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World Famous Bavarian Pretzels – Oktoberfest Special – Food Wishes ctm magazine



To make “real” Bavarian pretzels you have to use a lye dip. Do you have lye? I didn’t think so. Which is why we going to use a little trick involving baked baking soda to give our pretzels that signature, dark brown appearance, chewiness, and unique flavor. Enjoy!

For the fully formatted, printable, written recipe, follow this link: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/285589/bavarian-pretzels/

To become a Member of Food Wishes, and read Chef John’s in-depth article about Bavarian Pretzels, follow this link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRIZtPl9nb9RiXc9btSTQNw/join

You can also find more of Chef John’s content on Allrecipes: http://allrecipes.com/recipes/16791/everyday-cooking/special-collections/web-show-recipes/food-wishes/

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39 Comments

  • Petrichor on October 4, 2021

    8:49 "And I know I'm always making you wait for baked goods to cool down before you eat them"

    Oh, no, Chef John, I always blatantly disregard you when you say that.

  • David Welsh on October 5, 2021

    The puns are so wonderful!! Only someone like me (An incorrigible punster .. yes.. I need no incorrigement at all…..) really appreciates your efforts in punning that you do, John!!

  • Juliet Louis on October 5, 2021

    A great reminder why I follow Chef John

  • leung on October 6, 2021

    This video suffers from a severe lack of weisswurst and sweet mustard…

  • Ashhaa  on October 6, 2021

    Wooooow so Delicious 😋

  • Santosh Ramdhani on October 6, 2021

    Next use toothpicks

  • Jordan C on October 7, 2021

    For anyone wondering what baking the baking soda does:
    You drive off water and convert the sodium bicarbonate to sodium carbonate. If you were using the same relative amount of solid in a given amount of water, the baking soda pH would be about 8.3, and the sodium carbonate would yield a pH of about 11-12. Pure lye will go to pH 14.
    Note that pH is a logarithmic scale, so something that's pH 14 is 10x more basic (caustic) than something pH 13… which means going from pH 12 to pH 14 is 100x as basic.

    So as Chef John said, the baked baking soda (sodium carbonate) gets much closer to using lye than regular baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), but is also still safer. Lye is nasty stuff.

  • HyperXprojects on October 7, 2021

    OMG! This bring back childhood memories of the Bavarin Pretzel shops that were in the mall. You have to pair it with a cheese sauce and I'll be in the 90's again!

  • Christer Whitworth on October 8, 2021

    As we are headed back to Austria to ski this winter where these pretzels are everywhere, I was inspired to give these a try. My first batch did not turn out. The dough was too dry – About 3 1/3 cups not good enough. The second attempt was a success; I measured the 3 1/3 cups of flour EXACTLY. Made all the difference. Recipe turned out great. I heated the water for the lye bath in the microwave – 135 degrees F is pretty high for most people's homes out of the tap. The beer flavor really comes across. The only tricky part was in the rolling out the dough. You really need to put down some pressure as you extend outward to get them to "grow". By the time I got to the last one, was an expert.

  • CanuckErrant on October 9, 2021

    I wonder – would dipping them into the alkaline solution using a spider strainer work (assuming enough depth of solution to cover the pretzels)? Definitely something to experiment with – I can't imagine the surface area 'covered' by the wires would be enough to significantly affect denaturing the bottom of the pretzels.

  • Mark Hicks on October 9, 2021

    I always put mine in boiling soda water which treats them and allows them to rise more all in one step. 🙂

  • K. Wiljanen on October 9, 2021

    Nice kwa-son bro.

  • Brooke Yool on October 9, 2021

    So, I love this recipe (better than the one I used last year!) but both times, despite greasing the parchment paper this time, my pretzels stuck to the paper when they were done, leading to our eating a little bit of the paper. 🙁 Any way to avoid this?

  • quietone748 on October 10, 2021

    Dankeschön!

  • scarylion.roar on October 11, 2021

    3:43 hee-hee doughling ball 🎳

  • kg007 on October 11, 2021

    who the hell downvotes, this looks great!

