Homemade Pretzel Bites taste just like the soft, chewy buttery nuggets we all love to snack on at the mall and in airports. Made with simple, pantry staple ingredients such as yeast, olive oil, granulated sugar, flour, baking soda and coarse sea salt.
These are delicious and are the perfect appetizer or party snack for any occasion that you can make at home.
Making pretzels may seem intimidating but believe me when I say that these are easy to make. In just one hour, you can toss together a simple yeast dough, let it rise, shape it, and bake it into golden, salty pretzel bites!
The secret to getting your homemade pretzel bites to taste just like the real deal is the baking soda bath. A quick dip in this basic mixture will give these bites that classic soft pretzel texture that we all love.
See printable recipe card below for all ingredients, specific measurements, and complete instructions.
- All-Purpose Flour - Use your favorite brand of all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour.
- Active Dry Yeast - Keeps these pretzel bites fluffy. Make sure your yeast has not expired.
- Olive Oil - Or another neutral-tasting oil such as vegetable oil.
- Sugar - Feeds the yeast, allowing your pretzel dough to rise.
- Salt - A flakey sea salt will add flavor and a subtle crunchy texture.
- Baking Powder - Gives these bites that signature golden pretzel color and flavor.
Prefer sweet soft pretzels? You can create dessert pretzel bites by swapping out the flakey sea salt for some cinnamon sugar. Bake as normal before dipping these sweet bites into cream cheese icing.
Turn these snacky pretzel bites into an easy lunch by making pepperoni pizza pretzels! To do this, simply top your bites with pieces of chopped up pepperoni and shredded mozzarella cheese. Don’t forget to dip them in your favorite marinara sauce!
Need a snack with a little more substance? Turn your dough into full-sized pretzels instead of bites. Just roll your dough into several skinny strips and twist them into a classic pretzel shape before baking.
How to Make Homemade Pretzel Bites
- In a large mixing bowl, activate your yeast by combining it with a small amount of warm water.
- Once the yeast is foamy, add the sugar, olive oil, flour, and remaining water.
- Mix until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
- Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough back in the mixing bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled in size.
- Roll the dough into a large, flat sheet. Cut into bite-sized pieces.
- Use your hands to roll each pretzel bite into a cylindrical shape. Spread the bites evenly over the surface of a large baking sheet. Set aside.
- In a shallow dish. Combine additional warm water with the baking soda. Stir to dissolve.
- Quickly dip each pretzel bite into the baking soda bath before returning it to the baking sheet.
- Sprinkle the surface of your soft pretzel bites with salt and bake until golden brown.
- Serve warm with your favorite dipping sauces and enjoy!
- Make sure your yeast has not expired. It should foam when you mix it with warm water.
- The baking soda and water mixture is what gives pretzels their distinct flavor and outer texture. You want to make sure the pretzel bites are fully coated in the mixture, but don’t want to oversaturate them. For reference, you do not want to let the pretzel bites sit for more than 5 seconds in the mixture. If they sit for too long they will have a very strong baking soda flavor.
- The sugar is an important ingredient in making sure the yeast is well fed. This ensures a nice chewy texture that you expect with any pretzel.
How To Serve Pretzel Bites
Serve these as an appetizer, dessert, or after-school snack. Go the classic route and pair your pretzel nuggets with mustard or cheese sauce or get adventurous and serve them alongside marinara, buffalo sauce, hummus, or guacamole.
You can even present these as a sweet dish by pairing them with Nutella, cheesecake dip, chocolate sauce or buttercream frosting. You really can’t go wrong with these salty and chewy pretzel bites!
How to Store and Freeze
Pretzel bites are best served fresh out of the oven. But you can store leftovers to enjoy later.
Storage: You can store the leftovers in an airtight container on the counter for up to 2 days and in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Freeze: Place pretzel bites in a freezer safe bag or airtight container and store in the freezer for up to one month.
Although the texture will have changed slightly during the storage period, the leftover pretzel bites are still very tasty when warmed up in the microwave or oven and dipped in your favorite sweet or savory sauce.
This quick dip in a baking soda bath changes the PH of the pretzel dough. This rapid PH change is what accounts for soft pretzels’ signature color and flavor.
Make sure not to over-bake these pretzel bites or forget the oil! Olive oil helps to lock moisture into the dough. In addition, a well-baked pretzel bite will be fluffy and chewy as opposed to dry and crumbly.
Although I’ve never tried to make these soft pretzel bites gluten free, you could do so by replacing the all-purpose flour with your favorite 1:1 gluten free flour blend. Make your gluten free pretzel bites according to recipe directions, but feel free to skip the kneading - you won’t have any gluten to develop!
Other Delicious Appetizer Recipes
I hope you enjoy these Homemade Pretzel Bites! If you try this recipe, please come back and rate it and leave me a comment below. I love to hear from you!
Homemade Pretzel Bites
- 2 cups warm water (about 100 degrees Fahrenheit), divided
- 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 5 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup baking powder
- 2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
- In medium sized mixing bowl, gently mix 1 ½ cups of the water with the active dry yeast until just combined. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and allow the yeast to sit for 5 minutes, or until foamy.
- After 5 minutes, add the yeast mixture to a large bowl with the sugar, oil, flour, and remaining water. Use a whisk or wooden spoon to combine the ingredients until the dough begins to pull away from the mixing bowl and form a large, crumbly ball (about 2 minutes).
- Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 3 minutes to develop the gluten. After 3 minutes, place the dough back in the mixing bowl for 45 minutes, or until the dough has about doubled in size.
- Roll the dough out into a sheet about ¼ inch thick and cut into small rectangles. Roll each rectangle to form a cylindrical shape and place the pretzel bites on a large baking sheet lightly coated with oil or nonstick cooking spray.
- In a medium sized bowl, stir together 3 cups of water with the baking powder until the baking powder has dissolved. Dip each pretzel bite into the baking soda water and return to the baking sheet. Top the pretzels with the coarse sea salt.
- Bake your pretzels for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Serve and enjoy!