Is there anything more adorable than these reindeer pretzels? They are almost too cute to eat!
I said almost.
These salty and sweet reindeer treats are pretty addictive. Few (if any) will live to see the ball drop on New Year’s Eve.
And it is an easy Christmas cookie to make with the whole family.
There are no eggs, flour, sugar, or baking artistry required. You only need pretzels and candy.
So gather the family, put on a holiday movie, and start making some reindeer pretzels!
Reindeer pretzels are a sweet, salty snack made with ROLOs, candy eyes, and red candies. Oh, and mini pretzel twists.
The whole family will love them.
Every Christmas, I make a plate of various holiday cookies.
And my labor-intensive macarons do not stand a chance against these reindeer pretzels.
They do not require advanced baking skills. But the combination of sweet and salty flavors is addictive.
Creating the antlers with pretzels is a little finicky. But that is why you gather up the family for help!
With more hands, the reindeer construction process goes by fast. And it’s worth the effort.
The salty pretzels and caramel center of ROLOs is a match made in heaven.
You can’t deny that these cookies are 100 percent adorable.
They are always the first cookies to go. (And they’re the easiest to make!)
- ROLOs- ROLOs create that cute, round reindeer face and chocolate brown complexion. While other recipes use chocolate chips, Rolos adds a caramel surprise in the middle!
- Small pretzel twists. Be sure to grab a bag of the mini pretzel twists, not the full size.
- Mini pretzels are the perfect size for the adorable little reindeer face.
- Candy eyes. Candy eyes might be a little harder to track down than Rolos. Your local grocery store may have them in the baking aisle.
- They are often found with the sprinkles.
- If not, they’re easy to find online (and super affordable).
- Small round red candies. We’re not making just any reindeer. We’re making Rudolph! A red nose is a must.
- You can use any red candy, whether mini M&Ms, Sixlets, or Red Hots.
How to Make Reindeer Pretzels
These reindeer pretzels are a little finicky, but they are so easy. Just follow these simple steps.
1. Make preparations.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
While the oven preheats, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Aluminum foil will work in a pinch.
Place 20 (out of 40) whole mini pretzels on the baking sheet.
2. Prepare reindeer pieces.
Unwrap ROLOs from their foils and place them in a bowl.
Separate red candies and place them in a separate bowl. Cut the remaining 20 pretzels in half and set them aside.
Place 1 ROLO on each whole pretzel. Bake in the oven for 3 minutes to soften the caramel. Remove the tray.
4. Create reindeer.
While the ROLOs are still soft, press candy eyes, red candies, and pretzel antlers into the caramel.
Each will receive 2 candy eyes, 1 red candy nose, and 2 pretzel halves. But you can be as creative as you (or your littles) want to be!
Place in a cool and dry location to firm back up. They are ready to serve once the ROLOs are firm to the touch. Dig in!
Tips for the Best Reindeer Pretzels
Reindeer pretzels don’t require advanced baking skills. But there are still some areas where things can go wrong.
Follow these simple tips for success.
- Always buy more pretzels than you need. There will be casualties when cutting the pretzels in half for the antlers. Be prepared.
- It’s always better to buy more than what you need. You don’t want an antlerless reindeer.
- Organize your ingredients. Taking the time to sort and organize your components is a must.
- When the chocolate comes out of the oven, time is not on your side. You must work fast to ensure all the ingredients stick.
- Stay organized, and the process will go smoothly.
- Line your cookie sheet. The pretzels won’t stick to your cookie sheet but the melted chocolate will. Lining your cookie sheet ensures the reindeer will come off nicely.
How to Store
Store reindeer pretzels in an airtight container in the fridge. They will stay fresh for up to 1 week.
The chocolate may look chalky when it comes out of the fridge. That’s OK!
Butterfat can separate from chocolate when it heats. And when it cools, it stays separate. Thus, the white color.
(Say they spent the day playing in the snow!)
Luckily, eating them past their expiration date won’t be much of an issue. These cookies are so delicious they won’t make it to the end of the week.
How to Freeze
I know you want to get ahead of the cookie-making game. I get it- I do. But freezing these cookies is not ideal.
While the chocolate can freeze, the pretzels don’t fare as well in the freezer.
Once thawed, the texture of the pretzels isn’t the same. They will taste a little stale and soggy.
So, it is best to make these just before your main celebration. Plus, then you get the help of all your extended family.
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