Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce

Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce | platingsandpairings.com

These Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce are the perfect snack for tailgating. Soft, chewy and bite size with a golden crust, they're perfect for dunking into a rich cheese sauce which can be customized in one of three ways. | platingsandpairings.com

These Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce are the perfect snack for tailgating. Soft, chewy and bite size with a golden crust, they’re perfect for dunking into a rich cheese sauce which can be customized in one of three ways.

Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce - Better than Auntie Anne's | platingsandpairings.com

There are essentially two parts to this recipe. Soft Pretzel Bites. Cheese Sauce. And both… are… AMAZING!

The pretzel bites come together quickly – No need to let the dough rise for hours on end. Just 10 minutes is all it takes and then you’re ready to assemble. Knead the dough, roll it and cut bite sized bits. The key here is in the baking soda bath. Before baking, the bites are dipped into a bath of baking soda and water, for a quick 20-second swim. Then, they’re spread out onto prepared baking sheets and baked for 10-15 minutes. In those last few minutes of baking, that deep golden color really develops and then you realize – I made pretzels!

I’m going to be snacking on these all Fall! They’re perfect for tailgating!!!

Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce - Better than Auntie Anne's | platingsandpairings.comPS – Let’s not forget the glorious cheese sauce. One taste and you will NEVER forget it – Trust me!

Ooey, gooey, creamy, cheesy sauce that coats those pretzel bites in the best way possible. And boy, did it ever. I <3 <3 <3 this cheese sauce – It’s the perfect consistency, doesn’t clump up at all, and is super easy to reheat.

Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce - Better than Auntie Anne's | platingsandpairings.com

Plus… OPTIONS!!!

  • Make a mustard cheddar cheese sauce by adding a dollop of your favorite mustard to the prepared cheese sauce.
  • Make a spicy nacho cheese sauce by adding 2 tablespoons hot sauce and 1 teaspoon cayenne when you add the cheese.

Let me just give you a minute to ponder —–> How many of these pretzel bites can you eat in one sitting?

Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce | platingsandpairings.com

Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce

Course: Snack
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Author: Inspired by Sally's Baking Addiction
These Soft Pretzel Bites with Cheese Sauce are the perfect snack for tailgating. Soft, chewy and bite size with a golden crust, they're perfect for dunking into a rich cheese sauce which can be customized in one of three ways.
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Ingredients

Pretzel Bites

  • 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
  • 2 1/4 tsp instant rise yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
  • 3 3/4 cup - 4 1/4 cup all-purpose flour plus additional to coat worktop
  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • Pretzel salt or coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Cheese Sauce

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese grated
  • salt + pepper to taste

Instructions

Pretzel Bites

  1. Dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm water. Stir until yeast is well combined, about 1minute. Some lumps may remain.
  2. To a mixing bowl add the salt, sugar and melted butter, and the yeast mixture. Stir until combined. Slowly add in 3 cups of flour, 1 cup at a time. Mix by hand or use mixer fitted with dough hook, until dough is thick. Add 3/4 cup more flour and stir. If dough is still sticky, add flour, and additional 1/4 cup at a time, until no longer sticky, and dough bounces back when poked with your finger.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for about 3 minutes and shape into a ball. Place in a large mixing bowl that has been lightly coated with nonstick spray. Cover and let the rest in a warm area for approximately 10 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 425°F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  5. Section dough into six equal parts and roll each section into 20-inch long ropes. Cut each rope into 1-1/2 inch bites.
  6. Bring 9 cups of water to a boil with the baking soda. Once rapidly boiling, drop 8-10 pretzel bites into water and let sit for 20 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and place onto the lined baking sheet, making sure that pretzel bites do not touch.
  7. Brush beaten egg over each pretzel bite and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown, rotating the sheet pans once halfway through cooking.

Cheese Sauce

  1. Heat the milk in a small saucepan over medium heat until small bubbles form on the top.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in another saucepan over medium heat. Sprinkle the flour over the top, and whisk until lightly browned, and thickened, 2-3 minutes.
  3. Slowly add the warm milk to the flour butter mixture in a steady stream, whisking constantly. Continue cooking, whisking constantly until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes. It should be thick but still pourable. Add the cheese, whisking constantly until it is melted. Taste, then add salt and pepper to taste.

ERIN’S TIPS:

  • The pretzel bites will remain fresh for up to 3 days in an airtight container, though they will lose some softness.
  • Make ahead: The prepared pretzel dough can be refrigerated for up to one day or frozen for up to three months. Thaw frozen dough in the refrigerator overnight. Refrigerated dough can be rolled and cut while still cold, but allow some extra time for the pretzel bites to puff up before boiling and baking. Baked pretzel bites will freeze well for up to 3 months. Let thaw and reheat in the oven at 300°F until warm.

 

 

 

47 comments

  1. Catherine

    I had no idea pretzels were so easy! These look like the perfect snack to make all football season long!!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      I was shocked at how easy these were to prepare too! It’s the best feeling when you see them brown up in the oven! And the smell! That too!

      Reply

  2. Jenni Kupelian

    Man, If I could wheat, I would start here 🙂

    Reply

  3. Monica Louie

    These look so delicious! Can’t go wrong with some pretzel bites and cheese sauce! Thank you for sharing!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      You’re right Monica – These are totally one of my comfort foods!

