A staple snack at movie theaters, concession stands, boardwalks, and more, the soft pretzel has become a beloved recognizable food throughout the world. Its unique shape and simple ingredients not only make it a customer favorite, but also a highly profitable addition to a business's menu. Best of all, every vendor has its own soft pretzel recipe that makes it unique, from a traditional salty taste to a gluten-free cinnamon-covered treat and beyond. Whether you're a long-time vendor or brand new to the business, it's easy to stock, sell, and increase your soft pretzel sales with some simple considerations.
Calculating Your Profits
If you're new to soft pretzels, take a look at this profit calculator. Plug in your estimates in each field and see how much money you can make over the course of a year. You might be surprised!
Choosing Your Pretzels
When it comes to soft pretzels, you can either make them from scratch or buy them pre-packaged. Neither choice is right or wrong - it has to do with what your business needs. If you don't have the room to make your own pretzels, pre-made pretzels from Meister Bake are a fine alternative and generate just as much profit as the home-baked ones. If you like to put your own spin on things, you can make the dough yourself - it will just take more time and energy than the pre-packaged option.
Making the Dough
When you're starting from scratch, it's vital to get the dough right from the very beginning. You can start with the right flour, and then you can move onto the dough tools you'll need to make pretzels your way. With dough sheeters, dough cutters, and dough scales, you can cover all your bases in the early phases of baking.
One important consideration to make at this point is whether or not you'll use gluten to create your dough. Gluten intolerance is a growing hot-button issue, particularly in the United States, because of a recent spike in cases and the media spotlight. Going gluten-free could help increase sales by allowing every customer to enjoy your pretzels, especially if you live in an area where few other locations have made the dedication to gluten-free baked goods, and it's an excellent advertising point for industry newcomers.
Baking the Pretzels
Pretzels can easily be made using a pretzel oven. These are designed to bake your pretzels to the perfect crispiness while releasing the flavor from the dough and additives to create your signature snack. Ovens can be as powerful as 1400 watts and come with one or two decks depending on what you need, so you should have an expectation of customer demand before you purchase the oven to get the biggest bang for your buck. If you get one that produces too little in a day, you could lose customers. If you produce too much, you start to generate waste and lose money.
Making your pretzels appealing and easy to find is just as important as baking them in the first place. You have to make sure they're visible, but still warm enough for your customer to enjoy what they purchase. The solution is as simple as picking up a pretzel warmer or merchandiser. These countertop units come with glass sides to show off your food, an interior rack to hold them, and an overhead heat lamp to make sure they stay hot and ready to serve. Some even come with humidity control to give you greater control over the quality of your product.
Only one side of the merchandiser has a door, so you don't have to worry about passers-by taking food without paying or burning their fingers as they reach for a treat. And because most merchandisers come with a mounted sign, you can make sure customers can see your food for sale from a distance. You can even add to the presentation and sanitation with a convenient pretzel bag, sure to add to your customer's experience.