Introduction: Spicy Pretzel Nuggets
This is a way to modify cheap pretzel nuggets to make them awesome.
What you will need:
3 16 oz bags of pretzel nuggets (More or less. Around 40-48 oz.)
1 pkg Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix (Not the dip mix.)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 Tbs steak seasoning (It doesn't need to be expensive. The finer stuff works better than the granular stuff)
1 tsp dill weed
1-3 tsp ground cayenne (red) pepper (I use two if I'm making them to share, three if I think I will eat most of them)
You will also need:
A bowl large enough to hold all the pretzels with room to mix them up
Something to mix the ingredients in (I use a 2 c measuring cup)
2 shallow baking pans (15 in x 10 in x 1 in) like a jelly roll pan (The deep disposable aluminum pans don't work too well. The shallow disposable ones do OK, but they are flimsy, so be careful.)
Step 1: Combine Ingredients
Measure out 1 cup vegetable oil
Stir in the package of Ranch dressing. Mix well and break up lumps.
Stir in the dill weed, steak seasoning, and cayenne pepper.
Empty pretzels into the large bowl.
Pour the mixture over the pretzels. I try to stir while I pour so it doesn't settle too much. Toss to coat. I usually slide my hand down the side of the bowl and bring pretzels from the bottom (where the goo ends up) to the top. Turn the bowl and repeat.
A lot of the mixture ends up on your hand. I experimented with covering the bowl with plastic wrap and turning it upside down. It didn't seem to do any better, and you lose just as much on the plastic.
Step 2: "Bake"
Divide the pretzels between the two pans. Any of the oil mixture left in the bowl can be dribbled over the pretzels.
Place the two pans in the oven. You will probably have to use two racks.
Bake at 250 F for 1 hour.
Every 15 minutes, I stir up the pretzels and swap positions in the oven. Be careful about knocking pretzels out of the pan. They either end up in the bottom of the oven (retrieve later when the oven is cool, but before you use it at a higher temp) or in the door hinge (those are a pain to get out and usually end up getting crushed and making a mess).
Step 3: Cool, Store, Eat
Trust me, they are better when they cool down a little.
Let the pans cool, then serve or store in a sealable container.
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