Amazing Vegan Soft Pretzel Bites w/ Dairyfree Beer Cheese Dip

Amazing Vegan Soft Pretzel Bites w/ Dairyfree Beer Cheese Dip

Difficulty: 3/5 (5 being hardest)
Spice Level: 1/3 (3 being spiciest)

Prep & Cook Time: 90 minutes
Servings: ~80 bites

The Challenge: Soft Pretzels with Beer Cheese (um yes)

Its TAILGATE SEASON! Its Labor Day season. Its fall parties and its time for ... Soft Pretzel Bites w/ Beer Cheese Dip. Well, there's really any time for that! 

And hey, I'm pretty stoked, because this post was sponsored by my pals at Sprouts Farmers Market (ah shoot I sold out). But in all seriousness, folks, I MADE IT!. Its great to actually make some dough (I got bills to pay yo) doing this and SPROUTS FRIKIN ROCKS. I already shopped there before they approached me all "you're awesome - let's work together." I love shopping at Sprouts because the dudes/dudettes get it. You want to buy organic, want to be healthy, but you don't want to pay too much! These folks get it, and they deliver with the goods. I'll be doing a second post with them for Labor Day later this week as well. For this recipe, I'm featuring their unbleached flour because bleached flour just sounds disgusting, and I got a crap load of it for $3. Win!

Alright, back to our regularly scheduled blog post, VEGAN SOFT PRETZEL BITES....with...VEGAN BEER CHEESE DIP.

You have to be saying ... what?! Yep. Okay, I hate vegan cheeses. They are cheezy. They taste weird. They are fake. So, I have been working on cheese dips since I started this whole bizness. As you can see from the photos, this cheese kicks ass. It actually pours. It tastes cheesy, and its plant-based. No chemicals. We mix the cheese dip with reduced brown lager for that amazing beer cheese flavor.

The bites themselves are a bit of science. Soft pretzels are one of those things I can't really play with too much because they are baking and much more scientific. I turned to my bud Alton Brown for this, but I of course put my own vegan spin on it. 

The recipe is pretty easy to make actually. Most of the 90 minutes is just waste time. 

Alright, let's get into this. HELL YAAAA


Pretzel Bites

  • 1.5 cups of warm water (microwave 60 seconds)
  • 1/2 tbl coconut or brown sugar
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 package of active dry yeast
  • 4 cups + 1/2 cup of organic all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbl of safflower oil (sub light olive, sunflower, or walnut)
  • 2 tbl of melted vegan butter
  • Coarse sea salt, for sprinkling on top

Beer Cheese Dip

  • 12oz of brown lager
  • 1 heaping cup golden new potato, diced
  • 1/3 cup carrots, diced
  • 1/3 cup onions, diced
  • 1/4 cup raw brazil nuts
  • 1/4 cup dairy-free unsweetened milk
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 small jalapeño pepper, diced
  • 2 tbl apple cider vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Spices: 1.5 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp smoked paprika, 1/4 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp cumin, pinch of black pepper
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard

Equipment You'll Need:

Cutting Board . Sharp Cutting Knife . Measuring Cups . Measuring Spoons . Mixing Spoon . Clean Surface for Kneading . Mixing Bowls . Parchment Paper . Baking Sheet . Food Processor . Small Saucepan . Medium Pot . Serving Ramekin


Before You Cook:

  • Wash + cut fresh ingredients
  • Once the dough has risen (50 minutes waiting), preheat oven to 450F
 1. To start, for pretzels, mix warm water, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Pour active yeast on top and let sit for five minutes.

1. To start, for pretzels, mix warm water, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Pour active yeast on top and let sit for five minutes.

 2. Mix in 4 cups flour and 3 tbsp of oil with a wooden spoon. Slowly. Stir carefully. Forms dough ball.

2. Mix in 4 cups flour and 3 tbsp of oil with a wooden spoon. Slowly. Stir carefully. Forms dough ball.

 3. Put 1/2 cup flour on a clean surface and place dough ball on it. Knead the dough ball and flour for about 4-5 minutes…will become quite sticky. Use a good amount of force (its your workout for the day)! Place the dough ball into a large clean bowl that you rub a bit of oil in. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for 50 minutes. The ball will double in size.

