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Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzels Recipe

A cinnamon sugar soft pretzels recipe. Delicious soft and chewy pretzels covered in cinnamon sugar and a drizzle of coffee glaze. They’re sure to bring a smile to anyone’s face!

Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzels Recipe | sophisticatedgourmet.com

Last week, I decided to take a couple day off to relax with family. That did not end up going well, because I had my nose in work. Before I knew it, it was Sunday, and I had to go back home. I missed the train to get home by two-minutes; I was stuck in Penn Station for an hour. That event inspired (thank goodness) this cinnamon sugar soft pretzels recipe.

When I got to the main waiting area at Penn Station, I let out a sigh of relief; it was practically empty. Practically two-hundred empty seats for me to sit on; I found a seat, then rummaged through the mess of my suitcase for my planner. I wrote down a few events, checked things off my to-do list, and closed my planner to look up and find a woman sit a seat away from me in the middle of an empty waiting area (I had pretzels on my mind).

Cinnamon sugar on buttery soft pretzels

The woman sat a seat away from me; after opening my planner back, as though to show her that I was not suspicious as to why she sat next to me in a practically empty waiting area. She pulled out a can of Pepsi from the inside of her purple coat, opened the can, took a sip, let out a burp, and placed the can on the seat between us (goodness, where were my cinnamon sugar pretzels?)

A minute or so passed and the waiting area was bombarded with people; a younger woman sat next to me with the music on her iPod as loud as a jet engine. Then I smelled it. I smelled dirty feet. Purple coat lady took her shoes and socks off, and placed them right next to her can of soda. It’s rude of me to call her “Purple Coat Lady;” from here on we’ll call her June. The young woman sitting next to me sniffled, and I felt the hairs in my nostrils begin to shrivel into complete nothingness.

I got up politely, as to make it seem as if I was not offended by the smell of her feet. With my backpack weighing me down, and the weight of my suitcase practically pulling my arm out of its socket, I walked to the Amtrak area to find something to snack on (I could hear my stomach shout at me) while waiting for my train to get home. I passed a Krispy Kreme, a couple of deli’s, and decided on cinnamon sugar pretzel nuggets from Auntie Annie’s. When hunger strikes, even foods I would never eat, taste better than I would normally think they tasted. To my mind, those pretzel nuggets and the icing package that came along with them were the best things I had ever eaten (dare I mention that it was the first time I ate a cinnamon sugar pretzel?). After finishing my $4 investment, I felt guilty.

Measuring baking soda in a scale

After convincing myself that it was better of me to spend $4 on cardboard than spend more money at a dirty fast food joint (Auntie Annie’s had an A for cleanliness!), the idea to re-create a better and tastier version of the cinnamon sugar pretzels at home hit me.

So, my dear friends, thanks to Purple Coat Lady June, I’m sharing a recipe for cinnamon sugar soft pretzels with you today. Yes, I know- I’ve recently shared soft pretzels with you, but you’ll thank me for this small burst of warmth in your home. Oh, and if you are feeding your kids this- put them in a cage first and leave them in there until the sugar high is gone. I am only kidding. Sorta.

Coffee glaze drizzled on cinnamon sugar pretzels

What you will need to make this cinnamon sugar soft pretzels recipe

The components to cinnamon sugar pretzels are far from extraordinarily difficult to find. You might already have many of the following things on hand!

  • Digital kitchen scale – As always, the first thing I recommend when doing any baking is a digital kitchen scale. Unlike years ago, they continue to get cheaper in price as demand goes up. You can find great kitchen scales online for quite a bargain! If you don’t have a scale, no worries– I’ve provided cup measures for the recipe.
  • Active dry yeast – this is to help make the cinnamon sugar soft pretzels rise to their fullest potential. If you want to use instant, go ahead. Simply cut the amount of yeast in half and keep an eye on the soft pretzel dough while it’s rising.
  • Salt – table salt or fine-grain sea salt will do.
  • Granulated sugar – feel free to use white or natural cane here. I find natural cane to have a nicer flavor, especially when making the cinnamon sugar for these soft pretzels
  • Luke-warm water – it’s crucial to use water that is at a temperature between 100ºF – 110ºF (37ºC – 43 ºC). Too warm and the yeast could die. Too cold and the yeast might not activate properly.
  • Flour – you’ll need both bread flour and all-purpose flour for this recipe. It’s the perfect amount of gluten for these cinnamon sugar soft pretzels. However, if you prefer something a little less chewy or more chewy, feel free to use all of either kind of flour.
  • Butter – this makes the dough nice and soft and flavorful, but you’ll also need some to brush on the tops of the soft pretzels before sprinkling on the cinnamon sugar.
  • Baking soda – this is what gives the pretzels their unique color. You’ll need quite a bit of this, so make sure you’ve enough to spare!
  • Ground cinnamon – the fresher the better. We’ve all been known to hold onto a jar of cinnamon for way too long. You don’t need a special variety here, unless you prefer it.
  • Strong coffee – it doesn’t have to be fresh; it can be from breakfast time. This is for the glaze, so you want something that you enjoy tasting
  • Milk – any kind works here, this is just to mix into the coffee to achieve a perfect glaze
  • Powdered sugar – there is no substitute for this; this is what literally makes such an immaculate coffee glaze to be drizzled on top of these cinnamon sugar soft pretzels.
Glazed soft pretzels and bowl of cinnamon sugar

