Smoked Pretzels & Beer Cheese
Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
- 12 ounces beer, lager or IPA
- one packet of active yeast
- 1 tablespoon of kosher salt
- 4 1/2 cups of flour
- 2 tablespoons of softened butter
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- 12 oz. beer
- 8 oz. cream cheese
- 8 oz. cheddar
- 8 oz. mozzarella
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp. hot sauce
- Pour beer in a saucepan and warm on low heat. Use your instant-read thermometer and when the temp hits 110 remove the beer from the heat. Add yeast to the beer, along with kosher salt.
- Put 3 cups of flour, softened butter, and sugar in a mixing bowl.
- Pour your beer mixture in, and then using the bread hook on your mixer, mix on low until a dough forms.
- It will be super sticky... put another 1/2 cup of flour in the mixing bowl and mix again. Continue this process until the dough is no longer sticky.
- Throw a small handful of flour on your counter and knead your dough into the flour for 4 to 5 minutes. Kneading the dough helps strengthen the fibers in the bread and make it light and airy. When you're done kneading the dough lightly grease your bowl. Put the dough in the bowl, turn it over one time, and cover with saran wrap.
- Place the bowl in a warm area and let the dough rise for about an hour.
- When the dough has doubled in size it's time to start making your pretzels. Put the dough on a lightly floured surface and knock it down, and then separate the dough into 8 equally sized balls.
- Before you start shaping the pretzel dough, pour 10 cups of water in a large stock pot, and combine with 2/3 cup of baking soda. Bring it to a boil over high heat.
- Roll each ball out into a rope of dough that is about 12" long and then loop it back on its self to create a large pretzel.
- After all those pretzels and pretzel bites are formed, put them in the boiling water for 30 seconds.
- Make sure the water is boiling hard. This step is what helps puff out the pretzels and gives them that cracked golden brown appearance. Put a few pretzels in the water at a time, and then carefully remove them with a slotted spoon. Put the boiled pretzel dough on a drying rack with paper towels.
- While the pretzels are drying get your smoker turned on and up to a temp of 400 degrees.
- In a large cast iron skillet combine beer and softened cream cheese, then add cheddar and mozzarella.
- Sprinkle 1 tsp of garlic powder and 1 tbsp of hot sauce (I used Frank’s Red Hot) on top of the cheese.
- Grease two cookie sheets and put your now dry pretzels on the cookie sheets. Try your best to keep a gap between each of the pretzels.
- Put each cookie sheet in your smoker along with the skillet of beer cheese and let it all cook for 10 minutes.
- After ten minutes the beer cheese should be bubbly. Remove it from the smoker
- The pretzels will need a couple more minutes, about 12 minutes total. They're done when they look cracked and have that golden-brown pretzel like appearance.