These delicious treats are perfect for any Halloween get-together.. easy to make.. inexpensive.. and everybody loves them... who can resist the sweet flavor of the chocolate with the salt of the pretzel.. and the crunch ... they're positively addicting!
The make a great snack to serve or make little goody bags for a party favor.. either way.. they're a winner!
I can tell you from personal experience .... to save yourself some headaches.. follow my tips... just trust me...
The most important tip... use regular sized pretzels... the small pretzels will taste as good.. for sure... but won't look at pretty... it's hard to get the chocolate runny enough so it doesn't clog the little holes of the small pretzels... I have tried a variety of brands and types.. I always have to add a little shortening when melting to get it to a runny consistency for the pretzel.. and without adding quite a bit of shortening.. which takes away from the chocolate flavor... so my advice is use regular sized pretzels.
While I'm on the subject of melting the chocolate... you will need to add about a tablespoon and a half (eyeball the half).... to the chocolate when melting it.. be sure to add it in right from the start... I melt about a half of a bag at a time.... I use the Wilton bags of chocolate..
I buy the different colors and melt each separately.... DO NOT attempt to color the chocolate with food coloring.. you will ruin it.
If you are lucky enough to live near a chocolate supply store that has its own brand of chocolate melts.. then you will need to tinker with the amount of shortening you will need to melt your chocolate thin enough so easily dip your pretzel... ask the owner for advice.. they will know best.. be sure to tell them what you are using it for.
You can melt them in the microwave... however.. be very very careful.... the directions said to melt it on 50% power for a minute... it does warn you about the different powers of different microwaves... all I can say is... start melting at 40% power... and do it for 30 seconds at a time... stir well and then if you need more time...continue
As I mentioned, I used Wilton bags of chocolate melts... I have a fairly new and large microwave.. I ruined the first batch of chocolate at 50% power .. over-heating will ruin the chocolate beyond repair... so I then tried again... 1/2 bag of chocolate melts plus 1 1/2 tablespoons shortening (I used Crisco)... 40% power for 30 seconds.. stirred well.. then did 10 second intervals ... I ended up finding 1 minute totally worked for me... I took it and stirred vigorously after it came out of the micro... and all lumps eventually melted into a smooth workable texture...
So again.. since there are so many microwaves out there.. and a lot will also depend on the age of the microwave... start with the lower power and shorter time.. the take it slow.. until you find what is right for your oven... then stick to one brand of chocolate.. whatever it is.. since melting times will vary with different brands... and once you find what's right for yours.. it will be a snap and foolproof.
Do not use broken pretzels... the crumbs will get into your chocolate and then the chocolate won't look as nice as you will want it too.
A lot of blogs recommend that you use a toothpick to balance the pretzel on when dipping... I've tried.. another "just don't do it" advice from me.... it's a pain in the tookus.... not worth the extra effort... buy yourself a tiny pair of tongs.. I bought mine at a kitchen shop for 3 bucks... it was worth the purchase... they work like clockwork.. grip the pretzel easily.. and don't leave a noticeable bare spot.
They had a special.. a buy two get one free... being my thrifty self.. I only bought one... stupid move... since I wanted to do multiple colors.. i was constantly washing them... they work well for serving horsdourves so if you have an opportunity to get a special.. do it.. well worth it.
Have pieces of paper towel handy... to wipe the tongs .. the chocolate will build up a bit and that will make it more difficult to grip.
Sprinkles... I thought the sprinkles were cute... I tried little sprinkles (like on an ice cream cone) ... I tried tiny sprinkles (like you put on cookies) and I tried bigger sprinkles ... personally.. I recommend you sick to the regular sprinkles.. the purple and black ones were really cute on white chocolate.. they stuck the best and made the least mess... when making them and when eating them.
I used parchment paper to lay the pretzels on when I took them out of the chocolate.. let them set for a while ...they won't stick if totally set.
Don't fret if the chocolate glops a little when you lay them down.. just means you didn't let them drip long enough before laying them down... it can be fixed easily.. just pick them up again with the tongs and lay them elsewhere on your parchment paper.. it will leave behind the excess...
To avoid getting those glops .. after taking the pretzel out of the chocolate.. gently tap the side of the bowl to drip the excess chocolate off. You don't want it too thick in the pretzel. The thinner amount just looks nicer.
If you plan to put sprinkles on the pretzels, be sure to sprinkle them lightly just after placing them on the parchment paper.
I tried the shaker method... I tried using a spoon... and I tried sprinkling them using my fingers.. the finger method worked the best.. I could sprinkle them evenly and there was less waste...
After the pretzels have had a change to completely set... place them on a plate and place them in the fridge to finish setting them.. about 20 minutes or so should do the trick.
I know your thinking... these are a lot of tips.. well.. I guess they are... but they should make your life a lot easier... once I worked out the "kinks" I did a bag of pretzels in about an hour... it was that quick and easy...
Oh... and before I forget.. how much chocolate does a bag of pretzels... I used about 2 1/2 bags of Wilton's chocolate melts for about a pound bag of large pretzels... I say about a pound .. because I didn't do them all.. I didn't use the broken ones.
Recipe: Chocolate Covered Halloween Pretzels
All you need:
1 pound bag of regular sized pretzels
2 1/2 bags Wilton chocolate melts
Shortening *See TIPS
All you have to do:
Place a half bag of chocolate melts with 1 1/2 tablespoons shortening in a glass bowl... melt it in your microwave... please read the tips before melting your chocolate.
Stir well to ensure the chocolate is evenly melted.
Using tongs, dip the pretzels into the chocolate... tap the tongs on the side of the bowl to let excess chocolate drip off.
Place on parchment paper.... I dip about 4-5 pretzels at a time .. then I sprinkle them with the sprinkles.. and then continue...
Allow the chocolate to set... then place on a plate in a single layer not over lapping.. and place them in the fridge for about 20 minutes to harden.
Store in an air tight container... either in the fridge or in a cool dry place.