How to make cinnamon sugar pretzels

It all starts with proofing the yeast. You’ll need to mix together the yeast, sugar, sea salt, and the luke-warm water and let it sit until foamy. 5 to 10 minutes should do the trick. 

After that, it’s time to make the soft pretzel dough. The dough starts with butter that is cut into two types of flour– bread and all-purpose flour. This combination is crucial to making the perfect chewy cinnamon sugar soft pretzels, but feel free to use one or the other if you have textural preferences (use bread if you want it chewier).

After the butter is cut into the flour, the yeast is poured into the flour a dough is mixed together.  

The soft pretzel dough is kneaded on a lightly floured surface for about five minutes until it is smooth.

A bowl is coated with oil and the dough is placed in the bowl and turned to coat it with the oil. The soft pretzel dough is left to rest, covered with plastic wrap, for about an hour until doubled in size.

Learn how to form your soft pretzels using the photos located in my New York-style soft pretzels recipe post.

Cutting soft pretzel dough

After rising, the dough is deflated when it is divided into 12 equal portions.

Each portion is rolled into 18-inch long ropes. Form a U shape with 1 rope, cross both ends over one another, then twist the ends together twice. 

Fold the twisted portion toward yourself to form a pretzel shape, then gently press down the ends to seal the shape. 

Transfer the formed soft pretzels onto an oiled baking sheet and allow them to rise for an additional 20 minutes. In the meantime, this is the time to preheat the oven to 475ºF and bring a large pot of water to a boil. 

Yes, you heard that right… We are boiling the dough.

Add some baking soda and sugar to the boiling water lower the temperature of the water just a bit and boil the pretzels in batches until puffy. This takes only about 30 seconds for each side.

The boiled soft pretzels are drained and then transferred to a liberally oiled baking sheet to bake for about 15 minutes, until golden brown.

While the soft pretzels are baking, in the last 5 minutes of baking, the cinnamon sugar is prepared and the butter is melted.

The melted butter is brushed onto the soft pretzels and the cinnamon sugar is liberally sprinkled onto each soft pretzel. To take the cinnamon sugar soft pretzels to even greater heights, a coffee glaze is mixed together quickly and drizzled over the tops of each of the pretzels. You can also opt to use the coffee glaze for dipping. It’s delicious.

You’ll want to eat these right away. The match might not survive, especially if you’re sharing. However, refer to the recipe card below for storage options!

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Yield: Makes 12 Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels

Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzels Recipe

Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzels Recipe

I suspect that maybe adding a pinch of nutmeg to the cinnamon sugar mixture for this cinnamon sugar soft pretzels recipe might enhance the flavors of the topping a bit.

As for the glaze, if you prefer using vanilla instead of the coffee simply use 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and instead of 2 teaspoons of milk, make it 3 teaspoons (1 tablespoon).

When it comes to making any bread dough, I do everything by hand. No machinery is needed for this recipe, but if you are short on time, or don’t have the energy to knead for a good 5-10 minutes, I’ve included instructions on how to make the dough in a stand mixer.

