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Authentic Soft, Puffy German Pretzels

Adapted from Comfortable Food who adapted them from Alton Brown

Authentic German Pretzels ~ Sumptuous Spoonfuls #pretzel #recipe

Perfectly puffy, slightly chewy German yeasted pretzels dusted with coarse sea salt.

We’re preparing for my daughter’s birthday party … she is having an International theme this year. We settled on the menu today … it was tough because we had sooo many recipes we wanted to try, but these pretzels were SO definitely on the list.

I like these because I thought I could bake them ahead of time, freeze them and then warm them up on the day of the party. The only problem is, they turned out so good, we are tempted to eat them all! Out of 12, there are only 7 left. My kids each ate two and I had one. I need to stick them in a bag to put in the freezer soon before we eat more.

We are definitely going to be making these yummy pretzels again … My daughter helped shape them while I prepared the egg wash and the boiling water. Then my son lined the ones (that had yet to be bathed) on his big arm and timed the water bath for us, while my daughter brushed the bathed pretzels with the egg wash and sprinkled with salt. Of course, right in the middle of all this, their dad called and it couldn’t be much worse timing, but we did ok. We put him on speaker phone and somehow my son managed to check his soccer schedule without missing a beat on timing the pretzel baths. By the time we got off the phone with him, we were almost ready to pop our pretzels in the oven.

Authentic German Pretzels

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Yield: 12 large pretzels

Serving Size: 1 pretzel

Authentic German Pretzels


    For the pretzel dough:
  • 3 Tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons of yeast
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached white whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • For the bath:
  • 10 cups of water
  • 2/3 cup of baking soda
  • For the tops:
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • Coarse sea salt or pretzel salt


  1. Put all the pretzel dough ingredients into a bread machine or mixer and set it on the dough setting.
  2. When the dough is near done, pour the 10 cups of water and baking soda into a large pan or wok (I used my Swiss Diamond wok ... perfect for this!), cover and bring to a boil. Stir to dissolve the baking soda into the water and keep covered but still boiling. You might need to reduce the heat a bit to keep the pan from boiling over while you prepare the pretzels.
  3. Preheat the oven to 425 F. and prepare two baking sheets by spraying them with cooking spray or lining with a non-stick silicon baking mat. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and water and set beside the prepared pans with a brush close by for basting the pretzels.
  4. When the dough is done, plop it onto a floured surface and cut into 12 equal pieces.
  5. Shape each piece of the dough into a long snake about 1 1/2 feet long, then form each snake into a pretzel shape.
  6. Carefully set each pretzel into the boiling bath water, cover and let them bathe for 30 seconds. I did three pretzels at a time.
  7. Remove each pretzel carefully from the bath with a slotted spoon or spatula and set onto the prepared baking sheet. Brush with the egg wash, then sprinkle with coarse salt.
  8. Bake at 425 for about 10 - 14 minutes or until they are a beautiful golden brown in color.
  9. Remove from the oven and let cool a bit before eating.


Cook time includes time for the dough to rise. For traditional instructions without the bread machine, visit Comfortable Food

RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/

© Copyright 2013, Sumptuous Spoonfuls. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.


Authentic German Pretzels ~ Sumptuous Spoonfuls #pretzel #recipe

This recipe was shared at Saturday SpotlightMop it Up Monday, Mommy’s Manic MondayMarvelous MondaysTuesday’s TableTry a New Recipe TuesdayWednesday ExtravaganzaTried & True Recipes and Clever Chicks Bloghop.

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18 Responses

  1. Oh My! My hubby and son are going to flip out!
    Are you of German descent too?

    April 7, 2013 at 10:54 pm

    • Ann

      I am! So glad you like the recipe Audrey 🙂

      April 8, 2013 at 7:21 am

  2. NICE! Those are beautiful!!! 🙂

    April 7, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    • Ann

      Thank you for the awesome recipe! We had such fun making (and EATING) them 🙂

      April 8, 2013 at 7:20 am

  3. Love this! I’d like to invite you to link up to Saturday Spotlight @ Angels Homestead. The party runs from Saturday 12 am to Wednesday 12 midnight.


    Hope to see you there 🙂


    April 8, 2013 at 6:40 am

    • Ann

      Thanks for the invite, April! I’ll be there 🙂

      April 8, 2013 at 7:20 am

  4. OH MY GOSH!!! These look amazing. I am going to try these with whole wheat flour…it has to be about the same…right?!?! I am hosting a hop today at http://www.frugalfitfamily.com and would love it if you would share these!

    April 8, 2013 at 10:06 am

    • Ann

      I used part whole wheat flour … whole wheat just doesn’t rise as well as bread flour. Just make sure you use high quality whole wheat flour. You might want to add some gluten to help with rising.

      April 8, 2013 at 9:26 pm

  5. Yum! I’m marking this..I’ve always wanted to make pretzels.

    April 8, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    • Ann

      Me too! I’m so glad we finally DID! I told my kids we really must do this more often. We all loved them and the best part was: both my kids stepped into the kitchen to help 🙂

      April 9, 2013 at 7:08 pm

  6. Jackie

    These look great. I found you on Try A New Recipe Tuesday. I would love if you would share on my site: http://rediscovermom.blogspot.com/2013/04/tried-and-true-recipes-7.html

    April 10, 2013 at 10:07 pm

  7. Thanks for sharing on Tried and True Recipes! http://rediscovermom.blogspot.com/2013/04/tried-and-true-recipes-7.html

    April 11, 2013 at 9:39 pm

  8. Wow these look great!!

    Blue Eyed Beauty Blog
    Exercise Encouragement Group Blog

    April 16, 2013 at 12:47 am

  9. You had me at bread machine! And Alton Brown! I love his sciency way of explaining cooking and I love soft pretzels and I’m madly in love with my bread machine! I can’t wait to make these!!!

    April 19, 2013 at 7:38 am

  10. Pingback: » 2013 in Review: the 13 Most Sumptuous Recipes Sumptuous Spoonfuls

  11. Do you have to let the dough rise?

    October 2, 2014 at 12:39 pm

  12. put dough in bread machine I only have manual and different bread settings how do I know when it is done does it need to rise?

    October 2, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    • Ann

      Hi Tracy,

      Typically bread machines have a “dough” setting that stops after the dough has risen once. If yours doesn’t have that, yes, let it do an initial rise and then shape it into pretzels. The second “rise” will happen in the boiling water. Then they will rise a bit more when you bake them.

      Thanks for asking!


      October 2, 2014 at 8:33 pm