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Can You Use Pizza Dough to Make Pretzels?

Can You Use Pizza Dough to Make Pretzels?

Soft pretzels make for a delicious snack, and making them at home is quite an experience. Typically, pretzels are made from dough that isn’t very different from pizza dough, but there are some differences.

But what do you do when you’ve got pizza dough and you’re craving pretzels? That’s where this article comes in. If you want to make pretzels at home but don’t think you’ve got the right ingredients, I’ve got you covered because it is absolutely possible.

But first, though, let’s very quickly look at the difference between pizza and pretzel dough.

Pretzel Dough and Pizza Dough: The Difference

Pretzel and pizza dough with rolling pin.

As far as components or ingredients go, pizza dough and pretzel dough are very similar. The difference comes when you talk about hydration; normal pizza dough has between 60% and 65% hydration. They’re also made in different ways.

Still, you don’t have to despair if you’ve only got pizza dough, you’ll be able to make delicious soft pretzels. Although pretzel dough calls for malt syrup to give the pretzels that delicious flavor we all love, you can make yummy pretzels without the syrup.

Making Pretzels with Pizza Dough

Pizza dough with rolling pin on wooden table.

So, making soft pretzels with pizza dough isn’t impossible. That’s great! But how do you go about doing that?

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Let’s find out!

Fortunately, making pretzels with pizza dough is a fairly simple process. You will have to shape the pretzels as you would normally, then allow them to proof, boil them, and bake them.

Naturally, the timing of every step is important, but you don’t have to worry too much, you should be able to make some really tasty pretzels without too much effort.

Here is a basic pretzel recipe you can follow that uses pizza dough. It’s pretty straightforward and you’ll have beautifully brown and soft pretzels in no time if you follow it exactly.

Pizza Dough Pretzel Recipe

A golden brown freshly baked pretzels on table.

For this recipe, you should use plain pizza dough (though you can get away with whole wheat pizza dough) that you can buy at the store.

First, you need to let the dough warm up a bit by taking it out of the package and allowing it to reach room temperature. That way, it’s easier to work with and has the right elasticity. It will also hold its shape a lot better.

Next, you need to shape your pretzels. This is normally the most difficult part of the recipe, because making pretzel shapes can be a bit tricky.

There are a couple of tricks to making perfect pretzels, and I’ll gladly share them with you. First,  you should dip your pretzels in a mixture of water and baking soda before you bake them.

The baking soda serves as an alkaline bath that will help to set the pretzels’ exterior. This makes them chewier and will give them a lovely brown crust.

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The second simple trick that will take your pretzels to the next level is brushing them with a beaten egg before putting them in the oven. Not only will this make it easier for salt to stick to them, but it will help them brown nicely and give them a bit of a shine.

Coarse salt is best for pretzels, but you can use any kind of salt you prefer, whether that is normal table salt or garlic salt. If you’re in the mood for something a bit different, you can even sprinkle a cinnamon and sugar mixture over the pretzels instead of salt.

You don’t have to boil the pretzels if you’re using store-bought pizza dough, just bake them! Once they’re done, you can serve them on their own, with cheese, or even with mustard. If you have a specific custom dipping sauce you like, serve your freshly-baked pretzels with that.

All you have to do then is enjoy the pretzels with your favorite beverage!

As promised, here is the recipe:


  • 16 ounces of pizza dough
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • Coarse salt or preferred seasoning
  • Dipping sauce of your choice


Step One

A woman's hand preheating an oven.

Preheat your oven to 400 F and line a baking sheet with some parchment paper.

Place your dough on a surface that has been floured lightly to prevent it from sticking. Now, divide the dough into six equal parts.

Step Two

A man chef rolling a pretzel dough.

Roll each part into a rope of about 24 inches. Should your dough spring back to its original shape or feel difficult to stretch out, give it five minutes to rest and try again.

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Step Three

A chef forming a pretzel dough.

Shape your dough ropes into pretzels. Do this by bringing the ends together and twisting them around once. Then, bring the twist down into the right pretzel shape. You may have to try several times until you’re satisfied with how your pretzels look.

Step Four

Whisk together the baking soda and warm water, but don’t let the baking soda dissolve completely. Dunk your pretzels into the mixture and make sure you let the water drip off before placing them onto the baking sheet.

Repeat this step until all your pretzels have been dunked.

Step Five

A mixture of egg on a small tub with whisk.

Beat your egg in a small bowl and use a pastry brush to brush the egg mixture over the tops of your pretzels. Once done, sprinkle the salt or other seasoning over the pretzels.

Step Six

A skinny woman cooking a pretzel in an oven.

Bake your pretzels for roughly 20 minutes until the pretzels are golden brown. Let the pretzels cool a bit before you serve them.

Do Pretzels from Pizza Dough Taste the Same as Normal Pretzels?

You may wonder if pretzels made from anything other than pretzel dough will still taste the same.
And the answer is, yes, if you make the pretzels in the same way you would originally. Of course, some differences can creep in if you’re using a different kind of pizza dough. Seasoned pizza dough will obviously make the pretzels taste a little bit different.

However, the difference in taste shouldn’t be too significant and can actually result in some tasty pretzel variants.