Pretzel Sunday

Bretzelsonndeg is a holiday observed annually in Luxembourg as a national feast day on the fourth Sunday of Lent every year. Outside of German-speaking countries, it is observed under the name Pretzel Sunday, and it is the perfect day for people to pair up their favorite pretzels with their favorite dips.

Although pretzels originally didn’t come in many different sizes, shapes, and styles, that is no longer the case. Now there are pretzels of every size, pretzels that are savory and ones that are sweet, and there are even pretzels sold with sausages inside them. Of course, the pretzels filled with sausages probably aren’t going to be enjoyed by many people during Lent.

The History of Pretzel Sunday

Pretzels have been made for over 1,400 years. They were originally created by monks in Northern Italy and/or Southern France. They would take strips of dough from the monasteries’ daily bread baking and use them to make pretzels.

The pretzel shape is supposed to represent a child’s arms folded in prayer, and these pretzels were often given out to children for successfully completing their religious studies.

Pretzels would end up being spread all across Europe by merchants and other travelers, and they became especially popular in Austria, Germany, Alsace, and other German-speaking countries.

People started to enjoy them during Lent, and the tradition of Pretzel Sunday (Bretzelsonndeg) began to be observed in Luxembourg. On this day, young men give their romantic interests pretzels and/or pretzel-shaped cakes as a way to show their interest and affection.

If a young woman wants to let him know she feels the same way, she’ll give him a decorated chocolate egg on Easter Sunday. If she doesn’t feel the same way, then she returns the pretzel or basket. This tradition is reversed on leap years, meaning that women give out the pretzels and men have the opportunity to reject their advances.

Observing Pretzel Sunday

We already covered the traditions that take place in Luxembourg, so we’ll turn our attention to how this holiday is celebrated in the rest of the world. This is a day for people to try their hand at baking their own homemade pretzels and to take pictures of those pretzels to share on social media with the hashtag #PretzelSunday.

People can also take the time to visit a pretzel shop in their neighborhood. Although these shops aren’t as widespread as they used to be, there are some great pretzel shops in the U.S.

Below are some of the pretzel shops in the United States that serve great pretzels and are attempting to preserve the tradition of pretzel making. Let’s take a look at them so everyone can celebrate Pretzel Sunday with some fresh, tasty pretzels.

  • Esther’s German Bakery in Los Altos, California.
  • Ralf’s Bavarian Pretzels in Bellingham, Washington.
  • Pretzel House in Hershey, Pennsylvania.
  • FatBelly Pretzel in Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Gus’ Pretzel Shop in St. Louis, Missouri.
Where is it celebrated?
When is it?
This year (2024)
March 10 Sunday
Next year (2025)
March 30 Sunday
Last year (2023)
March 19 Sunday
Food & Drinks