[This post is sponsored by my foodie loves at Bob’s Red Mill! We’re using their fabulous Organic All-Purpose Flour for these Cinnamon Crunch Soft Pretzels.]
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You know those super tasty Cinnamon Crunch Bagels?
These are like those…but in PRETZEL FORM.
Is your mind blown? Because mine. is. too.
HI! This is quite the day, my friends. And that is because it is the big ol’ four year dating anniversary with my guy.
Yep. This time four years ago, we were grabbing dinner with friends (salads, olives, beer), walking around downtown (to Point State Park!), getting smoothies at Ben & Jerry’s (do not recommend), and signing our first apartment lease together.
Our story has never really been all that…conventional. Signing our lease the day we start dating. Then going on an “official” first date a month after that.
But all that lack of convention is very much “us.” We’re weird, we’re introverted, we make each other laugh with voices we make up for our cat, we love our little floofhead more than anything, we’re business owners, we’re whiskey drinkers, we’re saps, and we’re lovers of the ever-so-perfect cinnamon sugar pretzel.
IN FACT. We recently found out that, as kids, we both loved Auntie Anne’s cinnamon sugar pretzels with…wait for it…cheese dip dipping sauce.
I mean, have you ever heard of a more perfect couple? Or more bizarre? Who’s to say?
Regardless, I decided to pay homage to one of our favorite childhood snacks today, but of course, because I’m me and can’t leave anything alone…we’re elevating it with cinnamon crunch.
AHH. Yes. Those Panera bagels are life, right? Well, it’s totally replicable in pretzel form, and dare I say…better.
You’ve heard it here first, folks. Cinnamon Crunch Soft Pretzels are here to cure your carby cravings.
So, by definition, soft pretzels are a wee bit high maintenance. Not horrible, just…a little more time-consuming than making something like cookies.
But that’s okay. Once you sink your teeth into the soft, pillowy, chewy pretzel, studded with coffee cake-like crumbles and drizzled with vanilla glaze, you’ll forget about all the prep.
And here’s how it’s done:
How to make vegan soft pretzel dough
Oh the dough. I took a play out of Alton Brown’s book and leaned on him to lead me the way to soft pretzel nirvana.
You’ll need some flour, active yeast, sugar, salt, and some vegan butter.
Let’s chat about the flour, shall we? Because I was making these pretzels for a special occasion and because I want my baked goods to be the very best they can possibly be (aka. for you!), I use, trust, and love Bob’s Red Mill’s Organic All-Purpose Flour.
Lemme just say: they call it, “America’s Best Baking Flour” for a reason, okay? It hits that sweet spot of, “not too light,” and “not too dense.”
I love it and use it for everything. Cookies, cakes, and Cinnamon Crunch Soft Pretzels.
If you’ve never baked with yeast before, it’s nothing to fear! Promise. It’s very very simple to use. Just heat up some water so it’s warm to the touch, add some sugar, and then add your yeast. It’ll bloom and get foamy and delicious-smelling, and then it’s ready to use!
How to shape a soft pretzel
Once your dough has rested for, oh, an hour or so, it’s time to shape! This is my favorite part, because it kind of blows everyone’s mind how easy getting that “iconic pretzel shape” really is.
Well, at least it blew Mark’s mind. Not sure about everyone else.
Regardless! It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3!
- Make a U
- Twirl the ends together twice
- Fold the ends down on the bottom of the U
You’ve just made a soft pretzel, homie! Way! To! Go!
Why do you boil soft pretzel dough?
That’s a good question! Boiling is key to getting that…pretzel taste.
I think back in the day, people used a…not super safe ingredient to make that flavor happen, but you can easily achieve the same effect with one ingredient I know is in your kitchen: baking soda!
You add some baking soda to some water, bring it to a boil, and then boil your uncooked pretzels for 30 seconds each.
Just a quick dip in the baking soda hot tub will totally give your soft pretzels that pretzely edge.
How to make a vegan cinnamon crunch topping
And now the fun part! Mix together your crumble ingredients – Bob’s Red Mill’s Organic All-Purpose Flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, vegan butter, and a pinch of salt in a bowl.
