powder (so about 1 cup of baking powder for this recipe).
Storing + Freeze
Storage: Best served the first day fresh out of the oven. Store leftovers in a brown bag or covered container for up to 2 days.
Freeze: Place leftover pretzel bites in a freezer bag or airtight container and store in the freezer up to 2 months. Heat them back up in the microwave (20-30 seconds) or in the oven until warm.
5 star review
“Love these! My family devours them every time I make them! Can’t wait to make them for the Super bowl!”-Nellie
More Game Day Appetizers
Pretzel Bites Recipe
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 1 packet active yeast (or 2 1/4 teaspoons)
- 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher salt , plus extra for topping
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup baking soda (for boiling water)
- 1 large egg , whisked
- Melted butter , for brushing, optional
- In a small bowl, stir together warm water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit 3 to 5 minutes. Add salt and stir.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
- In the large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, add flour and yeast mixture. Knead 5 minutes. (You can also do this by hand, if preferred).
- Separate dough into 6 sections. Roll each section into ropes, about 15-inches long and 1-inch thick. Cut with scissors into 1 1/2- to 2-inch pieces. This should make about 60 to 75 pretzel pieces. Optional: cut a “t” or “x” on the top of the pretzel with scissors.
- In a small pot, bring about 8 cups water + 1/3 cup baking soda to a boil over medium heat. Once water is boiling, place about 8 pieces of dough into the water for about 30 seconds. Remove with slotted spoon and place pretzel bites onto baking sheet. Brush dough lightly with beaten egg and sprinkle salt on top.
- Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown. You can turn the oven to broil for the last minute to brown the tops, if desired. Remove pretzel bites to a cooling rack and brush tops with melted butter, if desired.
- Serve warm with your favorite dipping sauce.
Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.
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