Deli-Style Soft Pretzels

Grab the mustard and cheese dip because things just got snack-worthy. This recipe is wonderful and a deli-style winner!

It’s that time of year that the kids start asking for more snacks. Oh, wait. That’s all year long! Kids always seem to be hungry. What is with the growth spurts and puberty? They eat like crazy! Here’s a delightfully delicious snack to make with the kids. It is a simple recipe for making soft pretzels with great chewiness and texture. These pretzels have more of an authentic “Deli-Style” taste. How? Pretzels are dipped in an alkaline solution to get that browned crust and unique flavor. It can be diluted with lye or baking soda. In our kitchen, we prefer the use of baking soda. It’s easier to find.

Deli-Style Soft Pretzels

2 1/4 cups Milk
1 Tbsp. Red Star Active Dry Yeast
1/4 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Olive Oil
5 Cups Panhandle Milling Bread Flour (plus a little more for kneading)
2 Tbsp. Panhandle Milling Vital Wheat Gluten
2 tsp. salt, fine
1/3 cup baking soda
2-3 Tbsp. Course Pretzel Salt


  • Wash and sanitize hands, tools, and all work surfaces. Combine the milk, yeast, sugar, Olive oil. In a separate bowl combine the  Panhandle Milling Bread Flour, Vital Wheat Gluten and salt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Knead until dough is smooth and elastic on a lightly floured surface, about 5 minutes. Shape into a ball, place in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 450°F degrees and grease a large baking sheet. Punch the dough to deflate it, then turn out onto a lightly floured surface. (If the dough seems tight, cover and let rest until it relaxes.)
  • Divide the dough into 12 pieces. Roll and stretch each piece with the palms of your hands into a 30-inch rope. Hold the ends and slapping the middle of the rope on the counter as you pull. Form each rope into a pretzel shape.
  • Dissolve the baking soda in 3 cups of warm water in a shallow baking dish. Gently dip each pretzel in the soda solution, dip a pastry brush in the baking soda solution, and paint each pretzel. Allow drying and “paint” again. Arrange on the prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with the coarse salt.
  • Bake until golden, 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Wash and sanitize hands and all work surfaces after handling raw dough and flour.
  • Drizzle with garlic-infused olive oil after baking and serve warm with hot mustard if desired.