Recipe: Soft Pretzels For Kids

I love baking this recipe with my kids. It’s quick and easy to make (you don’t even have to wait for the dough to rise) and kids love making their own unique pretzel shapes. I usually make the dough myself and then call the kids into the kitchen to twist pretzels or do whatever they want.


Soft Pretzels

(scroll to the bottom for the full printable recipe)

What you’ll need:

  • 1 package (1/4 oz) or 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1.5 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • course salt


We’ll start with the water. It’s important for the water to be the right temperature when working with yeast. If it’s too hot or too cold, it can kill the yeast or make it inactive, which means your bread – or in this case pretzels – won’t rise. And who wants that?

So we’ll need 1.5 cups of water. Use a candy thermometer or other kitchen thermometer to measure the temperature. I needed to microwave my water for about 10-15 seconds to get it warm enough. If you warm it too much, just start again. It’s water after all.

Okay now we’ll have happy yeast. Dump the water into your mixing bowl and add 2.5 teaspoons of yeast. It needs to dissolve all the way into the water. The water will look kind of murky.

When the yeast is dissolved, add 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of salt. Mix gently.

Add 3 cups of flour.

Start mixing with your dough hook. Or by hand. I made this recipe many times before I had my Kitchen Aid mixer. It’s just much quicker with a Kitchen Aid.

Mix this for a minute or two and then add another 1/2 cup of flour. Mix this in and test the dough. If it’s ok, you can move on to kneading. If it’s still really sticky, you’ll want to add a little more flour – up to 1/2 cup more.

For kneading, you can either do this by hand for 6-8 minutes or continue using your dough hook (much preferred in my opinion.) With a mixer, “knead” for about 4-6 minutes. The dough will start pulling from the sides of the bowl.

That picture is kind of yucky – sorry about that. Lighting, camera, you know the deal. Anyways…

The dough above isn’t quite done yet. We want it to be smooth and elastic. I had to run the mixer for probably about 6 minutes total.

This is what it looks like when it’s done:

“Smooth and elastic” – see how it pulls away?

Great! The dough is done!

Now preheat your oven to 425° and pull out a couple cookie sheets. Line them with foil and spray them with non-stick cooking spray. Or grease them somehow. This is so important; do not skip this step! If you don’t do it, you’ll be scraping pans much later tonight. Trust me, learn from my past mistakes.

Now you can call the kids. Unless you were brave and had them help you make the dough. Or they were already hanging on you.

Now shape the dough into whatever you want! Nathan and Emily make letters, shapes, and of course pretzel twists. I love it too; it’s fun to mold that dough. It reminds me of playing with play-doh.

Nathan made this awesome twist all by himself:

We made a letter for each of the kids’ names. I just now realized we spelled out “J-E-N” below, lol. It was meant for Joshua, Emily, Nathan – with an L for Luke above


Now remember the egg at the beginning of the recipe? Now is when we need it. If you haven’t already, beat it.

With a pastry brush, brush the egg onto the pretzels. This will allow for the salt to stick plus add a nice golden color when the preztels are baked.

Sprinkle course salt over the pretzels. See how talented I am? I can shake salt and take a photo at the same time.

Bake the pretzels for 12-14 minutes each. You don’t want them to be overdone so check on them. When they are just beginning to turn golden, pull them out.

Cool on a wire rack.


Note: these pretzels don’t store well for long. Keep them in an air tight container and don’t plan on eating them past a day or so. They turn hard quickly. But they are so yummy! And the best part is watching the kids have fun!


Soft Pretzels

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 14 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yields: 15-24 pretzels

Soft Pretzels

  • 1 package (1/4 oz) or 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1.5 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • course salt

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the sugar and salt and mix. Add 3 cups of flour and combine. Add 1/2 to 1 cup more of flour as needed. Knead for 5-8 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.

Shape into pretzel twists or shapes as desired. Place on lined greased baking sheets. Brush with an egg; sprinkle with course salt.

Bake at 425 degrees for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
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About the Author

Erika is a happily married mom with four energetic children. With a love for Jesus, photography, organizing, and encouraging other moms, she stays busy and definitely does not have it all together.


  1. These look really good. We love soft pretzels in our house. Sometimes we dust them with cinnamon and sugar too for a breakfast treat.

