Easy Hand Rolled Water Bagel Recipe

Bagels. Photo credit:
Bagels. Photo credit:
Seeded bagels. Photo credit: the
Seeded bagels. Photo credit: the
Making bagels. Photo credit:
Making bagels. Photo credit:
Bagels being boiled in water. Photo credit:
Bagels being boiled in water. Photo credit:

Homemade Tastes Better

I've made a lot of bagels in my time. I owned a bagel restaurant for years, and you would find me every bleary-eyed morning kneading the dough and hand rolling all the fresh bagels for the day.

I've since gotten out of the bagel game (yay, sleep!) but I still love a great bagel.

People think that making outstanding bagels at home is really difficult, but it's really no harder than making a loaf of bread and can be done within about an hour.

Don't be discouraged if your bagels look at bit funny at first, you'll get the hang of it in no time. Those curiously-shaped bagels will still beat supermarket bagels hands down.

What makes a bagel different from other breads is the two-stage cooking process. A bagel is first briefly boiled, and then baked. I worked the meat counter in a Jewish deli as a teenager, and as my boss would say, an unboiled bagel is just a roll with a hole!


  • 4 cups bread flour
  • 1 tbs. sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsps. salt
  • 1 tbs. vegetable oil
  • 2 tsps. instant yeast
  • 1 and 1/4 to 1 and 1/2 cups of warm water


  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. You don't have to worry about soaking the yeast when you use instant yeast (most yeast sold these days is instant yeast). The dough should feel stiff, but add the extra water if it's really stiff, or you won't be able to get all the dry flour incorporated.
  2. Plop the dough down onto the counter, and knead for about ten minutes, or until the dough is uniform and smooth.
  3. Cut the dough into 8 equal sized balls, and let rest for 10 to 20 minutes.
  4. Pre-heat your oven to 425.
  5. Now, take each of the dough balls, and using two hands, roll them into little snakes on the counter.
  6. When the snake is longer than the width of your two hands, wrap it around your dominant roiling hand. The dough rope should be wrapped so the overlapping ends are together at your palm, near the start of your fingers.
  7. Now take the two overlapping ends, and use your palm to squish and roll these two ends together. Once the dough is fused, you should have a perfectly circular bagel-to-be! This is the only part of the process that can take a little practice before your bagels will look really professional. Don't get discouraged if they don't look perfect, it just takes practice!
  8. Let your bagels rest on the counter for about 20 minutes.
  9. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to boil, and grease a large baking tray lightly. You can just rub a splash of vegetable oil and rub it around.
  10. After the 20-minute wait, your bagels will start to look puffy, and it's time to get them boiling! Add them as many at a time as you can to your boiling water without crowding them. Boil for about a minute, turn them over, and boil for another minute. Take them out a let dry for a minute and then place them on your oiled baking tray. Repeat until all the bagels are boiled.
  11. Add the tray to the oven, and after 10 minutes, flip the bagels over, bake for another 10 minutes; and they're done!

Let them cool for at least 20 minutes, get the cream cheese ready, and feast on what's got to be one of the best weekend brunch treats possible!

You can add any toppings you like to these. To make sesame, onion, poppy seed, caraway, etc. bagels, just have a dry plate ready with the seed or spice topping spread out on it. After the bagels have come out of the boiling water, place them face down onto the seeds, and then place the seed side up onto the baking tray. Bake and flip as for plain bagels.

Short but Sweet Video on Bagel-Rolling Technique

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Comments 564 comments

Zsuzsy Bee profile image

Zsuzsy Bee 8 years ago from Ontario/Canada

great HUB! I used to make bagels years ago at the Bakery that I worked at. Our recipe had whole wheat and rye flour in it too. I will try your recipe next just for a change. Thanks

regards Zsuzsy

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 8 years ago Author

I love a pumpernickel bagel - and your recipe with rye and whole wheat sounds pretty good too! Good luck with the bagels! What proportion of whole wheat and rys did you use?

CCF 8 years ago

I am going to make these now. I have some pumpkin seeds ready to become bagel toppings.

neontrail 8 years ago

They are IN the oven RIGHT NOW!~!!! I can't wait !!!!!!

shira profile image

shira 8 years ago from U.S.A

"They are IN the oven RIGHT NOW!~!!! I can't wait !!!!!!"

tell us how did they came out

are they really good?

Decrescendo profile image

Decrescendo 8 years ago

Looks Great. Now I’m hungry

peter 8 years ago

Very good recipe, almost as good as the famous Montreal bagel. Thank you very much. The whole family loves it.

SBlake 8 years ago

I made my first-ever bagels using this recipe, and... I'm hooked. Thank you so very much for sharing the joy of something so simply delicious!

Any tips on making a crisper outside?

MtnMona 8 years ago

I made these bagels today..... UGH, didn't taste at all like a bagel! Tasted like a pretzet!! Sorry but this recipe didn't work for me.

Natasha 8 years ago

i made these bagels yesterday, and we forgot to add the vegetable oil when mking the dough together. we didn't remember till after the rising and the boiling, but its suprising how perfect they were anyway! the extra oil on the baking tray helped brown the bagels whre they sat.

Xoe 8 years ago

It took me three tries to get this right (first time entirely my fault...not sure what happened the second), but it was COMPLETLEY worth it. Bagels here are disappointing, at best, and it's so wonderful to be able to have the real TASTY thing. :D HOORAY!

joni732 profile image

joni732 8 years ago from Nashville, Tennessee

Thanks for your great recipe, also used to make and sell bagels, lost my recipe in the move, remember my kitchen being covered with dusting of flour after a long night, laughing all the time we worked. I want to teach my Granddaughter, now that bagels are her favorite food. Thanks for the clear and informative directions, will try some of your others as well, keep up the good work.

imploding 7 years ago

How do you avoid bagels imloding after taken out of the water?

grateful 7 years ago

I love baking but have avoided bagles ever since an attempt many years ago that end in disappointment. I am presently eating the bagels I made based on your recipe (no variation) and am delighted---perfect combination & so easy!

thank you!!!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Imploding,

It sounds like the bagels were over profed (over-risen) before being tossed into the water. Try reducing the rising time prior to boiling and you should have better luck.


Dave 7 years ago

Excellent recipe, just substitute 1 cup of flour for 1 cup of rye flour and mix in some caraway seeds in the dough and Wow wheeee, yum. Carb city!!!!

Mon 7 years ago

Awesome receipe, easy to follow. This is my first time making bagel and the bagels actually turned out very decent and tasty.

Also love your hub, a lot of great tips.


reyyan 7 years ago

I just made this recipe. I never attempted to bake bagels before but your post encouraged me. It was super easy and delicious!!

Thanks very much!!

indy 7 years ago

thanks so much! I made my first ever batch of bagles tonight and they were perfect!!

Darla 7 years ago

I moved to a small town in Idaho and coming from Denver where there are bagel shops every where I missed this style of bagel. I made them for the 1st time a few weeks age and I was shocked at how easy it was. Thank you for sharing your bagel recipe.

gnee 7 years ago

These are amazing. It was fun making them. They are delicious. Thanks for sharing.

Matt 7 years ago

So I'm making these bagels for the 80+ members of my Co-op here at college. Its going to be a great challenge. I'll let you know how it turns out! :)

Sharyn 7 years ago

They are cooling off as we speak. My fingers are crossed. I relocated to Costa Rica from NYC two years ago and bagels are what I miss most. I usally bring a dozen or so Ess-A-Bagels back in luggage w henever I go back. Hopefully these will tide me over til my next visit in April.

Sharyn 7 years ago

Oh my god!! The bagels were a hit!! We even had some Philly cream cheese to top them off!! Cannot wait to make them again. Thanks Dave!!!

Sam 7 years ago

Deeeelicious! I got the bagel rolling technique down pat on the first try. I have a convection oven and didn't need to turn them or use oil to get the crispy, plus the silpat helped! Next time I go to the store I'm going to invest in some poppy seeds and sesame seeds to make them even better! Thanks for the recipe!

Sharyn 7 years ago

Round two was even better than round 1. I got the rolling technique down and I only made 6 instead of 8 (much closer to the size of NYC bagels that I am used to). I even made some chopped liver to go with them. For transplanted NY'ers in Costa Rica . . .it was a little taste of home. Thanks for the recipe!!

J. Braun 7 years ago

This was super easy!! Everyone keeps saying how hard it is to make bagels. By the second time I got it down perfect!!! Great recipe!!!

chero 7 years ago

Been wanting to make bagels for awhile. And, I finally get to do it with this great recipe & instruction! Thanks for having this on the web! I'm glad Google made this my first search. Happy Holidays!

Sumguy 7 years ago

Easier than making pie!

Thank you for the recipe and rolling technique!

Rita 7 years ago

I don't understand what I did wrong..Your recipe was wonderful..dough rose beautifully...easy to shape into a bagel...put in boiling water after following the appropriate steps. Then, a horrible thing happened. I put them in the oven, and they went flat as pancakes. They had a funny flavor also. Had to throw the whole batch away...Such an exciting adventure until the end..What happened?

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Rita,

I'm sorry to hear about the disaster at the end! It sounds as though the bagels "over rose". If the bagel dough is allowed to rise for too long, or in too hot a room, the dough will eventually collapse down on itself. If this is in fact what happened, you will have better luck by speeding up the process and getting the bagels into the owven before they get overgrown!

Good luck!

Richard 7 years ago

Hi, I never made bagels before and didn't know what to expect. I followed your recipe and instructions and the bagels turned out as good as the best bagels my wife and I ever tasted. Thank you for the recipe, we will never need to buy bagels again!

Anna 7 years ago

Thank you for this great (and still quite easy) recipe!I'm a poor cook and the bagels taste delicious anyway!I couldn't be more happy, I can finally eat good bagels in France as often as it pleases me!

Kristin 7 years ago

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am on a sodium restricted diet, so I can't eat store-bought bagels right now. I used your recipe and just omitted the salt. They are fantastic. You made it so easy to follow along - and they came out great. Thanks again!

Ann 7 years ago

I managed to turn out some amazing bagels, even with the help of my three assistants (6, 4 and 2) Thank you so much for a fun and yummy recipe.

Mary 7 years ago

My kids love blueberry bagels, so I added some dried blueberries and WOW!!! My son said they were the best bagels he'd had "in his entire life." Of course, he's only 11, but still. . . .

Elvira 7 years ago

Tried your recipe and gotta say turned out a success! Thanks

Aly 7 years ago

I just made these and they turned out GREAT! Thanks for the easy recipe. For my next attempt I am thinking about adding blueberries. Any thoughts on how many, what kind (canned, frozen, fresh), and what step to add them would be appreciated.

miss_jayne 7 years ago

this recipe and technique is great. just made a batch this morning.

this method is much easier to utilize and the results were more 'professional' looking.

thanks for sharing! (especially with the instant yeast!)

TN FNP 7 years ago

Getting ready to try your recipe. I have been searching for weeks for an easily understood bagel recipe and I think this might be it. Having lived in Albuquerque for many years I have an addiction to the local green chile and will be trying this recipe with chiles added. I'll let you know how it turns out. If you have any suggestions for when to add the chiles please post.

Jason 7 years ago

I am living in Thailand...My cousin sent me 6 Sara L:ee onion bagles and I showed them to my local Thai bakery...They are interested and the purpose of this note is to ask for any information you can give me relating to a commercial bakery process so I can pass it on to the bakery. There are many Europeans and Americans living here so I think sales will be good. Any help you will send our way will be deeply appreciated,Jason BAKER !

Charlene 7 years ago

Can you use regular flour in this recipe?

DrewO 7 years ago

I'm a relocated NY'er who cooks but never bakes. With this recipe I was able to make GREAT bagels my first time baking. Next time I'll probably do 6 from a batch instead of 8 because I like my bagels bigger, but these are awesome! Thank you!!!

Michelle 7 years ago

I really want to try this recipe, but only have regular, non-instant, yeast. Do you have any suggestions as to how to go about using regular active yeast in this recipe?

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Michelle,

Active yeast will work just fine here. Just sprinkle your yeast over about 1/2 cup of warm (95 degrees farenheit) water and let it soak for about 10 minutes. You may then procede as directed in the recipe, adding in in all of the yeast and water to the dough, remebering to reduce the water called for in the recipe by that same 1/2 of a cup.

best of luck!


Michelle 7 years ago

Thank you for the tips, John. I made these today, and after being a bit worried with how the dough was looking (they became really crusty as balls before rolling them out and creating the bagel shape) they turned out wonderful! I'm never buying bagels from the supermarket again! Thank you sooo much for this recipe.

Michelle 7 years ago

I'm really curious if anyone has tried any variations to this recipe. I'd like to make garlic or onion bagels, but I love the bagels with actual pieces of each in them, not just on top. Has anyone tried this? At what point would you add the ingredients to the dough? In the beginning or in the midst of kneading? Thank you in advance!

carla 7 years ago

i am going to make these tomorrow morning and i'm so excited! it's my maiden voyage for bagel making and the posted comments have been incredibly helpful. i do have one question... i have been baking the infamous "no knead bread" for the past year and LOVE the delicious crisp, chewy crust and tender middle that is achieved by baking in a dutch oven. have you ever tried baking your bagels in this manner? i think i'll give it a whirl for a couple of the bagels and do the rest as your recipe indicates. i'll let you know how they turn out. thank you for the recipe!

ruddyadam 7 years ago

you want me to let them cool HOW LONG?? :) sorry, but when they came out of the oven, 30 seconds was all I could give it... and wow, AMAZING!! my first time making bagels, and they came out as good as I could imagine. And making them was fun too - watching them literally inflate 2x their size in the boiling water was pretty cool, I gotta say. Kneading the dough was fun, too. Going old-school and not breaking out the Kitchen-aid added to the experience. And they are delicious bagels - even with no toppings or cream cheese! So quick and easy - two thumbs up from me. Thanks for the post! You are officially bookmarked.

Stacy 7 years ago

I am determined to make these work but I have tried twice and I am having a problem. They don't seem to rise very much and they are too dense - they taste more like pretzels. I used yeast I had stored in the freezer - could that be a problem? Maybe my water is not warm enough? Should I be covering the dough when it is "resting"? I am using Fleischmann's INstant Dry Yeast. I am kneading 10 minutes, should I knead more/less??

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Stacy,

It certainly sounds as though dead yeast may be the problem here - and it's probably the best variable to change on your next attempt. These should rise quite easily..

If after trying these with fresh INSTANT yeast you are still not seeing much of a rise, it may well be that your water or even room temperatures are too cold. In this case, just let the dough and the rolled bagels rest for longer prior to shaping and boiling (try doubling the wait times) - that should help.

Good luck!

carla 7 years ago

wow!!! loved, loved, LOVED this recipe!!! it was my first attempt at making bagels and i don't think i'll ever be able to BUY one again! i baked two in my dutch oven, some on a baking sheet and some on a pizza stone, just to try out the different "crusts". fresh out of the oven (after cooling for awhile) my favorite was the one from the dutch oven. i didn't have to flip the bagel mid-way through the cooking process and the outer crust was crunchy but the middle was delightfully tender & chewy. after completely cooling, i toasted one from the pizza stone batch and was delighted with the result. not quite as crunchy as the dutch oven version, but soooo good. i am a forever fan and plan to make them again tomorrow!

mollyp 7 years ago

WOW!!!These were fantastic. I have been wanting to make bagels for a long time but thought they would be too difficult. NOT SO! Instead of kneeding by hand I threw all of the ingredients into my mixer with the paddle attachment until all of the flour was incorporated and then I switched to the dough hook for 5 min on speed 3. These came out perfectly, soft and chewy with a slightly sweet flavor. I added toppings to make mine everything flavored. My kids gobbled them up and were dissapointed to see that there were none left for seconds. Thanks so much for this post and the video is very helpful.

Jessica 7 years ago

I LOVE this recipe. Thank you so much for sharing it with us. I've been using it almost every week for a few months now. :-) They even taste better than Bruegger's Bagels. I posted a review of the recipe (and a picture) on my blog. :-)

John 7 years ago

Do you keep the water boiling? Did anyone put sugar in the water?

daphne 7 years ago

You should try jalapenos in the dough. I did, and boy am I glad!

Emily Martin 7 years ago

I just threw the dough in the trash and am going to look for another recipe. I followed your advice to just combine all the ingredients instead of starting the yeast in the warm water first. Then I needed to add a LOT more than 1 1/2 cups of water but by the time I'd added enough, it was like trying to work slime into a rock. the dough was SO HARD and there were all these little granules of yeast that hadn't dissolved. While cutting the dough into balls, I figured -why bother, if the yeast hasn't dissolved, they're not going to rise and with dough THIS HARD the most they'll be good for is as a weapon.

Thanks but I'm trying a different recipe. I just wasted a bag or really nice flour...

