These quick and easy 30-minute soft pretzel bites and beer cheese dip make the perfect game day appetizer for a crowd.Jump to Recipe
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Football is back!
The football season officially begins next week, but we’ve been gearing up for our favorite sport for weeks. Aside from keeping an eye on preseason and drafting for our fantasy leagues, we’ve been focusing on one major piece of football season preparation: the game day snacks.
Game day snacks, much like the sports they’re consumed in celebration of, bring people together. A plate of wings, chips and dip, or even a simple pizza are classic crowd-pleasers guaranteed to disappear before it’s even halftime. So we put some thought into our version of the perfect shareable game day snack (other than Buffalo Chicken Dip, of course) and came up with something that encompasses all the best parts of game day.
Something so snackable, so indulgent, and so delicious that it’s best enjoyed while watching the game with good company.
Our Easy Soft Pretzel Bites with Beer Cheese Dip is the perfect easy snack to make for your next game day party. All you need to make about 70 tasty little pretzel bites (plenty to feed a crowd!) is:
- One pound of store-bought pizza dough
- Baking soda
Paired with our four-ingredient Beer Cheese Dip (beer, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and salt), these bite-sized soft pretzels are irresistible. The kind of snack you can’t stop eating, no matter how hard you try, until you’ve totally run out. And the kind of snack that’ll disappear too quickly, which will make you start wondering if you should have made a second batch.
Trust us, we’ve been there. Alex and I scarfed down a half batch of this recipe in no time last weekend, and we were sad when they were gone. (But our stomachs were happy we hadn’t made a full batch, because there’s no way we wouldn’t have eaten the whole thing ourselves anyways.)
Here are a few tips on how to make the perfect soft pretzels with beer cheese dip for your next game day:
- Flour your working surface and your hands before working with the pizza dough to prevent it from sticking. You’ll also want to lightly dust the pizza dough with flour as you work.
- Boil the pretzel bites in a mixture of baking soda and water before baking. This is what gives them that pretzel-like crust and chewy interior – without this step, they would just taste like little balls of pizza dough!
- Don’t be shy with the butter and salt. That’s what makes a good pretzel good.
- Get a head start on the Beer Cheese Dip by melting down the cream cheese while you’re boiling the pretzel bites. Then once the pretzel bites are in the oven, you can focus on making the dip so it’s ready when the pretzels are done.
- The pretzel bites will be HOT when you take them out of the oven. And they will stay hot for longer than you might expect. So give them plenty of time (at least 5 minutes) to cool down before serving.
- Serve the Beer Cheese Dip in a small porcelain dish or preheated cast iron skillet (we love our mini ones for single servings) to keep it hot during the game!
This recipe is sure to bring a crowd together at your next watch party, from everyone wanting a taste of that salty, cheesy goodness to fighting over who gets the last bite. If you’re a football fan like us, try the recipe below for next week’s kickoff and let us know what you think in the comments!
Check out some of our other game day recipes here.
Easy Soft Pretzel Bites & Beer Cheese Dip
Soft Pretzel Bites
- 1 lb store-bought pizza dough*
- 9 cups water
- ½ cup baking soda
- 4 tbsp butter melted
- Sea salt
- Flour for dusting
Beer Cheese Dip
- 8 oz block Philadelphia cream cheese
- 1 cup beer*
- 8 oz block extra sharp cheddar cheese
- Salt to taste
Soft Pretzel Bites
- Lightly dust a large cutting board with flour.
- Dust your hands with flour, then remove the pizza dough from its container and lightly dust it with flour before setting it on the cutting board.
- Slice the dough into 4 equal chunks.
- Roll and stretch out each chunk of dough into a long snake. Start by rolling it between your palms, then once it's slightly oblong grab each end and gently pull in opposite directions. Repeat these motions as needed until each dough snake is about 1/2-inch to 1-inch in diameter.
- To form the pretzel bites, slice each dough snake into equal, bite-sized pieces, about 1/2-inch to 1-inch thick.
- Combine water and baking soda in a large pot and bring to a gentle boil over medium-high heat.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Using a spider strainer (or a slotted spoon, if you don't have a spider strainer), dunk a small batch of the pretzel bites into the boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove from water, drain, and transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets.*
- Repeat Step 8 until all of the pretzel bites have been boiled. Spread them out evenly on the baking sheets, leaving a little space between them.
- Brush pretzel bites with melted butter, then sprinkle with sea salt.
- Bake for about 12 minutes, or until golden-brown.
- Let cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Beer Cheese Dip
- Shred the cheddar cheese.*
- Melt cream cheese in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat.
- Add the beer a little at a time, stirring constantly to fully incorporate.
- Once all the beer has been stirred in, add shredded cheddar cheese in small batches. Stir constantly and melt each batch of cheese completely before adding more.
- Once all the cheese is melted, add salt to taste.
- Serve hot.*