Pretzel Recipe with No Yeast

Have you ever made a pretzel recipe with no yeast?

We have at our house, thanks to 4-H. Youngest daughter’s foods project called for making biscuits or pretzels for the fair. I’ve never felt that any biscuits I’ve made are too fair-worthy, so I didn’t feel confident that I could help one of the kids achieve greatness there. So, we tried pretzels.

My daughter made several recipes, and we liked them. But then, a few weeks before the fair, I noticed that the fine print called for pretzels with no yeast. Really? Don’t soft pretzels have to have yeast? It’s little things like this that make 4-H so maddening. You really have to be a detail person to do it right, but I was up for the challenge.

My daughter ended up trying three different no-yeast pretzel recipes. Some were fine, others were not so great. In the end, we combined the 4-H book recipe with a yeast pretzel recipe we had enjoyed.

The result was yummy, and she earned a blue honor class on them. The judge enjoyed that they were different from the typical pretzel. Friday we’ll find out if that blue honor became a reserve champion or champion. Wish us luck!

Here’s our pretzel recipe with no yeast, in case you’d like to try it.

Apple Pie No Yeast Pretzels

1 1/2 cups flour

2/3 cups milk

2 T oil

2 t baking powder

1 t sugar

1/2 t. salt

1 egg

2 t cinnamon

1 cup diced dried apple pieces (we cut up one apple into tiny pieces and let them dry for a couple of days)

In bowl, mix flour, milk oil, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Mix until dough is soft. Put dough onto floured surface.

Divide dough in half to make 2 balls. Roll each ball 3-4 times.

Knead each ball of dough 10 times, working cinnamon and apple pieces into dough. Turn a bowl over the balls for 15 minutes.

Divide each ball into 8 balls. Form each into a rope and then a pretzel.

On stove top, fill a kettle with  a few inches of water and add 1/4 cup baking soda. Bring to a boil. Drop each pretzel into the boiling water for 30 seconds, turning after 15 seconds.

Place pretzels onto parchment-lined baking sheet and brush with egg (beat the egg in a small bowl).

Bake for 11 minutes at 425.


no yeast pretzels

A note about putting the pretzels into the boiling baking soda water: we discovered this during our yeast pretzel baking. Those that we didn’t dip in the baking soda water were white and not so pretty. At first, one recipe recommended dipping them for 2 minutes. Bad idea! They puffed up so much that they were just blobs. Thirty seconds seemed to work great at puffing up the pretzels and browning them just the right amount.

Any pretzel tips, especially for recipes with no yeast? Any 4-H pretzel tales? Share them in the comments!


17 thoughts on “Pretzel Recipe with No Yeast

  1. I glory in Sophie’s spunk – making the best better. For me, I think I’ll stick with pretzels made by Snyder’s. While munching them I’ll be humming “I Fall to Pieces.”

  2. Way to go, Sophie!!!! You can make pretzels for me anytime!

  3. Wow that’s a fun project! No more butter cakes? Nut bread? hahahahah Biscuits–I learned (finally) to not make hockey pucks this way. Sift and measure flour, then sift AGAIN with baking powder and never, ever, “roll” the dough–pat it. Works like a charm. And never use cheap flour–Gold Medal at least, preferably King Arthur.

    Hope the pretzels and other projects do well this week!!

  4. I am making these for my 4H project this year with a few minor adjustments . This is by far, the best pretzel recipe my mom and I have made in our search for the perfect pretzel. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  5. What would be your proportions for whole grain. Our 4-H project requires whole grain flour. Sound so yummy.

  6. Rena, I’d try 1 cup white flour and 1/2 cup whole grain. I find that if I use too high a % whole grain, my breads become too “heavy.” You might at least start with those proportions and could adjust based on your likings. Best wishes!

  7. I agree. But the 4h recipe says whole grain. As you said it can be picky with 4h. Have no clue what proportion on while grain. Thought I might have him try 1/2 and 1/2. Today we tried one with all whole wheat. Ok but not stellar. Dried the apples for one on this page and will do that with hLf and half. Excited about the apples.

  8. Does the rules book say it has to use ALL whole grain? I’m just not sure. In our county, I know all the foods rules/requirements have changed for 2015. We exhibit in July so I haven’t really looked into it yet!

  9. It says; Three no-yeast, any shape pretzels with a whole grain flour OR 3 no-yeast sweet or savory rolled biscuits with a whole grain flour ( no drop biscuits)
    One never knows how the judge will interpret. (Same with all projects!)
    Our rules have changed too. Are you from Indiana?

  10. I’m in the same boat as others having to use whole grain flour this year, wish they were a little more specific. Glad I found this recipe because I didn’t even know if we could jazz them up with cinnamon/sugar/apples, etc. Excited for my daughter to experiment on this because the ones she made tonight were pretty yucky.

  11. Hey, the author chiming in here — we made this recipe before the new whole grain requirements. If I were making them now, I’d probably experiment with the amount of wg flour to use. I typically use about 1/3 wg to 2/3 white flour in recipes. As I understand the new rules, recipes need to include whole grain but don’t have to use ALL whole grain. If anyone out there hears differently, please let us know.

  12. For sure don’t use all whole grain. Tried it last weekend. Went to the trash. We tried them toasted and not too bad, though!!

  13. Grandmother June,2017 The measurement of flour is a bit confusing what is 1.5 cups of flour? 1 cup plus 5 ounces, tablespoons, etc? In baking I use cups and this has thrown me for a loop. I think your recipe is 1-1/2 cups pf flour, maybe……. Thanks for your help.

  14. Hi Janet! Yes, you’re right — it’s one and a half cups of flour. I’ll change the posting now to make that more clear. Best wishes with the recipe — we still make it every now and then 🙂

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