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Homemade Bagels

Recipe Level: Moderate

Homemade bagels are fun to make yourself. They are soft, chewy and make the perfect homemade treat for breakfast. Custom make your own variety of flavours by changing the toppings.

Baked by Alie Romano

Professional Baker and Recipe Developer

* Make sure to read the entire blog post. Every step matters, and I’ll provide helpful tips along the way!

Homemade Bagels

Have you ever made homemade bagels? You won’t believe how enjoyable it is to make them yourself! It may not be a weekly baking routine but it’s definitely a fun baking activity to try out. You can play around with different toppings and seeds to make your own bagel variety pack too!

When it comes to working with yeast, it can be a bit intimidating. I’ve got a few helpful tips on working with yeast, proofing, and the most problematic – over-proofing, aka why did my dough flop? I hope this helps in making you more confident when it comes to working with yeast and making your own homemade bagels.

Homemade Bagels

Ingredients

  • All-purpose flour
  • Water
  • Active dry yeast
  • Granulated sugar
  • Egg wash
  • Salt
  • Seeds for topping (optional)

Homemade Bagel Variations

  • Everything – poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried minced garlic, dried minced onion, flaked sea salt or coarse salt
  • Poppy Seed
  • Sesame Seed
  • Onion –  dried minced onion
  • Rosemary and sea salt
  • Cheese – add 1/3 cup of mixed cheeses, sharp cheese pairs the nicest. Top with extra cheese before baking.
  • Blueberry – add 1/2 cup fresh blueberries to the dough.
  • Chocolate chip – add 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips to the dough.
  • Cinnamon & raisin – add 1/4 cup raisins and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon to the dough.
  • Jalapeño and cheese – add 1 thinly sliced and seeded jalapeño pepper plus 1/3 cup white cheddar cheese to the dough. Top with extra cheese before baking.
  • Coconut – add 1/2 cup shredded coconut to the dough. Top with extra coconut before baking.

Tips For Making Bagels

What to look for when proofing yeast

When using active dry yeast you need to break down the coating to activate the yeast. After your yeast has sat (proofing) in warm water for approx. 5-10 minutes you should have a foamy mixture, sometimes with bubbles. This will all depend on how active your yeast is. If you look closely you should see your yeast moving in the water.  This is a great sign your yeast is active. Sometimes recipes call for a little sugar, this can help activate the yeast as it eats the sugar to activate. If your yeast is not foamy or you see no activity your yeast is most likely dead and this will cause your bread to not rise. Check your expiry date before using and store in the fridge (or if you don’t use your yeast often you can store in the freezer).

How do you know when your dough is ready?

You want your dough to be smooth and elastic looking after kneading. If you are using a mixer with a dough hook, take your dough out and knead it a few times so you can see how smooth and elastic it is. Shape your dough into a ball and gently press your finger into the dough. If the dough springs back it’s ready to proof. If the dough doesn’t spring back you have to knead it a bit longer. 

What is Overproofing?

It is very important to keep an eye on your dough and its activity. If you overproof your dough, your dough will have no structure to hold itself together and will flop. All the air bubbles and gases pop and leave the dough, resulting in overproofing. You can tell by how much the dough has grown and if you press your finger into the dough and it doesn’t spring back it means it’s overproofed. If this happens, you can save the first proof by pressing the gases out, reshaping the dough, and reproofing.

When a recipe calls for more yeast, your proofing time should be shorter. Proofing time all depends on how warm it is where your dough is resting, how active your yeast is, and how much yeast is used in the recipe.

Homemade Bagels

How To Make Homemade Bagels

Step One: Make your dough and let rest until doubled in size. Then divide the dough into 12 equal pieces. Shape dough into round balls, and flatten into discs. Use the handle of a wood spoon to poke a hole in the centre of the dough. Slip the dough halfway down the wooden handle and then gentle spin it around to create a large opening (you can do this with your fingers/hand as well). Repeat with the other pieces.

Step Two: Place up to two bagels in a pot of boiling, boil for 1 minute on each side. Using a slotted spoon remove bagels onto a baking sheet.