Jessica  7 years ago

Have you ever made whole wheat bagels? Is there a way to replace some (all?) of the flour and have ithem still come out? I've never tried to bake with whole wheat... I'm kind of intimidated by it.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Jessica,

Try substituting about 1/4 - 1/3 of the white flour for whole wheat flour. This relatively small amount of whole wheat does not change the way the dough rises or bakes in any significant way, and is a good place to start a foray into whole grain baking. If desired, successive attempts might include ever higher ratios of whole wheat flour, until you find the taste and texture that you're shooting for.

I hope this helps get you over your intimidation - nothing to be scared of!

I would also very highly recommend author Peter Rhinehart's newest book on whole grain breads, if that's something you're interested in.

Love your blog, by the way!


TrissJ 7 years ago

I have made these twice and they are really, really good. The first batch I made were some plain ones (trying to get the recipe down) and they were good. I was especially impressed by the texture.

Today I upped the ante and added ground flax seeds and dried blueberries; I also substituted melted butter for the oil. All I can say is, if I wasn't hooked before, I totally am now.

Thank you SO MUCH, not only for the recipe but the assurance that one can make delicious bagels at home! It's totally true.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi TrissJ,

Thanks for the comment, I love hearing from people who have just realized how easy it is to make deli-quality bagels at home, and additions and experimentation are all part of the fun!

anonymous 7 years ago

AWESOME! who knew you could make bagels?? i definitely want to try toppings next time

Thank you so much- bagels here, not so hot :(

Lara 7 years ago

Thanks for sharing your recipe. I live in South Australia and will be trying your recipe as I love bagels. We have good bagels here but not as good as the ones I had in NY...

Michael 7 years ago

Hi. Nice, simple recipe. Worked beautifully for me. Emily Martin, did it ever occur to you, with so many people reporting success, that maybe, just maybe, the problem was on your end and not with the recipe? Just saying....

Sandi 7 years ago

Thank you!! Great recipe. I lost my original Montreal bagel recipe and this one is just as good and easier!! Thanks again.

Grateful Canuck :)

Emily 7 years ago

Thanks so much for the recipe. I never use vegetable oil so I wasn't about to go out and buy some, so instead I've tried all kinds of other oils, like olive, toasted sesame, and peanut, and each has a fantastic and distinct flavor!

I've also tried using the dough recipe, but rather than rolling it into bagels, I folded a piece of sweet potato into the middle, then boiled and baked it that way. Turned out delicious!

DrewO 7 years ago

I've been making these for a few weeks now (thank you for the great recipe!). A few things I've noticed:

-Use filtered water. You will taste the difference.-Try making 6 from a batch instead of 8. This does adjust your cooking time from 20 minutes to about 24.-When rolling for the actual bagels slightly dampen your hands (a few drops of water). It makes the dough easier to work with and join.-I use a silicone baking sheet instead of greasing the pan. Has anyone tried making cinnamon raisin yet?

Jerry 7 years ago

This is the ONE i've been looking for....take it from a New York Jewish guy transplanted to California. Easy, fast and the bagels are the bomb!

Jerry B. Highland California

Angela 7 years ago

This recipe is FANTASTIC!!! Thanks so much for sharing! These turn out great every time we make them. We have added all different kinds of things, eggs, sesame seeds, jalapenos & swiss cheese & it always comes out tasting so yummy! Best bagels we've ever had!

Mickey Mitchell 7 years ago

Hi, going to try your bagel recipe tomorrow morning. I wonder if at some point, maybe after the boiling, can these bagels be frozen, and baked at a later time? Would love to have some ready for baking, at a minutes notice.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Mickey,

I have never frozen the unbaked but rolled bagels, but since bread doughs freeze very well, so should rolled bagels. I think you would have better luck freezing the bagels just after you have rolled them, but before boiling. After boiling the bagels are already quite puffy and risen, and I think they would collapse during the cooling period in the freezer.

Good luck!


Journey * profile image

Journey * 7 years ago from USA

This is great John! Thanks. I'll give the recipe a try.-Journey*

Tiffany 7 years ago

This recipe is fantastic!!! I had used a different recipe before and the bagels came out small and were too sweet, but these were perfect! I actually have ended up making them everyday because my family and friends love them so much. I just have one question though. How do you get the plain bagels to look glossy on the outside like they do in the bagel shops and in the picture?

carla 7 years ago

i just read through the comments to see if you've already addressed this question and i have to say i was cracking up at the people who were unsuccessful at making bagels with your recipe. it's fool proof! they must have used bad yeast or something because i've not had a single problem and i've made them at least 20 times since i found your recipe. my question is this: is there any benefit to using high gluten flour? a friend of mine uses a recipe from cook's illust. that uses high gluten flour but i've been unable to find the logic behind using that instead of regular flour. i look forward to your reply. and thanks again for posting this recipe. i love that i can make them and eat them the same day, within a couple of hours, to boot!

carla 7 years ago

tiffany, i use an egg wash to make the bagels look glossy and to get the toppings to stick. doesn't change the flavor, but makes them look uber fancy!

Talingngam 7 years ago

Lovely, ihave a gallery cafe on Koh Samui, I baked the bagels this morning and they are just fantastic. I will serve them with Smoked salmon ,sourcreme, philadelphia,springonions and swedish horseradish cream on crispy salad. Sawan Sawan

Thanks a lot for the recipe

Stephanie 7 years ago


High gluten flour only makes the bagels chewier. That's really the only benefit.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Carla - Thanks for sharing your success with the egg wash and answering Tiffany's question about the glossy look.

Stephanie is exactly right in saying higher gluten flours will give the bagels a little extra chewyness - but if you're using a reasonably strong all-purpose flour - the difference is not all that great between them.

ara133photography 7 years ago

They're in the oven now!! Thank you so much for the awesome recipe! I substituted a tiny bit of raw wheat germ (maybe 3 tbsp) for some of the flour, and added about 2 tbsp of fiber powder. I did cheat a tiny bit and use my kitchenaid mixer with the dough hook for initial kneading, and instead of rolling to get circles I punched a hole in the middle of the little dough balls and shaped out an inner hole that way - I'll post results shortly!! :) I chose your recipe because you said you owned a bagel shop, and the ingredient list was pretty simple!

ara133photography 7 years ago

Forgot to add - I also added about 2 -3 tsp of wheat gluten because I only had regular flour on hand :)

ara133photography 7 years ago

The verdict is in - they're DELICIOUS!! The crust is nice and crunchy, and the inside is tender and chewy! The only thing is - we couldn't wait 20 minutes LOL!!! :) Thanks so much for the awesome recipe! :) Amy

Tiffany 7 years ago

Thanks, Carla! I will try it out on the next batch.

Zach S 7 years ago

We used your recipe to make bagels for the first time. They turned out great. Thank you.

Kate A 7 years ago

Sir, I salute you. I attempted the recipe as a bit of a sideline while baking regular loaves. They turned out a real treat (although I'll aim for a chewier texture next time - guess I need to boil them for longer). I was using dried yeast, not the instant stuff, and followed instructions for regular bread. I suspect a little less would produce better results if (like me) you like your bagels DENSE.

It was my first attempt making bagels, and my first attempt translating US cups into European weight measures. I'm pretty sure my maths will have been off, so it is a real testament to the robust nature of the recipe and instructions that something edible came out of my oven!

Dina 7 years ago

Made these bagels, and they tasted great! I live in Cairo, so I so miss bagels!!!!!! One question, how do i get the color to be that light golden color.... not just the bottoms... my bottoms of my bagels are golden while the part in between is white... but they are cooked?!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Dina,

I wouldn't worry about the difference in color. You can add an egg wash prior to baking if the color is important to you, but I rthink the bagels are better without the wash. Bagels cooked in heavier masonry type ovens will also develop better and more uniform could always build yourself a brick wood fired oven too!!!(lol)

How much yeast?????? 7 years ago

I am confused because another recipe which makes about the same amount of bagels says to add two tablespoons of dry yeast. (As opposed to two teaspoons instant yeast) I am wondering why the amount of yeast is so varied?

Lynn Grassell 7 years ago

OMG!!! These are terrific and soooo easy! We live in Wyoming and tough to get great bagels! I'll never buy bagels again! Thanks so much!! (I mixed 2 cups whole wheat four and 2 cups worked great!!) My children love them!! Thanks so much!!

NoHairMon 7 years ago

Moved to the great rainy state of Washington about eleven months ago from Jersey and thought I would never regret the move or miss anything about the east coast... WRONG. Can't find a decent pizza, cheese steak, Itialian sub OR BAGEL. Made this recipe last night and ate two right away and here it it is 5:30 in the A.M. and I couldn't sleep because they were calling me from the kitchen and making a hell of a racket. GREAT recipe, going to try a few variations as well, garlic, onion, sesame ...

Chantelle 7 years ago

I made these with organic whole wheat flour for my kids and topped with Tillamook cheese from Oregon. They were soooo yummy, thanks a whole bunch! Great toddler food!

Cassandra 7 years ago

John, you've made my day! It's my first time ever making bagels, and they turned out perfect! We moved from Cincinnati to Shanghai about 2 years ago, and one of the things we miss is a good bagel. Most of the "bagels" here are more like a roll. Once at a cafe I paid USD 6.00 for a very mediocre bagel (I was told the bagels came from Beijing because they can't find a good bagel here in Shanghai) with a stingy amount of cream cheese! Thank you for sharing your recipe with clear & detailed instructions, and encouraging words. I'll be making them often.

Edith 7 years ago

DrewO, I did these as cinnamon raisin. I substituted 3 tablespoons of cinnamon for 3 tablespoons of the flour, and I added a handful of raisins. I actually added the raisins after everything else was mixed together, but I would not do it that way again. Next time I would add the raisins with all the other ingredients; the way I did it the first time left a lot of the raisins on the outside of the bagel, and some of them burned in the oven.

Otherwise, I love this recipe! Easy, and easily adaptable.

Cgrimm 7 years ago

Made these last nights. Should say that I am from NY, so am very picky about my bagels. bagels came out a little bit chewier and denser than i'd like, and didn't seem to rise nearly as much as the ones in the photo. Did I over knead the dough? Not enough water? Any thoughts?

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Cgrimm

At a guess, I'd say your yeast wasn't working very well. Maybe try it again with some newly bought instant yeast and see how you make out.

Best of luck,


Bob-O 7 years ago

I'm gonna try the bagels John. I've tried my own a couple of times with very limited success. My problem has always been after I roll the bagel and let set for 20 minutes. I get ready to pick up to put in water and the darn thing deflates. It rises a little in the water but not like the ones in the deli. Guess it just takes a little practice. Thanks for the recipe John.


Mallory 7 years ago

I cant wait to try these, i relocated to the south from new england, and theres nothing like a "northern" bagel, do i need to change the recipe at all to make cranberry orange ones, or just add them in? and does just doubling the recipe work to make more or is there a different recipe?

Thank you so much!!


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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Bob-O, I hope these work for you. You don't want to let them rise completely after rolling, then they will deflate in the water, just let them get a little bit puffy before throwing them in the pot. If your room is really hot, this might not even take 20 minutes, but in most situations, 20 mins is about right. I also wait 20 minutes from the 1st one I rolled, not the last one! and then just start boiling in the same order.

Good luck!

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Mallory, you can multiply the recipe as necessary, no problem at all

To make cranberry bagels, just add in the cranberries with the flour - no other changes are necessary.

Good luck and have fun!

Cathy Gray 7 years ago

This was a great recipe! My 11 y.o. daughter made these by herself with great success! She added homemade olive cream cheese when she served them. Delicious!

Tonya 7 years ago

Thank you for making your recipe available to us and for keeping this forum. It was helpful to read every one's posts and your responses to them. I just made my first bagels ever. It wasn't hard and I can't wait to eat them... unfortunately I have to wait till my company gets here. I split my dough and did half of it as small cinnamon and raisin bagels (6) with cinnamon and sugar topping and the other half larger plain bagels with toppings (4) of either sesame or poppy seeds. I liked the size of the smaller ones best, but then again, I like things to be part of my meal rather than an entire meal. Thanks again.

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Woodson 7 years ago from Minnesota

Just tried this recipe again and enjoyed the results. For some reason they seem not to stay fresh as long as the bagel shop's. Maybe I should get my hands on some industrial strength preservatives.

hcohn9731 7 years ago

looking forward to trying this! how do i make the everything topping or do i buy it already made to to my bagel?

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

The everything topping can be made using whatever you have on hand. Typically, it includes a mixture of sesame, poppy, caraway, large kosher salt, garlic and onion - and whatever else you happen to like. Just mix it all together on a plate and press each bagel down on one side into the seed mixture after the boiling but before the baking.

marisaspez 7 years ago

I made these this morning and they were exactly like bagels from my favorite bagel shop on Long Island. I live in Dallas now and will no longer eat Einstein bagels when I am craving bagels - this was so easy. I split the dough in half after kneeding and added chocolate chips for my kids and husband into half and left the rest plain, although I dipped one in a mix of poppy, onion, sesame, garlic and salt like I love. I used AP flour and cooked them on my grill pizza stone on a gas grill with a little cornmeal under them and they came out perfect. I didn't have to flip them over and they cooked in about 20 minutes on the medium setting.

Adam 7 years ago

Why do you have to flip them over? Does it change anything in how the bagel is cooked?

Candice 7 years ago

Thank you so much for the recipe!! I live in Thailand- hard to get good bagels. I made them this morning and was surprised how easy and fun they were to make!! The only change I made was adding a Tblsp. of soda to the boiling water- they were wondefully crispy on the outside and chewy/dense inside. SO YUMMY! Kids and husband all loved them. The only problem I had was they stuck to the tray a bit during baking, so I'll oil the tray more next time. Thank you for a wonderful recipe- I will be making these often!

Leisha 7 years ago

Wow, I can't believe how easy this was! I live in New Zealand and am sure I have never eaten a "real" bagel before! Only problem I had, mine sunk to the bottom of the boiling water, and stayed, they still taste beautiful, but hoow do you get them to float? Did I not let them rest long enough?

Thanks so much for the recipe and the posts, so great! Going to try making sour dough (again!) following your instructions!


Kyong A 7 years ago

since you were former bagel shop man, we thought, it was worth trying your recipe--since it made money for you! and as a business man, we figured you'd cut out any unnecessary extra steps--what we were looking for. our first attempt at bagel making was after we moved to Japan and missed our American bagel breakfasts. but that attempt discouraged us for the next 7 years from even trying again. it seemed like a delicate art that seemed mysterious since we didn't know what part of the many steps we went wrong on. now, i know that our dough was just overproofed--when i tried to move the beautifully risen bagel shapes for the hot water bath after what seemed to me a lot of work (i had not been accustomed to breadmaking then) they collapsed even before they hit water! well, we tried your version today and they came out BEAUTIFULLY, ENOUGH TO SELL!. i usually search for the best recipe of anything we like and once i'm satisfied, i stop looking. i've stopped looking here! it is a KEEPER! i like that you have a set amount of flour, instead of add a little more until it feels right--but how would a novice know what it is supposed to feel like if one has never felt it before! your instruction was clear (somewhere--either in the recipe or in a comment) on what to look for in the dough formation--to add the first amount of water and then add some of the additional amount if you find that it is too dry where all of the ingredients are not able to be incorporated. that helped me know what to look for. we did need the extra water but i was able to add it confidently. thank you for apprenticing us!!!

our variations - we doubled the recipe and used a Bosch Universal mixer. once all of the ingredients were added, mixed on speed 1 for 5 minutes. for the boiling water bath, we added 1 T baking soda since so many recipes call for this and many on this site commented to add this. for the baking portion, we used cornmeal instead of oil since we love that cornmeal texture/taste as in bagel shops and didn't need to grease up the pan. we keep home milled cornmeal in the freezer for such occasions (regular store bought would do fine). we also didn't flip the bagels--we wanted to see if we could cut out that extra bit of work. they came out beautifully still! we did rotate the trays halfway and switched their position in the oven for even browning. we baked it at 250C or 480F for 22 minutes. one tray seemed ready a minute or two earlier than the 22 minutes.

can you give some amounts for additions to try in the bagel recipe? e.g. blueberry bagels, wheat bagels, spinach bagels, etc. i'm assuming you just add it to the dough ingredients that you begin with or do you knead it in once the dougn is formed?

thanks! i'll have to facebook recommend your hub to my friends!

chrisincal 7 years ago

My 5 year old and I made these and they were great the very first time! I'm wondering if anyone has thoughts about using barley malt syrup, either in the dough or the boiling water or both.

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Thanks very much for all the comments,


I found that not flipping them over led to over browning on the bottom side. Some people have commented that they baked this recipe successfully without flipping, so you can try it either way.


Glad I could help - I live in Thailand too! The baking soda is a good trick.


It sounds like your bagels that sunk had not risen long enough. Once bagels rise a bit they get filled with air pockets and will float. Good luck with the sourdough!

Hi Kyong A.

