Do you have those foods that you just have to eat when you go certain places? Like when you go to the movies, you have to get buttered popcorn, right? Well for me, when I go to a college football game or any outdoor sporting event really I just HAVE to get a big soft pretzel. And I have to have it with lots of salt and mustard. So good! It completes the outing for me for sure. These Sourdough Soft Pretzels are so reminiscent of those ballpark pretzels. Not quite as big, but certainly big on flavor, texture, and salt!
What Makes These Soft Pretzels so Good
Many soft pretzel recipes involve boiling the pretzels and/or multiple proofs of the dough. This recipe has one proof only and no boiling! Less mess and less time. You gotta love that! This soft pretzel recipe also uses some sourdough discard. This is part of a sourdough starter that usually gets thrown away when the starter is fed or refreshed. It’s so sad throwing away starter, so I’m always on the lookout for great recipes in which to use it. In this case, the sourdough discard helps elevate the flavor of the pretzel. It does not make the pretzels taste sour by any means. If you don’t have starter and aren’t interested in establishing one for this recipe, I have a tip below for substituting.
To Salt or Not to Salt
There’s inevitably a big debate that ensues when soft pretzels are made and consumed. Salt or no salt. Now, lemme tell ya, I am a big lover of pretzel salt. There is such a thing as too much of it, however, my threshold for the quantity of this stuff is pretty darn high.
I’m not exactly sure why this is either because growing up, my mom was ultra reserved when it came to using salt in her cooking. We never had salt on the table and it was never something that was asked for when we ate out at restaurants either. My mom’s cooking was, and still is, excellent – this is in no way a criticism, she’s the best – love you mom! But, my parents both don’t like salt in their food. Which makes me wonder where I developed my love for salt. Oh well, I suppose some things will forever remain a mystery! All I know is, I am definitely on #teamsalt. If you are on #teamnosalt, you can of course choose not to use salt. Or, you can just use salt sparingly.
Tips for Making This Recipe
- If you don’t have a sourdough starter, you can buy one and start your own from somewhere like King Arthur Flour. Or, you can borrow some of a friend’s starter. Or, you can omit the sourdough starter all together and substitute it with 4 ounces of additional bread flour plus 4 ounces of water
- Shaping a pretzel for the first time can be a bit intimidating, but once you get the hang of it, it’s actually pretty straightforward. Here’s a great quick video on how to do it. There are many methods, so feel free to try any of them to shape your pretzels
- This recipe calls for pretzel salt. Yes, there is such a thing. You can find it easily online, however, if you did not order in time, you can substitute for any coarse salt or even Maldon. I wouldn’t use table salt, as it’s too fine and will dissolve into the pretzels
- The recipe calls for brushing the pretzels at the end with butter as an option. It’s not optional in my opinion. You should always brush them with melted butter. The butter makes for a perfect finish to these pretzels and enhances the flavor
Like this recipe? Follow me on Pinterest for lots more just like it! And, don’t forget to pin this recipe for later.
Notice: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. By clicking on any of these links, you are consenting to us to place cookies on your browser.