Saturday, January 5, 2013

"gourmet" auntie anne's pretzels

Today I went shopping with my friend Tessa.  Exams are starting on Monday, and after hitting the chemistry book for hours on end, we both deserved a little bit of retail therapy.  A few peplum tops and lululemon sports bras, and my woes of homogenous mixtures were far behind me!  

While we were shopping around, I realized how much I love mall food.  That fruity smell of self-serve fro-yo, the basil and oregano wafting out of Sbarro pizza, freshly popped buttery popcorn filling the air from the cinema -- it's the aroma of retail therapy! The smells and tastes of the mall remind me of that inexplicable joy that comes with finding the perfect pair of shoes for half-price, or finding the perfect jeans, or getting a complimentary hand massage at one of those little kiosks. 

There is not a mall in America that doesn't have a Cinnabon and Auntie Anne's (I made the infamous Cinnabun a while back).  Today, I tackled Auntie Anne's big, buttery, twisty mall pretzels.  Except these are better (take that Anne!).  I topped mine with some delicious, gourmet ingredients that elevate these from the standard sprinkle of kosher salt.  I dipped some in truffle oil and sprinkled them with truffle salt, I sprinkled some asagio cheese on some, and even did a maple-butter glaze!  Of course, I had to make a few plain cinnamon-sugar ones. ;)

With love, 


1 cup milk
1 packet active dry yeast
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoons fine salt

1/4 cup baking soda

1 1/2 cups warm water
Coarse salt
4 tablespoons butter, melted in a shallow dish 

My "gourmet" toppings:
  • Instead of dipping in butter, dip in truffle infused olive oil, and spinkle with truffle salt
  • Mix in some Vermont Maple Syrup with the butter for a maple-glazed version
  • Sprinkle with some grated Parmesan and Asagio 
  • When all else fails, roll 'em in cinnamon sugar
Warm up the milk in the microwave for about 1 minute. It should be about 110º. If it's too hot it will kill the yeast.  Stir in the yeast and let it sit for about 3 minutes. Add the butter and sugar. Add the flour about 1 cup at a time and the add the fine salt. Kneed for about 10 minutes with a stand mixer, or by hand. Put it in a greased bowl and cover with greased cling wrap. Let rise for 1 hour in a moist, warm place until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 450º. Punch down dough and divide into 8 chunks. Roll them all out as thin as you can. Combine the warm water and baking soda in a wide bowl. Form the dough into pretzel shapes, then dip in the baking soda water. Place on a greased baking sheet and sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake for about 7-11 minutes or until browned. Dip each in the melted butter while hot and roll in desired toppings. 

Adapted from Yammie's Noshery


  1. is it possible to use whole wheat bread flour for this recipe? that's all i have at the moment. thanks!!

    1. I am sure you could sub in whole wheat flour for this recipe -- it would make it healthier as well! The pretzels may be a little tougher and chewier and with a dense, wheat texture. But I'm sure they would be delicious and buttery all the same. Since you're making them healthier, don't skimp on the butter!

  2. thank you for understanding the immense woes of chemistry!
    these look amazing, please feed me!

    1. Thanks so much Mikayla! Thank goodness that final is done with (as of 11 this morning!)

  3. I love the pretzels you get at the mall and totally agree with you on the aroma of retail therapy. I can't wait to try these next. Hope you did well on your finals. Your pictures are amazing, do you mind me asking what kind of camera you use? Thanks for sharing another great recipe. Stacey

    1. Thank you so much! Please shoot me an e-mail if you try them, I would love to see how they turn out! I used a Canon DSLR for these photographs.

    2. * I think it's called the Canon "Rebel"? -- sorry I don't know the technicalities!

  4. Loved your pretzels so I featured them on my Friday five over @Feed Your Soul -

    1. Thanks so much! I appreciate the feature! Plus your brownie recipe looks AMAZING!

  5. Wow! Yummy! Should try this out soon, thanks for the recipe you have provided.

    Gourmet pretzels

  6. These pretzels are awesome! My kids are in heaven when ever I make them. With some yogurt and fruit and a pretzel as the main course it is a great quick alternative to dinner! Thanks for all the great recipes.

    1. That sounds like a great dinner! :) Glad you enjoyed them!