Go Back
+ servings
Bagels on white platter, one cut open with vegan cream cheese.
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Bagels Recipe

Recipe and tips for making the most amazing homemade bagels. These bagels have a chewy texture and are dense and flavorful, with the perfect, glossy crust!
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Rising time3 hours
Total Time3 hours 35 minutes
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 8 bagels
Calories: 235kcal


  • 2 ¼ teaspoon yeast (1 package. Either active dry yeast or instant yeast is fine).
  • 1 ¼ cups water (lukewarm)
  • cups bread flour (you might not need all of it)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt or pink salt (or any salt of choice)
  • 2 tbsps maple syrup + 2 tbsps for adding to water bath
  • Olive oil for coating bowl

For optional bagel seasoning

  • 2 tbsps sesame seeds (white or black)
  • 2 tbsps poppy seeds
  • 1 tablespoon nigella seeds (onion seeds)
  • 1 tablespoon dried onion flakes
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder (or 1 tablespoon garlic flakes)1
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Mix all seasoning ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.
  • Place lukewarm water, yeast and maple syrup or sugar in a large bowl.
  • Add one cup of whole wheat flour and two cups of bread flour to the bowl with the salt. Use a wooden spoon or your hands to mix until a dough forms. Turn out the dough on an unfloured surface and knead. If the dough seems too soft and sticky, add flour to it. You might need up to half cup more flour, but add only a tablespoon or two at a time.
  • After six to seven minutes of kneading the dough should be smooth and supple and not sticky. Form into a smooth ball and place into an oiled bowl, making sure to oil the top of the dough.
  • Cover the bowl with a lid or cling wrap and place in a warm spot for an hour or until it has doubled.
  • Turn out the dough on an unfloured surface, knead lightly, form into a disc and cut into eight equal-sized pieces.
  • Roll one of the pieces into a smooth ball. To do this tuck the seams of the dough under and roll the ball of dough on the surface using the palm of your hand. Flatten slightly, then use your forefinger or a wooden ladle to make a hole in the center.
  • Hook both thumbs inside the hole and pull the sides outward until the hole expands to about 2-3 inches. It will look a little funny at this stage, but rest assured the dough will pull back and rise enough so you end up with a good-looking bagel.
  • Place the bagels on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silpat sheet, cover loosely with a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm spot or on the countertop on a warm day.
  • After 45 minutes to an hour the bagels should have doubled in size and become very puffy.
  • About 20 minutes before the bagels are done rising, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 2 tablespoons of maple syrup or sugar to the water. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit/220 degrees Celsius.
  • Gently lift the bagels and drop them into the water bath, making sure you don't overcrowd them. Immediately after putting them in the water set your timer to 45 seconds. After 45 seconds flip the bagels over and set the timer again for 45 seconds. As soon as the time goes off, remove the boiled bagels to a rack. Roll each bagel in the seasoning to coat. The water still clinging to the bagel will help the seeds adhere to the bagel. Place the bagels on a parchment- or silpat-lined baking sheet at least an inch apart.
  • Bake the bagels in the preheated oven for 25 minutes, turning the sheet around once halfway through baking. Let the baked bagels cool on a rack before serving warm or at room temperature.


Helpful tips
  • You might need only two cups of the all purpose flour or you might need more in order to get a smooth, soft, supple dough that doesn't stick. I've needed all 2 ½ cups at times, and at others I've needed just 2 cups and maybe one tablespoon more. Add more flour just a tablespoon or two at a time and be careful not to make a stiff dough.
  • Knead the dough until it's very smooth and supple, which should take 6-7 minutes. A smoother dough will help you better shape the bagels and will also result in better-looking bagels.
  • Similarly, after dividing the dough, make sure you shape the individual balls of dough as smooth as you can, taking care to tuck any ends underneath and sealing any open edges. This will ensure better-looking bagels. If you don't do it, and the bagels look a bit more, ahem, rustic, don't fret. They'll still look great after you've covered them with the seasoning and baked them.
  • If the holes in the bagels look smaller than you want them to be after the bagels have risen, wait until the bagels have come out of the water bath. Then, before rolling the bagels in the seasoning, use your fingers to widen them a little bit.
  • If you have leftover bagels, toast them the next day for a crunchy, crispy, delightful texture.
  • For cinnamon raisin bagels, add ¼ cup sugar and ½ cup raisins to the dough.
  • For chocolate chip bagels, add ¼ cup sugar and ½ cup chocolate chips to the dough.
  • For blueberry bagels, add ¼ cup sugar and 1 cup fresh blueberries to the dough. Cut down the water to 1 cup and add more flour if needed because the blueberry will express some juices.
Storage instructions
  • Refrigerate: Bagels are best eaten fresh, but you can refrigerate them for up to a week.
  • Freeze: Freeze bagels in a freezer-safe bag for up to a month.
  • Reheat: Reheat bagels in a 400-degree Fahrenheit oven until warmed through. These bagels also toast beautifully.


Serving: 1bagel | Calories: 235kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 0.4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 586mg | Potassium: 153mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 2IU | Vitamin C: 0.5mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 1mg