Thanks very much for the kind words and I am glad you had success. You know, I have never made blueberry bagels! Blueberries aren't really sold where I happen to live, but i did a quick search for you and it seems that most people use dried berries, and add them in to the dried ingredients. This is how I add the rasins for cinnamon raisin bagels. Try between 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup of berries and see how that treats you. Good luck!


I have made these using barley malt syrup added to the dough. It does change the taste and color (a bit nuttier and browner), but in the end I decided I liked the bagels better without it. It's worth a try to see what you think. Best of luck.

Lori 7 years ago

Great recipe! I'm making my second batch of the day. Much easier than I expected. Now I just need to try different flavors.

suzieq0360 7 years ago

Oh My Word!!! I have never made bagels in my life. All I can say is WOW!! I like one of the other readers, used my trusty ole kitchenaide (due to carpal tunnel). All I can say is John I dont think ill EVER buy another store bought bagel!! Mine also sunk to the bottom, but after a few secs, they came right to the top. I added some garlic to mine, dehydrated. Wish I had put more in!! John thank you very much for sharing this really easy, and fool proof recipe.

Vicky 7 years ago

!!!Thank you John!!!!! This is really fail proof recipe like everyone else says! I had some leftover blueberries and thought, maybe some blueberry bagels? I was really nervous, especially of the fact that I was adding blueberries into a recipe I didn't even try out before! But I just ended up needing more flour and everything turned out beautifully. Thank you thank you!! Next time, I make plain bagels. :)

Nancy 7 years ago

WOW! I just made my first batch of bagels and they are delicious. The recipe is very simple. Thanks so much!

jess 7 years ago

This was my first ever bagel baking experience. When i made my dough it didn't seem to get as smooth and elastic as pictures show. So when i baked them they didn't have a smooth finish. I was thinking that maybe i should have put more water?

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Jess,

It's possible that you needed to add more water, but also possible that you needed to spend more time kneading. When you start jneading the dough, it should be firm but workable (if it's not or it won't all come together, add a little more water, but not much, as you want a firm dough) and then make sure to spend a good 10 minutes or so kneading the dough, or until it looks smooth and elastic.

I hope this helps.

Good luck!


shane k 7 years ago

i just made these and they turned out great. I have never had a "real" bagel until this morning. So delicious, i look forward to making them again. One mistake i made was after boiling them i placed them on paper towels; definitely a NO NO, they stuck. Anyways, thanks so much for this recipe!

KathyF 7 years ago

I've been making your bagels for a couple of months. They are fabulous!! We have a good boiled-bagel shop in town here, but these are better. I add cinnamon (approx 2 Tbls) to the dry ingredients and make the topping larger sugar crystals. I also don't flip in baking and bake 5 min. longer. Hasn't failed me yet.

Stefan 7 years ago

Hi John,

I have an allergy to high levels of wheat gluten, but discovered Bageltime Bagels a while ago, and I did not have an allergic reaction to them. Unfortunately, Bageltime was bought out by Fleischer’s Bagels, and they did not continue using the Bageltime recipe. I decided to save a package with the ingredients, and try to make a home version which closely resembled the Bageltime bagel.

In my research to do this, I discovered there were many ingredients which were industrial production ingredients I could not easily buy. I also discovered that there was much advice on how to make good homemade bagels with basic ingredients. I’m sending this comment to you because I made a plan that followed more closely to your recipe than to any other.

The only changes I’ve made is to try non-diastatic malt powder, for taste and to supplement the lower gluten flour—and the Bageltime Bagels had molasses, so I’ve tried to put that in too. I’ve also used some non-diastatic malt powder in the water for boiling the bagels. And I have experimented with adding Red Star Nutritional Yeast, to see if the bagels can be a plus on B vitamins, without moving out of the good flavor zone (the Red Star yeast has a light cheesy nutty flavor….).

The bagels have been okay so far, but from the comments here at your hub—and your helpful responses—I think I can get some improvement. So I’m sending some of my observations along, to see if you have some possible solutions to areas which I’d like to improve.

The bagels I’ve made so far are good, but maybe the taste is a bit much on the sour side, and a little short on the sweet side. Since I prefer less or no white sugar, what would you recommend? (I’ve used your 1 tsp sugar and added ½ tbsp molasses).

Also, if the bagels were a little less tough chewy and a little more soft chewy on the inside, I’d like it better. Any thoughts there?

And the crust is a maybe a little too crusty (I did put 1 tbsp malt powder per quart in the boiling water….)

The most difficult part for me though, seems to be preventing burning on the bottom of the bagels. I’m okay with “there is an easy solution, I’m just missing it”, but maybe there’s something else. I’ve tried corn meal, and parchment paper on a pizza pan (what we happened to have for a cookie sheet). Then I got two “Baker’s Secret” cookie pans, and tried one of them with parchment paper and one with vegetable oil. I can’t get away from burn marks on the bottom of the bagels. Can you help me sort this one out?

Also, what’s your thoughts on ginger as a “yeast booster” and as a non-preservative way of preserving freshness?

Thanks for a very helpful website/hub.


Jersey Mike 7 years ago

My first batch is in the oven right now and I'm pretty sure I made two errors:

1. I used "Active" yeast instead of the "instant" called for in the recipe. Not only that, but I didn't figure out until later down in the comments about how to correctly use the "active" yeast.

2. Pretty sure I may have not let them "dry off" long enough before the cooking...

Ten more minutes and we'll know for sure :

Great tutorial either way though. Thanks for this.

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Stefan,

It sounds like you are doing a great job trailblazing a better bagel recipe for those at home who don't handle gluten well...unfortunately, I don't think I have much to offer that will help you in your quest.

1. The sourness seems like it might be easily countered simply through the addition of more mollasses.

2. I have no experience working with low gluten flour - so I can't really comment on the texture of the finished product. Bagels rely on gluten for their characteristic chew - so this is a tougher (No pun intgended!) one, likely.

3. It sounds like you have done everything you can to counter the burning on the bottom. Does your oven maybe run hot? You could try turing it down 25 degrees or so and see how that works for you...

Please let us know how you resolve these issues.


Jersey Mike 7 years ago


Two failed attempts and the third batch was almost-perfect.

Mistake one was not using the active yeast correctly. Mistake two was using two much water.

I posted a quick little blog post with pictures of my finished product.

Thanks for this-

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Jersey Mike,

Those bagels on your blog look great! Thanks for sharing your efforts.

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fortunerep 7 years ago from North Carolina


I have tried making bagels many times, the water works!! Thanks great job and now I can make my own!!


Bethany 7 years ago

I felt like baking and decided I would try bagels. On my way to the grocery store to pick up some flour and yeast I spoke to a friend who told me how hard it is to make a great bagel. So needless to say I was nervous. I had to add a little extra water but besides for that they turned out perfect! I rolled two in cinnamon sugar and two of them in some spices (garlic powder, oregano, dried basil and dried parsely all mixed together) and they were all delicious. The only advice I have is cook different versions of bagels in different pans, especially with sugar. I completely forgot that the sugar would caramalize and get on the other bagels. Thank You so much for the great recipe!!!

Michelle 7 years ago

These kind of DO taste like pretzels. That said, they're far, far better than any bagel I've had since I moved to Texas from New York. I think next time I may use a bit less salt.. hopefully that won't ruin them. Fresh out of the oven (I know you're supposed to let them cool but I have a bad habit of not waiting) the outside was a little hard and the inside was perfect. About an hour later the outsides had softened and the texture was pretty good; not quite what I'm used to but like I said, very tasty!

John Rapid City 7 years ago

I'm on my 2nd try at this recipe. Looks good this time. I put 1 cup of frozen berries in a 2 cup measuring cup. Microwave for about 2 minutes, add hot water up to 1-1/4 cups. Then add about 1/4 cup extra flour also.

Heather  7 years ago

Excellent! I've made this recipe twice now, both times were successes, and I'll be making them again shortly. This recipe makes great bagels- no more store bought for me.

Charles 7 years ago

Thanks John. Like so many others I happened onto this with the help of google and man am I happy I did. These are delicious. First batch was last night for the test and now again this morning as a surprise for a returning loved one. I hope she likes them. Great ideas and thanks for sharing them!!

TJ 7 years ago

Made this yesterday - first ever attempt - worked like magic!! Will keep this recipe for life. Some didn't look perfect but they still kinda looked and definitely tasted like bagles!

Question: If I half the recipe exactly will it still work as well for just 4 bagles or should the flower be halved and something else not?

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi T.J.

Glad to hear you had success! If you want to halve the recipe, just cut all the ingredients in half. best of luck.

P.S. - Bagels freeze perfectly, so why not make a big batch and freeze?

Jennifer K. Michaels 7 years ago

John D! That is some really great advice- freezing the bagels, I mean. I will definitely do that! The dough is rising RIGHT NOW! so exciting! yummm:)

Kevin 7 years ago

Great recipe - very easy and plenty of room for sloppy chefmanship. I didn't do a very good job pinching the ends together and I ended up with some pacman bagels, but they taste great. Classically doughy and chewy with nice flavor.

I might add an egg and some more salt and sugar next time to mix it up. I also only had regular unbleached white flour, and the results were great.

mommyinpigtails 7 years ago

I am so excited to have found this recipe! My 7 yr old daughter has a touchy stomach in the morning, and blueberry bagels are the best solution, but they get expensive. I was worried because everyone was posting about using dried blueberries and I only have fresh or frozen and had visions of trying to dry them to make bagels with! So thank you John in Rapid City for your post. I will try these in the morning!

Beth 7 years ago


Help! I'm an American living in Australia. I've tried your recipe several times with great success. I'd like to try blueberry bagels but there isn't any blueberry flavouring in Australia and blueberries are very expensive fresh. What do you recommend for doing blueberry bagels? When do they get added to the recipe, do the other ingredients alter etc.? I've looked at John in Rapid City's recipe but I'm not sure what to do. thanks

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Beth,

In all honesty, I have never made a blueberry bagel!! I live in Thailand, which is another non blueberry friendly country and so I never got around to it. O

ther recipes that I have seen simply use a small quantity of dried blueberries (like a 1/4 cup-1/2 cup) and these get added in at the beginning with the dried ingredients. I wouldn't worry about changing any of the other ingredients in the recipe. The natural sugars in the fruit will make the bagels very slightly sweeter, but in a blueberry bagel, that's probably a good thing.

I hope that this helps, I am sorry for not knowing the answer with certainty, and I (we) would love to hear what you do and how you make out.

Best of luck,


Alicia 7 years ago

I might have made the holes too big, but they came out looking and tasting great. I had trouble getting onions to stick but I used fresh, raw ones, figuring they would cook during the bagels baking (they did). They still were far more than satisfactory, thanks, and I will be baking again!

Sarah 7 years ago

Hi! I'm Aussie and hooked on bagels because of working at Starbucks!!

So keen to try these.... Am off to the markets to buy flour...

Bridget 7 years ago

I love these bagels!!! This was my first bagel attempt and they turned out wonderful!! I would like to add what point do I add the blueberries? They will be frozen.


Holly 7 years ago

Thanks so much for this. I was craving bagels bad and could not find any decent ones nearby (bagel shaped bread is not a bagel. I tried these (first time) and they came out brilliant. as good as the best bagels I've ever bought.

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Bridget,

Most people seem to have best success using dried blueberries, added in with the dry ingredients during the mixing phase.

Best of luck,


Alan in Washington DC 7 years ago

Tried the recipe today for the first time; had to substitute all-purpose flour and one cup whole wheat in the house for the bread flour. The dough was uncomfortably sticky when worked, and it yielded more of a crumb texture than chewy. But otherwise, very satisfactory results. Looking forward to the next batch!

SS 7 years ago

Why do other bagel recipes call for baking soda in the boiling water? I'm assuming it is not necessary for this recipe since so many had success with it.

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Adding baking soda to the boiling water changes the PH level, which according to bread guru Peter Reinhart, changes the way the starches on the exterior of the bagel gel, which in turn increases the browning of the exterior while baking.

KC 7 years ago

Wow, I will definitely try this recipe out. I'm 19, and absolutely adore cooking/baking and I especially love bagels lol. Any tips or suggestions for someone who hasn't yet worked with yeast? I would also love to know how one would go about making cinnamon raisin bagels? Thanks for your recipe. You are very kind to share this with the world =]

Paul 7 years ago

These turned out great! Easy to make, the directions are easy to follow. Best bagels I've ever had. I made cheese bagels by adding 2 cups of grated cheese right in the dough! Thanks for this recipe!

Meaghan 7 years ago

Wow! Such an easy recipe to follow :) thanks so much

I Made Whole wheat Sun dried tomato and basil bagels by using 3 cups of whole wheat flour and 5 of regular, and then adding chopped fresh basil and sun dried tomatoes as well as some garlic pepper. They are absolutely wonderful!!! Thanks so much for the recipe!!

Francy Johnson 7 years ago

Thank you so much for this recipe! I am an American, teaching in Kuwait and tired of paying a small fortune for frozen Lenders bagels. I tried this recipe and was hooked. Now i make them for the other teachers and its a real treat. Shukran! Francy

SMC 7 years ago

I tried this recipe today (my first time making bagels), and it turned out great! I kneaded in 1/2 cup of fresh diced jalapenos during the kneading stage. Here is a photo of the finished bagels:

Kim 7 years ago

1 tbs cinn. 1/2 tbs sugar 1/2 cup raisins!! amazing I love this one i thought it would be soo much harder to make! you've made my week!

Susab 7 years ago

Making bread is something I enjoy and often make English muffins, but no bagels. This recipe was easy and the results were yummy. I made two batches but will have to make more to get the forming technique down.

Kim 7 years ago

they came out a bit yeasty, and just a bit fluffy. they taste great but i may have to find a way to counteract the yeast flavor, it makes it taste a bit like a pretzle :0 no complaints really they still taste great, i just cant wait to play around with your recipe. thanks so much!

HellsBellsAK 7 years ago

This was my first attempt at bagels. This recipe is perfect!! They are delicious and easy. The only thing I did different was brush the tops with egg white before baking for a crisp golden crust.

Steve 7 years ago

We used to be able to buy fresh bagles back in England but now we live in Queensland Australia and it is impossible to find fresh bagles. I have just made a perfect batch of this recipe and they are great. Added a little extra salt, might try salting the water next time, also made six from the mix as I like them big. Thanks.

Barry in Los Ageles 7 years ago

wow great recipe. i found when joining the ends if you dip one end in water they join really EZ have fun!!!

Jeannie 7 years ago

Made your bagels today and they are awesome!!

Added dried blueberries and can't wait to try more fillings.

Thank YOU!

Russell 7 years ago

We live in Hong Kong and, as cosmopolitan a city as this is, we are hard pressed to find a GOOD bagel. The only resort left open was: Make them myself!!! eeep! So I dove into the inner sanctum of the collective human mind we call the internet and discovered this recipe ... and this morning I was brave enough to try it and ... HOOO BOY I GOT BAGELS!!! I mean honest to goodness crispy on the outside soft and tender on the inside DELICIOUS bagels!!! WooHoo! I am one happy camper! Thank you so much for sharing your bagel making wizadry!

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John D Lee 7 years ago Author

Hi Tetra,

Don't worry about the wrinkling and cracking. It's just that the bagels go through a couple of pretty quick expansions, first in the boiling water and a second time during the first couple of minutes in the oven, and this can lead to little tears and such, as things get bigger in a hurry. These 'imperfections' are much less noticeable when you top with sesame seeds or other such toppings.

These look quite normal (and tasty) to me.

Best of luck with the baking.


Roger 7 years ago

I followed your recipe a few months ago and made the best bagels I've had in a long time. We used to live in southern New Mexico where we enjoyed green chile bagels (NOT jalepeno - there's a BIG difference!). I've wanted to try making green chile bagels but was concerned about the moisture content. The chiles can be rather moist - should I reduce the added water by a 1/4 cup or so to compensate for the moisture in the chiles?

Melissa C. 7 years ago

Tried it using 1/2 whole wheat flour and 1/2 unbleached white flour. Then added 1 tbs sugar + 1 tbs cinnamn + 1 cup rasins. Used a Kitchenaid Mixer to do the 10 minute kneeding. Added 1tbs Baking Soda to the boiling water. Then used a baking stone with cornmeal as opposed to the sheet w/ oil. Turned out fabulously well, and as a person from the Bronx living in IL, these were pretty good bagles. If only I could import NY water! The kids claimed victory and were stoked Mommy could make bagles at home - "no more buyign them in the store". LOL.

Amanda 6 years ago

Just made some bagels today with my14 year. We used a recipe that called for malt syrup. I didn't like the taste, so we will be trying this recipe tonight.

Nathan 6 years ago

Thank you very much for sharing this recipe. It made me realize I'd never had a real bagel before /this very instant/. So delicious.

Jacklen 6 years ago

I made these this morning, and the first batch didn't go so well. I was in a hurry to get hubby off to work and I kneaded hastily. They probably could've use five more minutes in the oven as well.

