Frugal Food: Chocolate Covered Pretzels

I must confess.  Chocolate covered pretzels is one of the easiest, quickest, and tastiest ways to show someone you care.  When I say easy, I mean E-A-S-Y!  It’s chocolate and pretzels.  That’s it.  The bag of pretzels cost $1.50 and the chocolate was $2.50.  I made about 150 pretzel treats, but could have made more.

Toss some of these in a parchment lined box or into a ribbon tied cellophane bag and give them to your favorite person (that is if you can avoid eating them all before wrapping them).  For that person in your life who is too “manly” to receive a box of chocolates, give them some of these savory sweet bites.  I brought in a bowl of these pretzels to a Christmas office party one year and they were gone within 15 minutes. 

I’m not going to list a recipe for how to make a chocolate covered pretzel – it’s chocolate and a pretzel.  However, I will give you some tips from my experience and some ideas for you to try at home.

Things you will need:  Chocolate Candy Coating, a bag of pretzels (I like the small ones), wax or parchment paper, a spoon/fork.

Things that are helpful: Wooden skewers, white chocolate morsels for decoration.

Start with a pound of Candy Coating.  The one that I bought came with a microwave safe tray to melt the chocolate in.  I prefer the double boiler method – put the chocolate in a metal bowl and set that bowl over a pot with 2 inches of simmering water.  Stir the chocolate a few times until it melts. 

One way to coat a pretzel is to do it one at a time.  Scoop some chocolate onto a plate and press the pretzel into it.  Flip the pretzel with a skewer and do the other side.  This will get the job done, but come on… I said this would be E-A-S-Y didn’t I?  You’d be there all day if you did a bag of pretzels this way.

The preferred method to crank out chocolatey goodness is to dump a handful of pretzels in the chocolate and then fish them out with a skewer.  Let them drip a few seconds and then transfer them to wax paper.

Here’s a trick I learned.  When you fish them out of the chocolate, the small pretzel holes will usually be globbed up with chocolate.  Pick a designated dumping spot on your wax paper and drop your pretzel there.  Immediately, pick it back up and move it to a clean spot to harden.  The extra chocolate sticks to the wax paper and you get a nicely coated pretzel.

For variation, I also like to coat just one side to cut down on the choco-overload.  Scoop some chocolate onto a plate or right on the wax paper.  Press the pretzel in, lift off with a skewer and place upside down to dry.

Even better yet, lay a bunch of pretzels out and drizzle chocolate from a spoon held high over the paper.  This really gives you a nice combination of salty, sweet, and crunchy (and it’s even EASIER than the other methods).

If you want to add that oh so special something extra, melt some white chocolate chips in the microwave to use for decoration.  Follow the instructions on the package precisely or you will get the chalky mess on the left instead of the liquid goodness on the right.

I like to decorate 1/2 of my pretzels and leave the other half plain old chocolate.  I think it adds a certain “pop” to the presentation and everyone else thinks you are a genius.  Mums the word here.

As a gift, I like to mix up all the methods and give them a variety to taste.  Couldn’t be easier, tastier, or more addictive!

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