Sourdough Pretzels – Lessons learned from my first bake

by Heather

I have family coming to visit this week, and I want to make sourdough pretzels with them while they’re here. My sister, brother-in-law and two kids are arriving Monday. I’m excited, and I had been thinking and thinking about what sourdough recipe to make while they’re here.

Obviously there will be fresh country loaves aplenty. I’ve also promised my brother-in-law I would make him my Christmas cinnamon buns, and I made two cinnamon raisin loaves just today.

All delicious, but what else could I make?

I wanted to do something different and a little more fun. The idea of getting her kids excited to help in the kitchen is important to me. Like, I geek out over sourdough fermentation and rising dough, but I suspect an 11-year-old would not. I was completely stumped until tonight when my husband yells across the house:


Yesssss. This is the perfect idea. I made sourdough pretzels once before, and they turned out surprisingly well. It was a little labor-intensive, but totally worth it.

Stacked sourdough pretzels
Note to self: buy the pretzel salt.

Sourdough pretzels will be fun to prepare and bake with my niece and nephew, who are 8 and 11 years old. My own kids, 1 year and 2 years old, loved them the first time I made them so they will be a hit with them as well.

Constantly learning from my results

I did take note of a few things from my first time making sourdough pretzels, and I want to correct those mistakes and – hopefully – achieve a better pretzel overall.

  1. The most important thing I need to do is order proper pretzel salt. I naively thought I could get away with kosher salt, but I was seriously mistaken. The dough just absorbed the salt and it went all weird and bumpy, plus the signature salted pretzel appearance disappeared.
  2. I want to change how long I let the dough rest before shaping. I feel like if I let it rise a little more, the final result may be lighter and fluffier, but I may also be horribly wrong. Guess we’ll find out! Luckily, I suspect that sourdough pretzels are pretty forgiving.
  3. Finally, since I’ll be serving to guests, I’ll make some queso and marinara dipping sauces to serve with the pretzels. I personally love a pretzel dipped in marinara – I can recall as far back as fifth grade, ordering a soft pretzel stick with pizza sauce for lunch!

Let’s give sourdough pretzels another try

So, I have three changes I’m going to make with this pretzel recipe. Once I perfect it I plan to post it, but for now, I will just keep experimenting and updating you along the way! Stay tuned… 🙂

If you’re looking to make your own starter from scratch, head on over to my recipe How to Make Sourdough Starter in Six Easy Steps!

Knuckles-deep in pretzel dough
Knuckles-deep in pretzel dough

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Joanne Crouch February 26, 2021 - 12:59 am

pretzel recipe pretty pleeze?

Heather May 10, 2021 - 12:35 pm

I wish I still had it! I went looking for it recently and I forget what recipe I used for these amazing pretzels. Time to make my own! 🙂


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