Say hello to my cheesy dreams: Pretzel Tot Queso Fundido.
Here’s what makes up this glorious cast iron skillet:
– Pretzel tots on the outside of the skillet.
– In the center, there is a cheese dip full of pickled jalapeños from Rio Luna.
Sounds simple enough but it’s absolutely glorious. For this post, I teamed up with Rio Luna Organic Peppers. The queso fundido in the center honestly didn’t need much because these pickled jalapeños are so flavorful and delicious.
Another plus: Rio Luna Peppers and Chiles are certified organic, GMO-free and kosher. They’ve also been used by professional chefs for years. To make the peppers, Rio Luna works with trusted growing partners who utilize key sustainability practices such as drip irrigation, recycling initiatives and crop rotation to cultivate the best possible chiles and peppers in the most responsible way.
Let’s dive into making these!
How to Make Pretzel Tot Queso Fundido:
I’m no stranger to queso fundido. I fell in love with it years ago. This isn’t the hardest recipe but admittedly, there are some steps so let’s discuss them.
You’ll need to first make the pretzel dough, which is super easy.
– mix together the instant yeast and dry ingredients
– add the water, melted butter and mix it all together
– let it rise for 1 hour
– during that 1 hour rise, I mixed together the shredded cheese with the Rio Luna pickled jalapeño
– when you make pretzels, you have to boil them in baking soda (in bagel shops they use lye—but that’s dangerous and you need a permit lol). this will give them that delicious crust
– then you line the skillet with the boiled pretzel tots
– the cheese mixture goes in the center and everything is baked!
– 12 minutes later, you’ll be met with golden brown tots around pool of spicy cheesy goodness
It’s that easy! I hope you make this for your next tailgating or game day!
If you make this recipe, let me know on Instagram!
Pretzel Tot Dough:
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon Instant Yeast or Active Dry Yeast, (see notes below)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 3/4 cup warm water
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Queso Fundido Cheese Dip:
- 2 cups shredded cheese, (I used a blend of Monterey Jack, Cheddar and Mozzarella)
- 1/3 cup Rio Luna Nacho Sliced Jalapeños, roughly chopped
For Boiling the Tots:
- 4 cups water
- 1/3 cup baking soda
- 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Flaky sea salt, for garnish
To Make the Pretzel Tots:
- In the bowl of a stand-up mixer with the paddle attachment, add the flour, sugar, instant yeast and kosher salt. Give it a mix until combined.
- ***NOTE: if you don’t own a mixer, you can do this in a large bowl with a spatula. If you’re using active dry yeast (instead of instant yeast), you’ll need to activate it in the warm water until it’s nice and foamy. If doing so, begin the recipe with the warm water in the stand-up mixer and then mix the yeast into the water and allow it to activate. AND then, add the melted butter and dry ingredients.***
- In a small sauce pan, add the butter and cook until melted. When melted, remove it from the heat and pour in the water. Give it a mix and then pour it in the stand-up mixer and mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with neutral oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel and sit in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
- When the dough is done rising, divide it into 8 equal pieces and roll those pieces into balls, tucking the dough underneath.
To Make the Queso Fundido Cheese Dip:
- In a bowl, combine the shredded cheese and diced jalapeños. Set aside.
To Boil the Tots:
- Place a clean kitchen towel on a plate or baking sheet. Fill up a medium saucepan up with the 4 cups of water and baking soda. Bring it up to a gentle simmer. Drop each of the balls of dough into the water and cook for about 30 seconds. Immediately transfer to the clean kitchen towel to drain.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch cast iron skillet or oven-proof baking dish. Place the boiled pretzel tots all along the outside of the skillet or baking dish. In the center, pour in the cheese mixture and press it into an even layer.
- Brush the tops of the pretzel tots with the egg wash mixture and a sprinkling of sea salt. Transfer to the oven to bake for 12-13 minutes, until the cheese has melted and the tops of the tots are golden brown.
(This post is sponsored by Rio Luna. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that keep A Cozy Kitchen cozy.)