What’s better than a soft pretzel? One with cheese inside duh. I know cheese dip is popular when you get a mall pretzel. I may have just aged myself.. do people still go to malls? I haven’t lived near one in a long time so I’m not sure, but I know I used to. As David Schitt says, I will not feel shame about the mall pretzels! Anyway, cheese makes most things better. So I took my Easy Pretzel Rolls and modified them to make these cheese stuffed pretzel buns. I’m telling you now, they were all eaten within 24 hours in my house.
So if you have ever made any kind of bagel or soft pretzel, be it a bun or pretzel shaped, this process is very similar. When we shape the buns we simply add cheese. You want to make sure you seal your dough when shaping pretty well to prevent cheese coming out when either boiling or baking these. Mine were sealed well but some cheese still leaked out while baking. That’s okay though, they are still delicious!
Cheese Stuffed Pretzel Buns Key Ingredients
- Cheese – Cheese is a magical ingredient in general. Now, you could potentially use almost ANY cheese. I personally used sharp white cheddar and fresh mozzarella but any melty cheese would work great. Monterey Jack, Fontina, Gruyere, Provolone, the list goes on.
- Baking Soda – Pretzels in bakeries and commercially are dipped in lye. Now, if you feel comfortable working with it you could but I personally just stick with baking soda as it’s a little less dangerous.
- Pretzel Salt – You could use kosher salt, or flaky salt on top of these buy I purchased a small bag of pretzel salt (this is the kind I use) for when I make pretzels. It doesn’t melt and also sticks to the dough very well.
- 480 g Bread flour 4 cups
- 25 g Dark brown sugar 2 tbsp
- 2 tsp Sea salt
- 2¼ tsp Instant yeast
- 1¼ cup Water warmed
- 2 tbsp Whole or 2% milk warmed
- 2 tbsp Unsalted butter softened
- 8 cup Water
- ¼ cup Baking soda
- 1 tsp Salt
Filling + Topping
- 4 oz Cheddar cheese cubed
- 2-4 oz Fresh mozzarella
- Pretzel, kosher or flaky sea salt for sprinkling
- Weigh out your flour into the mixing bowl of your stand mixer, dough hook attached. Add salt, yeast, brown sugar, milk and water and mix on low until dough begins to come together.
- Add in softened butter and mix dough on low-medium until dough is smooth and elastic, no longer sticking to the sides of the bowl.
- Remove your dough from the bowl, shape into a ball. Lightly grease your bowl and place the dough ball back in. Cover the bowl and allow to rise for 60-120 minutes, until dough has doubled in size.
- Line a baking sheet with either parchment or silicone and set aside.
- Remove dough and divide into 16 equal portions.
- Take each piece of dough and lightly press out into a a small disc. Place your cheese in the center and fold the sides up around it, pinching to seal the seams.
- Place on the counter seam side down and place your cupped hand over the dough ball. Using a circular motion with your hand, create tension in the dough. Place on your baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Cover dough and let rest for about 5-10 minutes. While dough is resting, fill a large/wide pot with water and bring to a boil. Preheat oven to 375°F
- When water has reached boiling, add baking soda and salt.
- Add dough to the pot. I like to do about 4 at a time, but this will depend on the size of your pot. Let them boil for about 30-40 seconds on one side, flip them and let them sit for another 30-40 seconds. Remove with a spider tool or slotted spoon back to the baking sheet. Sprinkle with pretzel salt.
- Repeat process with remaining dough.
- Place baking sheet on the center rack of your oven and bake for about 22-25 minutes or until pretzels are a dark golden brown.
- Enjoy pretzels while they are warm, store in an airtight container.