3. Put 1/2 cup flour on a clean surface and place dough ball on it. Knead the dough ball and flour for about 4-5 minutes…will become quite sticky. Use a good amount of force (its your workout for the day)! Place the dough ball into a large clean bowl that you rub a bit of oil in. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for 50 minutes. The ball will double in size.

 4. While the dough rises, work on the beer cheese. Start by pouring the beer into a saucepan and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. It should foam a bunch ... don't worry.

4. While the dough rises, work on the beer cheese. Start by pouring the beer into a saucepan and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. It should foam a bunch ... don't worry.

 5. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil and add potatoes / carrots / onion to the boiling water. Boil for 

5. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil and add potatoes / carrots / onion to the boiling water. Boil for 

 6. Add beer / potatoes / carrots / onions and all other beer cheese ingredients to a food processor. Mix for 15 seconds. Stop. Scrape down sides. Repeat process 5-6 times until the cheese is extremely well mixed. Taste. More cheesy - add nutritional yeast. More salt - add salt. More bite - add jalapeno or smoked paprika.

6. Add beer / potatoes / carrots / onions and all other beer cheese ingredients to a food processor. Mix for 15 seconds. Stop. Scrape down sides. Repeat process 5-6 times until the cheese is extremely well mixed. Taste. More cheesy - add nutritional yeast. More salt - add salt. More bite - add jalapeno or smoked paprika.

 7. Once the dough is done rising, break into 6 smaller parts. Roll the dough in your hands and let it grow to about 12-16 inches as a long snake. Cut every 1 inch with a sharp knife and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.

7. Once the dough is done rising, break into 6 smaller parts. Roll the dough in your hands and let it grow to about 12-16 inches as a long snake. Cut every 1 inch with a sharp knife and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.

 8. Brush with melted butter on top to get that nice shine on the pretzel bite.

8. Brush with melted butter on top to get that nice shine on the pretzel bite.

 9. Sprinkle with coarse salt and bake for 14 minutes in 450F preheated oven.

9. Sprinkle with coarse salt and bake for 14 minutes in 450F preheated oven.

 10. Warm your beer cheese while the pretzels bake. Serve with cheese and salivate!

10. Warm your beer cheese while the pretzels bake. Serve with cheese and salivate!


 
Vegan BLT Sandwich w/ Rice Paper Bacon, Heirloom Tomato, and Arugula Jesus - it looks good huh. I love BLTs. I used to eat them with old green box Morningstar Farms bacon, but after becoming a vegan, I have not had many since most bacon replacements are not vegan. So, I wanted to crush that issue. But how to make an easy vegan bacon that wouldn't require too much work. Enter rice paper. I had seen some rice paper recipes, but I had felt like they were pretty hard, easy-to-burn, or just didn't have the flavor. The key to this BLT is really the marinade. I worked a lot on the marinade and then texture. Rice paper works well because it crisps really nicely, and it is also very easy to work with. For the marinade, it was a bit of trial and error, but the key is liquid smoke, a bit of maple syrup, smoked paprika, nutritional yeast, some garlic + onion powder, and a few extras. But how do we make this into bacon? Wet the paper, squish it together, lay on parchment, and slap on some marinade. Bake it on high heat and crisp it. Then eat a ton of it. GUILT FREE BACON YAYYYYYYYY!   Aggregate rating will show here Serves 4 Ingredients: 10 sheets of rice paper, 2 tbl olive oil, 2 tbl nutritional yeast, 2 tbl liquid aminos, 1/2 tbl garlic salt, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp chipotle chili powder, 1/3 tsp liquid smoke, 1/2 tbl maple syrup, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 4 pretzel rolls, 2 medium heirloom tomatoes, sliced, 4 large handfuls of arugula, 6 tbl (or so) of vegan mayo,
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