Pretzel Hugs & Turtles

pretzel hugs pretzel turtles holiday treatsIMHO we live on the best street ever.  Low traffic, nice sidewalks, lots of kids & dogs, older kids to babysit, and generous sociable neighbors!  Plenty of summer cookouts, Halloween fun, and during the Christmas holidays everyone swaps homemade treats…

This year I found a delicious-looking and li’l-kid-friendly idea on Pinterest.  We tried out Pretzel Hugs & Turtles which worked out great.  They have simple ingredients, are fast and easy to make, and taste AWESOME.  Each is a study in complements: crunchy & creamy, sweet & salty.  And once packaged in pretty foil-striped holiday treat bags (gussets add class) they look like something out of a gourmet shop!!!

pretzel hugs pretzel turtles gift wrap

The stripes and colorful M&Ms look so pretty on my Christmas plates too.  Yes, of course I’m the kind of woman who has Christmas dishes.  My serving pieces are the Spode Christmas Tree pattern, but my mother-in-law started me on a different tradition for plates.  She bought a Royal Copenhagen Christmas plate the year my husband was born and passed it on to us shortly after we were married.  I’ve since purchased more and now every family member has a plate with their birth year!  I display them on the mantel throughout the holiday season, and then we each use our own plate for dessert on Christmas Eve.  A beautiful and yummy (and expensive) family Christmas tradition.

1977 royal copenhagen christmas plate1978 royal copenhagen christmas plate2009 royal copenhagen christmas plate2011 royal copenhagen christmas plate

We might try making these treats for other holidays too by changing the colors of the M&Ms or even trying other candies.  Try it yourself and enjoy!



  • Mini pretzel twists
  • Hershey’s Hugs
  • M&Ms
  • Rolos
  • Pecan halves


  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  Clear out flat surface(s) in the refrigerator the size of your baking sheet(s).
  2. Place parchment paper on baking sheet(s).  Spread out pretzels.  Eat any broken ones right away.
  3. Unwrap chocolates (Hershey’s Hugs and Rolos).  Place one on each pretzel.
  4. Put in oven for 3 minutes until chocolates are slightly melted and soft but not completely runny.  Meanwhile get your candy or nut toppers ready.
  5. Pull the baking sheet(s) out of the oven.  Quickly use an M&M to smush down each Hug, a pecan half to smush down each Rolo.
  6. Place into refrigerator for 10-15 minutes until chocolate has cooled to firmness again.
  7. Package with gift wrapped boxes or treat bags and share with neighbors.

UPDATE 12/21/16

We’ve been making these pretzel treats for years now, and have a couple of tips & tricks for making Pretzel Hugs & Turtles:

  • Keep your Hershey’s Hugs or Kisses “fresh” in a cool dry place. While they technically don’t expire for 6+ months, temperature changes over time seem to forge the chocolate. They won’t be smushable no matter how long you warm them in the oven or how high you turn the temperature.
  • 1 lb bag of pretzels + 1 large 36oz bag of Hershey’s Hugs + 1 large 11oz bag of M&Ms = 18 dozen pretzel treats

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