Beer Cheese Filled Pretzel Rolls

When I was growing up, it was very rare for my parents to take my brother and I out for any sort of treat. During the summer there would be an occasional trip out for frozen custard and perhaps once or twice a year we would go out to dinner at a nice Italian restaurant, but that was really it. Once a month my father would bring Chinese food home for dinner, once or twice a year he’d bring home McDonald’s for us, and I don’t ever remember getting pizza until I was in high school and went out for pizza with friends. My exposure to ready-to-eat foods was quite limited. It was truly a different time.

I do remember when I was very young, perhaps 6 or 7 years old, my parents took us to the mall and we got Orange Julius’ and soft hot pretzels. Now, as strange as this may sound, this was long before hot pretzels were served with cheese. Nope, these pretzels did not come with sauce at all. So what would we put on them, you ask? Well, yellow mustard of course. In fact, up until I had children of my own and started taking them to the mall when shopping and Hubby decided to treat us to a hot pretzel, I had no idea that cheese sauce even existed. Cheese sauce is definitely good on pretzels and my kids won’t eat them without it, but for me, a little yellow mustard on top of the coarse salt of the hot pretzel is the perfect topping.

Keeping up with the times is something of a requirement when you have kids. So, although a plain soft pretzel bun with a side of mustard might be okay for me, when I found a recipe for cheese-filled pretzel buns, I knew they would be a hit. Oh, and spicing it up a little by using homemade beer cheese to fill them, well that just put these little pockets of gold over the top.

The first step in this recipe if making your own pizza dough is to make the dough. If you plan on using store-bought dough, continue on with To prepare cheese filling.

To prepare the pizza dough: Combine 1 Cup of all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. sugar, 2 1/4 tsp. instant dry yeast, and 2 tsp. kosher salt in large mixing bowl. Add 1 1/2 Cups warm water (approximately 110 degrees F) and whisk until well combined. Let stand for 15 minutes to form a sponge, which proves your yeast is fresh. With mixer running, add 2 tbsp. olive oil and 2 1/2 to 3 Cups additional flour 1 cup at a time until dough comes together. Knead dough with mixer dough hooks for 4 -5 minutes, until dough is firm and elastic. Grease a large glass bowl with olive oil, add the dough, cover with plastic wrap, and proof in a warm area until double, approximately 1 hour.

To prepare cheese filling: Toss 3 cups cheddar cheese with 2 tablespoons corn starch until combined.

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In a medium saucepan bring 1/2 cup beer to a simmer.

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Add in cheese and corn starch mixture and whisk until it begins to thicken.

Remove from heat and cool. Don’t worry if it solidifies, it will melt back down in the oven. Actually the cheese is easier to work with if it solidifies.

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To assemble rolls: Divide pizza dough into 24 – 30 pieces.

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Fold under each piece until it forms a ball. Set aside and continue forming balls with remaining dough. Flatten dough ball.

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Place a teaspoon of beer cheese mixture in the center of the dough.

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Pick up the top and bottom edges of the dough and bring them up and together.

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Do the same with the left and right edges. Continue bringing in the rest of the edges of the dough until it all meets in the center and there are no gaps for the cheese to leak out during baking.

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Bring five cups of water to a boil in a medium pot. When all the pretzel balls are assembled, add 1/4 cup baking soda to the water and immediately scoop in your rolls. Boil for 20 -30 seconds, then remove with slotted spoon and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Preheat oven to 425. In a small bowl, beat one egg and two tablespoons of beer until they are well blended. Brush the mixture onto the top of each pretzel and top with coarse salt.

Bake for 15 minutes or until browned.

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Cook’s Note

If you do not want to fill all your rolls with cheese, eliminate the filling step and just boil the dough as directed prior to baking. Then you can either top or dip in a sauce of your choice, say…yellow mustard!

My recipe for pizza dough for these rolls calls for all-purpose flour. The reason for this is all-purpose flour will give the dough a chewy consistency. If you decide to use this recipe for pizza dough and prefer a crispier crust, use bread flour.

This recipe came together very fast and the family loved them so much, I had to make a second batch two days later. I love it when something turns out so well, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.

Beer Cheese Filled Pretzel Rolls

  • Servings: 24 - 30 Rolls
  • Print

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Ingredients

  • 1 Recipe Pizza Dough or 1 Pound of Prepared Pizza Dough
  • 3 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 2 Tbsp. Corn Starch
  • 1/2 Cup plus 2 Tbsp. Beer
  • 5 Cups Water
  • 1/4 Cup Baking Soda
  • 1 Egg
  • Coarse Salt (although definitely preferred, if you do not have coarse salt, table salt will work in a pinch)

Directions

The first step in this recipe if making your own pizza dough is to make the dough. If you plan on using store-bought dough, move on to step 2.

  1. To prepare the pizza dough: Combine 1 Cup of bread flour, 1 tsp. sugar, 2 1/4 tsp. instant dry yeast, and 2 tsp. kosher salt in large mixing bowl. Add 1 1/2 Cups warm water (approximately 110 degrees F) and whisk until well combined. Let stand for 15 minutes to form a sponge, which proves your yeast is fresh. With mixer running, add 2 tbsp. olive oil and 2 1/2 to 3 Cups additional flour 1 cup at a time until dough comes together. Knead dough with mixer dough hooks for 4 -5 minutes, until dough is firm and elastic. Grease a large glass bowl with olive oil, add the dough, cover with plastic wrap, and proof in a warm area until double, approximately 1 hour.
  2. To prepare cheese filling: Toss cheddar cheese with corn starch until combined. In a medium saucepan bring 1/2 cup beer to a simmer. Add in cheese and corn starch mixture and whisk until it begins to thicken. Remove from heat and cool. Don’t worry if it solidifies, it will melt back down in the oven. Actually the cheese is easier to work with if it solidifies.
  3. To assemble rolls: Divide pizza dough into 24 – 30 pieces. Fold under each piece until it forms a ball. Set aside and continue forming balls with remaining dough. Flatten dough ball and place a teaspoon of beer cheese mixture in the center of the dough. Pick up the top and bottom edges of the dough and bring them up and together. Do the same with the left and right edges. Continue bringing in the rest of the edges of the dough until it all meets in the center and there are no gaps for the cheese to leak out during baking.
  4. Bring five cups of water to a boil in a medium pot. When all the pretzel balls are assembled, add the baking soda to the water and immediately scoop in your rolls. Boil for 20 -30 seconds, then remove with slotted spoon and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  5. Preheat oven to 425. In a small bowl, beat one egg and two tablespoons of beer until they are well blended. Brush the mixture onto the top of each pretzel and top with coarse salt.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes or until browned.

Cook’s Note

If you do not want to fill all your rolls with cheese, eliminate the filling step and just boil the dough as directed prior to baking. Then you can either top or dip in a sauce of your choice, say…yellow mustard!

My recipe for pizza dough for these rolls calls for all-purpose flour. The reason for this is all-purpose flour will give the dough a chewy consistency. If you decide to use this recipe for pizza dough and prefer a crispier crust, use bread flour.

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