  2. These look delicious! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Oh yeah, this looks like something I can make! I need simple recipes. Thanks for sharing

  4. I make this recipe for myself too!!! These are so yummy!! I have the same exact recipe!!! I think I might make some today! You have inspired me:) Thanks for posting!

  5. yummy! I am so going to make these with my kids – we are making bread today, I am doing letter of the week with my preschooler so we are on “B” (bread). Thanks for sharing! :)

  6. This looks easy. I have been thinking about making some pretzels like this because my 5 year old’s new obsession is getting a pretzel at Auntie Annies or whatever it’s called at the mall. But we only go to the mall every once in a while (kind of like only letting the kids get in on the twisting part-I haven’t lost my mind totally). Think I’m going to try this with her. Thanks!

  7. Pamela Halligan says:

    I love soft pretzels, but never actually thought about making my own. I will definitely use this recipe. Thanks.

  8. This looks like a great rainy afternoon project or one I can do with my Cub Scouts. This is an easy to use/follow recipe. Great!

  9. Mary Dailey says:

    These look great. I’ll have to try to make them!

  10. Becky Davis says:

    This sounds quick and easy. Have you ever tried it with cinnamon and sugar? How did it turn out?

  11. This is so cool. The kids love soft pretzels but they get expensive to buy all the time. This would be great to because they can help roll them or do their own design with them.

  12. Thank you for this recipe. I’ve been looking around the net for things to do over the summer with my kids. This one would be great since they will be able to do shapes and twists before they eat it.

  13. Hi Erika,
    i am so glad that i stumbled upon you blog! my attention was captured by your blog name and then i read a little bit about you and i just want to say that i love it that you are not afraid to admit that you are a Christ following woman, mother and a wife! I recently got married and we have couple’s meetings and we have been thinking hard about how to home school our kids (only one couple has a child so far, but the rest of us are still waiting) we just see how much is going on in schools and we are all pretty concerned about our children. So i would just like to say that i am fascinated that you are able to do all this and still be great at it! God bless!
    Julie from MA

    • Thanks so much for the comment, Julie! It’s always encouraging to hear from other moms and know that we’re not alone, isn’t it? ((HUGS)) and God bless you too!

  14. Lorna Lyons says:

    I am fairly new at the computor but would love to get some of your receipts and pictures such as the pretzel one for kids. My grandkids would love to make those so is there a possible way you can sent me the recepite and pictures to me on e=mail. If not i understand. Thank you so much for doint this iy is greatly appreciated. Thajks again Lorns

    • Hi Lorna, if you go to the post above you can see there’s a button to click where you can print out the recipe. I hope that helps!

  15. Made these with the kiddos and they are fantastic! We bought a bunch of dipping sauces and are making them again tonight in honor of National Pretzel day. :)

  16. These were amazing and so easy. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  17. Elizabeth Yutzy says:

    Hello Erika, I tried your recipe with my children at school and they loved the pretzels. Thank you so much for the details.
    Elizabeth Yutzy

  18. I usually brush mine wiht butter afterwards then wiggle them around in a cinnamon and sugar mixture. Thanks for posting the recipes!

  19. um yea….these are awesome!

  20. Its true these are SO EASY!!!
    I don’t have kids but I needed an easy appetizer to make for a dinner party. These were a huge hit! I added an extra layer of melted butter at the end to mimic the “Aunt Annie” flavor. These were delicious!

  21. We make the kind you buy at the store all the time. But now that I got this great recipe we can make our own here at home. It will be alot cheaper and the kids will have a ball make their own pretzels. I never realized the recipe ingredients were that simple of products. Thanks so much for the recipe

  22. The kids in my preschool classroom loved this recipe. My six students have attention and sensory processing issues. Smelling,
    rolling the dough, and putting their hands in it made them feel happy and calm. Best of all everyone tried the pretzels! Thank you so much!

  23. Heather says:

    My son saw some frozen soft pretzels and begged me for them and I refused. So happy to have found a simple recipe, and can’t wait to try it out! I worked at a pretzel shop years ago and before we baked them we brushed this wash on it that was water and baking soda (or powder, I’m not positive), but no egg, just that mixture. When they came out we would pick them up with tongs and dip them in oil and salt them. I’m gonna try a few each way to see what works best. Thank you for the recipe :)

  24. I made these… Tasted ok but not light dough…. Really heavy & I only got 8 pretzels the size of my hand out of this recipe… I think they should have been left to rise alittle before baking. They got to hard baking long enough to get golden brown.


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