Auntie Anne’s Copycat Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites (Nuggets) with Cream Cheese Dipping Sauce

11.08.2013

I think I’ll take the award for coolest mom ever today (I’m only joking, but after making these, I’m feeling like my kids think I’m seriously amazing). My family has become serious pretzel lovers, all thanks to my husband. He has always loved them so he started taking my kids to get them at the mall. Now, they request to go get them at least once a week. We only live 10 minutes away from the mall which has two Auntie Anne’s so we definitely haven’t had a shortage of them. My kids are always begging to go, and even though I’m not much of a mall person I’m always game for food. The last time we went we made the switch from the regular salted pretzels (with that nasty cheese sauce my kids love) to the cinnamon sugar version. We are hooked on those now. What happens then? I usually try to find a way to make it at home if we love something that much. Plus, I thought theirs could seriously use a sweet and fluffy cream cheese dipping sauce to pair with them (it’s like a cinnamon roll meets mall pretzels = best upgrade ever).

Copycat Auntie Anne's Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites | Cooking Classy

I’m happy to say, these taste just like the Auntie Anne version if not better. With cream cheese and cinnamon sugar covered smiles on their faces my kids highly approved (my four year old also says these are “home pretzels” not “mall pretzels”. While we were making them together, I kept referring to them as mall pretzels and she kept telling me, “no Mom, they’re home pretzels” – since we were making them at home of course). My husband also agreed that they were amazing, after trying just one he said he didn’t need dinner anymore.

You too are going to be hooked on these and you’ll love the fact that you can indulge in a large batch in the comfort of your home. You could even make half of them coated in cinnamon sugar and the other half with coarse salt if you’d prefer (just be sure to add the salt before baking though). Enjoy!

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Auntie Anne’s Copycat Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites

4.38 from 8 votes

Cute little cinnamon sugar pretzel bites with cream cheese dipping sauce that everyone will love.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cinnamon pretzels, sugar pretzel bites
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 35 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 562 kcal
Author: Jaclyn

Ingredients

  • 1 (1/4 oz) pkg active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water , 110 degrees
  • 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 to 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour , plus more for dusting
  • 3 cups hot water
  • 1/4 cup baking soda

Coating

  • 1/2 cup butter , melted
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon

Cream Cheese Dipping Sauce

  • 4 oz cream cheese , softened
  • 2 Tbsp butter , softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream

Instructions

  1. For the pretzel bites:
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, combine 1 cup warm water, yeast and 1/2 tsp granulated sugar, whisk to dissolve and allow to rest 10 minutes. Fit mixer with whisk attachment and mix in remaining granulated sugar (1 Tbsp + 2 1/2 tsp), brown sugar, vegetable oil and salt.
  3. With mixer set on low speed, slowly add in bread flour and mix until well blended. Switch attachment to the hook attachment and slowly add in all-purpose flour.
  4. Knead mixture on low speed until smooth an elastic, adding up to an additional 1/4 cup flour as needed (you want a soft dough and it may seem slightly sticky).
  5. Transfer to a lightly buttered bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest in a warm place until doubled in size (I like to let mine rest in the oven with the light on), 1 1/2 hours.
  6. Punch dough down and divide into 6 equal portions. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dust tops of dough lightly with flour and cover the ones you aren't currently rolling loosely with plastic wrap (to prevent drying).
  7. Roll each portion into a rope about 24 to 28-inches long (you can do this by rolling or the method of pulling on each side and flicking upward like a jump rope while slapping onto the countertop). Cut into bite size pieces (about 1 1/4-inches each).
  8. Pour hot water and baking soda into a mixing bowl and whisk to dissolve. Using a slotted spoon, dip several pieces of dough into the water mixture, then lift and allow excess water to drip off, then transfer to a Silpat lined baking sheet.
  9. Repeat process working in batches and using two baking sheets, and rewarm water in microwave until hot between batches. Bake in preheated oven 8 - 11 minutes until tops are nicely golden brown.
  10. Remove from oven and using a slotted spoon, dip into melted butter, toss to evenly coat then lift and shake off excess. Transfer to a plate and allow to rest 2 minutes (I felt this just gave them time to absorb the butter, rather than having it all end up clumping the cinnamon sugar mixture).
  11. Meanwhile in a small mixing bowl, whisk together granulated sugar and cinnamon until well blended.
  12. Dip butter coated pretzels into cinnamon sugar and toss to evenly coat. Serve warm with cream cheese dipping sauce (these are best served warm so I'd recommend rewarming them once they've cooled. To do so microwave on a plate for 10 - 20 seconds).
  13. For the cream cheese dipping sauce:
  14. In a mixing bowl using an electric mixer, whip cream cheese and butter until smooth and fluffy. Stir in powdered sugar and vanilla and mix until combined. Add heavy cream and whip until fluffy, about 2 minutes longer. Store in refrigerator in an airtight container.
  15. Recipe Source: Cooking Classy
Nutrition Facts
Auntie Anne’s Copycat Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites
Amount Per Serving
Calories 562 Calories from Fat 270
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 30g 46%
Saturated Fat 18g 90%
Cholesterol 78mg 26%
Sodium 1997mg 83%
Potassium 57mg 2%
Total Carbohydrates 69g 23%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 44g
Protein 5g 10%
Vitamin A 18.4%
Calcium 5.1%
Iron 2.6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

140 comments

  • Renee@ Two in the Kitchen: Well, I’ve never been to Auntie Ann’s, but with this recipe it doesn’t look like I have to. These look delicious…..and dangerous! This is the kind of thing I would eat in one sitting if I’m not careful!! November 10, 2013 at 1:02pm Reply

  • Kristen: Made them this morning with my non-pretzel loving husband. I knew they were great because he kept sneaking some with salt and mustard before I rolled them in the cinnamon and sugar! Thanks so much for this easy recipe. November 10, 2013 at 9:58am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so glad you and your non-pretzel loving husband enjoyed them :)! Thanks for leaving a comment Kristen! November 10, 2013 at 10:21am Reply

  • sally @ sallys baking addiction: Amazing, Jaclyn! I love auntie anne’s. In fact we go to the mall sometimes… just for auntie anne’s! And of course, some new shoes.

    I love the cream cheese dipping sauce too! November 10, 2013 at 9:11am Reply

  • Erin | The Emerging Foodie: Oh my. Yessss please! These look incredibly addicting. And delicious. Little balls of pure bliss coated in cinnamon sugar ecstasy. Plus a cream cheese sauce?! Wowowow. November 10, 2013 at 8:29am Reply

  • Stacy | Wicked Good Kitchen: Such a fun copycat recipe, Jaclyn! Love that Fluffy Cream Cheese Dipping Sauce. Gorgeous photography, as always! Pinning (of course)! xo November 9, 2013 at 4:14pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks for the compliment Stacy :)! November 9, 2013 at 4:59pm Reply

  • Laura @ Lauras Baking Talent: I bet these taste so much better, and you gotta feel good makings them at home. You know they were prepared with good ingredients and with love by you :) November 9, 2013 at 6:38am Reply

  • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious: These look amazing! They’re so perfectly coated and with that dipping sauce – YES AND YES! November 9, 2013 at 12:20am Reply

  • Averie @ Averie Cooks: Wow, just wow! Now I don’t have to go to the mall :) Okay but I still want to go shopping…LOL Seriously though, you outdid yourself! This week I posted cinnamon sugar 1 hour breadsticks. I need to try your little bites next. Pinned! November 8, 2013 at 9:56pm Reply

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