  • T Bjorn on October 12, 2021

    <——has lye laying around!

  • ebi on October 12, 2021

    they look *amazing*. can't wait to try them (:

  • Chik N10Ds on October 14, 2021

    Is it possible to shape the dough into a ball for pretzel buns?

  • Chuck Finley on October 16, 2021

    Very nice! Thanks for the recipe!
    The only thing I have to add is that if you cut the belly you get Swabian pretzels. The Bavarian pretzel breaks open by itself and therefore has a crunchier texture on the belly than the Swabian pretzel.

  • rndmcmmnt on October 17, 2021

    In case you want that Brezel "loaded", you can basically do exactly this recipe, but instead of forming them to knots you form them to a bun or "kaiser roll" I believe you call them. Then slice em and fill em like any kind of sandwich. I prefer 'em hearty but you can easily go sweet with 'em as well. Forming them like mini baguettes is also a very popular thing.

  • Stan Vanillo on October 18, 2021

    Probably tastes nice, but has little in common with a Brezn…

  • Mousie Brown on October 18, 2021

    Why not use a spider and make the baking soda dip a bit deeper? Dunk the spider with the dough into the dip — it might be easier.
    They look great!!!

  • Norbert Paul Vossiek on October 19, 2021

    Best with soft butter. And I am definitely not Bavarian.

  • Seria Mau on October 20, 2021

    So, here's a tip for dipping your pretzels in the baking soda/lye: instead of a shallow, wide pan, use a deeper, narrower container, like a pint glass or something. Pick up the pretzel dough by putting two fingers through each "hole" and use your thumb to secure the ends of the dough. Dip the pretzel and your hand into the glass full of baking soda/lye and just hold it there as long as you need to.

  • Pablo Huarina on October 20, 2021

    How many Bayern München fans here…?

  • Apricot Cat on October 23, 2021

    Let's GOOOO

  • hiota45 on October 24, 2021

    Just buy some food grade lye on ebay folks. It's worth it. Plus then you can make lye bagels. A deeper dipping vessel is better so you can just hold and dip the dough in and swish it around.

  • Alpha Bravo on October 26, 2021

    Not the 1800s? I'm in Canada and the German bakery down the street from me still uses lye

  • Bryan Jensen on October 30, 2021

    Those are cute baby Bavarian pretzels! When we were in Bavaria they were usually 3X that size.

  • Jedidiah on November 1, 2021

    "Nobody has lye lying around?" I have lye lying around. The question is, why don't the rest of you?

  • linibellini on November 1, 2021

    They look really good! Usually we don't make them with beer in the dough, we just use water and / or milk. Save the beer for a drink 😉 Oh and you should definitely eat them with butter for an even tastier snack! I also love mine with cream cheese and chives or green onion. But butter is the most classic way definitely!

  • SAML on November 4, 2021

    Oktoberfest is in September

  • Russ F on November 4, 2021

    I don't think I've ever seen you make so many mistakes.

  • MD Vog on November 6, 2021

    I am from the Palatine. I never baked them myself, we always buy them and eat them rather for snack or breakfast. You can buy them pure or cut with butter. You can eat it with butter or some marmelade, perhaps also white cheese. It is more for morning/ early morning pleasure. These look very closely those in our bakeries. The City where I came to this world even has a nickname for its citizens – Bretzelboy our Bretzelgirl.

  • MD Vog on November 6, 2021

    Just a question – is it Natronlauge? or Baking soda? Because, in order to get the real taste you need to have the dangerous product. 🙂

  • Amanda Tikkanen on December 13, 2021

    What you've made is washing soda/sodium ash from the baking soda. When you bake the sodium bicarbonate, the water (H20) and carbon dioxide (CO2) make a break for it, leaving behind the sodium carbonate (Na2CO3).

  • KarenDeanne on December 14, 2021

    "And as always… Enjoy!" Love it!

  • Allyson Stuhlmiller on December 16, 2021

    I have lye lying around. I make soap :).

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