German Soft Pretzels

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Made with just a hint of nutty, rye flour, these German Soft Pretzels have all that old world flavor in an easy recipe.  They are dipped in a baking soda bath to give the pretzel that crusty outside while keeping the inside soft and delicious!

German Soft Pretzels


Yes, it’s that time again!  It’s time for #FreakyFriday!  “What’s #FreakyFriday?” Well, it’s an event hosted by Michaela from An Affair of the Heart. This is the summer edition of the event.  If you are new to my blog, welcome!  Here’s the 411 on #FreakyFriday.


Each blogger who signs up is assigned a blog from another participant. Like me, for instance. I was assigned West via Midest.  Once you receive your assigned blog, you get to go through their recipes and pick something you want to cook.  Michele has so many delicious looking recipes on her blog.  I mean, that Santa Maria Tri Tip Roast from a few days ago just has me drooling!!  Right?


German Soft Pretzels


So, just a little bit about Michele and her corner of the blogosphere. She offers up tips and tricks to keep you from going out! What I mean is, her blog tells you have to easily, and successfully, entertain your friends and family at home. Which is important to her since she believes that “getting together over food gives us balance in our lives.” I totally agree whole heartedly in that statement!

However, there is one consequence to all this. EVERYONE will want to come to your house for ALL the events, holidays, parties, etc. West via Midwest will make you sure you have all the tools, tips, and tricks you need to keep yourself stress free and entertain like Martha.


German Soft Pretzels


I was tempted by so many of her recipes.  She makes beef welling appetizers people!  How crazy good does that sound?  Wellington isn’t as difficult as most think and it packs a wow factor punch.  Plus, you can pseudo make it ahead of time.  Just sayin…


Then I thought about this gorgeous looking Greek style lamb chop recipe.  Because, well, I have a new-found love for lamb chops on the grill.  But I was intrigued because she uses a grill pan.  I just got one and was thinking I should christen it with this recipe.


German Soft Pretzels


I almost stopped in my tracks with her grilled steak with bourbon garlic butter.  Hello!?  Steak, bourbon, butter?  What’s not to love!  Especially since I’m from Kentucky where bourbon is KING!  I will have to table that bourbon garlic butter to put on my table later on this summer.  Compound butters are AH-mazing on grilled steaks.


The German pretzels had me hooked.


Because, well, I love soft pretzels!  If they’re on the menu I WILL order them.  No fail.  Hands down.  Every time.  So, there’s no need to say I was more than excited to try this recipe.  Especially since it has rye flour in there.  I HAVE RYE FLOUR!  YES!  WIN WIN !


German Soft Pretzels


I have to preface this; I suck at baking bread.  So, I fake it.  Seriously.  My pizza crusts are too dense.  I have issues baking loaf bread.  That’s why there’s not that many recipes for bread on my site.  It’s on my list of things to master.  But these pretzels are super simple to make!  Which is a good thing because German lead pretzels just doesn’t sound like a good recipe post title.


Look at that gorgeous color!  I was thrilled when I pulled these out of the oven.  These German soft pretzels look gorgeous and they taste amazing.  There’s a perfectly nutty flavor, which is why she added the rye flour.  They had a nice crispy outside with perfectly moist and delicious crumb on the inside.  They are definitely pub worthy pretzels!



I do not like a lot of salt on my pretzels.  So, I didn’t use pretzel salt.  I tried to find it, but just didn’t.  The Maldoon salt in the pantry was perfect flaked salt to sprinkle lightly on my pretzels.  And I was right!  If you like more salt, then load it up.  I am super sensitive to salt and don’t use a lot of it.  The poor hubs has to sprinkle salt on his dinner before he eats because he claims it’s bland.  It’s a struggle.


You can see that I barely coated these beauties in salt, but there’s enough there to get the point across.  I love the little cracks that happen when you boil them.  To me, they’re like the corners of the brownie pan or the edges of the lasagna with the crispy bits.  They’re caused in the boiling process, so if you don’t like the crispy bits or extra chewiness in your pretzels, then watch them carefully and take them out after they puff slightly before they split.


German Soft Pretzels


Just a heads up.  The boiling process is messy.  Especially when you’re putting the baking soda in the water.  It will bubble up.  The bubbles will pop and leave a ring of dried baking soda around the edges of the pan and probably your burner or stove.  I don’t think anyone ever mentions this in their recipes, but I just wanted to let y’all know this part will be messy and require additional clean up.