I started over and this time I kneaded in some raisins - couldn't find the cinnamon but oh well. I cut it into tiny pieces and made about 3 dozen bagel sticks. These I brushed with egg wash and sprinkled a small amount of white sugar on top. Baked them properly this time and they are delish!

Heading to hubby's office right now with an afternoon snack of yummy homemade bagel sticks! Thanks for the great resource, I've been dying to do bagels for a long time but was intimidated!

Ryan 6 years ago

Just made the bagels on a whim as you are the first google hit. Eating one right now. I made 4 plain and 4 sesame. I gatta say the texture is very nice. I used a tablespoon of baking soda in the water for a nicer crust. I recommend this step. These are very good. 4 of 5 stars. The flavor is just a bit off, kinda bready, but im still gonna munch these till im stuffed. Very good, very easy. Thanks!!!

Ryan 6 years ago

Oooh! The soda goes in the boiling water, not the dough! Forgot to specify that!

Jen 6 years ago

Thank you for the recipe. Tried and liked these bagels but the yeast flavor was too strong. Is there anything that can be done?

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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Jen,

You can reduce the amount of yeast in the recipe and it will still work OK.

You may have a yeasty/beery flavor, however from letting your dough over-rise or rise in a very hot room? If that is possibly the case, just try make sure to keep things moving along (although if you followed the times in the recipe, this is kind of unlikely.)

Anna 6 years ago

JUST tasted my first-ever home made bagel by way of your recipe and I cannot thank you enough for this recipe! As a former New Yorker (seems a lot of us who go looking for bagel recipes are) I can safely say that these are excellent.

I ran out of bread flour so I supplemented half the recipe (2 cups) with whole wheat and a few tablespoons of wheat gluten and flax meal. Made for a very interesting bagel. I put caraway/kosher salt on half of them and almost wished I had mixed the caraway seeds into the dough, perhaps that will be the plan next time.

Thanks again for giving this newly midwestern girl a superior alternative to the Lenders bagels everyone here seems to be content with! There is no substitute for a fantastic bagel.

MrE 6 years ago

cant wait to try making these bagels. Do you know how to smoke a salmon?

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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi MrE, hope you have good luck with the bagels.

Here are some instructions I wrote on curing your own salmon for lox, if interested

You can just give this cured salmon a couple of hours of cold smoke to great results.

Tee 6 years ago

Thanks for the recipe I'll try to make it today and will let you know what will come out!!

Bagel's lover

katherina 6 years ago

These were very easy! They turned out professional even though I have never attempted bagels before, and only had regular flour. My 5 kids were really impressed! I will make these for life!

Samuel 6 years ago

I have made these several times using your recipe. They always turn out great! thanks!

Nicole 6 years ago

More delicious every time I make them!!!! Thank you!

Kay 6 years ago

These are pretty good. However, to me, they taste more like soft pretzels (also very good!) than bagels. Still, they are yummy and the hubby is happy. Thanks for the recipe!

Lib 6 years ago

I made these this afternoon and they are fantastic! We live in a very rural area and can't get "real" bagels without and hour+ drive. Wish I had known how easy it is to make them years ago. Thanks!

Lilly Page-Blau 6 years ago

They are in the oven. I have cheese. My cats hungry.

John V. 6 years ago

I make these constantly now since my wife and I live in Cambodia and bagels here are just rolls with holes. This is a wonderfully written recipe - thanks so much!

Tom Connor 6 years ago

Two things I learned from bread-making:

The only important measurement is the water you start with, which will determine whether you will have enough dough to fill your loaf pans - or determine how many bagels you get. Everything else you play with - add flour until you get a stiff dough.

A yeasty taste in your bread - or bagels - is usually from yeast that has died from overwork or old age. Don't skimp on the yeast you start with.

If you really like a yeasty flavor, use a cup of beer to replace a cup of water in your ingredients.

Lisa G. 6 years ago

We have always enjoyed fantastic bagels from a bagel shop in my hometown when visiting family over the holidays. Well, we live in South Korea now and didn't make it home this year. I made the mistake of buying bagels from the grocery. They were AWFUL and moldy! So, my husband and I came across this recipe. My first attempt at bagel making was a phenomenal success! We were truly overjoyed. Someone posted that they used their baking stone. I think I'll try that with my next batch. Thank you so much for making this a fairly simple undertaking with delicious results. My husband even said he thought these bagels were as good if not better than our favorite bagel shop!

Carrie 6 years ago

Hi John! Thanks for posting this! I, for some reason, thought my yeast was instant, but it was active. Since I didn't put the yeast in warm water first, the bagels obviously didn't rise quite right, but they are still beautiful and delicious! Tomorrow, I'm going to try again, and pay a little more attention this time, lol!

nzsusan 6 years ago

Hi Im from New Zealand. I have wanted to make bagels for quite a while and always thought they were hard and complicated. Thank you so much for this recipe. Especially your easy to follow instructions. I made them today and friends came to visit and did not believe they were home made at first. I am going to make my own bagels from now on and will try different flavours. Thank you again.

M.L. 6 years ago

I made these last week. I added a little malt syrup and they tasted great. More importantly, the shaping instructions were perfect. After 2 failed tries using instructions from other websites, these looked perfect.

Seattle4 6 years ago

Thanks for the post. New to baking and i struggled on the clean roll part but they came out good.

Boston Beth 6 years ago

John, this is probably one of my favorite recipes ever...I literally just took a batch (my first batch ever) out of the oven for tomorrow's Sunday brunch with my boyfriend. I love to bake and I almost love more challenging recipes the most-- this recipe and method was so simple that I wasn't sure if they would turn out properly...I kept thinking that it was too simple! Indeed it was, but my bagels just look incredible!!! Thanks for posting this!!!

Shannon I 6 years ago

This is definatly my favorite recipe yet!

as a side note its also amazaing to tweak to make stuffed buns (instead of shaping the balls into "bagel" shapes, make little bowls, add a filling, and close back up... only boil one minute...and dont turn them in the oven) very yummy! :D

Vanessa 6 years ago

This is a fantastic recipe for a first time bagel maker! I substituted olive oil for the vegetable oil and threw in some sautéed shallots To cook them I put them on my wood pellet grill. It gave them such great flavor and texture. I've never eaten a bagel with grill marks on it before.

Catherine Gianna 6 years ago

WOW!! Thank you for sharing!! Amazing :)

Seattle4 6 years ago

No matter what i cant get the clean bagel roll to work. It does not mend together cleanly, any tips?

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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Seattle4

you have to press pretty firmly to stick the ends together - but if you really can't stick em' then your dough is probably too dry. Try adding a touch more water to the dough and seeing if that helps.

Christine 6 years ago

AWESOME bagels! Tried it for the first time and it worked awesome. We are in NJ and have tons of great places around to get them from, but the price keeps going up. I am pretty sure i will be making batches at least twice a week!

Jan 6 years ago

Hi John! Your recipe is awesome. The results were great right from the start. Thank you so much. Most bakers around here don't cook the dough, so they're basically just baking buns with a punch hole.

Steve in Pasadena 6 years ago

AWESOME! Made two batches today. My first attempt at bread in over 20 years!

Thanks so much!

Elizabeth 6 years ago

So delicious and I can't believe how easy it was! Thanks so much for this great recipe...

Caitlin 6 years ago That was fantastic! It took me a little over an hour to make these bagels, and they're delicious. I used a tablespoon of vital wheat gluten to each cup of all-purpose flour (because I happened to have VWG) and added some baking soda to the water.

I also added some shredded Asiago/Parmesan/Romano cheese on top of one a few minutes before they were done, and it was fantastic! Thank you for a wonderful recipe.

oo 6 years ago

will try once i figure out how many grams 4 cups are.

greyeagle 6 years ago

Just too cooool! Had more fun making these. I've been baking breads and rolls for 40 years but never tried bagels. I love em too. Thanks to your recipe and your instructions I made some of the best bagels I've ever had. Move over lenders the homemade ones are here to stay!

The only thing I did was to add salt to the boiling water.

Got a little unnerved when the dough started to look very dry but I resisted the urge to add more water and the flour did incorporate and the dough was just perfect. Thanks very much!

Charity 6 years ago

After my fiancé made homemade cream cheese, I decided we had to have bagels to go with it. I've made these 3 times now, and they are AMAZING every time! It's like being back in NY-- I've never had a better bagel.


For CINNAMON RAISING, knead in a spoonful of cinnamon and a handful of raising before first rising. *Soak the raisins in warm water for about 20 minutes before adding them to the dough, and they will be plump and juicy.

For "EVERYTHING" bagels, combine in a shallow bowl: coarse sea salt, poppy seeds, uncooked sesame seeds and dried, chopped onion (all of which should be available in your supermarket's spice section). Immediately after bagels are removed from boiling water and excess water is allowed to drip off, dip both sides of hot bagel in spice mix. Bake as usual.

I prefer baking the bagels on parchment paper dusted with cornmeal rather than oil, as the bottoms come out less oily, and more similar in texture to the tops.

Also, we ran out of bread flour today and used about half bread flour and half all-purpose white flour; came out just as tasty.

Daniela, Windsor UK 6 years ago

John, I never thought I was going to make proper bagels. After three failed attempts, this afternoon I stumbled across your recipe. It look too easy to be true, too easy compared to the failed ones which required planning, as well.

My children love bagels and are constantly asking me to bake them, despite my flops! So today I thought, 'ok let's give this one a try and see' if anything it wasn't going to take too much of my time.

John, HURRAY, I did it. YOUR RECIPE IS PEERRRRFFFEEECCCCTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!! Perfect, perfect and absolutely perfect. Thank you ever so much. And your comments, your hints and suggestions are spot on. I am so glad I finally found your recipe. The children tomorrow are going to be over the moon! And now, well, I can only experiment with seeds, onion, etc. etc. Perfect bagels here I come.

Since I'm Italian and I work only with grams I thought of writing the amounts I used, after careful weighing. Thanks John, I look forward to trying your other recipes and eventually, one day, the sour dough.

620 g. bread flour (I used Canadian Manitoba, because that's all I had today) 1 cup = 155 g approx.

1 tbsp sugar

11 g. salt

1 tbsp vegetable oil

10-11 g. fresh brewer's yeast

340-350 g. warm water (I always weight liquids when making bread and sweet breads).

Oven temperature 220°C.


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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Daniela, thanks so much for your kind words and for taking the trouble to list down the weight measurements - very much appreciated!

sophie c 6 years ago

i'm making these right now and when i was rolling them out the dough seemed dried out and kinda flakey, i needed it until it was smooth about 8mins. Any tips on how to make them less dry for next time?

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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Sophie,

You can just add a little more water in the initial stage.

It's hard until you get a feel for how the dough should be - but it's also hard to give a precise amount of water that will always work out perfectly, as many variables are at play - such as the humidity of the air while you're kneading, the type of flour you're using and how much gluten it has, etc.

Add a little more water in the mixing stage, and If you're having a lot of trouble getting it all to come together in the first minute of kneading, add a little more water until it's easier to work with - and see how that treats you.

Best of luck!

Holly 6 years ago

I made these again today and they are gorgeous. One thing I wanted to say was that I used all purpose flour rather than specifically bread flour and they came out perfect. I'd recommend rather than looking for the specialist flour just check the protein levels. I bake all our bread now rather than buying it so use a lot of flour, at $1 a kilo vs $3 a kilo it is a no brainer to use the cheap, no brand, all purpose. Seeing as it is the gluten that is the key to the chewiness, as long as there is enough of it then the recipe will work fine. I find anything with around 10% protein works perfectly. If you prefer a softer, less chewy bagal try using a flour with a lower protein content.

Thanks again for a great, easy recipe. Your a star!

Lainey 6 years ago

Hey John! Thanks for the fantastic recipe. I'm a first timer at baking bagels and it turned out really darn good! My family adores it. Thanks again for the recipe!

Jenny 6 years ago

I love to bake. I also have philosophy that if I can make it rather than buy it, I will make it. I make my own pizza dough, sandwich bread, pita bread etc. I had always assumed bagels would be hard. This was so easy AND so yummy! I have made two batches and each time I have learned something different. Second time, I used 1 c. oat flour and 3 c. bread flour...I'll add more water next time, but the flavor is wonderful and the texture cannot be beat. Thank you for placing your knowledge out there for people like me. No more store bought bagels for us.

Kat Tanaka Okopnik 6 years ago

+++ !

I had my kids (a toddler (2 1/2) and a 6-month old) to manage throughout the process, as well as doing this on a boat in enough wind to make the wave action noticeable, with a small oven, in a 9x13" nonstick pan.

I abused this recipe badly, starting with active dry yeast, probably too much water, needing to mess with the flour quantity as a result. My timing was off all over, letting the dough rest longer than 20 minutes at almost every step, and the water wasn't truly boiling when I dropped the bagels in. Oh, and I didn't have bread flour, so used all-purpose flour with some active wheat gluten instead. (1 tsp per cup of flour.) I had to crowd the pan to get all the bagels in at once. (John, could I have baked this successfully in batches?)

In short, I don't think I followed *any* of the steps quite right.

STILL came out recognizably bagel-like, to the satisfaction of two demanding foodies (myself and my husband). The directions were fantastically, wonderfully clear and easy to follow. The bagel-forming video was particularly helpful.

Thank you so very much, John. I'm looking forward to making this again, and seeing if I can manage to do it as designed. A note to everyone who's gobbling them up immediately out of the oven: Mine were good to start, but a lot better after resting for a while.

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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Kat,

Glad you had success, sounds like you had some challenging conditions for your baking!

You can bake these in batches, no problem. If you are going to bake in batches, it's best to roll the bagels in batches as well - waiting 15 minutes or so after finishing to roll the bagels for the first batch prior to rolling the bagels for the second batch - this helps the bagels from getting over proofed before baking.

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AlanSwenson 6 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

Gunna make these tomorrow, nice detailed recipe.

oregonrain 6 years ago

I have made bagels before and this was not my favorite recipe. The flavor was slightly off and the texture was much more chewy then I prefer.

Julie 6 years ago

I've only made bagels once before and that experience was considerably more work and the results were mediocre. These bagels were delicious, I used King Arthur White Wheat and they still maintained the bagel qualities that are most important to me.

Connor 6 years ago

The perfect thing when I'm craving bagels in Cairo, Egypt! Had problems with sticking on the first batch, then tried cornmeal with no oil in the pan and without flipping they turn out great. I just made one in a heart shape for my wife on Valentine's Day.

Otter Fest 6 years ago

This recipe was awesome... best bagels I have ever had.

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BkCreative 6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

I'd really like to try this. I live in NYC but no we don't have great bagels everywhere. In fact most are horrible and I have given up on eating them. Just the other day I was thinking 'why not make my own - and where to begin' - how timely. Yes, they've become nothing more than a roll with a hole - but not even tasty rolls. Ugh! The boiling part is missing and necessary.

Thanks so much!

R. Mann 6 years ago

After 13 years in Seattle, I can finally stop complaining about not being able to get a decent bagel: Why? Because On attempt #4, I produced a batch that almost brought tears to my eyes. As close to a NYC bagel that I have had since moving away. Thanks!

Kat Tanaka Okopnik 6 years ago

Another vote for the King Arthur bread flour. WOW, that made a nice difference even over all-purpose with extra gluten added. Cinnamon raisin next time! Thanks again, John. I've been passing your page on to all my foodie friends.

gareth 6 years ago

after eating some of best bagels in london from brick lane, and then i was curious after hearing you have to boil bagels before you cook them, i found your recipe tried it and it is bang on, straight forward with superb results, great work dude i understand why you was in the industry,

Andrew 6 years ago

I made these with the kids a couple nights ago. I made them a little too skinny (my last bagel effort ended up with hole-less puffy rolls, so I over compensated). The flavor of the recipe was great, and the texture was also correct. I added 1 tsp of baking soda to the water and they developed a nice, golden crust. We're definitely going to make them again. Steam baked bagel suck, but that seems to be about the only thing you can get around here now. Even my favorite bagel place in SF (House of Bagels) changed to steam baking and their bagels are now almost inedible.

Seattle 4 6 years ago

On my earlier post i had trouble with the seal, a little extra water like John mentioned fixed that issue. Its 1 1/2 cups of water for me.

Just made Jalapeno Cheddar bagels. Added the jalapenos after a bulk of the mixing and a bit of cheddar cheese on the inside. Topped with cheddar cheese after the boil and they came out fine. I wonder if i should save the cheddar topping for the last 10 minutes though since I turned them over and baked the cheddar side down which crisped it a bit.

Melissa  6 years ago

I have tried a couple bagel recipes, but this was not only the easiest, but also the tastiest. For no reason at all I replaced a 1/4 cup of the water with dark flavorful beer, and used brown sugar instead of white. Instead of plain all-purpose flour I used "Halbweiss" ("half-white") that they have here in Switzerland. They came out great, quiiiiiite tasty, thanks!

