Pretzel rolls may be sorta ubiquitous—we hear they’re even at Trader Joe’s—yet you’d be astounded at just how easy they are to make at home. As the name implies, they taste just like a German pretzel. And you can rely on them anyplace you’d use a bun—think a hamburger or sandwich or even to satisfy any old carb craving.
Pretzels rolls made from scratch in a little over two hours. Believe it. And yes, all the requisite traits of authentic German pretzels are in attendance here—shiny, salty, perfectly burnished, densely bread-y, and reminiscent of a soft pretzel but in a handier shape. Smother with butter, stuff with your favorite sandwich fixings, or inhale them straight off the baking sheet.–Angie Zoobkoff
- Quick Glance
- 30 M
- 2 H, 30 M
- Makes 10
- 3 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon (500 grams white spelt flour or unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for working the dough
- 1 (1/4-ounce or 7-gram) envelope fast-acting yeast
- 2 teaspoons (12 grams) fine sea salt
- 1 1/4 cups (300 ml) water, lukewarm (about 110°F or 43°C)
- 3 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces or 40 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 4 1/4 cups (1 liter) cold water
- 3 tablespoons (54 grams) baking soda
- Coarse sea salt
- 1. Combine the flour, yeast, and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer.
- 2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the 1 1/4 cups warm water and butter. The mixture should be lukewarm.
- 3. Add the butter mixture to the flour mixture and mix with the dough hook of an electric mixer until well combined, about 2 minutes. The dough shouldn’t be sticky. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and continue kneading and punching it down until you have a smooth and elastic ball of dough, 2 to 3 minutes. Place the dough back in the bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let rise in a warm place (preferably in a 100°F (35°C) warm oven) until double in size, about 60 minutes.
- 4. When the dough has doubled in size, punch it down, take it out of the bowl, and knead it for about 30 seconds. Divide the dough into 10 equal (roughly 3 ounce or 85 gram) portions. Dust your hands with flour, place a portion of dough on the palm of one hand, and with the other hand forming a dome over the dough, roll the dough for about 10 seconds until the top is round and firm and you can feel the tension increasing against your hand. (Don’t shy away from this. It creates surface tension and prevents the buns from becoming flat.) Place the roll on the parchment paper and repeat with the remaining dough. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until puffy, about 20 minutes.
- 5. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- 6. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C).
- 7. In a large pot wide enough to fit 2 rolls at once, bring the 4 1/4 cups cold water and the baking soda to a boil. Carefully watch the pot as the baking soda-water mixture will foam up. With a slotted ladle or spoon, gently slip 2 rolls into the boiling water and cook for 30 seconds, turn them over, and cook for another 30 seconds. The buns don’t need to be completely covered with the solution, but do take care that they don’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Transfer the buns to a wire rack and let them drip-dry while you repeat with the remaining rolls. After the rolls have dried, transfer them to the parchment-lined baking sheets. Use the tip of a sharp knife to score a cross on top of each roll and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Bake the pretzel rolls, 1 sheet at a time, until golden brown, about 16 minutes. Dive into the rolls while they’re still warm.