Soft pretzel knots made with part whole wheat flour. Dipped in butter and sugar for a sweet topping.
Warm pretzels, hot from the oven, brushed with melted butter and dipped in sugar. Hmm, just writing that is making my mouth water! Kind of a snack, kind of dessert, either way sweet pretzels are sure to make you smile 🙂
Rather than a thick, dark crust, I was looking for a lightly golden brown color. I baked them at a lower than average temperature to keep them from getting too crusty. The melted butter brushed over the tops helped to keep the pretzels extra soft as well.
The pretzels are pretty easy to make, the process is very similar to bagels. Where bagels are boiled in sugar water, the pretzels are boiled in a baking soda water. After boiling they are baked, the two step process gives them their characteristic chewy texture.
We went with a very basic knot shape (to kick it up a notch tuck those ends in too), but really the shape can be anything. I usually let the kids have fun with making anything they desire, sometimes even a traditional pretzel shape! These are mini pretzels, yielding 24 knots, but we each ate 2-3 so it didn’t serve any more than full-size pretzels would.
- 1 and ½ Cups (6.75 Ounces) White Whole Wheat Flour
- 1 and ½ Cups (6.75 Ounces) White Flour
- 2 Teaspoons Instant Yeast*
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Tablespoon Honey
- 1 Cup + 2 Tablespoons Warm Water
- 2 Tablespoons Baking Soda for Cooking
- 1 Egg
- 4 Tablespoons Butter
- Sugar for Dipping
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking sheet.
- In a large bowl, stir together both flours, salt and instant yeast.
- *You can use active dry yeast, but it will need to be activated according to the package directions. Be sure to reduce the amount of water in the recipe by the amount of water used to activate the yeast*
- Stir the water and honey into the flour mixture until most of the flour has been absorbed. Cover and allow to rest for 20 minutes. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for 8 to 10 minutes until a smooth elastic dough has formed.
- Wipe out the bowl and brush the inside with vegetable oil or butter. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rise until doubled, approximately 1 and ½ hours.
- After the dough has risen, punch it down then divide it into 24 pieces. I use a bench scraper to divide my dough. Cover the dough pieces with the plastic wrap while shaping the pretzels.
- Place a wide pot filled with several inches of water on to boil before shaping the pretzels.
- Roll out a piece of dough into a long rope, approximately 6 inches. Cross the ends of the dough rope, forming a circle. Take one of the ends and fold it through the circle, creating a knot. Place each completed knot on the prepared baking sheets.
- When the pot of water is boiling, add the 2 tablespoons baking soda. Cook each pretzel knot in the boiling water for 2 minutes, flipping halfway through. Remove the pretzels and place them back on the cookie sheets.
- In a small bowl, beat the egg with 1 tablespoon water. Brush the egg wash onto each pretzel. Bake 15-17 minutes or until light golden brown. While the pretzels are baking melt the butter. Place approximately 1 cup of sugar in a shallow bowl for dipping.
- When the pretzels have cooled enough to handle, brush each pretzel with butter and then dip into the sugar.
Pretzels are best the day they are made. To store longer, place the pretzels (without butter and sugar) into a covered container for up to 2 days.