You’ll want to make sure your vegan butter is cold, and that the chunks end up the size of small crumbs. Not like, teeny tiny. But small. It’s much better this way, trust me.
Brush your boiled soft pretzels with a bit of non-dairy milk, and sprinkle away! You want these babies coated, so I also hit them with a bit of cinnamon-sugar. Totally optional, but also kinda not, you know?
Last important note: any excess cinnamon crunch topping on the baking sheet will burn – we’re baking these at a hot temperature (450 degrees F, to be exact), so try and brush up as much of the excess as possible and put it on top of the pretzels. The more the merrier with this topping!
And then finally…in just 12-15 minutes, you, too, will be greeted with the aromas of fresh-baked, cinnamony-sweet bagels, ready for devouring.
We liked them with a simple vanilla glaze, but feel free to skip it if the pretzeling before was enough for ya.
If you’re a fan of:
- Chewy dough
- Cinnamon sugar
- Coffee cake-like crumbles
…you’ll love these pretzels. Guaranteed. Omg. Must go devour leftovers like a monster now. BYE!Print
Cinnamon Crunch Soft Pretzels
Just like those incredible crunchy-sweet bagels we all know and love…made into a pretzel! So chewy, relatively simple to make, and only requires a handful of ingredients. 100% vegan and a great dessert or snack!
- Prep Time: 2 hours
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
- Yield: 8 pretzels
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
1 packet active dry yeast
1 and 1/2 cups warm (~110 degrees F) water
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar*
~4 and 1/4 cups Bob’s Red Mill Organic All-Purpose Flour
big pinch salt
2 Tbsp. vegan butter, melted
CINNAMON CRUNCH TOPPING:
1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Organic All-Purpose Flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
4 Tbsp. cold vegan butter
unsweetened plant milk, for brushing
BAKING SODA BATH:
4 cups water
1/3 cup baking soda
1 cup organic powdered sugar
2-3 Tbsp. unsweetened plant milk
splash vanilla extract
- DOUGH: Add your yeast, warm water, and sugar to the bowl of your stand mixer. Give it a quick mix with a wooden spoon, and allow it to sit for 5-10 minutes to bloom. You’ll know it’s ready when it’s foamy and smelling like bread!
- Add your flour, salt, and vegan butter, and mix with the hook attachment. Start on low speed, then increase to medium, and mix for 5 minutes. The dough should pull away from the sides and be in one homogenous ball.
- Take a large bowl and oil it with olive oil or your favorite neutral oil. Place the dough in that bowl, cover with a damp towel, and allow to rest for 1 hour.
- TOPPING: Meanwhile, make your topping. Combine all of your ingredients in a small bowl, pinching the butter between your fingers so that it breaks down and is coated in the flour-sugar mixture. You want the butter balls a bit smaller than peas – it’ll stick better to the pretzels. Place in the fridge until needed.
- After that hour, remove your dough from the bowl onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide into 8 pieces, stretch each piece to ~26 inches long, and then fold it into a pretzel – make a U, twist the ends twice, then fold the ends on top of the curved part of the U (see post for pictures).
- BATH: Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Bring your water and baking soda up to a boil in a medium pot. Once boiling, carefully boil each pretzel one-by-one for 30 seconds (I flipped mine at the 15-second mark). Place on your baking sheet.
- ASSEMBLE AND BAKE: Preheat your oven to 450 degrees F. Working with one pretzel at a time, brush it with your plant milk all over the tops and sides. Generously cover with your topping mixture, pressing down slightly so that it sticks.** Cover the tops and sides.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden and cooked through. Allow to cool on a cooling rack, then serve immediately (with the glaze, which you can whisk up together to serve!).
*I used raw cane sugar, but regular ol’ granulated sugar works too
**Make sure that you’ve cleaned up most of the topping that fell on your parchment – it’ll burn in the oven because we’re baking at such a high temp!
Pretzel recipe slightly adapted from Alton Brown.
Keywords: soft pretzel recipe, cinnamon crunch, vegan soft pretzels
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