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Chinese Pretzels (Rosette Cookies)

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Chinese pretzels or rosette cookies are thin and crunchy deep fried cookies that are simple to make and perfect to share with family and friends. Bet you can’t have just one.

chinese pretzel

Whether you call these in Chinese pretzels like we do in Hawai’i or rosette cookies, bunuelos, or any other name, the common denominator is they are all so so yummy. 

What are Chinese pretzels?

Chinese pretzels, otherwise known as rosette cookies or bunuelos, are paper thin, crunchy cookies that are fried. They can be enjoyed plain or topped with delicious toppings

chinese pretzel on a tray

This recipe for Chinese pretzels is really simple and uses ingredients you likely have in you pantry already.

To make these cookies you’ll want to get a rosette iron. This is what helps give your cookies it’s characteristic shape. Everything from flowers to hearts to stars.

Ingredients for Chinese pretzels

  • Cooking oil of choice
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Milk
  • Flour
  • Vanilla extract You can make homemade vanilla extract here
chinese pretzel ingredients

Substitutions

  • Sugar: Use your sugar replacement of choice here.
  • Milk: Any oat milk will work fine as well.
  • Flour: Swap out traditional flour with the gluten free flour of your choice.
chinese pretzel irons in oil

What toppings can I use?

  • Melted chocolate drizzle
  • Powdered sugar
  • Cinnamon sugar

Can the batter be made ahead of time?

The great thing about this recipe is that you can make the batter ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator for a day or two. When you are ready to cook the cookies be sure to stir the batter to reincorporate anything that may have settled.

chinese pretzel irons in batter

Can you bake or air fry these?

Traditional Chinese pretzels are fried using a rosette iron to form the cookies. The batter is too thin to hold its shape enough to bake or air fry these. 

How to store?

Once cookies have completely cooled, place in an air tight container and store at room temperature.

chinese pretzels in oil

How long do these last?

Stored in an airtight container, these will last up to a week.

Other great cookie recipes

hand picking up chinese pretzel

How to make Chinese pretzels?

  1. Set a pot of oil over medium high heat and heat to 375F. Set the chinese pretzel iron in the oil to heat up.
  2. To a medium bowl add eggs, sugar, and salt. Whisk until well combined.
  3. Then add flour and milk and mix until well combined.
  4. Next stir in vanilla until just combined.
  5. Remove the iron from the oil and dab on a paper towel to remove excess oil. Dip the hot iron into the pretzel batter until the batter is about ¾ up the iron. Be sure not to cover the iron completely. 
  6. Then place the iron back in the oil. After a few seconds the batter will release from the iron. You can help it along with a pair of tongs to slide it off the iron. Fry for 1-2 minutes on each side or until golden brown.
  7. Remove from the oil and place on a paper towel to drain excess oil. Allow to cool completely and ENJOY.
  8. Optional: Top with powdered sugar, chocolate drizzle, or cinnamon sugar.

Tips for delicious Chinese pretzels

  • Be sure your oil is heated to at least 375F which is the perfect frying temperature for these cookies.
  • Mix batter well and be sure there are no lumps. A smooth batter wil cling nicely to the rosette iron and keep the frying time uniform throughout.
  • Keep the rosette iron in the oil to heat up prior to dipping in the batter. This helps the batter stick to the rosette iron.
  • Do not dip the batter more than ¾ up the rosette iron. It will be very difficult to get the cookie off the iron.
  • If you are having difficulties getting the cookies off the iron you can gently shake the iron in the oil or use a tongs to gently push the batter off the rosette iron.
chinese pretzel

Chinese Pretzels (Rosette Cookies)

Yield: 20 cookies
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 12 minutes

Chinese pretzels or rosette cookies are thin and crunchy deep fried cookies that are simple to make and perfect to share with family and friends. Bet you can’t have just one.

Ingredients

  • Cooking oil of choice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Set a pot of oil over medium high heat and heat to 375F. Set the Chinese pretzel (rosette) iron in the oil to heat up.
  2. To a medium bowl add eggs, sugar, and salt. Whisk until well combined.
  3. Then add flour and milk and mix until well combined.
  4. Next stir in vanilla until just combined.
  5. Remove the iron from the oil and dab on a paper towel to remove excess oil. Dip the hot iron into the pretzel batter until the batter is about ¾ up the iron. Be sure not to cover the iron completely. 
  6. Then place the iron back in the oil. After a few seconds the batter will release from the iron. You can help it along with a pair of tongs to slide it off the iron. Fry for 1-2 minutes on each side or until golden brown.
  7. Remove from the oil and place on a paper towel to drain excess oil. Allow to cool completely and ENJOY.
  8. Optional: Top with powdered sugar or a chocolate drizzle.

Notes

*This recipe calls for a rosette iron https://amzn.to/3hwNcRh

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 46Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 40mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 2g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

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By on May 18th, 2021

About Relle

Aloha, my name is Relle and welcome to my little home on the internet where I like to share all my favorite Hawaiian recipes (and local ones too).

I am a wife, mom of two, and nurse practitioner here in the beautiful state of Hawai’i. I was born and raised in Hawai’i and I am of native Hawaiian descent. In my spare time I love to cook and bake and I have compiled many of my favorite recipes here for you to enjoy.

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