Pretzel Sticks with Two Sauces for #10DaysofTailgate

There’s a little place called Maxxwell’s that is in a boutique hotel in Tulsa (The Campbell).   The Campbell was featured as a Designer Showcase project a couple of year’s ago.   Although we have walked through the lobby a couple of times, we have visited Maxxwell’s more than that.   It really is more than a hotel restaurant/bar.


We like it because it is not crowded.   While watching Last Comic Standing or AGT—not sure which one—we laughed out loud at the comic you told the following joke:  “I’m getting older.   Now I walk into a bar where no one is there and I think, ‘Wow, what a great place.'”

I am paraphrasing quite a bit, but you get the jest.   We like the out-of-the-way, not crowded places now—not the standing room only, super crowded and loud clubs of our youth.

Anywhoo, Maxxwell’s has the best pretzel sticks with two sauces:  mustard and cheese.    On our last visit, The Hubs issued one of his challenges:   Can you make these?

Are you kidding me?

(Maxxwell’s also makes a great green chili mac ‘n cheese.   Eventually, I want to try to replicate that dish, too.)

2014-09-01 17.26.24

Notice the OSU orange background? Go Pokes!


So for today’s post for #10DaysofTailgate, here’s my attempt which would be great for any tailgating party.


The pretzel sticks can be made ahead of time as can the sauces.   In fact, one of the sauces can double as a condiment for brats, hot dogs, burgers, or BBQ.

Soft Pretzel Sticks
slightly adapted from German Soft Pretzel Sticks

½ c. light brown sugar
2 c. warm water
2 envelopes active dry yeast (4 1/2 t.)
¼ c. extra virgin olive oil
5 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided (plus more for kneading)
¾ c. baking soda
1 large farm fresh egg beaten with 1 T.  of water
Coarse sea salt

In the  bowl of a stand mixer, stir the brown sugar into the warm water until dissolved. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the oil and 3 cups of the flour. Mix with the dough hook attachment.   Mix in the remaining 2 3/4 cups of flour; the dough will be slightly sticky.

Keep kneading with the dough hook and mix in ¼ c. more flour if the dough seems too sticky.   Transfer the dough to an large, oiled bowl, cover with a clean dish towel and let stand at room temperature until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 450°. Line 3 large cookie sheets with oiled parchment paper. Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a floured work surface.

Knead the dough lightly, flatten it out and cut it into 24 pieces.

2014-09-01 16.29.21Take each strip and form it into a roll.  (Use the snake rolling method.   Your aim is to shape them like a small hot dog bun.)  Transfer the sticks to the prepared cookie sheets, leaving at least 2 inches between them. Let stand uncovered until puffed, about 25 minutes.

2014-09-01 16.50.08

If using a silpat, make sure you oil it as well. These are sticky little things.

In a large, deep pot or kettle, stir the baking soda into 2 quarts of water and bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce the heat to moderate. Using 2 slotted spoons, carefully transfer 6 pretzel sticks at a time to the simmering water 30 seconds, turning once; add about 1 cup of hot water before cooking the second batch of pretzels. Transfer the pretzel sticks to paper towels to drain, then return them to the cookie sheets, spacing them evenly.

2014-09-01 17.08.51

Ready for the oven.

Brush the pretzel sticks with the egg wash and sprinkle with salt. Bake until richly browned, about 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature, with mustard and/or cheese sauce.


2014-09-01 17.30.55

During one of the dough rises, make the sauces.   I made the mustard sauce for some pulled pork we made one weekend.  The Hubs suggested how it might be a better condiment for pretzel sticks.   Here is a pared down recipe as a pretzel dip.   The original recipe can be found here.   For the hot sauce, I used the gift of one of our #10DaysofTailgate sponsors:  Intensity Academy’s Carrot Karma.

2014-09-14 15.44.34

Mustard Sauce
slightly adapted from South Carolina BBQ Mustard Sauce

1 t. dried rosemary leaves
½ t. celery seed
1 c. prepared yellow mustard (just the plain old hot dog mustard)
1/3 c. apple cider vinegar
1 ½  T.  tomato paste
¼ to ½ t. favorite hot sauce (I used Carrot Karma, of course.)
1/3 c. light brown sugar
1 t. chicken bouillon paste
1 ½  t. ground mustard
1 t. onion powder
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. sea salt
1 t. freshly ground black pepper

Grind the rosemary leaves and the celery seed in a spice grinder.

In a food processor with the blade attachment, process all the ingredients (including the ground spices) until smooth.

Refrigerate for at least one hour.

2014-09-01 17.24.47

Spicy mustard sauce.


Both of these sauces are super easy to whip up.   You might be skeptical about the simplicity of this next one, but trust me.

 Easy Beer Cheese Sauce

8 oz. shredded cheese (I used a colby/cheddar mix.)
6-8 T. beer (Your choice—I used a Sierra Nevada.)

Place cheese in food processor with the blade.   Pulse a few times so cheese becomes well-chopped and almost powdery.   While processor is still running, pour in beer about 2 T. at a time until you reach the desired consistency.   Bring to room temperature before serving.

2014-09-01 17.26.12

For a more “cheesey” color, use all cheddar.


This sauce couldn’t be simpler and trust me, it is delicious.   Your tailgaters will think you slaved over a hot stove to make this.

The pretzel sticks can be made ahead of time and frozen to pull out the day of your event.



This recipe does make a lot of pretzels.   In fact, some of your “sticks” could double as hot dog and bratwurst rolls.

Hope you enjoyed these make-ahead #10DaysofTailgate recipes.   Stay tuned for a Caramelized Hot Onion dip—coming soon.

Don’t forget to enter the GIVEAWAY for some fantastic prizes from our sponsors.

#10DaysofTailgate Sponsors

Click here to enter.

Here’s what the rest of the team brought to the table…


Sticky Mango Mustard Glazed Duck Meatballs by girlichef

Pretzel Sticks with Two Sauces by Eliot’s Eats

Cherry Chipotle BBQ Pork Nachos by The Spiffy Cookie

Duck Poppers by CafeTerra


Cranberry Gin Fizz by Culinary Adventures with Camilla


Corn and Cheddar Dip by Sew You Think You Can Cook


Ultimate Bacon Burger by Cheese Curd In Paradise

Cincinnati Turkey Chili by The Pajama Chef

Smoky Date Pulled Pork by Curious Cuisiniere

Grilled Cilantro and Lime Chicken Skewers by From Gate to Plate

Grilled Avocado with Melted Cheese & Karma Hot Sauce by Making Miracles


Just Ducky Baked Beans by A Day in the Life on the Farm


Linebacker-Sized Chocolate Chip Cookies by Things I Make (for Dinner)

Rocky Ledge Bars by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy

Pear Poppy Snails {Birnen Mohn Schnecken} by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen

Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies by Love and Confections

Stay tuned for my next #10DaysofTailgate post:  Hot Caramelized Onion Dip.

32 comments to Pretzel Sticks with Two Sauces for #10DaysofTailgate