A Pretzel-Lover’s Guide to Pretzel Foods at Universal Orlando Resort

September 23, 2021
Auntie Annes Pretzel

As a yankee-blooded transplant, there were more than a few food culture shocks when we relocated to the south in my early years. Differences in what constitutes quality pizza comes to mind, first and foremost, also, a total lack of traditional diners and delicatessens. 

But the common thread of all these culinary concerns was the unmistakable difference in the bread. Crusty and chewy on the outside, soft and warm in the middle – any true northeasterner knows what I’m talkin’ ‘bout. And the king of all breads, the soft pretzel, was even harder to find (outside of your local mall food court). 

But my oh my how the times have changed! The soft pretzel is finally getting its day in the Florida sun, showing up as a staple on just about any appetizer menu worth its weight in pretzel salt. To honor the rising popularity of this doughy delight, I bring you a gluten-filled glutinous guide to pretzel foods at Universal Orlando Resort. Get ready…for Pretzelmania!


LOCATION: Select Food Stands & Carts

OG Pretzel

I’m a simple man who likes simple things done right. And nothing fulfills my comfort food cravings quite like the classic salted street pretzel — the OG of the pretzel world. It’s a warm and chewy on-the-go snack that you can choose to enjoy with a side saddle of cheese sauce or a simple packet of mustard, although traditionalists like myself prefer it in its natural form. 

LOCATION: Select Food Stands & Carts


If you’re looking for something slightly more adventurous than the classic street pretzel, you can find an array of options throughout the parks including a pizza pretzel stuffed with marinara and cheese and topped with pepperonis or a jalapeno and cheese stuffed pretzel. 

LOCATION: Auntie Anne’s Pretzels

Auntie Annes Pretzel

You know her, you love her, you wouldn’t dare leave your local mall without paying her a visit. Auntie Anne, the favorite Aunt of all pretzel lovers, serves up her classic lineup of familiar favs in three locations throughout Universal Orlando — in Universal CityWalk, in Universal Studios Florida and in Universal Islands of Adventure. And as always, if you can’t find your nearest Auntie Anne’s just follow that familiar fragrance. 


LOCATION: Finnegan’s Bar & Grill

Finnegans Pretzels

Hear me now, restaurants of the modern world! If you do not have a dippable pretzel item on your appetizer menu, then your menu is incomplete. Bonus points to fan-favorite pub Finnegan’s Bar & Grille in the New York area of Universal Studios for taking this cheese and pretzel app to the next level by infusing their dip with a full-flavored beer. 

LOCATION: Finnegan’s Bar & Grill

Pastrami Finnegans

One of the items gaining the most popularity during the Pretzelssaince™ has been the pretzel bun. Seriously, I dare you to find a burger/sandwich joint that doesn’t carry it right now. At Finnegan’s, they honor this regal roll by filling it with a mound of thinly sliced medium rare corned beef and topping it off with melted swiss cheese, sauteed onions and your choice of fixings. 

(I’ll pause here so you can get yourself something to eat. You must be starving by this point. OK, you got something? Let’s continue.)


LOCATION: Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen


If you read this entire blog and you intend to try just one of the items I’ve covered, make it this one. Aside from the buttery and adorable slider pretzel buns and the perfectly cooked pork belly, these mini sandwiches are topped with chocolate coated bacon (yes, you read that right). And if you’re a “dipping-my-french-fries-in-my-milkshake-on-the-regular” kind of being like myself, then I highly recommend you take that chocolate bacon and place it right inside that sandwich to enhance the sweet and savory flavor explosion. 

LOCATION: Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen


Oh, you thought the pork belly party was over? That’s cute. In addition to their Pub It Up burger, which also features a pretzel roll (and a smothering of andouille sausage queso), Toothsome’s facetiously named May Contain Bacon Burger does in fact contain bacon…in two forms including, yes, you guessed it, pork belly, and topped with a sweet and tangy pineapple chutney. That’s fancy for jam…I think. 

LOCATION: Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville 

Not all pretzel sticks (or rods, whichever nomenclature you prefer) are created equal. Much as not all cheese and mustard dipping sauces are the same. At Margaritaville, they checked many of my boxes including warmth, softness, subtle chew and easy on the salt, not to mention a uniquely creamy mustard sauce that was delightful. 13/10, highly recommend, would order again. 

LOCATION: NBC Sports Grill & Brew


For starters, let’s get one thing straight: describing this pretzel as large is the understatement of the century. It’s flippin’ gigundous! And the jalapeño queso and Bertman Ball Park mustard that accompany this Bavarian behemoth are insanely addictive. Now, I know I said the Pork Belly Sliders were my favorite, but that’s only because a soft pretzel appetizer the size of a hubcap need-not my recommendation. When you enter NBC Sports Grill and see most of your fellow diners devouring one of these bad-boys it’ll be all the recommendation you need. 


LOCATION: Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort – Galaxy Bowl

Cabana Bay Pretzels

When I wasn’t busy solemnly retrieving my gutter ball from the bowling ball-return machine I was contently nuzzled in my booth consuming this entire plate of tasty salted pretzels and whiz-style (for my Philly friends) cheddar cheese sauce.

LOCATION: Loews Royal Pacific Resort – Jake’s American Bar

Pretzel Rods

I think it’s clear by now that if you have a dippable pretzel app, then I am your target consumer. But the real star of the show here is the warm four-cheese stout fondue (although, I am an equal opportunity dipper, so that tangy mustard sauce did not go to waste). 

LOCATION: Hard Rock Hotel – Beachclub

Hard Rock Pretzels

The last item on my list had just been added to the poolside Beachclub menu. In addition to the accompaniment of dips, these pretzel bites were dusted in a deliciously flavorful garlic and parmesan topping – and immediately followed by an additional dip I took into the Hard Rock Hotel pool.

Welp, that just about covers the carbs.  If I somehow missed any of your favorites, please add them in the comments below. 


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  • Reply Jessica Berzito September 24, 2021 at 3:30 pm

    Loved your article ! Pretzel lover here and also pizza!! Can’t wait to eat them on my next trip to universal! 🥨🤎🥨
    I am also a yankee transplant.. from Jersey!!
    I have a super important question ; have you actually been able to find real pizza!?? I’m having a real hard time with this living now in the south ! And what the locals think is good pizza is not quite cutting it. I know you feel my pain and totally understand!

    • Avatar photo
      Reply Jimi Kunkel September 27, 2021 at 2:54 pm

      Hi Jessica, thanks for reading the article and appreciating the pretzel love! I’ve been in Central Florida for quite a while now and have (like you) searched far and wide for pizza that comes close to what I remember from my time in NJ. Email me at DiscoverUniversal@universalorlando.com and maybe I can recommend some spots.

  • Reply lizzy August 11, 2022 at 1:45 am

    the pizza pretzels SLAPPP

    • Avatar photo
      Reply Jimi Kunkel August 29, 2022 at 11:07 am

      I KNOW, RIGHT?!?!?!

  • Reply Guide to Must-Try Appetizers in Universal CityWalk at Universal Orlando Resort - Discover Universal August 17, 2022 at 11:52 pm

    […] nuts, but sometimes I’m just not in the mood for a giant pretzel (don’t tell the writer of this Pretzel-Lover’s Guide!). If I’m looking for a lighter option, I opt for the Chicken Lettuce Wraps! Savory ground […]

    • Avatar photo
      Reply Jimi Kunkel August 29, 2022 at 11:09 am

      Can relate. Getting the giant pretzel usually results in me having A TON of leftovers to take home from my entrée.

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