Step Three: Brush the bagels with egg wash and sprinkle desired seeds on top. Bake in the middle of the oven for approximately 20 minutes or until the bottoms are browned and when tapped the bagel sounds hollow.

Homemade Bagels
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Bagels

Homemade bagels are so fun to make yourself. They are soft, chewy and make the perfect homemade treat for breakfast. Custom make your own variety of flavours by changing the toppings.

  • Author: Alie Romano
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 50 mins
  • Yield: 12 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: German

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 33 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons (one package) active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • egg wash (add 1 tablespoon of milk or water to beaten egg)
  • seeds for topping (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, add warm water, yeast and 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Let rest until the mixture starts to foam and creates small bubbles, approx. 8 minutes.
  2. Add the rest of the sugar, 3 cups of the flour and salt and blend with a wooden spoon. Turn out mixture to a work surface and knead until blended and glutens have developed, about 5-7 minutes (add the rest of the flour as needed).
  3. Grease a large bowl, place the dough in the middle, cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rest until doubled in size, approx. 1 hour.
  4. Meanwhile prepare your baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside (you may need two baking sheets).
  5. Preheat your oven to 450˚F, with the rack placed in the middle of the oven.
  6. When dough has doubled in size, bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  7. On a lightly floured surface, press down the dough, and divide the dough into 12 equal pieces, shape dough into round balls, and flatten into discs.
  8. Take a wooden spoon and use the handle to poke a hole in the centre of the dough. Slip the dough halfway down the wooden handle and then gently spin it around to create a large opening (you can do this with your fingers/hand as well). Repeat with the other pieces, meanwhile keep your dough covered with plastic wrap, or a damp cloth so they don’t dry up.
  9. Place up to two bagels in the boiling pot of water and boil for 1 minute on each side. Using a slotted spoon remove bagels onto your prepared baking sheet, brush with egg wash and sprinkle desired seeds on top. Continue until all the bagels have been boiled.
  10. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the bottoms are browned and when tapped the bagels sound hollow.

Notes

Seed Options:
– Poppy Seed Bagel
– Sesame Seed Bagel
– Everything Bagel : poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried minced garlic, dried minced onion, flaked sea salt or coarse salt.
– Onion Bagel: dried minced onion

See blog post for more topping variations; like cheese, coconut, etc.

Bagels freeze well. Freeze half the bagels and take a few out daily to enjoy fresh.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: per bagel
  • Calories: 133
  • Sugar: 4.3g
  • Sodium: 196mg
  • Fat: 0.4g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.1g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 28.5g
  • Fiber: 1.1g
  • Protein: 3.7g
  • Cholesterol: 0

Keywords: Homemade Bagels, Breakfast, Bread, Yeast

Did you make this recipe?

Write a review and let me know!

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I can’t wait to see what you’ve made! xo alie

FAQ’s

Why did my bagels deflate once I added them to boiling water?

If bagels fall flat or deflate once added to boiling water this could be because of overproofing. If your dough is overproofed it will have no structure to hold itself together and will flop. All the air bubbles and gases pop and leave the dough, resulting in overproofing. Once the dough is submerged into the boiling water the structure collapses.

How do I know when homemade bagels are completely baked through?

Homemade bagels are done when the bottoms are browned and when tapped with your finger the bagels will sound hollow.

Can I prep homemade bagel dough ahead of time?

Yes, you can prep homemade bagel dough just before the boiling stage. The easiest method is to divide the dough into 12 rounds, cover in plastic and then place them in the refrigerator overnight. The next day continue the recipe as is. Flatten the dough, poke holes, boil and bake.

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Sarah
Sarah
3 years ago
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I just made these bagels! So good and such a nice easy recipe to follow. Thanks!

Ashleigh Scott
Ashleigh Scott
3 years ago
Rating :
     

These bagels are so yummy, I probably messed up the dough a bit because I’m still learning and they still turned out sooo yummy! Just curious is it ok to add extra flour if my dough was super sticky?? I’m always worried I’ll add too much. Thanks!

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Alie Romano

Meet

Alie

I'm a professional baker, recipe developer & photographer behind Baking For Friends. I specialize in classic & comforting baking. I hope you enjoy the recipes & find inspiration of your own to bring your family & friends together over home-cooked food!

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