top of page

Homemade Pretzels

Making these homemade pretzels is one of the easiest baking projects I think I've ever undertaken. They can be made super fast since...

Making these homemade pretzels is one of the easiest baking projects I think I've ever undertaken. They can be made super fast since there isn't much rise time needed, and they don't require a ton of skill to make.




  • 4 cup flour (632g)

  • 1g diastatic malt powder (optional)

  • 12g salt

  • 1.5. tablespoons (13g) instant yeast

  • 1.5 cups (365g) water percent lukewarm water @ 95f 35c

  • 1.5 tablespoon (21g) butter softened

Lye Solution (please use a food scale to be accurate here):

  • 1000g cold water

  • 30g lye beads (this equates to a 3% solution)

Baking Soda Alternative to Lye (be aware that your pretzels will be different in color and flavor if you go this route):

  • 1000g cold water 60g baking soda


Primed Yeast

  1. Mix yeast and water. Let sit in warm area ten minutes before using.


  1. Incorporate yeast and water mix into dry ingredient bowl using medium-low speed.

  2. Gradually add butter, then mix 2-3 more minutes until fully mixed and elastic.

  3. Proof for 15 minutes with damp towel on top.

  4. Divide do into 8 pieces weighing 127 g.

  5. Lightly shape dough in a fat log 4 in or 1 cm long.

  6. Place in baking sheet greased with oil. Cover with damp towel or plastic wrap and let rest for 5 minutes.

  7. When shaping pretzel dough, start from center, increase pressure as you reach ends to get a tapered effect until getting a long tapered torpedo 20 in or 50 cm long (think about a giant earthworm here, fat in the middle skinny on the ends).

  8. Take the two ends, bring them together, gently cross over each other.

  9. Twist end pieces once, gently bring it down to front and attach those legs to the base line on oiled sheet tray, cover and proof for 30 min.

  10. Put in fridge to cool, prep lye solution LYE SOLUTION: 1000 g cold water to 30g of food grade lye beads. Whisk until all are dissolved. IMPORTANT: USE GLOVES!

  11. Drop in solution 10 seconds per side. Place on wire rack setup over drain excess lye mixture. Make sure rack is greased otherwise it sticks.

  12. Slash base or thickest part of pretzel with razor blade

  13. Finish with flaky salt, then bake at 425 F or 218 C for 15-20 min or until golden brown.


William Shimanek
William Shimanek
Jan 29

Used baked baking soda (200-250 for a couple hours) to make sodium carbonate, has pH closer to lye. Used about 70g per 1000g water, turned out really well. Almost the same color and taste as typical pretzels at a stadium or mall, but much better.


Li M. B.
Li M. B.
Dec 18, 2022

What if I wanted to make hard pretzels? Is the process the same?


Aug 30, 2022


Your recipe calls for 4 cups of bread flour and gives the weight as 632 grams. Are you really using bread flour that weighs 158 gams per cup? if so, what brand of flour are you using? thanks!


Christopher Travers
Christopher Travers
Dec 10, 2021

Professional bakers dip raw soft pretzels in a lye (sodium hydroxide) solution just before baking to promote rapid browning and give the twists their distinctive slightly alkaline flavor, chewy texture, and dark brown color. Since lye is extremely corrosive, requiring the use of goggles and gloves, pretzel recipes for home cooks typically call for a far weaker and safer base: baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). Unfortunately, it’s too mild to be very effective; pretzel dough treated with a baking soda solution more closely resembles breadsticks in color, taste, and texture. Here’s a better way: Transform baking soda into sodium carbonate—a more alkaline substance—by spreading 1 cup of baking soda on a baking sheet and baking it in a 250-degree oven for…


Edward Rosser
Edward Rosser
Sep 10, 2021

Have you ever used Rooto lye? I can’t find “food grade” lye anywhere but this product claims to be 100% lye… I mean, Lye is Lye, right?

Nov 16, 2023
Replying to

I was able to easily get food grade lye on Amazon.


Let's Get Cooking

Recent Recipes

bottom of page