It's impossible to resist these Homemade Soft Pretzels with Mustard Cheese Dip! Salty, buttery and warm, soft pretzels are perfect for tailgating, celebrating Oktoberfest, or just for a fun afternoon snack!
We love serving homemade pretzels with some of our other favorite German recipes like Traditional German Red Cabbage [Rotkohl], Authentic German Sauerbraten Recipe, and German Apple Cake with Streusel Topping.
Table of Contents
If you need an afternoon snack that will fuel your kids through their after school activities until dinner, these chewy soft pretzels are guaranteed to bring smiles on their faces. They are quick and easy to throw together and taste just like the pretzels from the mall for a fraction of the price. Nobody can resist a chewy, salted pretzel dipped in some melted butter or cheese sauce!
You will love this Pretzel Recipe
All year long I've been participating in a monthly recipe collaboration group where we share recipes around the same theme on the first of the month. When I saw that September's theme was tailgating, I knew I wanted to share these homemade soft pretzels with mustard cheese dip!
Maybe it's just me, but I think that a warm, buttery soft pretzel just might be the pinnacle of comfort food. They are so tasty and fun to eat at the same time and I find it so hard to resist them! Homemade soft pretzels are my kryptonite.
Whenever we go to the mall (not often) my girls beg to go to Auntie Anne's and it takes all my willpower to steer clear. And to be honest, my willpower usually fails me.
But it's super easy to make these at home for WAY less! And honestly, way better because they are homemade. Keep scrolling past the recipe to see the other fun tailgating food ideas to try from my food blogging friends!
This is another fun recipe to make with kids because they have so much fun rolling the balls of dough into long ropes and then trying to twist them together into pretzels shapes.
And when the golden pretzels come out of the oven and get brushed with melted butter, it's all we can do to wait for them to cool enough to start tearing them apart!
While this definitely isn't an authentic german pretzel recipe, you could still totally makes these to celebrate Oktoberfest at home this year since pretzels have been a big part of German baking culture for centuries.
In fact, pretzels have been the emblem used by bakers in southern German since the 12th century! In Germany, you can get large soft pretzels at bakeries or stalls on the street and they are sometimes sliced in half horizontally and buttered inside or filled with sliced meat or cheese.
Soft Pretzel Recipe ingredients
- Active Dry Yeast
- All-purpose Flour
- Baking Soda
How to make Soft Pretzels
- If you have ever wondered how to make homemade soft pretzels and whether it is a difficult or time-consuming task, I'm here to tell you that it's so much easier than you might think and takes less time than making a loaf of homemade bread.
- Don’t skip the baking soda bath which is what gives soft pretzels their golden brown color, chewy exteriors, and distinctive flavor. Just don't soak the pretzels longer than 20-30 seconds or they will end up with a metallic taste.
- Make the pretzel dough by proofing the yeast in warm water with a little sugar, then adding the flour and salt and kneading in a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment for 5 minutes until smooth and soft.
- Cover the pretzel dough with plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes.
- Prepare a baking soda hot water bath while the dough is resting, then divide the pretzel dough into eight equal pieces.
- Roll each ball of dough into a long rope, then twist into pretzel shape and dip into the baking soda bath for 20-30 seconds.
- Sprinkle the pretzels with coarse salt, then bake for 10 minutes until golden brown.
- Brush the hot pretzels with melted butter.
- You can go traditional like I did here and top them with coarse salt and butter, or you could skip the salt and sprinkle them with cinnamon and sugar.
How to make Mustard Pretzel Cheese Dip
- Here's my quick and easy way for how to make mustard cheese dip. We typically eat our pretzels plain, but for occasions like tailgating you are probably going to want something more festive to go with them.
- Make a roux with butter and flour by whisking them together in a skillet or saucepan over medium heat, then whisk in milk and cook for about 5 minutes until thickened, but still pourable.
- Once thickened, whisk in freshly grated cheddar cheese until melted.
- Add a tablespoon of your favorite mustard (I love a good spicy mustard!) and season with salt and pepper to taste.
