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Homemade Prayer Pretzels

Prayer Pretzels at KarenEhman.com

The process of making pretzels was once used to teach kids about prayer during Lent. The shape of a traditional pretzel mimics the folding of hands in prayer. Make homemade pretzels as a family, and while they are baking, think of someone nearby who is in need of prayer.

The following verses are great discussion starters about talking to God in prayer:

“Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The urgent request of a righteous person is very powerful in its effect.”
James 5:16 (HCSB)
I call on You, God, because You will answer me; listen closely to me; hear what I say.”
Psalm 17:6 (HCSB)
Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.”
Jeremiah 33:3 (ESV)

When the pretzels are done, enjoy some as a family and wrap up the rest to take to that person and let them know you are praying for them. If you make a big enough batch, you can take them to multiple people!


1 c. very warm water
2 Tbs. dry yeast (or two packets if using pre-packaged instead of bulk)
½ c. + 3 tsp. honey, divided
½ c. butter
1 Tbs. salt
2½ c. whole milk
8 c. whole-wheat white flour (or unbleached flour)
coarse salt

In a large bowl, mix warm water, yeast, and 3 teaspoons honey. Let rest. In a large saucepan, melt butter. Add remaining honey, salt, and milk. Heat this to 120°F over medium heat (use a candy thermometer). Take off stove and let cool 10 minutes. Pour milk mixture into yeast mixture and stir well. Add flour 2 cups at a time. You may need to add a little more or less than 8 cups to make a slightly stiff dough. This depends on the humidity of the day.

Knead dough for 5–10 minutes. Place in a large, oiled bowl, cover, and let it rise for 1–1½ hours, until doubled in size.

Punch dough down to release air and knead on a lightly floured surface for 5 minutes. Take a piece of dough about the size of a tennis ball. Roll it into a rope about half an inch thick. Make it into a pretzel shape by crossing the ends, leaving about two inches on the ends. Then twist at the intersection of the two ends one time. Fold the ends down to touch the sides, creating a traditional pretzel shape. Repeat with remaining dough. (Makes 10-14 pretzels on average)

Place pretzels on a cookie sheet that has been lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for 20 minutes at 350°F until golden brown. Do not over bake.

When you remove pretzels from the oven, brush them with additional melted butter, then sprinkle coarse salt on top. Serve plain or with mustard or sharp cheddar cheese spread. Enjoy!

Leave a comment with your thoughts on prayer or the pretzel activity!


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Everyday Confetti by Karen Ehman and Glynnis WhitwerFor more recipes and fun ideas for celebrating Easter and holidays throughout the year, check out Everyday Confetti: Your Year-Round Guide for Celebrating Holidays and Special Occasions. In our book, Glynnis Whitwer and I hope to spark your creativity and provide with you ideas for planning and implementing wonderful holiday and holy day celebrations with your loved ones. In addition, you will learn to toss a little confetti and make the ordinary days extraordinary.



Homemade prayer pretzels to teach your children about prayer. Click here for recipe at karenehman.com.

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  1. I really enjoyed your devotional about prayer. As a new Mom (my baby is about to be one), I find it harder but even more important to make prayer a priority. I also loved seeing your tie-in on prayer and pretzel making with children. I grew up baking with my Mom and look forward to doing the same with my daughter. If I can bring in a spiritual lesson with the baking fun, all the better!

  2. I like the object lesson in this. My kids learn best hands ON and love to help cook and bake! This will be fun to do together!!!

  3. Thank you for the encouragement on prayer. The devil uses distraction to
    hinder our prayers so praying first for our minds to be focused is a good thing.

    Janet W.

  4. I really like the pretzel idea with sharing those verses from Gods word with my daughters. They love to help in the kitchen and having this foundational Christian lesson to use during the process will *hopefully* go wonderfully :)
    Thank you!