      Reply

  4. Marlynn @UrbanBlissLife

    I keep meaning to make pretzels because my youngest kid is on a weird soft pretzel kick, so your recipe came at the right time! Thanks!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      I hope he loves ’em Marlynn! You’d be the BEST MOM EVER!!!

      Reply

  5. Create/Enjoy

    I don’t eat grains or dairy or processed foods, but… great photos! =) TV snack foods are fun!

    Reply

    1. Ajbject

      What was the point in commenting? Did you need someone to acknowledge the fact that you only eat cardboard?

      Reply

  6. Stephanie

    Oh man! I had no idea it was so easy to make pretzels! No need to run to our local Philly Soft Pretzel Factory any more on game day – I can make them myself! And that cheese sauce. Yum! #client

    Reply

    1. Erin

      It’s really, really easy to make these pretzel bites Stephanie – Fun too!

      Reply

  7. Liz @ I Heart Vegetables

    I could be talked into watching football if we had these during the game! 😉

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Ha Ha – Love it Liz! I don’t watch a lot of football, but love to cheer on my Ducks!

      Reply

  8. heather @french press

    what a delicious game day snack! and that cheese sauce is a must!!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Everyone loves to dip, right?! This cheese sauce is perfect for that 😉

      Reply

      1. Michelle

        Does it have to stay warm?

        Reply

        1. Erin

          Hi Michelle – The pretzels do not need to stay warm, although they will lose a bit of their softness. The cheese sauce should be kept warm over low heat if not eating right away. I hope this helps!

          Reply

  9. kelsey

    ah these look completely amazing! i am drooling!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Thanks Kelsey! I’m trying hard not to make these on a weekly basis – They’re SO good and perfect for snacking!

      Reply

  10. Melinda

    OH man, these look so amazing! I will definitely be trying them!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      I hope you do give these pretzel bites a try Melinda – They’re SO yummy!

      Reply

  11. Trish

    Oooooh! I’ve been wondering when some Oktoberfest recipes will start to pop up! These looks oh so delicious. And cheers to no damage to your wine drinking hand!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      It’s that time of year, right Trish?! I’ve always wondered why most Oktoberfests are in September…

      Reply

  12. Shannon

    The pretzels are delicious, but they really stuck to the parchment paper.

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Oh no! I generally use my Silpat when making these pretzels and they come right off. I find that it’s better to remove them when they’re still slightly warm though. I hope you were still able to enjoy them Shannon!

      Reply

  13. Jenifer Talbott

    Not only can you pour me a glass of wine dahling…feel free to set out the pretzel bites for us to snack on…
    I LOVE YOU MAN…okay so my New York to California roots are showing

    Reply

  14. grace

    I made these today and was so impressed!!! They actually taste like Auntie Anne’s and are so delicious. 🙂

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Aren’t they the best Grace?! I was so excited when I finally learned how easy it is to actually make pretzels at home (and good too)!

      Reply

  15. Rufusd

    I’m planning on making these this weekend before I make them for a party I’m going to in two weeks. I have a question. When I make these for the party I am thinking of boiling them at home, putting them on the cookie sheet and them cooking them at my friends house. Do you think this will work? I want to serve them warm.
    They look awesome!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      That should work just fine Rufusd – Just be sure that you put them on a non-stick surface. Enjoy!

      Reply

  16. Beth

    Is there a special salt you use? If so where did you get it?

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Hi Beth – I just use coarse kosher salt which you’ll find easily in your local supermarket. Hope this helps!

      Reply

  17. Vandy

    Hi, the recipe looks awesome. I just had one question. Can I make the cheese sauce a couple of days ahead of time
    Thanks

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Hi Vandy – Yes, you should be able to reheat the sauce easily in the microwave.

      Reply

  18. Christopher

    They are great and easy to make. Did not have everything to make sauce though. Our once in a decade snow day here in south east Texas , I did not venture out.

    Reply

    1. Erin

      I’m glad you liked them Christopher – A perfect snacking food for snowed in days!

      Reply

  19. Tara

    How many pretzels does this recipe make? Making for our super bowl party tomorrow!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Hi Tara – This makes a LOT of pretzels. Definitely enough for 6-8 people.

      Reply

  20. Cheri

    So easy & good, 2nd review in my 5 years on pinterest, thanks for the great recipe!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      So happy to hear that you liked them Cheri!

      Reply

  21. Kadi

    Mine taste like baking soda. What did I do wrong?

    Reply

  22. Sarah

    Hi, Erin. I plan on making these. Just one question… Do I have to boil these for 20 seconds before I put them in the oven? Thanks!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Hi Sarah – You do. That’s what will give them their golden color, since they’re boiled the baking soda.

      Reply

  23. Lisa

    I made these today, and thought it was odd the recipe called for 1/2 cup of baking Soda but then never mentioned it in the directions. Well…all the reviews said they were awesome so I followed it…to be incredibly disappointed at the taste. 1/2 cup was NOT the correct measurement I’m guessing 🙁 is it supposed to be 1/2 teaspoon or Tbsp?

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Hi Lisa – Did you add the baking soda to the water? It doesn’t actually go in the pretzels themselves, but it goes in the boiling water bath.

      Reply

  24. angela

    Will the cheese sauce stay dipable once it cools? Thinking a couple hours into the party at room temp. Tan!

    Reply

    1. Erin

      Hi! Unfortunately, the sauce will need to be kept warm, or reheated. If you have a small crockpot, that will work. Otherwise, you can just pop it into the microwave when it starts to solidify. Hope that helps Angela!

      Reply

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