Free Pretzels Today, National Pretzel Day 2013

Friday has arrived with National Pretzel Day and places across the U.S. are offering free pretzels in celebration.

Loved for its salty taste, the pretzel, also known as Brezel in Germany, comes in both hard and soft dough forms. The pretzel is recognized for its distinctly symmetrical shape, as the dough is twisted and looped before baking.

The bread product originated in Europe and is very popular in southern Germany. Made from wheat flour, water, and yeast, the pretzel remains a very popular snack in many parts of the U.S. as well.

Much of the appeal of pretzels applies to their versatility- the bready treat can be either sweet or savory. While some recipes call for chocolate toppings, others recommend the mustard-dipped pretzel.

Options for topping pretzels are endless, but some popular toppings include caraway seeds, salt, white chocolate, peanut butter, or cheese.

Also, more unusual recipes incorporate pretzels into dinnertime meals. For example, Food & Wine magazine suggested using pretzels for a crispy, salty crust for baked chicken.

Celebrated each year on April 26, National Pretzel Day is seeing many pretzel vendors giving away the favorite snack for free.

From New York City to San Diego, stores are helping pretzel lovers celebrate National Pretzel Day.

Famed pretzel makers Snyder's of Hanover will be giving away free pretzels all day on Friday. The company offers you a choice of three pretzel flavors: honey mustard and onion, hot buffalo wing, and bacon cheddar.

Pretzelmaker is also offering customers one free pretzel on Friday.

Furthermore, Auntie Anne's is participating in National Pretzel Day by offering $1 pretzels from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

For a full list of places participating in National Pretzel Day, click here.

#NationalPretzelDay became a trending topic on Twitter Friday with hundreds of users sounding off about their celebrations.

"Bethenny Ever After" star Bethenny Frankel even chimed in about National Pretzel Day.

"Are you celebrating national pretzel day," the reality star tweeted. "Off to a meeting w a @SkinnygirlDaily dark chocolate multigrain pretzel bar."