Whole Wheat Soft Pretzels
When I was a kid, the ultimate snack I craved was a soft pretzel. It didn’t matter where we were, if there was a soft pretzel available, I wanted it. Imagine my excitement when they started packaging and selling soft pretzels in the grocery store!!! Holy crust!!! Could life get any better? Well sure it could and did, because I learned just how easy it is to make homemade soft pretzels from scratch. And they taste 100% more delicious than any store bought pretzel!
Soft Pretzels in the House!
Go figure that my little sous chef loves soft pretzels just as much as I do. We love dough here at my house! While I think pretzels can be a pretty yummy snack, I’m also aware that many of the kinds you can buy at various retailers (?), are made with 100% all-purpose flour and likely loads of butter. Not a win-win for this dietitian mom! So, I set out to figure out how to make them at home. Determined to find a way to make them delicious and just a wee bit more nutritious.
Soft Pretzel Success
And the verdict? It was easy. Yep. So easy. Turns out making soft pretzels isn’t too different from making bread. And if you’ve got a stand mixer, it’ll do most of the work for you. I’ve made my version of soft pretzels more nutritious by swapping out some of the all-purpose flour for white whole wheat flour and then of course, eliminated that butter bath! 😉
The other thing that rocks about making these pretzels is that it’s fun. I promise! My little sous chef loved every minute. And when she struggled making the pretzel shape, she found alternate shapes to make instead. She made a necklace, a tiara, etc. All of which looked horrendous, but still tasted good. WIN!!! So go ahead, make some pretzels. You’ll be glad you did!
Treat yourself to homemade soft pretzels! They’re fun to make and you’ll love the whole grain twist!
For the dough:
- 2 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 1/3 cup warm water (110’F), divided
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
For cooking the pretzels:
- 6 cups water
- 1/2 cup baking soda
For garnishing the pretzels:
- 1–2 tablespoons melted butter
- kosher salt, to taste
To prepare the dough:
- To the bowl of a stand mixer, add the yeast and 1/3 cup of water and 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar. Let sit and bubble up, for about 5 minutes. Add the remaining water, the flours, and brown sugar. Place the dough hook attachment on your mixer, then mix on lowest speed (stir) until combined, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add salt, then increase speed to low (up one or two notches) and “knead” for about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Shape dough into a ball and place in a bowl coated with non-stick cooking spray. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm, draft-free spot to rise until double in size, about 1 hour.
To prepare and cook the pretzels:
- Move one oven rack to the middle and another to the upper third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 425’F and coat two large baking sheets generously with non-stick cooking spray.
- Place the water and baking soda in a large pot and set over high heat and bring to a boil.
- Remove dough from bowl and divide into 10, equal-sized pieces. Roll each piece into a 20 to 24-inch rope. Shape each rope into a pretzel (it may take a few tries, but you’ll get it!).
- Once water boiling, drop pretzels in, one at a time, and boil for about 15 seconds. Remove with a slotted spatula and place on the prepared baking sheet. Once all pretzels have been boiled, place them in the oven and bake about 10 minutes, rotating pans halfway through cooking time.
- Remove from oven, brush tops with melted butter and sprinkle with kosher salt. ENJOY!