Suzette 6 years ago

WOW Thank you so much for the amazing recipe! My two son's, 8 and 10 yrs old, made them for my family this morning and we devoured all of the bagel's. Thanks for the recipe that is now officially part of the family recipe book!

The bagel's are much better than any we have had before. And since they are so easy and large family is very excited that we can have bagels more often.

Many thanks


Rachel 6 years ago

I decided to make this recipe (my constant bagel-buying addiction was getting out of hand) and all I can say is wow! These turned out awesome, thanks so much for the recipe.

Jodi 6 years ago


I will be making this recipe soon! I have seen some recipes that call for adding sugar to the boiling water. How would that effect the finished product?



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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi jodi,

I've never found that adding sugar to the boiling water made things taste better - Montreal style bagels get some of their sweetness from the sugar in the boiling water. I guess it's a personal preference thing. Fortunately, you can't go too far wrong either way, so try one batch plain and another batch boiled in sugar water.

Adrienne 6 years ago

wonderful recipe! Just made my second batch and am surprised at how amazing they were! made some with dried blueberries kneaded into the dough yum! will definitely be making these again and again!

DG 6 years ago

Just made these and they are so good!!!! My husband is on a diet, but they smelled so good he had to break it to try one. Thanks for a great recipe. I live in NYC and have easy bagel access, and these bagels can compete with the best of 'em!

J. Rose 6 years ago

Think the initial dough mixing could be done in a bread machine? Maybe I'll try that today. I had no idea it could be so easy to make bagels, this could be fantastic.

Chris P. Bacon 6 years ago

I tried this recipe and it came out great! I think next time though, I won't put in as much salt. I might also throw in some more cooking oil, because my bagels were very dense and difficult to chew. I also will reduce the baking time, because they came out a little too dark. But they were still amazing! Does anyone have any advice for cutting these bad boys up? Every time I try my knife somehow pops out the top or bottom. It could be I am bad with cutting.

Alexa Parritt 6 years ago

Thank you so much for brightening up my life. Just stumbled across this site when I had the hairbrained idea of making bagels when we had run out of store bought. I have made 2 bathces now and they are truly delicious! It's the small things in life that make all the difference. My husband and kids love them too. Thank you!

Melissa  6 years ago

Chris - Maybe just a bit more water needed in the dough next time? Or maybe they did not rise as they were supposed to?

Today I made these for the fifth time, this time with 1 1/2 Tablespoons molasses instead of sugar, replacing all the water with milk and replacing about 1/4 cup of the flour with darker flour - awesome.

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asbender 6 years ago from Virginia

I tried this out as part of a challenge to make something homemade that I would normally buy. I used wheat flour, 1 package of quick rise yeast, & Smart Balance oil [canola, soy, & olive oil blend] and these turned out really well.

What a nice treat for me and my family! Thank you.

Chris 6 years ago

Fantastic recipe. Just made my first batch. Absolutely wonderful! Thank you :)

Rachel D 6 years ago

Just finished my first batch--what a fantastic recipe! They turned out great. Thanks so much...I look forward to playing with this in the future and making a ton to freeze.

lmeyer718 6 years ago

I tried a batch and they look and feel great. They just seemed bland to me. I used 3 cups bread flour and 1 cup whole wheat. I would really love to make a whole grain bagel..

Melissa D 6 years ago

Thank you so much for this recipe! I just took these out of the oven and they are YUMMY! I am so proud that they aren't hockey pucks and they are even better than just OK! Our closest (decent) bagel shop is 30 minutes away, so this will definitely be the way we go from now on!! Thank you for saving me a trip- these are excellent!!!

Wendy 6 years ago

These bagels are amazing!! I put the dough in the breadmaker and let it mix together for 20 minutes, and then continued with the rest of the steps. So delicious- made them for my second graders after reading a great story called, "Jalepeno Bagels". I didn't actually put in the jalepenos, but they got the idea!

Geri Winters 6 years ago

Just tried these bagels today. It is my first time making bagels. I used the baking soda in the water for a crispy crust, and coated the top with poppy seeds. I made 6 instead of 8 because we like large bagels!

These came out very well. I think I'll have to adjust the oven temperature a bit though - I had to take them out 4 minutes early because they were getting so brown. The texture is just on the verge of being underbaked, so I think at the full baking time they would have been perfect.

As some posters have noted, there is a taste similar to soft pretzels, but that is fine!

My husband is eating them straight from the oven, but I'm waiting a bit to put cream cheese on mine!!

Thanks John for the recipe and instructions.

Geri Winters 6 years ago

Update for day 2: We ate 4 of the bagels warm after baking, and I put the other two in a Ziploc bag in the refrigerator overnight.

We ate those 2 bagels this morning. We found that they were denser and chewier than the day before. I don't know if it is because they sat overnight or because they were chilled or both.

Anyway, no taste of pretzel, nice chewy texture on day 2. So if you don't like them hot, try letting them sit one day and see if you like them better the next day.

I'll be making these again. Maybe egg bagels next time. Yum!!

Sara 6 years ago

Incredible recipe and easy-to-follow directions! I am a bagel addict, but never buy them because they are expensive. This recipe was easy and yielded excellent bagels. Not the best I've ever tasted, but the texture is near perfect. I think I skimped on salt and would add more salt, oil and sugar next time to enhance the recipe. I made a homemade cashew nut cream cheese, and accidentally added too much salt/sugar, so the balance is perfect! When I took them out, they were very hard, and I was a little worried, but they quickly softened. I used sugar and baking soda in the boiling water. I think next time I might leave them in a little longer, or broil them a bit first, for the harder crust. But as-is, they are very authentic looking and tasting bagels.

For people who frequently fail at making bread - don't be afraid of this recipe! Even I made it work.

Paul 6 years ago

I have to say that I have now made bagels using this recipe many times and in many ways. I've made everything bagels, blueberry, cinnamon raise, poppy seed and sesame seed. My wife is from upstate NY and when we visited in the past, our last stop was always the bagel shop to purchase at least 2 dozen bagels that we would haul back to Mississippi and put in the freezer for her to ration out to herself until they were gone.

No more! I can now make fresh bagels for her anytime she wants and I've been giving them away to my friends so they can try a bagel instead of just eating biscuits! It's a great way to say "I love you!"

This is the single best recipe I've ever tried and has garnered more positive reaction and comments than anything I've ever tried to cook.

In fact, my wife is buying me a standup mixer for my birthday to make it an easier job to do, but every once in awhile I think I'll still have to knead the dough by hand, just so I can feel the moment when all of the ingredients come together and become something incredible.

Thanks for the recipe and thanks to all those who commented and helped refine my knowledge of this amazing food art and in doing so stimulated my imagination and creativity. I now have a new hobby and it is one that makes my wife, my family and my friends all smile. How cool is that?

jacob 6 years ago

That is not how you make a bagel. A bagels has sugar, brown sugar, salt, malt, and cake yeast. I don't know how you owned a bagel shop and made it. I have been making bagels for 5 years and the cake yeast makes a big difference. And also brown sugar also gives it a taste

Erik 6 years ago

I've never really thought of trying out home made bagel recipes until today, probably because I thought they would be rather difficult for a newbie such as myself. But surely enough, I googled for some recipes and quickly found this one, and it sounds great! I look forward to seeing how my first bagels turn out! :)

Erik 6 years ago

Wow, thank you so much for sharing this recipe! I just tasted my first home made bagel, and although I am new to this and surely have a whole lot to learn, they are still a whole different league from random bagels bought from a super market. Thanks a bunch! :D

Lee H 6 years ago

Thanks so much for this great recipe! My first two attempts I make yummy hockey pucks. I wasn't proud of them, but my wife and kids didn't let me down. Not a one of them went to waste. I discovered the yeast I was using was long expired. Third time was the charm! Today the bagels were as I hoped. I just need to work on my shaping so they fit in the toaster better. lol

I don't claim to have baking skills. I'm just a dad that likes to try new things. I've been using a Kitchen-aid mixer to mix the dough as I've never actually learned "kneading by armstrong". The above posted recipe seems a bit small for the hook. The dough would wrap around the hook rather then bang around the bowl and knead. Today I tried doubling the recipe and it seems to work just fine. But I must warn everyone it was a bit scary since once the dough was about half done it put the machine under a lot of strain and I would have to drop the bowl down often so the hook wasn't taking such a big bite. I'd bet a recipe and a half would be perfect for the machine.

I can't wait until my wife get's home from work to show her my success, I'm sure I made big points (thanks to you) and I intend on cashing them in. *big grin*

Lee H 6 years ago

Just a follow up... the bagels were a hit with my wife and kids. As expected the double batch was gone at breakfast time this morning.

I got a wild hair while trying to figure out what to make for lunch for the family. As luck would have it... we needed to do some shopping. Anyhow my wild hair was to make "bagel dogs". I made your above posted recipe, let raise once, rolled into a log and cut it into 12 portions. Each portion was rolled and stretched. Then flattened to roll up a wiener. I pinched the seams then rolled the things on the counter to make uniform. I then let them raise and boiled and baked as described in your posted recipe.

Holy Cow they were goooooood!

Another note: I kneaded by hand this time. No mixer cleanup and the dough was superior. No comparison at all.

Now I'm off to your other hub to make my sourdough starter. Me thinks we will be ingesting a few too many carbs this week!

Cheers, Lee

Susan 6 years ago

Just another thank you - I totally ignored most of the warnings (used all purpose flour, for instance) and rushed every step so bagels would be ready by the time husband was back from walking dog.

And they turned out fantastic. I can only imagine how they'd be if I actually followed the instructions.

Nicola 6 years ago

like the hundreds of others, made bagels for the furst time with this recipe. simply amazing! thanks!

Kitty 6 years ago

Just finished munching down one from the batch I made. Freaking delicious! Thank you!

Jane 6 years ago

My bagels turned out slightlt flatter than I would have liked. Anybody know why? Or how I can fix it next time? Thanks guys!

candacemarie 6 years ago

they're in the oven right now (:

i couldn't get them perfectly round do they look kinda retarded :x

i just hope they taste good :D

Scherif 6 years ago

Thanks for the recipe, it worked for me alright, though i think my oven could've crisped it more than i wouldve liked & in addition to i baked it with 3 kinds of flour!! It was delicious nonethless, simple & effective recipe, thank you

Bob F 6 years ago

I found your recipe on the web site and tried it immediatley. They were amazing. I've made bagels before but this was the easiest and best I've made, it only took one hour from start to finish. I also used the baking soda in the boiling water and they came out very brown but delicious.

jack 6 years ago

how to decrease the chewiness of the crust just a bit

Gerard 6 years ago

Excellent Site, CONGRATULATIONS! I've been importing H&H bagels, but now want to make my own.

Can you suggest the best substitute for MaltSyrup? I've read molasses, honey, HFCS, Dark Corn Syrup (Karo), brown sugar, etc. Today found Maltose in an oriental shop. Pls Advise.

Also, is baking soda in the boil a real enhancer sheen and crust wise?

Much obliged. THANK YOU.

Clara L. 6 years ago

Hi, first...Congratulations, u're recipe rocked! I did it today with my grandma, and both me and her loved it!

I always loved bagels, but since i live in Brasil, we don't even imagine to have them here. Second- I did a cinnamon and raisin bagel, by adding these toppings to the dough, and i taught it was saltier than i remembered. Do u have to add something else to the recipe at this case? Third- I have some folks that live in the Usa, and my uncle, that is american, had a bakery, and he used to add maple syrup to the this right???

thanks for sharing ur awsome recipe.

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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Gerard - go with the maltose, should work great! The baking soda will help the bagels brown up - but I don't tend to use it myself.

Clara, you can substitute equal parts honey or maple syrup (maybe add an extra teaspoon or so) for the sugar called for in the recipe. It changes the taste slightly, and some people may prefer it...or not. Worth a try! If the cinnamon bagels taste too salty, just reduce the salt by a half tsp and see how that treats you.

Thanks for the comments!


otiliorules 6 years ago

I made these yesterday on a whim (halving the recipe so I only had 4 bagels) and they were quite good! The whole family liked em. I used high gluten flour so they were pretty chewy which I love. The next time I do it I think I will go half and half with the high gluten flour and regular bread flour to ease down the chewiness and I think I will add some honey into the mix as well. Thanks so much for the great recipe!

gerard 6 years ago

TKS John. But, maltose is basically sugar(?), will it impart the secret flavor of malt syrup? Sorry to harp, but your experience is valuable, so you really think THE BEST substitute for malt syrup is straight maltose?


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John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Gerard,

If' you're willing to make the effort, the best substitute for malt syrup is diastatic malt powder. This can be ordered pretty cheaply and easily online.

Best of luck!

Ken 6 years ago

Wow, 2 years on and still receiving comments! This page was the top Google result I got back for "bagel recipe," and well-deserved too! I'm a Jersey Boy now living in Romania, always on the lookout for a new taste of home. Your recipe turned out perfect bagels the first time, just as I remember them. And the hidden benefits are such a plus! 10 minutes' kneading of stiff dough is a great way to work out aggression AND build those hand muscles... the latter being very useful when that cute co-worker says "ooh, don't stop" to the shoulder massage. Thanks!

gerard 6 years ago

Thanks again John! Ok, I did your recipe exactly, and (my apologies), the following happened:

1. Hard as concrete both outside and inside.

2. Simple bread taste, no resemblance at all to bagels.

3. The first rise was perfect, second no rise at all, and during baking no puffing whatosever.

Kindly offer advice, PLS? Thanky.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Ken, thank you very much for the kind words.

Gerard - this is a tough diagnosis! The lack of 'second' rise and no rise during baking almost certainly explains the 'concrete' texture - but since you had a good first rise, then your yeast must have been alive and active. I have to admit that I am stumped.

If you let the dough sit for a very long time prior to rolling then the yeast could die off - but this would take hours at a normal room temp., and I am assuming you did not do this.

If you are interested in trying again, you might want to try making the dough a little less stiff this time, as a 'wetter' dough will rise more easily and will result in bigger, if slightly less chewy, bagels.

If this works and you get a bagel that rises appropriately - then we are left only with the taste. If it tastes good to you, then great! If not, then it is either that the ingredients that you and I use differ greatly, or the expectations you and I have for what a good bagel tastes like differ greatly!

I am sorry that I cannot be of more help - best of luck!

gerard 6 years ago

Gracias! I believe you are correct with the water observation, I will make them a bit wetter.

All the best!

Michelle 6 years ago

I made these bagels for the first time yesterday. I served them with supper. My husband loved them. He said they were so good, that we don't have to buy them at the store anymore! Thanks for sharing your bagel recipe. I'm going to make some more today! ( I made 2 different kinds yesterday, poppy/sesame seed bagels, and cheddar cheese).

Jen 6 years ago

What if I want to make a loaf of bread and not bagels? What should I do different, if anything?


Michelle 6 years ago

I made the second batch this afternoon, WOW. All I can say is LETS OPEN A BAKERY! Very 'schmecksy'. (Tasty). My neighbors said their going to start putting orders in....HA.

Scentsy Warmers 6 years ago

I have been looking for a way to make bagels myself. I can't wait to try out this recipe

Sonny 6 years ago

Found this page a few weeks ago. Have made 3 batches since that time. I love a good bagel in the morning. Thanks for showing me how to make my own.

amandaarallen 6 years ago

My first batch didn't rise much, but still tasted pretty darn good. My second batch rose but the insides are still really dough like and gooey after 25 minutes of cooking. Could this have something to do with under or over boiling? What should the bagels look like/feel like when they've been boiled correctly? I also used the baking soda trick in my second batch of boiling water, could that have something to do with it?

DeAnn Tilton 6 years ago

Hi John,

I have a small home based bagel bakery and have a question about baking my bagels after I freeze the dough. Basically, the bagels are over puffed. Sometimes cracking the skin of the bagel.

The great thing about freezing the dough is that if I've over proofed my white dough, freezing them prevents the bagels from collapsing once they are boiled and baked, which is great. But, when I freeze my wheat and multigrain dough, the bagels are too small and high, the whole closes up and the skin cracks. I need to freeze the dough to keep up with demand and even out my work flow.

Any thoughts on how to alter my wheat and multigrain recipes to prevent the above problem? I was thinking maybe less yeast (currently 2 1/2 t. per 4 c. flour and 1 1/2 c. water) but I'm not sure. Any ideas?


charb 6 years ago

hi, i'm sorry if this question came up earlier, but i couldn't find it while scrolling through the past months.

you mention broiling, but there is only boiling and baking instructed in your recipes. how long and when do i broil.


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secretscp 6 years ago

I tried these and they were great. I had no idea it would be so easy to make my own bagels.

Sia 6 years ago

Thank you so much for posting this recipe! I've never made bagels before. I used your recipe for my first attempt and they worked pretty well. I even posted it on my blog:

(The header links back to your page when you click it.)

You're awesome. Thanks so much for sharing this!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Amanda - It sounds like your oven was not hot enough? try baking at a higher temperature and see if that solves your gooey inside problem!