For shaping the pretzels, refer to the four photos in this blog post.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes

Ingredients

Soft Pretzel Dough

  • 2 ¼ teaspoons (¼ ounces; 1 envelope) active dry yeast
  • ⅛ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons (8 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (8 fl. oz) warm water (100º to 110ºF)
  • 1 cup (128 grams) Bread Flour
  • 2 cups (256 grams) All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter, softened
  • Vegetable oil, for bowl and baking sheets
  • ¼ cup (72 grams) baking soda
  • 1 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar

Cinnamon Sugar Topping

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter

Coffee Glaze:

  • 2 teaspoons strong coffee
  • 2 teaspoons milk
  • 2/3 cup of powdered sugar

Instructions

Make the Dough:

  1. Mix yeast, sea salt, sugar, and warm water in a small bowl, whisking until sugar dissolves. Let stand until foamy, about 5 to 10 minutes (Kamran Note: I let it sit for about 8 minutes).
  2. Place flour into a large bowl. Using two butter knives, a pastry cutter, or your fingertips, cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  3. Slowly pour yeast mixture over flour mixture, stirring with a wooden spoon or your hands to combine. Using your hands, gather dough together. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until it is no longer sticky, about 5 minutes.
  4. Lightly brush a large bowl with oil and turn the dough to coat. Cover with plastic, and let rise in a warm place, until the dough has doubled in size. About 1 hour. (Kamran note: If you want, you can place the bowl of dough in the refrigerator over night)
  5. Cut dough into 12 equal pieces, and roll each into an 18-inch rope. Form a U shape with 1 rope, and twist ends together twice. Fold twisted portions backward along center of U shape to form a circle, then gently press ends of rope onto dough to seal. Transfer to an oiled baking sheet, and repeat. Let rise for 20 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 475ºF.
  7. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and add baking soda and 1 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar. Boil pretzels in batches until puffed and slightly shiny, 30 seconds per side. Transfer to wire racks to drain. Place pretzels on an oiled baking sheet.
  8. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, about 15 minutes.

In the last 5 minutes of baking, make the Cinnamon Sugar Topping:

  1. Mix the 1/4 cup sugar, 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, and the pinch of salt in a bowl; set aside. In another bowl, melt the 4 tablespoons of butter and prepare the coffee glaze (recipe below).
  2. Brush the warm melted butter onto the tops of the pretzels, once they are immediately out of the oven, sprinkle on some of the cinnamon sugar, then drizzle on some of the coffee glaze (recipe below) and serve immediately.
  3. If you want to keep the pretzels (without melted butter, cinnamon sugar, and the glaze) they will keep uncovered at room temperature for up to 12 hours; just warm them up in a 250ºF oven, and brush on some melted butter, sprinkle on some of the cinnamon sugar, and if desired, drizzle on some of the coffee glaze.

Make the Coffee Glaze:

  1. Mix the milk and coffee in a small bowl. Slowly stir in the powdered sugar, making sure there are no lumps.

Notes

Storage

If you want to keep the cinnamon sugar pretzels (without melted butter, cinnamon sugar, and the glaze) they will keep uncovered at room temperature for up to 12 hours; just warm them up in a 250ºF oven, and brush on some melted butter, sprinkle on some of the cinnamon sugar, and if desired, drizzle on some of the coffee glaze.

Measuring the Flour

When measuring the flour for the dough, I used a scale. If you do not own one, when measuring flour, be sure not to compact the flour into the cup. You want to fluff the flour in the container and spoon it gently into your measuring cup. Use the back of a knife to level the flour- not your fingers. Also, make sure not to tap the sides of the measuring cup, as this will compact the flour and result in a dry dough.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 541Total Fat: 42gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 34gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 81mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 1gSugar: 13gProtein: 4g

33 Comments

  • Tessa
    February 11, 2011 at 12:22 am

    Love these photos (as usual). And also, Kam… I have to say… cinnamon sugar > “cheese” sauce!

    Reply
  • Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets
    February 11, 2011 at 12:26 am

    Love your homey photos :). And these look like awesome comfort food for me!

    Reply
  • Joy
    February 11, 2011 at 4:33 am

    That’s my absolute favorite flavor of pretzels, aside from plain (how boring am I?). I must admit I haven’t baked your pretzels like I said I would, so shameful.

    And oh god, I hope to never have the Purple Coat Lady and pretzels in the same thought again. Ew, ew. LOL.

    Reply
  • Jessica @ How Sweet
    February 11, 2011 at 6:42 am

    These are my favorite soft pretzels. Love them!

    Reply
  • thejewishhostess
    February 11, 2011 at 7:10 am

    Thanks for sharing this great recipe. Is it possible to substitute whole wheat flour for any part of it?

