Soft pretzels are a summer staple – at baseball games, ocean boardwalks, city parks, you name it. But nothing beats pretzels baked fresh at home! Kids can get hands-on and messy with this delicious version.
To start, dissolve 1 packet dry yeast in 1 cup warm water; let stand for 5 minutes – you’ll get to see the yeast bloom, like tiny little fireworks in a bowl. Super exciting!
Meanwhile, combine 2 and 1/2 cups flour, 1 teaspoon sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add the yeast mixture and stir until you have a soft dough.
Using floured hands, knead the dough for about 5 minutes. This step was fun but too messy to photograph!
Place the dough in a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes.
Next up came some fun math – we needed to divide our dough into 8 portions, which meant slicing in half, then each of those in half again, then each of those in half again! Travis loved pretended we were Peg + Cat for this step, and cut to use the pizza cutter under close supervision.
Flour your hands again and roll each portion into a long rope. From here, you can have as much fun as you want.
Shape the dough into traditional twists, letters of the alphabet, or whatever else your kids want. Travis requested a square!
Dip the pretzels quickly in a bowl of water, then transfer to a buttered baking sheet (we used Earth Balance). Let rise for 10 minutes.
Bake the pretzels at 450 degrees F for 10 minutes. Peek-a-boo, little pretzels!
Brush the tops with a little more Earth Balance and serve – they are best served warm, we think! If you prefer, you can also sprinkle some of the pretzels with salt, and others with a mix or cinnamon and sugar, but Travis requested his plain.