DeAnn - If I understand you correctly, you are baking straight from the freezer? If so, I have no experience in doing so and am not sure I can help.

Sia - the bagels look great - thanks for sharing your page with me!

EarthMuse 6 years ago

I found this recipe a couple days ago and was so excited. We moved to Australia from the US about 12 years ago and one of the things I have really missed is bagels, good bagels, not those things from the freezer. They're pretty hard to find here. Anyways, bought some fresh yeast today, came home and made them and was just amazed. These are not only delicious but so easy! I cannot thank you enough for sharing the recipe. Cheers!

adorababy profile image

adorababy 6 years ago from Syracuse, NY

These Bagels turned out delicious! thanks for the recipe.

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Whitney05 6 years ago from Georgia

This sounds interesting.

Nick 6 years ago

Just made these yesterday and was very pleased! We're now going for an 'everything' bagel and a cinnamon raisin bagel. I'll let you know how they go. I also suffered 7 years apart from bagels living in Australia. I'm now in Finland and they have bagels, but not the same.

Traci 6 years ago

I'm wanting to try this recipe, but first need to know one thing: By "instant yeast," do you mean rapid rise?

mominbrasil 6 years ago

Hip hip hooray! After 3 years in Japan without good bagels, and now in Brazil without a bagel to be found, life is good! We are hosting a brunch this weekend inspired by our new bagel discovery, and I'm contemplating taking orders from all of our friends! Great recipe....THANK YOU!

Tom 6 years ago

These bagels are great and congratulations to John for patiently answering all of our amateur bagel making questions for over two years. Nice work, man!

Lady Redbush 6 years ago

I'm in Australia but too far from Elsternwick or Balaclava in Melbourne where some very exceptional bagels are made. So decided it was my duty to make some and they turned out way better than expected cheers cobber for the recipe and for popping my bagel making cherry...

basejumper profile image

basejumper 6 years ago

Lekker, bagels. My wife's can do them veeeeeery well!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Traci - I am not sure about 'rapid rise' that may simply be active yeast. instant yeast is generally labeled instant yeast on the package and it can be added to the dry ingredients without first re hydrating it.

quiltlover 6 years ago

These were delicious bagels and I put dehydrated onions on the top and hope to make some with sesame seeds tomorrow. I do have some questions, John. Are there any pointers to making blueberry bagels and adding some cinnamon to the basic dough? The rapid rise yeast is labeled super active yeast, and it was all I could find today at the store in myh little rural community. Would it ruin my bagels if I used it? How can I keep the toppings from burning. The dehydrated onions got a bit blackened, but the bagels were still delicious. Do you have any pointers to preventing the toppings from getting so browned? I want to try garlic bagels. Is the salt that you list in the dough ingredients table salt or Kosher? Thank you for the recipe and for answering my questions.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Quilt Lover,

OK, to answer your questions:

The salt is fine grain, not course or kosher salt

you can add cinnamon to the flour when mixing

Most people have good luck when using dried blueberries

I am sure that your yeast will work just fine. You should rehydrate it in lukewarm water for about 10 minutes before adding it

Best of luck!

Research Analyst profile image

Research Analyst 6 years ago

water bagels are so good with sliced tomatoes, onion rings and cream cheese, yummo!

Sonya 6 years ago

I made these today. It was my first attempt at bagel making and other than my rolling technique, these came out great! They were perfectly moist inside and had an amazing thin, beautiful crust. They were perfection. Thanks so much for this awesome recipe. It was so helpful.

Ann Marie 6 years ago

I made these over the weekend and they turned out great. Thank you for the recipe!

Stacy 6 years ago

Thanks for the fantastic recipe! So easy!

I substituted all purpose flour, and they seem fine (though we haven't tasted them yet!) Total time to make them was about an hour. I think 20 minutes bake time may have been slightly too long, next time I will put them for 17-18 minutes as they look slightly overcooked. I'll let you know how they taste here shortly!

andriana 6 years ago

hi thanks for this recipe in Australia not very many bagel place unless your in the capital cites and a bit hard to find even then, been wanting bagels for so long they are wonderful, taste great and are easy to make.

P Sharma 6 years ago

Thank you! I love bagels, but I've been living in a country where they are simply unknown for quite some time. I'll definitely try this

Dangazzm profile image

Dangazzm 6 years ago

Those bagels look way better than the only version I have known, store bought. I think I might actually enjoy a bagel for once!

Rena 6 years ago

They turned out great (althuogh I have to work on their shape!). My only problem is that the plain ones taste very bland. Should I add more salt or oil?

Francesca 6 years ago

I think people using this recipe should know that unless yeast is risen at the proper temp, it will give a "beer like" taste and may also work too fast causing it to over prove.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Rena - you can certainly up the salt a bit if you find these bland, not a problem

Francesca, because these are proofed so quickly, you don't run a huge risk of the 'beer like' taste with these guys.

Rena 6 years ago

Oh it wasn't a criticism of your recipe. They came out perfectly and the texture was great. I decided to use half water and half milk and it tastes perfect!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Not to worry Rena - just glad you had success!

Alfredo 6 years ago

John!!!!! THANK YOU VERY MUCH!! I live in Venezuela and there is no place where you can get them! I tried to make them yesterday and, for being the first time baking something, they came wonderful! almost perfect shape!

I didn't find bread flour so I used all-purpose just to try it for the first time, I'll get bread flour later.


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G L Strout 6 years ago from Ohio, USA

Great recipe and wonderful instructions. Thanks.

Smokin_dave 6 years ago

Hi John, i wanna give the bagels ago as i've become addicted to shop bought ones, recently i have mastered bread. Down in australia we have a blueberry bagel, i guess they use a puree as there are no big bits just the colour and flavour. How would i incorporate such a thing into your recipe. thanks.

HT 6 years ago

thanks for the recipe! my first attempt at bagels came out great! a little crunchy on the outside, nice and soft on the inside. very tasty bagels!! i used some sunflower seeds on some of them, and they were especially tasty! will certainly be passing this page on to my friends! Thanks

Sugarsuzi 6 years ago

Hi John, my bagels didn't came out quite right. I kneaded the dough for a good 10mins till it was nice and smooth and cut into pieces for it to rest. As i was rolling out the dough after 20mins, it felt like the dough was very elastic and hard to roll out. The dough doesn't seems to be able to hold its shape, and kinna shrink in size.

After resting, the dough felt puff up but once i lift it up to boil, the whole dough just feels soft and limpy. It only rise abit during the boil and doesn't rise at all during bake. The bagel came out hard and heavy.

What could I have done wrong? pls help.



Smokin_dave 6 years ago

@ Sugarsuzi......i had the exact same problem with my batch. Nearly no rise and way too dense....look forward to john's reply .thanks dave

dizzyfingers 6 years ago

Frolm your comments (tender and chewy, can be made in an hour) I doubt if you're making bagels. Sounds more like donut-shaped bread. Although good, bagels have a very different standard of identity...

Elsebeth, Denmark 6 years ago

Dear John, when you are making gravad lax, you got to be very careful, so NEVER use fresh dill, only dried - and ALWAYS freeze the salmon for 24 hours first. I have been baking for more than 50 years, and here we are taught to follow the recipe when baking with baking soda, but when baking with yeast, always hold back some flour, because you can always add more, never take some out. I will try your bagels today.

Kind regards from southern part of Denmark

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Sugar_Suzi and smokindave,

The amount of water you need to add to the dough depends a lot on the flour you use - and flours will vary a lot in gluten content in different parts of the world, or even in different parts of the same country.

From what you describe, it sounds to me like the dough needs more water. An overly stiff dough can be very hard to work with and won't rise as well.

try adding an extra 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water and see if that helps.

Best of luck!

Sugarsuzi 6 years ago

Hi John, im using high glutin break flour, i will try again with more water and let u know the outcome.

Thanks for the advise.

Hattie 6 years ago

first try and they came out great!! this was great since i seem to fail with bread every time. I made cranberry bagels i ate one right out of the oven, yum!

Sarah 6 years ago

Omg... I decided to try your recipe. Even my daughter, Emma (turns one in 6 days), looooved them. She has a hard to satisfy palate, but it did the job. Thank you for such an easy recipe. I'll get some of my mates to try it - Karen the health nutritionist loved them too. What a way to start the day :)

Carly 6 years ago

Hi John, thanks for sharing your recipe, it obviously works so well for everybody, but my bagels unfortunately went pretty wrong! Everything was fine until I put them in the boiling water, where they swelled like crazy! When I cooked them they just turned all crispy and strange, thankfully my little sister actually liked the strange end result, despite the fact they were definitely not bagels! Do you have any idea what I did wrong to cause them to absorb so much water? Have I missed out an ingrediant or step? Thank you!

Anthony 6 years ago

Just tried your recipe but with whole wheat flour. Turned out OK taste wise but a little dense and overcooked (oven temps vary and next time I will set oven at slightly lower temp and use a mixture of regular and whole wheat bread flour). A nice simple , easy to follow recipe that actually works. This will be the start of many more batches of fresh made Bagels. Thank-you

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Carly - it's a little hard to diagnosis the problem, but at a guess, I'd say you may want to look into what type of flour you were using. Was it a bread flour?

Anthony - yeah, you'd probably find a blend of whole wheat and white flours would give you an easier rise

Best of luck!

!!DDBK!! 6 years ago

Bagel forum ftw! this recipe was and is delicious

Sugarsuzi 6 years ago

Hi John,

I tried with more water, the whole dough became very wet and very hard to manage, i have to keep additional flour to the tabletop and onto my hands to stop the sticking. Results was still a dense bagels tat doesn't quite rise.

I'm using bread flour, for the high glutin percentage, could it be the reason? Should i just use normal general purposes flour instead.

Thanks for your advise.

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Hi Sugarsuzi

sorry to hear that adding more water didn't do the trick - I was hoping that would do it.

Assuming you are using flour with sufficient gluten (which it sounds like you are) other reasons for a poor rise are - dead yeast, or very insufficient kneading to develop the gluten. Of the two, I'd guess that the yeast is the more likely culprit.

If you're game to try again, try buying a new fresh package of instant yeast and see if that helps.

Bets of luck!

Sugarsuzi 6 years ago

Hi John,

I will go get some new fresh package of instant yeast and try again... will keep trying until i get it... update u again :)


LizzieBee 6 years ago

I just made these bagels and they are AWESOME! The recipe is the best & easiest I've ever come across and the results are fantastic! I work in a bakery but we don't make bagels, and no where around where I live does either, so I'm absolutely stoked to finally find a brilliant, easy & fast bagel recipe! Thank you so much!

Matt 6 years ago

I just made bagels from scratch and they are delicious...thanks!!

smokin_dave 6 years ago

Hi John,

thanks for the feedback. Any suggestions on adding blueberry's in a puree? so that the whole bagel is coloured with no solid bits? Loved your Bacon, ready to build the earth oven...what's next....i eagerly await your next project.LOL. How about Presunto Ham? i live in australia, i would love to make it, no info here.



amazing 6 years ago

thank you so much for this amazing how to on bagel making. i never thought i could make home made bagels. my fam is definitely impressed with my bagel making skills, lol. thank you!!

AliceXinXPonderland 6 years ago

I was so excited for my first try at making any bread! My bagels don't look so great but after about my fourth one I perfected them! It was so easy, aside from the kneading of course... ^-^; Anyway, thank you so much for your easy to use recipe! I'm glad that I used this one! - Linda (Alice)

Smokin_dave 6 years ago

Hi John,

Today i gave it a crack. HOMEMADE BLUEBERRY BAGELS. They came out perfect and eight were gone in 1 hour. This is how i did it.

I just substituted the water for blueberry puree. My wife had a can of blueberries in the cupboard. I used them due to the syrup and then i pureed the fruit. The can size was 415 gram net weight and i had about 1/4 left over. i had to add just a little water to get the dough consistency right, bout 1/4 cup. So thats 1 1/2 cups of luke warm blueberry puree and 1/4 cup water. I changed john's recipe a little. after i mixed and kneaded for 10 mins i then cut each piece (8 )and rolled and shaped immediately. i covered to rise for about 30 mins. Then they were boiled and popped in the oven @ 210 degrees centigrade on a baking stone for 10 mins. The texture is a little chewy ( how i like it) and nicely browned on the outside.

I think the ones we buy at the supermarket in australia are steamed bagels. Mine had the right color and toasted up great with some butter or philly cheese.

now i just have to work on the shaping.

I'll post some pics on my blog, john here's the link, only way i know how to show you all.


Sugarsuzi 6 years ago

Hi John,

My third trial was better, the bagel rised during boiling and also during baking. But the texture of the bagel was more bread like and i reckon that its because the consistence of my dough was not good enough.

i still cannot managed to get a very smooth dough, its still diffficult to roll out the dough into snake as the moment i let go, the snake will shrink and so will the hole after forming the bagel.... what could be the problem with my dough?

Thanks John...

Erin 6 years ago

I have made this recipe several times and they always turn out perfect. I made these yesterday and everything was going fine till I started to boil, they started to puff up but then when I took them out they got flat. I still baked them and never did rise. They taste great and are chewy with a crunchy crust but any ideas why they are so flat?? It was a bit warm in the kitchen with the oven on but like I said they were fine till I boiled them. I made sure to time 1min each side also. Thanks for any advice

jessie. 6 years ago

my sister and i made these and they came out excellent. nice recipe.

Gayle Rogers 6 years ago

Found this recipe, made them and oh my gosh! They are great. My husband was blown away.

heidi 6 years ago

great recipe thankyou

Janel 6 years ago

i am from halifax, nova scotia, canada. i have been bedridden for the past 3 weeks and needed something to occupy me and help get my strength back (i thought some kneading would do the trick!)

clearly i mostly did this as just something to do, wasn't expecting them to be as DELICIOUS as they were! i really am never going to buy a bagel again. woooowww! love love love! i dont think i have ever eaten a proper bagel before! everything was from the supermarket, and not that great.

i was wondering though (as i normally work pretty early in the morning) if they would be alright to freeze? would they lose some of their deliciousness?

Mark 6 years ago

These came out awesome! I have shared the recipe with several friends and they too have enjoyed them. Simple yet delicious. Will be experimenting to make cinnamon raisin bagels...

Sivaraj D 6 years ago

Very good recipe and easy to make for a new baker like me. I had been missing bagels since my return back to India from US. This made my day today.

Michael 6 years ago

One batch made with whole grain wheat flour and sesame seeds is in the oven as I type. I think this Sunday morning will start deliciously.

Bill 6 years ago

I just made a batch of bagels and they were so awsome. I use to have a buddy that lived here in Maryland, who's brother owned a bagel shop in Long Island, New York. He'd go to Long Island at least once a month and bring back a big bag of bagels. And these remind me of those, Nice and chewy on the outside and awsome on the inside (now you got a recipe for sub rolls thats like that too? Chewy on the outside and soft on the inside? Now that I know how easy it is to make them, I'll never buy another grocery store bagel again (just need practice rolling them and making them all Thank you very much!

Sharon  6 years ago

I have not had a decent or good bagel since I left NY 13 yrs ago to live in the Southwest. I plan on trying this ASAP.

I have some questions...

1. Does being at High Altitude make a difference in the baking?

2. What substitutions do you make for whole wheat bagels?

3. Cinnamon Raisin Bagels?

4. Pumpernickel Bagels?

5. Honey Oat? For this can you add Honey to the dough and still have it come out correct??



NY’er missing great Bagels.

Petstrel profile image

Petstrel 6 years ago from Slovenia

Great recipe, fantastic bagels ;)

wrldadvntr profile image

wrldadvntr 6 years ago

Just made for the second time. GREAT recipe! 1st time I forgot the oil but they came out good anyway. This time, I added a tbsp of flax and tried toppings of sesame seeds (4 bagels), garlic (2), and parmesan cheese (2).

They are in the oven now and smell DELICIOUS!!!!

I looked for a good recipe and they were all so annoying and complicated. Your recipe is easy, direct, and simple to follow! Thanks so much!!!!

Michael 6 years ago

One batch is cooling down (whole grain wheat flour and poppy seeds) and another batch (plain white flour) is in the oven... last week's batch was a success, there was not a crumb left after breakfast.

mrc215 6 years ago

Hi John,

I am making these bagels for the first time and don't know if one package of yeast equals the amount you use in the recipe. I know it's 2 teaspoonsful, but my package says it's equal to 2&1/4 teaspoonful. I only have the instant package. Thanks, Mary

just a little doughy 6 years ago

I just made these bagels, and the recipe was super easy, they look fantastic smell fantastic but taste just a little doughy. Not extremely just a little. Did I do something wrong? What could the reason be and how can I fix it. Any suggestions?

Francesca 6 years ago

I'm sitting here eating my warm bagel with cream cheese. I love your recipe. Very simple. My bagels came out looking pretty ugly but they taste great. Next time, I'm sure they'll turn out even better. Thanks!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Sugarsuzi - sorry for the delay in getting back to you - I've been away on vacation.