This sauce is awesome with pretzels but also really good with veggies like cauliflower or broccoli too.
How to serve a Soft Pretzel
Soft pretzels are best enjoyed fresh. Serve them shortly after warming for the best flavor and texture. Soft pretzels are often served with various dipping sauces including mustard, cheese sauce, or a sweet glaze.
Soft Pretzel with Cheese storage
If you plan to eat your soft pretzels within a day or two, you can store them at room temperature by placing them in a paper bag or wrapping them in a clean kitchen towel to prevent them from drying out. You could also place the pretzels in an airtight container or wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate them for up to about 1 week. Before eating them, you can warm up the pretzels in the oven for a few minutes to restore their softness.
If you want to store soft pretzels for an extended period (up to 2-3 months), freezing is a good option. Wrap each pretzel individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. Place the wrapped pretzels in a resealable plastic bag or airtight container. When ready to eat, thaw the pretzels on the counter or in the refrigerator overnight and then warm them in the oven or microwave.
How to reheat Soft Pretzels
To reheat soft pretzels, start by preheating your oven to about 250°F. If the pretzels are at room temperature, place them directly on the oven rack or on a baking sheet. If they were refrigerated or frozen, let them come to room temperature first. For refrigerated pretzels, you can wrap them in aluminum foil before reheating. If frozen, thaw them in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat the pretzels in the oven for about 5-10 minutes or until they are warmed through. This gentle warming process helps restore their soft and chewy texture so they taste almost just as good as when they were freshly baked. Avoid overheating the pretzels, as it can dry out the pretzels and make them tough instead of soft.
Soft Pretzel Dip FAQs
I think of traditional pretzels as the crisp snacking pretzels you buy in a bag from the store. They have a firm, crunchy texture on the outside and are a dark brown color.
Soft pretzels, on the other hand, are a softer, chewier version like the ones you might get at the mall, theme park, or fair. Soft pretzels are a lot larger and have a more doughy consistency compared to their crispier counterparts and are often flavored with toppings like pepperoni, jalapenos, cheese, or even cinnamon-sugar.
More Fun Party Foods To Make
- Jalapeno Popper Dip with Bacon
- Sheet Pan Ultimate Nachos with Slow Cooker Salsa Verde Ranch Chicken
- Easy Greek 7 Layer Dip
- How to Make the Best Fruit and Cheese Platter
Did you make this recipe?
Let me know what you thought with a comment and rating below. You can also take a picture and tag me on Instagram @houseofnasheats or share it on the Pinterest pin so I can see.
Soft Pretzel with Cheese
- 1 cup warm water
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup boiling water
- 2 Tablespoons baking soda
- Coarse kosher salt
- 3 Tablespoons butter, melted
Mustard Cheese Sauce
- ¼ cup butter
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 Tablespoon spicy brown mustard or other coarse ground mustard
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the warm water, sugar and yeast, and let it proof for 5 minutes until foaming. Add the flour and salt and mix with a dough hook to combine, then knead for 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and soft. Cover bowl of dough with plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 450°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
- While the dough rests, combine the boiling water and baking soda, stirring until the baking soda is dissolved.
- Divide the dough into eight equal pieces and roll each piece into a long rope, about 30" long. Twist into a pretzel shape by making an upside down "U" shape and crossing and twisting the ends, then folding them over to the top of the "U".
- Place the pretzels into the hot baking soda bath for 20-30 seconds, spooning the liquid over the pretzels, then transfer to the baking sheet and sprinkle with coarse kosher salt and bake for 10 minutes until golden brown.
- Remove the pretzels from the oven and immediately brush with the melted butter.
Mustard Cheese Sauce
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Whisk the flour into the melted butter until lightly browned and thickened, about 2-3 minutes, to form a roux.
- Slowly add the milk to the roux, whisking constantly. Continue to whisk until the mixture thickens but is still pourable, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the cheese over the sauce and whisk until it melts into the sauce, then taste and add the mustard, salt, and pepper to taste.