Eat and Drink

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!

UNIVERSAL STUDIOS FLORIDA & UNIVERSAL’S ISLANDS OF ADVENTURE

CLASSIC SALTED STREET PRETZEL
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. 

STUFFED PRETZELS
LOCATION: Select Food Stands & Carts

PizzaPretzels

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. 

ORIGINAL SOFT PRETZEL & CINNAMON SUGAR 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’s Islands of Adventure. And as always, if you can’t find your nearest Auntie Anne’s just follow that familiar fragrance. 

UNIVERSAL STUDIOS FLORIDA

GUINNESS WARM 3 CHEESE DIP & PRETZEL STICKS
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. 

TIPPERARY CORNED BEEF SANDWICH
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.)

BBQ PULLED PORK SANDWICH COMBO (“The Vampire”)
LOCATION: Classic Monsters Cafe

Monsters Cafe Pretzel

Let’s be real, you could put just about anything short of a gym sock between a pretzel bun and it would taste delish. At Monsters Cafe, they’re serving up a generous portion of sweet and vinegary pulled pork with a stellar homemade coleslaw between two pieces of pretzel bun goodness. 

UNIVERSAL CITYWALK

PORK BELLY SLIDERS
LOCATION: Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen

Toothsome

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. 

MAY CONTAIN BACON BURGER
LOCATION: Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen

Toothsome

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. 

PRETZEL STICKS APPETIZER
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. 

LARGE WARM SOFT PRETZEL
LOCATION: NBC Sports Grill & Brew

Pretzel

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. 

UNIVERSAL HOTELS

MINI PRETZELS
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.

HOMEMADE PRETZEL RODS
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). 

GARLIC PARMESAN PRETZEL BITES
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. 

Cheers!

Epic in your Inbox

Never miss a thrill. Subscribe now to get email updates from Universal Parks & Resorts.

Share
Facebook Share on Facebook Twitter Share on Facebook Pinterest Share on Pinterest

You Might Also Like

2 Comments

  • 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!

    • 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.

    Leave a Reply

    We and our partners use cookies on this site to improve our service, perform analytics, personalize advertising, measure advertising performance, and remember your website preferences. By using the site, you consent to these cookies. For more information on cookies including how to manage your consent visit our cookie policy.