Anyway, if you say you're having trouble getting a smooth dough then it sounds like you could spend a little more time in the kneading phase - this should help with texture and workability. It is normal, however, for the bagels to shrink back a bit after you roll them.

Erin - It sounds like they got over proofed and the yeast died off after you got them out of the water.

Janel - these freeze beautifully, i tend to slice them before freezing to make life easier as you remove them as you need them

Sharon - I'm afraid I don't know a lot about baking at altitude...more of sea level kind of guy myself! When adding honey for honey and oat bagels, I'd probably just substitute the honey for the sugar that's already in the recipe. You can add more if you like a sweeter bagel, but watch them in the oven so they don't over-brown. As far as whole wheat goes, I recommend gradually substituting some of the bread flour for whole wheat flour until you get a texture that you like. Try 1 part whole wheat to 3 parts bread to start, for example, and on the next batch you can up the whole wheat if you like, until you reach perfection (or go past perfection into heaviness...)

MRC215 - you can just use on package of yeast - no problem

Just a little doughy - I would suggest giving them a couple more minutes in the oven next time, you shouldn't have to worry about a doughy tatse in these.

Thank you very much to everyone who has commented and to those who have shared their successes - I really appreciate your taking the time to do so.

Happy bageling!


Julia 6 years ago

I just tried this using whole wheat flour instead of white. I was expecting things to go horribly wrong but they actually turned out great! They are a bit more heavy but that is to be expected with the flour change!

Super easy to follow the directions, thanks!

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 6 years ago Author

Julia, thanks for your comment, which should be of interest to Sharon (and others!) who was asking about using whole wheat flour.

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kubth 6 years ago from UK

There's am amazing traditional bagel place in the city that I don't get to visit as often as I would like to. I've never had the guts to try baking my own though!

Penny 6 years ago

this is so amazing. I can't believe how well this turned out. The video really helped too! My bagels actually look like bagels! Awesome!!

sara 6 years ago

read this this morning. Tried making it earlier. misshapen but they look REALLY good. Waiting for it to cool down so I can try it...this is literally the first time I have attempted baking bread and I went with the bagel...Thanks for the recipe

Sara 6 years ago

OK, just tasted one...THANK YOU!!

Bagel lover 6 years ago

Tried making bagels many years ago & they turned out horrible & rock hard. Ended up throwing them at my neighbour's cats (don't worry, I missed). Will follow this recipe & try again...sick of the bagels from the supermarket!!

Chrissy 6 years ago

I can't wait to try these!!! My mom used to make delicious bagels in her bread machine, but sadly the machine passed away several years ago and I've never tried to make bagels since. I would try these right now, but I literally just took 2 loaves of bread out of the oven, so I think I'll eat those up first! I'll be back with my results! :)

Dana 6 years ago

This was my first foray into bagel making and I'm new to bread making altogether. I found the recipe wonderfully easy to follow, and the bagels came out well save for one issue. After cooling, they took on a very 'wrinkly' look--not at all smooth on the surface. Any ideas why this might have happened? Did I maybe not knead it enough?

Any input would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks for posting this recipe :-)

Air Jordan Fusion 6 years ago

I missed). Will follow this recipe & try again...sick of the bagels from the supermarket!!

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BigFatBaker 6 years ago from West Lafayette, IN

I have been pondering the idea of making bagels for a week or two and now finally feel like I have found the perfect recipe! So glad I found your hub too.

stut 6 years ago

Just done a couple of batches here, and they turned out perfectly - thankyou so much for the recipe!

One batch was wholewheat - I used 100% 'very strong' wholewheat flour (bought in the UK) and they turned out pretty well - not as risen as with white, but still a decent texture. The only difficulty was that they were a lot more fragile pre-boiling - you couldn't really handle them once they'd proved a second time, and had to tip them onto a fish slice to dunk them. Once that was done, however, there was no problem at all - perfect with pumpkin seeds on top.

Also did a ginger & sultana version of the white, which involved grape juice soaked sultanas and some powdered ginger - they turned out rather well.

For those who add ingredients to the dough (fruit, chillis, etc) when do you add it? I've been doing it during kneading (so I can split a batch easily), but is this the best time? Obviously you have to make sure it doesn't over-moisten the dough...

almas hashmi 6 years ago

My God this seems such an excellant recipe ,I was looking for Bagel recipe & the first one I saw was yours ,thanks so much for sharing.

Chrissy 6 years ago

I made these this morning (after a night of restless sleep dreaming that I kept messing them up haha!) and they came out PERFECTLY!!! I followed the recipe exactly, and just added onions as topping. I diced them up last night and soaked them in olive oil overnight and they came out great! Perfect! Thank you soooo much for the recipe!

kwikwater 6 years ago

WOW!!! I'm one for one!! These are GREAT! Jon, what's the secret to adapting loaf breads to bagels. This is very close to my white bread recipe which is pretty dense, only difference being powdered milk. Would most bread recipes work if you made teh dough a bit stiffer, like this? Any changes in amount of yeast?

THANKS for this start!!! Sandwich bread is dead!!!

Louis 6 years ago

Smoked Salmon bagels, cream cheese, fresh garden leaves, capers, squeez of lemon, crushed black pepper and avocado slices. Can't wait for Sunday morning brunch.

Katherine Hartley 6 years ago

I'm just about to try this recipe! I've been searching for a good bagel recipe for a while now, and what with all the positive comments here I'd be an idiot not to try this one. I'm still very anxious about trying it, but it sounds so simple!

cyberiagirl 6 years ago

Just made my first two batches; the first one were not well-shaped, and the second lot were oddly sticky, but all my guests were happy. Next time I would use baking paper when in the oven, every bagel stuck fast to the trays and I had to prise them off and bits remained stuck. :(

Jackie 6 years ago

Great bagels! super easy and quick! No Fail! My husband loves cinnamon rasin bagels & I love savory ones...any suggestions to incorporate these ideas into this recipe? Thanks!

Chris73568 6 years ago

I did it! and they are GREAT! Love this recipe! I even wrote an article in my little blog about my bagel adventures:)

Bagel 6 years ago

Great bagels. I never had made bagels before this! These turned out excellent. The recipe was excellent. And then there were six.

FallenAnjel 6 years ago

I am going to try this tonight! I'll cut the recipe in half or even by 3/4 because it's just my son and myself and I know they won't keep long w/ no preservatives in them. My co-worker makes her own bagels.

I'll post back and let everyone know how they came out! :)

ps--is "Fleichman's Active Dry Yeast" Instant Yeast? Thx

Mrs. Unknown 6 years ago

This is best bagel resipe ever I'm going to try it to night .it sounds awaome. I hope my gest think there good. It's my birth day today beast wishes love you peace

Koocy Sue 5 years ago

I have just finished making the bagels. They look and smell just great. I used a store prepared bread flour/yeast mix instead of the separate ingredients and followed the rest of the recipe as described. Thanks for a really simple and effective recipe.

PC 5 years ago

Thank for the recipe, I will try your recipe today.

Stormy 5 years ago

I am soooo chuffed (happy and grateful)..I'm a Canadian living in Botswana, and bagels that are available sometimes, are of South African variety...and not the same as the bagels I enjoyed in Canada...have been making my own bread for awhile now...and had a big craving for bagels the other day...thanks so much John for sharing this fantastic recipe with us all...just finished my first batch(won't be the last!!) and gobbled down 2!!! They are wonderful..used a cup of whole wheat flour, and a tbsp of honey instead of sugar...and they are DIVINE!!

luzmic 5 years ago

Dear John

Thank you for your recipe.

I'm very interested in bagels, as they are quite unknown where I live (North-East Italy) although the local jewish community has an historical ashkenazy base.

My first attempts went quite well, although my bagels came definetly "crumpled" out of the boiling water (but you probably already answered to this one: I let them rise too long or in a too warm room).

My real problem is: what are the measures in the metric system? 4 cups of flour should be 500 grams, and 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 cups water should be around 1/3 liter (from 295 to 355 ml), but with these proportions I get a far too wet dough, sticky and impossible to work with. Or is it the flour? In Italy we have basically three types of flour for consumers: O0 flour (since ten years ago it was the all purpose flour, now it is used mostly for cakes and backery); 0 flour (used for pizza and bread) and Manitoba or American (yes) flour (the richest one, used for better pizza or pasta).

Can you please help me?

Thank you

Shelly 5 years ago

Oh man these must be really good! I've never tried to make my own bagels but the recipe seems easy enough. Thanks!

thomas Tak 5 years ago

so , what would cause a beautiful bagel pulled from the oven to age quickly, and go from a beautiful bagel to a shrivelled up Bagel in less than a minute?

Allison Edwards 5 years ago

I'm going to try these, and first I'm going to buy some regular salt....When I was using a breadmaker a while back and suddenly could never get a loaf to stay risen, I didn't realize that my switch to sea salt was probably the reason. A friend recently clued me in. So no sea salt with yeast baking! Apparently some of the minerals in it kill the yeast.

natalie 5 years ago

hi john,

i'm looking forward to trying your recipe. i'm going to try using spelt flour mixed with white flour - will see how it goes.

Maggie 5 years ago

I used active yeat and i let itsoak in the warm water for about a minute.... is that too short??? well too late now im waiting for them to rise i just shaped going to put poppy seeds on top because i have some i love them and its rememberance day

pam 5 years ago

i'm waiting for the bagel get all puffy and i can't wait try them. since i move from the US i haven't have any, so i'm pretty excited.

josh 5 years ago

The recipe worked like a charm from the first batch!

Brian 5 years ago

They came out fantastic. Used the brad machine to mix the dough and it was perfect. Set it up last night used 1-1/3 cups of water, set the timer on the bread machine so it would finish when I wanted to get up. Rolled them out and boiled and baked them in the morning. It was an easy way to have a hot fun breakfast.

Yun 5 years ago

Hi John,

I live in Korea and good tasting bagels are really hard to come by like the ones I enjoyed in the States. Reason? Most of Korean made bagels are steamed, not boiled as the old fashioned way.

I tried your recipe and it came out perfect!! I just need to work on the shape and fusing the dough but I will never have to buy another bagel in Korea now that I know how to make a very tasty bagel. Once again thank you for sharing your recipe!!

Laura 5 years ago

Lovely recipe, easy to follow and it worked!! Thank you. So long for store bought bagels in our house!

Krazy Kook 5 years ago

I've used your recipe so many times now! I love adding dried cranberries (add same time as flour)I forget the oil many times, now I just don't use it. I also bake on parchment paper. This is such a wonderful recipe, and thank you for sharing!! KK

congodwarf 5 years ago

Wow. Thank you so much! I just made my first batch and they came out excellent!

Gabby 5 years ago

Do u know how to make cinnamon and raisin bagels? is it just the same recipe but adding raisins, if so how much?

kathy 5 years ago

have tried many recipes this is the absolute best. only one problem they dont seem to cook thru if i leave in longer they are to brown. what do you suggest try turning oven down and cook longer? i get 14 bagels from your recipe and they are big cant imagine the size of 8. great site. thanks

Kara Brouillette 5 years ago

I just opened a bakery in Beijing and I wanted to own up to being the first shop here with real bagels. My customers believe since Im american I must know how to make them correctly but up until now I was clueless! taking hours to turn out 12 really ugly and bad tasting bagels... one of the recipes I used called for malt powder which was really gross! these instructions are fantastic and i love what im seeing when they come out of the oven, as well as the taste being spot-on. thanks, you rock!

maconsense 5 years ago

John, thanks for the amazing recipe. It's perfect for me 99% of the time, but once in a while they come out looking, acting, and tasting like pretzels. Any idea why that might be?

Brenda  5 years ago

I used your recipe to make my first ever batch of bagels and loved it so I decided to tweak it a bit to make blueberry bagels and they look perfect. I haven't tasted them yet as they have just come out of the oven. Thank you so much for this recipe!!!!

tai 5 years ago

my bagels are in the oven now. my very first try. I live in the caribbean and getting fresh bagels is almost impossible. So i googled a recipe and found this one. I LOVE BAGELS and cream cheese. MY only concern is that I find the 10 mins. recommended for each side while in the oven, doesnt get the bagels brown enough... what do you recommend??

Kayleen 5 years ago

I am new to this whole bagel making thing. Well making anything with yeast really. I need HELP! I have been making your wonderful bagels for the last 2 days and I still cant get it right. When they are boiling they go gooey no matter how long they boil. And then when they bake there still gooey. Some turn out with just spots that are gooey and others turn out just fine and are yummy to eat. I love to cook but baking breads just isnt my thing. I dont know what I do wrong. Any ideas on what im doing wrong?

Kirsten 5 years ago

Thank you for the great recipe! The detailed instructions are appreciated =)

Angele 5 years ago

I followed this recipe and my bagels came out great! I've tried other recipes that didn't work out, but this one was so easy and DELICIOUS! Thanks!

Andrew  5 years ago

These bagels will go toe to toe with any bagelry in NY!!

Lisa 5 years ago

I have made many bagels in my past time. This dough was extremely hard to work with. I had to add 2.5 cups of water to be able to knead it. I kneaded it for over a half hour to get it to some sort of smooth consistency. After I let the 8 rolls sit for 15 minutes, it was like dry crust. I had to throw it all out. Sorry, I did not like the dough, it was way too dry.

matt 5 years ago

OMG! I'm a native New York City boy . Best bagels the world had to offer so i thought. Made these once the family loved them . Now my kids come down early on sunday and we all bake bagels together. All varieties. Stock up on seeds and toppings and try adding some rye flower to the mix or half and half rye and wheat awesome is all we have to say

kaswimmer 5 years ago

wow. first time makeing these and they tured out AMAZING! i think today iam gonna try to make then cinn. and raisen and see what happens.

Boomer 5 years ago

I am no longer a virgin, having just watched the 10 commandments on the television I decided to give bagels a go. They are cooling as we speak, all seems well.

Thank you from Ireland for a good recipe and info.

Emmu 5 years ago

Made these this morning for New Years. I added shredded cheddar cheese and chopped garlic into the dough and some cheddar on top for good measure- the perfect treat to enjoy this freakishly warm weather we're having in Wisconsin on New Year's Eve.

Ashley 5 years ago

I made them with half wheat flour and half white flour and used rapid rise highly active yeast. Is there any tips in using this type of yeast?

Peter  5 years ago

I got into making cheese begals ,,mmmmm so damm yummy

OPCCook 5 years ago

I can't wait to try these IN THE MORNING!! I want to make them with our freshly ground whole wheat flour. Thank you for such good directions. Do you mind if I link your site to mine? You have some really neat stuff. And if you get a chance, run over and look at our Oklahoma kinda pastry cloth! :-)

lynjams 5 years ago

I just made my first batch in cinnamon raisin as a surprise breakfast for the hubby. Had to try one of course before he got up ... just to make sure they were good. And they are awesome Thanks for the easy recipe, and the addition of the baking soda to the water was perfect.

Suzanne 5 years ago

Very successful! Breadmaker set on dough cycle, 1/2 bread flour and 1/2 white-whole-wheat bread flour (whole grain) and the recipe was completely successful. I did find it difficult to move the bagels through the seed coating step, without leaving the others boiling too long, so I decided to slow down and put fewer into the boiling water at a time. I don't think I've ever tasted a truly fresh bagel before. Soft, puffy center with a nice firm chewy crust! Thank you John.

bri 5 years ago

I'm eating these right now! Amazing! I topped them with sesame seeds and added tsp total of salt. Perfect recipe! I can't believe I just made these gorgeous bagels, this recipe is fool proof many thanks!

Beth in Chile 5 years ago

These are GREAT and EASY (but time consuming)! I haven't had bagels for 3 years - since we moved to Chile. I always assumed they would be hard to make... Now I think they may become a staple around my house! Thanks for sharing!

Addie 5 years ago

Great! My friend wants to open a bagel restraunt called Schlagel's Bagels. This will really help.

Noel 5 years ago

Thanks for the great recipe. I made these bagels and they came out great. But now I'd like to step it up a notch. Would you have a bagel recipe that uses a sourdough starter?

isiah 5 years ago

ty ty,,, thes r like exress bagels,, super quick,, sssuper e-z.. try adding a few tablespoons of honey and a tbspoon of baking soda 2 the boiling water.. great great:P

Steve 5 years ago

Thank you also... I just ate the first in the first (ever) batch of homemade bagels. It's been so long since I've had a bagel and they're just as good as I remember. Best of all they came from my oven!!!

Many thanks for this easy, easy recipe.

