Homemade Bagels

For all of the baking I have done in my life, one thing I had never made – until today – is bagels.

Bagels… those chewy-tough dough concoctions that, when properly toasted and slathered in cream cheese and assorted toppings, are the nectar of the gods.

Victor had seen a recipe for bagels the other day and decided we should make them. I looked at the recipe, thought of a recipe my friend, Katja, recently made, and went with hers. Not a huge difference in recipes, but… I knew Katja’s were successful!

They were actually a lot easier to make than I thought they would be. I need to be more careful in sealing my dough balls before creating the bagel shape, but… I am not displeased in how they look.

The recipe states they are actually better the day after making, so we’ll have them for Sunday Breakfast, tomorrow!

New York Style Bagels

adapted from Gemma’s Bigger Bolder Baking


  • 3 1/2 cups (500g) bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons (6g) instant dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/3 cups (300ml) warm water
  • 3/4 cup (105g) additional bread flour for kneading in
  • 1 egg mixed with a drop of water for wash
  • 1 cup honey, barley malt, or cane syrup added to boiling water, optional (while not necessary, adding the sweetener gives a chewier texture)


  • caraway seeds
  • minced garlic
  • poppy seeds
  • dried onions
  • sesame seeds.
  • coarse salt

Making the Bagel Dough

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, mix the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl on medium/low speed.

Slowly add the warm water. Stir in just enough water for your dough to form a ball and clean the bottom of the bowl.

Knead the dough on medium/low speed for roughly 10 minutes. While it is kneading slowly incorporate the extra 3/4 cup of flour until your dough is smooth and elastic, forming a firm but stiff dough.

Lightly oil a large bowl turn the dough to coat. Cover the bowl tightly. Let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in size.

Once doubled, punch the dough down and carefully divide the dough into 8 pieces (roughly 115g/4 oz each).

Shaping the Bagels

Shape each piece into a smooth, round ball. Take a dough ball, and press it gently against the countertop moving your hand and the ball in a circular motion pulling the dough into itself while reducing the pressure on top of the dough slightly until a perfect dough ball forms. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

Gently press your finger into the center of each dough ball to form a ring. Stretch the ring to about 1/2 the diameter of the bagel (around 1 1/2 inches) and place on a lined cookie sheet. Repeat the same step with the remaining dough.

Once more, repeat the process of shaping the bagels as they might have sprung back into shape.

After shaping the dough rounds and placing them on the cookie sheet, cover with cling wrap and a towel and allow to rest for 20 minutes.

Cooking the Bagels

Preheat your oven to 425ºF (210ºC) and bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Carefully place the bagels one by one into the water. Boil as many as you are comfortable with boiling. Let them boil there for 2 minutes, and then flip them over to boil for another 2 minutes.

Boiling BagelsRemove bagels and place them back on your lined cookie sheet. Egg wash one by one and top with your favorite toppings..

Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Storing Bagels

For best results, leave them in an airtight container overnight at room temperature.

Homemade Bagels

They look and smell fantastic! A bit more practice and I’ll have this one down!