    Reply
    • kamran
      February 11, 2011 at 7:26 am

      thejewishhostess -of course! I would say your best bet is to use whole wheat flour in place of the bread flour.

      Reply
  • Eliana
    February 11, 2011 at 7:25 am

    These pretzels look super super delish.

    Reply
  • Brian @ A Thought For Food
    February 11, 2011 at 7:41 am

    You know… I’ve never been a fan of the sweet pretzel since I’m more of a salt person. But a homemade soft pretzel? I can’t see how I wouldn’t like that.

    Reply
  • Lana @ Never Enough Thyme
    February 11, 2011 at 8:18 am

    You know, I’ve never had a sweet pretzel, but I’m really liking the idea! I’ve also never made home made pretzels. Sounds like a good weekend project to me.

    Reply
  • Joanne
    February 11, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    People really do the weirdest things. I would never take off my shoes in public. Because really. Why should I subject anyone to that?

    I have to say, I have a severe weakness for Auntie Annie’s although I haven’t had it in YEARS (decades maybe?). These look so delicious!

    Reply
    • kamran
      February 14, 2011 at 11:42 am

      Thanks so much, Joanne!

      Reply
  • [email protected]
    February 12, 2011 at 2:21 am

    I always do find it strange when people sit right next to you in a empy room, I geuss you looked friendly. Although that doesn’t sound like the greatest experience for you, I’m glad it happend because this recipe looks great! I have never had cinnamon sugar pretzels either, I’d like to give these a try. I also love the photos.

    Reply
  • Lexi
    February 12, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    I love soft pretzels, whether cinnamon and sugar or regular. The pictures are amazing.

    Reply
  • Geni
    February 13, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Warm, fresh pretzels are my son’s favorite food ever. Perhaps I should make this for a Valentine’s Day gift to him? Your photos have a dream-like ethereal quality. Just beautiful. I do enjoy that you added that Auntie Anne’s had an “A”. It says alot.

    Reply
  • Wenderly
    February 13, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Mmmmmmm these look divine! I adore soft pretzels and the coffee glaze sounds crazy fabulous!

    Reply
  • [email protected]
    February 13, 2011 at 10:54 am

    HaHaHaHa. I’m still laughing, thinking about the feet, and the burp. I’ve sat at Penn Station. I remember never wanting to touch anything. I can fully understand going for the donut pretzel things. And, see it was all inspiration. So is June her real name?

    Reply
    • kamran
      February 14, 2011 at 11:43 am

      Ha! How would I know? I was thinking of names and then I remembered that I don’t know any food bloggers by the name of June (I think), so I went with it . . .

      Reply
  • Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction
    February 16, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    These look amazing!

    And, loved your Penn Station story… I, too, have done my share of waiting in Penn Station, and it is rarely dull and boring. That’s my least favorite part of traveling to NYC.

    Reply
  • May Cookie Co.
    February 16, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    I love the smell and taste of cinnamon. Toasty warm cinnamon sugar is exactly what I need on these cold, winter days! Thanks for the entertaining story and great recipe!

    Reply
  • Kelly
    February 17, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Mmmm. Those look so much better than Annie’s. I especially love the drizzle of glaze on top.

    Reply
  • Natalie
    February 18, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    I’m going to have to try these! Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  • Chihiro
    February 18, 2011 at 10:17 pm

    Hi! I just stumbled across your site :) It’s beautiful. Are you a college student in NYC? Sorry if I missed that.
    Anyway, I am also tempted by the Auntie Anne’s when I’m trekking to my bus at Port Authority. Did not know of the A for cleanliness.
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • kamran
      February 19, 2011 at 1:55 pm

      I go to school in New Jersey.

      Reply
  • Delishhh
    February 24, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Just came across your blog and love it. Very clean. And what a great pretzel recipe. Nice work!

    Reply
  • a frog in the cottage
    March 17, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    let’s face it ! I definitely can’t resist cinnamon !!

    Reply
  • Brandi
    March 17, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    This is a cool recipe, I’ll have to try to make them one day. I like your site! Very impressive set up and photographs for an 18 year old. I found your site by browsing Pioneer Woman’s tweets and saw that she said something to you. I’ll be bookmarking your blog!

    Reply
  • Leah
    April 11, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    Just made these today!!!! Absolutely loved them!!!!!!Thanks so much for posting the recipe!!!

    Reply
  • Mina
    July 6, 2012 at 7:12 am

    Made these yesterday. DELICIOUS! :D

    Reply

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