These pillow-soft sourdough pretzels are super simple to make, and only require a few steps till you achieve a delicious result. Though you’ll need to ensure that your pretzel dough has proofed enough before you proceed with the bake! Get your sourdough starter ready, because you’re in for a treat!
Table of Contents
- Can You Use a Sourdough Discard to Make Pretzels?
- How to Make Soft Sourdough Pretzel Recipe
- Why Do You Boil Sourdough Soft Pretzels Before Baking?
- Is Pretzel Dough and Bagel Dough the Same?
- Why Are My Sourdough Pretzels so Dense?
- Soft Sourdough Pretzels
- Sourdough Pretzel Recipe FAQs
Can You Use a Sourdough Discard to Make Pretzels?
You can use a sourdough discard for this soft sourdough pretzel recipe. However you will need to include commercial yeast in the recipe.
Simply add up to 7g of commercial yeast, along with your sourdough discard, for a nice puffy rise.
How to Make Soft Sourdough Pretzel Recipe
To make sourdough pretzels you’ll need a starter, or sourdough discard if you fancy. For this particular recipe, I’m using an active sourdough starter and baking soda, to boil the pretzels in. This should help achieve a wonderfully soft, sourdough pretzels.
- 100g active sourdough starter
- 255g water
- 40g honey
- 10g fine sea salt
- 500g bread flour
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp coarse salt
- 2 tbsp baking soda
- 1 tbsp dark brown sugar
- Stir sourdough starter, water, honey and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer. Add the bread flour, and use your hands to gather these ingredients together as best as you can. By now the dough should be stiff, and ready to knead. Place the dough hook on the stand mixer, and mix the dough on the lowest speed for 7 minutes. Cover the bowl and let the dough rest at room temperature for 12 hours.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and transfer the pretzel dough to a clean work surface.
- Roll the dough into a long rope shape and set it in the shape of U. Lift the ends of the dough and twist twice. Fold the twist over, and press the ends of the dough together. Cover the pretzel dough with a towel and let this puff up and rise for 60 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 425F, and place the oven rack in the center of the oven. Boil 6 glasses of water in a large pot and add 2 tablespoons of baking soda, along with 1 tablespoon of dark brown sugar.
- Drop 3 pretzels at a time in boiling water, for 30 seconds, then use a mesh strainer to remove them and place them onto a parchment paper. Brush each pretzel with an egg wash and sprinkle some coarse salt over them.
- Bake the pretzels for 12-14 minutes, until they’re light golden brown.
- Day 1: 8 AM – Feed Starter
- 8 PM – Mix pretzel dough, cover and ferment on the kitchen counter overnight
- Day 2: 8 AM – Divide the dough, shape the pretzels, cover and rise.
- 8.30 AM – Prepare boiling water with baking soda and dark brown sugar
- 9 AM – Boil the pretzels, coat in an egg wash, add a sprinkle of salt, then bake.
Why Do You Boil Sourdough Soft Pretzels Before Baking?
To achieve a soft and chewy crust, it’s important to boil your pretzels before baking. Traditional German pretzels are boiled in lye, but to make this recipe accessible to home bakers, you can add some baking soda to the boiling water instead.
The baking soda helps the pretzels achieve their unique color and chewiness. Boiling soft pretzels allows them to achieve a wonderful puffiness, before they eventually bake in the oven.
Like sourdough bread, these pretzels require moisture, to achieve a desired result. This means that the crust is set from boiling, and while the pretzels bake, it becomes chewier from the moisture.
Is Pretzel Dough and Bagel Dough the Same?
Sourdough pretzel dough is almost the same as sourdough bagel dough, in the sense where it has been prepped and boiled in the same way, in hopes to achieve a chewy result. The only difference lies in the shapes of the sourdough pretzels, while their textures are pretty much the same.
Why Are My Sourdough Pretzels so Dense?
When pretzels are too dense, they may have not proofed correctly, or you may have used a flour that is quite high in protein.
Before boiling your sourdough pretzels, they should be nice and puffy, like pretzeled pillows of dough.
If the pretzels are not puffy before boiling, they will emerge dense after the bake. Pretzels should be soft and chewy, with a light and airy interior.
The type of flour you use, plays a huge part in this sourdough pretzel recipe, so choose an all purpose or bread flour, for best results.
How to Store Pretzels?
Homemade pretzels can be kept at room temperature, or an airtight container for up to 3 days.
To preserve your pretzels for longer, simply freeze then pretzels when you’re ready to eat again!
Soft Sourdough Pretzels
Top your scrumptious, soft sourdough pretzels with some pretzel salt if you wish, for that decadent finish, and enjoy for breakfast or snack time!
Sourdough Pretzel Recipe FAQs
Are Sourdough Pretzels Healthy?
Pretzels are low in fat, and quite nutritious. Instead of snacking on potato chips, opt for a soft sourdough pretzel instead.
Are Sourdough Pretzels Low Carb?
Though sourdough pretzels can be highly nutritious, they’re very high in net carbs (78g), which isn’t great for those following a keto or low-carb diet.
Can Diabetics Eat Sourdough Pretzels?
The fermentation process in sourdough recipes, reduces the glycemic response when people with diabetes consume sourdough bread, or pretzels.
Is Pretzel Good for Weight Loss?
Though regular pretzels can be low in fat, they hold no nutritional value, meaning that they do not contribute to weight or fat loss whatsoever.