You’re welcome!


However, in order to get that deep golden color this part is essential.  It’s also critical for a crispy or chewy exterior.  Basically, the only reason I eat pretzels.  The first time I made pretzels successfully I vowed to ALWAYS use the baking soda bath before baking.  I will probably use this method when making bagels, too.  I love chewy outsides.


German Soft Pretzels


That’s just a little honey mustard I had on hand.  I typically like beer cheese or pub cheese for pretzels.  Some places serve them with nacho cheese and that’s just not right in my head.  Pretzels need a beer cheese or mustards; not canned nacho cheese sauce.  Please, don’t do that.


Michele has a great blog full of entertaining tips and tricks and DELICOUS recipes!  I hope you head over there and check it out.  Also, follow her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest to stay up to date on what she’s creating for her guests.


German Soft Pretzels
Yield: 12

German Soft Pretzels

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Made with just a hint of nutty, rye flour, these German Soft Pretzels have all that old world flavor in an easy recipe. They are dipped in a baking soda bath to give the pretzel that crusty outside while keeping the inside soft and delicious!


  • 1/4 ounce active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 2 1/2 - 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup rye flour
  • Pretzel salt or flaked sea salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
  • 1/2 cup baking soda


Place the water in large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir in the molasses and the yeast. Allow the yeast to bloom 5 to 10 minutes or until bubbly.

Stir in the rye flour, 1 cup of the all-purpose flour, and the table salt. Using the paddle attachment or a dough whisk, stir until the flour is incorporated and the dough begins form into a ball on the paddle. If the dough is still sticky, add an additional cup of flour or more until the dough begins to form.

Change to the dough hook and knead the dough on medium speed, adding more flour as needed to keep it from sticking until the dough is slightly shiny and stretches without easily tearing.

Alternative, you could turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead by hand 12 to 15 minutes or until shiny and stretches easily.

Brush a mixing bowl or proofing container with butter or olive oil. Place the dough in the container and turn to coat on all sides. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise about 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in size (this is where a proofing container would come in handy as you could easily tell when it’s doubled in size).

Once the dough has risen, remove from the bowl and cut into 12 pieces for large pretzels or 20 pieces for smaller pretzels.

Roll each piece into a long strand about 16 inches long for the larger pretzels, and about 12 to 13 inches for smaller pretzels. 

Carefully twist into the classic pretzel shape and place on a baking sheet lined with silpat or parchment paper. Continue rolling and twisting all 12 or 20 pieces. Allow to rise 15 to 20 minutes.

At this point you could flash freeze the pretzels to bake later. Place the baking sheet(s) into your freezer about 30 minutes. At this point, they should no longer stick together and you can place them an airtight container for up to one month.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

While the pretzels are rising again, bring a large pot of water to boil. Leave at least 1 to 1 1/2 inches of room at the top of the pot. Carefully, and slowly, add the baking soda to the pot one tablespoon at a time to prevent it from boiling over.

Boil the pretzels, 3 to 4 at a time, for 30 seconds on each side and place on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with pretzel or flaked sea salt. Repeat until all the pretzels have been boiled and sprinkled with salt.

Bake at 450 for 15 to 20 minutes for large pretzels or 10 to 15 minutes for small pretzels. Serve warm with beer cheese, honey mustard, or cheese sauce.

Nutrition Information



Amount Per Serving Calories 0Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 0mgCarbohydrates 0gFiber 0gSugar 0gProtein 0g

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  1. Looks like you picked a great recipe!! I have only made soft pretzels once but this recipe looks amazing! Love the rye addition in there- your right about that color- gorgeous and im sure the flavor is perfection too! Cant wait to make a batch or two!

  2. I love this event. Reading everyones blog and picking out just the right recipe, it’s so much fun! And boy did you! These pretzels look just amazing, tender on the inside with a chewy exterior, yum! I can’t wait to make them! Thanks for sharing and I just love reading all about it!!

  3. I love that you made these! They were one of the first recipes I made for entertaining that people asked me for the recipe! I just ran out of pretzel salt and I love your idea of the soft flaked salt…… we too have cut way back and that salt is so flavorful you dont need much of it! (win for our new low sodium eating!)

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