Watch: How Sarris Candies makes thousands of chocolate covered pretzels

The fifth of 10 must-try holiday sweets and spirits in Pittsburgh.

Jasmine Goldband / The Incline

You can’t talk about holiday sweets in Pittsburgh without craving Sarris Candies — probably chocolate covered pretzels to be precise.

“Everyone loves the sweet and salty … and the crunch,” Athena Sarris told The Incline.

So how does the Canonsburg candy shop churn out tens of thousands of the treats for Christmas and Easter?

Sarris goes into high production Sept. 1 through Easter, with a dozen of its 300 peak-season employees working just on the pretzel machine. Twists made just for Sarris take about a half hour to become chocolate-coated goodies, with about 20 minutes devoted just to drying. Other information about the pretzels themselves is secret, because of competition, Sarris said.

The recipe for the sweets — of which the milk chocolate outsells its white and dark chocolate companions — hasn’t changed in more than 50 years. That’s when Frank Sarris started making candy in his basement at home on Adams Avenue. And while the recipe hasn’t changed, the space has undergone *nine* expansions and now includes a factory, ice cream parlour and storefront.

“This is a part of our family tradition. It’s run and operated by family members only. That’s what my grandfather wanted, and that’s what we continue to do,” Sarris told The Incline.