  5. After reading your blog and these replies I don’t feel alone like I thot I was. Thank you for being honest. I hear about all these “prayer warriors” and there comes the guilt trip. What does help keep me on track, A BIT, is listening to songs of praise and my mind wanders to my own awe of God, before it wanders on to other things :( Another thing is writing as I pray. Just one word notes, like a need as I pray it or a persons name and what (again in a word) their need is. I don’t write the prayers, that causes thinking more about the writing, but looking at the word on paper, pencil in had, helps me focus.
    I am excited to make the Prayer Pretzels with my great grandson! It will keep us both focused!

  6. Just stumbled upon this blog at just the right time! I’m always searching for ways to incorporate our faith into activities with my three boys. Would love a copy of your
    timely book! Thanks!!

  7. Karen, it seems every where I turn right now, I read something about changing the way I pray … God’s way of saying, “Let’s change things up a bit”? Maybe I will try doing a prayer walk this week. : )

  8. Oh my, Karen, this really hit home with me! I find that I doze off on a regular basis, and like many here, I am embarrassed to admit it, but obviously I’m not alone!

    Thank you for your REAL words, and for your encouragement!

    AND…thanks for the recipe…how yummy!! :)

  9. This is my first time on your blog. I really enjoyed this post and I can totally relate. I am so very easily distracted when I am trying to pray or focus on my Bible. And then I get an extremely guilty feeling and I am ashamed and keep myself from God for a period of time. I want to be better about this but I don’t know how to start.

  10. What a wonderful way to incorporate spending time with your children & talking about & to God. Thank you for sharing a recipe to nourish our bodies as well as our souls.

  11. Thank you for your blog today. I remember being in college where we had a lock-in and were left alone for at least an hour to pray. With no guidance, it was easy to get off track. I had no idea how to pray that long either. Thankfully, I am in a much different place but you’re right, bring purposeful about it and lifting it up to God helps. He knows our hearts and honors us when we seek Him. Thank you for your words and encouragement!

  12. I love the idea of making prayer pretzels with my kids. Sometimes it’s easier to use a practical application with them to keep their focus (and mine too)!

  13. It is easy to start praying, but so hard not to get distracted or fall asleep. I am so encouraged by your words. Thank you!

  14. I fit the mold of strong of spirit weak of flesh. My best intentions to pray daily sometimes fly right out the window! Thank you for your words of encouragement and verses to follow.

  15. This is so me!!! I get easily distracted all the time, ugh!!! We made room for a chair in our bedroom so I can have a place for quiet time. A mom’s work is never done. Thanks so much for the encouragement you give to all of us.

  16. I have found that for me it is easier to pray in small bits many times a day. Whenever a person, need, request, etc comes to mind I try to pray right then. This is possible because I’m retired and usually don’t have much to do but read and pray. I also like Max Lucado’ s short prayer. That is a good starter for me and usually launches me into more intercession.

  17. thank you for this post! I continue to struggle and always need encouraging reminders. Can’t wait to try the recipe with my boys!

  18. Loved today’s devotional…valuing sleep more than time with the Lord has been something the Spirit has been convicting me of recently…how apropos! Thank you for this poignant devotional! Love the prayer pretzels…my 5, 3, and 1 year will love making them!

  19. Thanks so much for this wonderful reminder and the scripture verse today. Stay FOCUSED while praying and not let our minds wander away. Have a wonderful Easter Karen. God Bless.

  20. Thank you for this devotion. I often find my thoughts drifting if prayers are in length so I devote my whole day to prayer. When I feel the need to pray for someone or something that I see on the news, I just do. Consistent prayer is a constant reminder that God is always there listening to us.

  21. I love the practical application of making “prayer” pretzels. I can’t wait to make some with my kids!

  22. Karen: thank you for these encouraging words. The recipe is a bonus too! Just this morning as I was starting to pray on this Good Friday morning, I was distracted. Thank you for the verses and encouragement. I look forward to making the pretzels with my boys in the next few days. God bless you!

  23. Finding a quiet place and being still are two obstacles that get in my way of praying. I like your blog today. It hits home, right where I needed it. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one that has a problem with it. Thanks.

    1. I’m so glad to know that I am not alone in my struggle to stay focused. Thank you for such encouragement.

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