Sean 5 years ago

Tried this recipe again today taste good but, as with the first time, they seemed to have parts that were under cooked and/or overly dense though the outside looked great and otherwise well cooked. I was wondering if anyone could tell me what could cause this? I'm not sure if I did not give them enough time to rise, not knead them enough, or not maybe I did not cook them long enough though I though I followed the directions to the letter. The second time around they turned out a bit better (better color and less dense) but still not 100%...Any ideas?

joanne 5 years ago

I made these today and they are wonderful. I've never made bagels before, but was craving an onion topped bagel--YUMMMY! They were absolutely fantastic. The only problem I had was the bagels sticking on the pan; tin foil sprayed with pam worked great and they didn't stick.

Thanks for the great recipe!

aw 5 years ago

the bagels looked fluffy and nice until they are ready to the hot water bath. When I lifted the bagel from the baking sheet pan, it started to collapse and somewhat sticking on the parchment paper I used on the baking sheet pan. What have I done wrong?

christina 5 years ago

wow - I know you have a million compliments already, but I've tried other bagel recipes and gave up, assuming it was just impossible to duplicate store-bought bagels. These, however, are just perfect! Thanks a ton!

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andhe 5 years ago from Sweden

Looks delicious, will make this for next sunday breakfast.

Lisa 5 years ago

Wonderful recipe - and SO easy. Thanks for sharing!

I made the bagels as the recipe states the first time, then decided to try some variations (I get bored with the same thing each time).

Rosemary - Parmesan: added 1 cup Parmesan cheese and 2 tablespoons dried, ground Rosemary. These are awesome toasted with cream cheese!

Cinnamon - Raisin: increased sugar to 3/4 cup. Added 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, and 1 cup raisins.

kim 5 years ago

I've made my third batch in 7 days. These are the best! Thanks for posting!

Ant 5 years ago

Can anyone help me. I need to get the crusty New York Crust going. I have the inside just right. I have an oven stone. I am almost there with full authentic New York, but I am really working hard on getting the firm layer before the nice soft chewy inside. Do bagel boards help? Is it adding more soda to the boil?

KayLee 5 years ago

Good bye store bought bagels and bread for that matter, these make the best sandwiches. I add sugar and baking soda to the water, but haven't drifted farther then that. Oh and half OJ half water and dried cranberries with chopped walnuts...

I'm addicted! Thank you!

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rakoo 5 years ago from Midwest

Just Awesome, Thanks. Love Bagels

Megan 5 years ago

I tried these a couple days ago, but subbed 1 C bread flour for whole wheat...did it again today, but didn't use any WW flour, and they're great!! So much better from the first time! :P

I'm really bad at rolling them though...but I'll get better at it :)

Bagel Gods 5 years ago

We tried to make bagels and they really failed. We're sorry but its not easy to make bagels please make this clear in the begining before we start to make them

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craftybegonia 5 years ago from Southwestern, United States

Nice hub. I made bagels once but mine turned out flatter than yours (tasted great though.) Yours look terrific!

Margarita 5 years ago

Thank you so much for posting this recipe!!! As an ex-NYer who loves bagels these are great! I did them with all purpose flour instead of bread flour because unfortunately they don't have bread flour here in Greece and they still turned out great. I made mine "everything" bagels!

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Which4u 5 years ago from Leicester, UK

This is great! I'd never thought about making my own bagels. I've been experimenting with them recently - my favorite so far has to be toasted half bagels with cream cheese and salmon with a squeeze of lemon - Yummy!

Thanks for the tips, i'll be using them this weekend ;)

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Giftformen 5 years ago

Wow what a great hub! Thanks for all of the suggestions.

Melbourne 5 years ago

They are in the oven. My partner and I kneaded them in our Magimix. How easy! I can see them in the oven. I think they are saying "Eat me!". A + A, Melbourne, Australia

Monica 5 years ago

I made this recipe for the fist time yesterday. I am so impressed. I am not a baker, this recipe was simple and very easy to follow. My bagels turned out wonderful, the outside was crusty as I like. I am planning my second batch now and will probably make cinnamon. Thanks so much for this wonderful detailed recipe.

Ann Marie 5 years ago

My rye, whole wheat bread (similar recipe) didn't rise, so I made it into bagels...look good and I'm sure they taste good. I hope so, I didn't know bagels were fairly easy to make.

emily 5 years ago

I made these last week and they were fabulous!!! Making them again right now. Thanks for the great recipe!

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magicthe 5 years ago

Yummy! BTw, the shape like donut

çatlak kremi 5 years ago

I love a pumpernickel bage ;)

Perry 5 years ago

I made these bagels this morning. i have to say most things went smoothly except that my bagels didnt get so puffy after letting them sit, i boiled them and placed them in the oven. when i went to flip them, they stuck really bad and basically ruined my first batch. my second batch came out slightly better but they are both lacking height and puffyness. Any suggestions?

Deviled Eggs Recipes 5 years ago

Oh YUM! I'm going to have to give this recipe a try. I've never made bagels before.

jamesz 5 years ago

I'm already salivating flowed from your photos. Cool hub

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Yoovle 5 years ago from at the beach

Wow, I've just found that it wasn't a good idea to read your hub hungry, they look soo tasty :)

gogus buyutucu 5 years ago

Good bye store bought bagels and bread for that matter ;)

Debra Gilbertson 5 years ago

Perry, mine didn't get very puffy after sitting either but they did in the water. I used a silicone baking sheet in my pan. I highly recommend them for any baked goods, nothing sticks to them and the pan stays clean. My bagels turned out great and it was my first attempt. They fell some after sitting overnight but actually I think they were better toasted than fresh. My sister and I just opened a bakery and I plan to make these with variations like switching some of the flour, adding cinnamon and raisins, or cranberries. My first ones I only had all purpose flour and I added part whole wheat and a teaspoon of cinnamon. I mixed raisins and maple syrup into cream cheese for a topping, yummy.

Phil 5 years ago

Oh my god, these worked sooo well. Wow!

Pauline 5 years ago

It always blows my friends' minds when I tell them I make delicious bagels from scratch. This is the most-amazing and explicit recipe. Thanks so much!

5 years ago

I've made these a few times now, great recipe, thank you!

Stella - Free Internet Marketing Tips 5 years ago

Yummy, yummy sweet looking bagels. Your instructions are so easy to follow. Thanks

Bisnis UKM 5 years ago

nice recipe, Thanks for share...

Tanthowi 5 years ago

Wow... leeeezzzaaatttooo... amazing recipe..

cs 5 years ago

Are thee bagels like pretzels, or like the bagels I love - harder on the outside, soft inside? Thnaks. I love the ny bagel.

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commonc 5 years ago from London

These look so good, im hungry just from looking at the pictures!

Aimee 5 years ago

I am gluten intolerant, do you have any suggestions on other flours I could use and still have a good quality bagel, taste and texture, I haven't had any luck with bread recipes. Everything I seem to do enhances the yeast flavor.

Cameron 5 years ago

this worked perfectly! thank you so much

kate 5 years ago

my three year old and i made a batch the other day and we absolutely LOVED them. I am about to attempt them again this morning and will try to make ten per batch rather than eight to see how it goes.

THANK you!

Danielle 5 years ago

Thanks so much, this recipe was great! I will be using it again. Such a good alternative for bread for a student, tastier, quick, costs about the same.

Diana Trimble 5 years ago

Recipe works great and tasted identical to ones from the Brooklyn bagel shop I worked at in my teenage years! The only suggestions I'd make are 1) the dough rises better if you don't break it down into 8 chunks until after the first rising and 2)it's easier to make the circle shapes by just punching your thumb through each dough ball and then kind of forming it around your hand like that. The hole looks big at first but it closes up.

Kim 5 years ago

I love your bagels; I'm NEVER buying store-bought again! Anyone who doesn't like them, doesn't know how REAL food supposed to taste, instead of all that processed crap! I added garlic slices to the dough and topped with sea salt, poppy seeds and seseme seed! Yum

Deanna 5 years ago

I can't believe I made these and they came out fantastic the first try! They were so good, they lasted about an hour. I came home from work and immediately made a second batch of cinnamon raisin ones! They were even better! I used the baking soda in the water as others mentioned and will continue to do so. Thanks John for an absolutely wonderful recipe! I blogged about it with some pictures for reference of the process on my blog listed here.

Deanna 5 years ago

I guess if you click on my name, it will send you to my pictoral step by step of this recipe..try it. It will help you to see what each step looks like as you make these gems!

mishel 5 years ago

The recepie given for preparing bagels is amazing and I must say that your technique of preparing bagels raises the hunger of common viewers up to an extreme level.Your way of demonstrating all these bagels is really commendable.

Fau 5 years ago

I'm trying this recipe after I tried another one that turned out to be a disaster. And I still have the same problem. Everything goes perfectly well until I bake them. I don't know why, but once they're baked, they get really hard and there is a big hard crust. Is it my oven ? Or just me ?

Spring Texas Real Estate 5 years ago

Wow - I have never even seen a bagel recipe before today. I am printing this out, and making them tomorrow morning. Never have had a bagel this fresh - so will make enough to share with my neighbors.

Cecilia Chaplin 5 years ago

I made the bagels today and they are perfect. I followed the steps and measurements religiously. We live in Brazil...(I had concerns regarding to altitude and flour quality but it was all fine)...and my spoiled rotten American hubby was missing his bagels. Now he doesn't miss them anymore. I made them! I'm so proud. Thank you so much for sharing this gem.

Stacy 5 years ago

I make bagel dogs with this recipe and the fam loves them :)

Margaret 5 years ago

We've found that boiling the bagels 2 minutes per side in water with a tablespoon of honey allows the sesame or poppy seeds to stay on and don't have to use an egg wash. Also, we bake them in the BBQ.... Almost Montreal bagels!!! Thanks so much. Glad we found your recipe.

Sasa 5 years ago

Thanks for posting your easy to follow recipe. This is the second batch that I've attempted to make and they came out even better than before! Delicious!

Mike 5 years ago

Just made them... perfect dough! Divided it up into three lumps and made one blueberry (needed extra flour with all those juices!), chopped up a few cherry tomatoes and added garlic and other herbs. The remaining I just made plain. All turned out perfect! Nice golden brown outside, chewy fresh inside. Thanks a ton for this comprehensive guide for awesomeness!

Nate 5 years ago

This dough recipe is great, but I think that if you baked them for 20 full minutes they would burst into flames.. Mine were smoking after 10! But, they made perfect bagels just the same! Thanks so much!

Elise 5 years ago

Got it perfect first time - easy to follow recipe with delightful outcome!!! thanks!!!

Elise from NZ

Lydia 5 years ago

I made the bagels, it as my first attempt and they turned out pretty good...with one small problem. They seem heavier than they should be with a slight yeasty taste. Do I need to kneed longer?? Do you have any suggestions?

Nik 5 years ago

I've never tried making bagels myself and i tried now the first time. Mmmmh. Thanks for that.

Ash 5 years ago

Is there a substitution for yeast?

Sara 5 years ago

sooooooooooo delicious i have made this recipe about 5 times now and people keep asking me to make them more bagels. thank you for the great recipe!

NancyB 5 years ago

Thanks for the easy to follow recipe. My bagels turned out BIG. I think I used too much yeast. I will certainly try this recipe again. It was fast too.

Thanks so much.


NancyB 5 years ago

Just a question: I noticed that your recipe does not give the dough a first rise with a punch down. I made the bagels without this step but wondered if I am missing something.



Mikells 5 years ago

I made these bagels today..... UGH, didn't taste at all like a bagel! Tasted like a pretzet!! Sorry but this recipe didn't work for me.

lols use a bagel recipe instead of a pretzel one imo xD

Alex Peck 5 years ago

This recipe was great! i loved the bagels, had tried a different recipe before and they didn't come out very well but this were really good. I just have one question, i would like to double this recipe. And with my oven, i wouldn't be able to fit all them in there at once. I'm not quite sure how instant yeast works, but before i put the second batch in, they would have been sitting out for about 25 mins. will they flatten if after their boiled they are sitting out for awhile before baked? thanks for the recipe! loved it :)

John D Lee profile image

John D Lee 5 years ago Author


I have certainly done double batches and they do kind of flatten as they sit on the counter after being baked but then they perk back up again after they get placed in the oven.

If it's something you are worried about, you could always make one double batch of dough, and then only roll and boil half of it, and then once that's in the oven, roll and boil the other half for your second round.

best of luck!

JimBakes 5 years ago

John, thanks for this recipe posting! All the other bagel methods I'd found made it into a weekend project but I can easily do these in the morning with great results. Tried my first half batch of plain with exactly half the ingredient measures and they came out great. Next time I'll try the toppings. Thanks again!

JT 5 years ago

Thank you for a great recipe!! This was the first time that I've ever made bagels and they were delious!!! Perfect with some cream cheese!!!

billybob122121 5 years ago

Thanks for the recipe i really needed it :) have a grrrreeeeeat day :)

JimBakes 5 years ago

Last week was the basic halved recipe, this weekend I decided to try chocolate chip. I know, I know, not very traditional but tasty! I followed others' tips and added the 1/3C chips (2/3 for the full recipe) at the beginning. I also wanted more "bagel" flavor so substituted barley malt syrup for the sugar (equal amounts), and added 1Tbsp of the barley malt syrup, 1Tbsp baking soda and 1Tbsp salt to the boiling water. They were excellent! Just the perfect tasting, chewy bagel. Next is some toppings on a plain bagel with the water additions. I can't believe how easy this is!

Middleton 5 years ago

I added a cup of chocolate chips while I was kneading the dough and they turned out just like a bagel shops I'm so happy now thanks for the recipe :)

BagelManiac 5 years ago

This comment is for anyone who says that this bagel tastes like pretzel.

You never had a real pretzel in your life, if you think this bagel tastes like pretzel!!!! Great recipe, thank you so much. Just came out of the oven :) yammm

Madds 5 years ago

I laid my dough out and sprinkled cinnamon, sugar and crazins on it, then rolled up the doing and kneaded the extra stuff in. it came out amazing! thanks for the recipe.

amanda 5 years ago

AMAZING!!!! So easy and tasty to boot.

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Dr Rockpile 5 years ago from USA

I never thought of making my own bagels before. Might have to try it!

Nomannic 5 years ago

Not quite the soft, doughy taste I was looking for. Tastes more like really good white bread. But still - very delicious. My family ate them right up. But a note - this takes more like two hours to do, at least the first time around.

Jon 5 years ago

Made these this past weekend. Got 8 bagels out of the batch. When all was done, they had the proper shape and consistency. Color was a little light... my reading suggests this might be because of missing lye in the water. Didn't feel adventurous enough to play with poison :) Bread flavor was a little flat. Perhaps some longer rising time for the yeasts to produce more flavor, or some different flour combinations. I'll certainly try this again and experiment more. thanks!

halaB 5 years ago

Hi can I refrigerate the dough after the first rise and shape them the next day?

Katherine 5 years ago

I have made these bagels three times now. Delicious and so easy.

I've started making blueberry bagels by simply substituting 3/4 of a cup of dried blueberries into the mix and replacing the sugar and water with an equal volume of apple juice. I finish it off with a dash of ground cinnamon. Absolutely lovely. Excuse me while I go and polish them all off.

Kristian 5 years ago

Thanks so much for the hub! Haven't had a bagel, worth eating, since moving to the country a few years back. Time for that to change!


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mister bytchy 5 years ago from Sheffield UK


This sounds great. I have been making bread for a little while and have perfected my 'Crusty Cloud' recipe. I am going to try your recipe today using my preferment (biga).

A former Montreal resident, I long for the bagels from Fairmount Bagel Factory I hope this comes even a little bit close.


Elisabeth Lowther 5 years ago

I made your bagels today. I used half whole wheat flour in them. They came out really great and also looked quite nice thanks to the good description! Now we have bagels in Serbia!

Yumi 5 years ago

I moved down to Venezuela from NYC!! Oh gosh! I was so desperated to find bagels (I found a small bag that were fluffy, tasted funny, and weren't worth the travel to buy 'em); so couple of months ago, I found this recipe! I WON'T ever buy them again! It is too easy, fast, and not delicious but YUMMMY!!! Thanks for this recipe, wherever I move, I'll have the chance to have a bagelicious breakfast! :D

Yumi 5 years ago

Btw, I'm making some right now!!! Just waiting to boil them!! Half Cinnamon Rainsins, Half Classic :D

Krazy Kook 4 years ago

No idea how many times I've used your recipe, and shared it with others, but thank you so much!!

I've made several different variety's, and my favorite is adding cinnamon and dried cranberries when first mixing the dough.

Again, manyyyyyyyyy thanks for the best recipe!!

Joe 4 years ago

How many cups of water should we add??????

Guy 4 years ago

I'm assuming that your talking about the first mixing process, if this is the case, add 1/4 cup at a time and continue mixing until the dough reaches the desired consistency.

Andrew 4 years ago

Love these bagels!

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vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

I make bagels infrequently, but will use your expert advice when I crank out my next batch.

Kahla 4 years ago

Just used this reciepe and added fresh roasted green chile to mine and they're amazing my neighbors won't stop eating them!! Thanks

Angela 4 years ago

Bagels are in the oven. I coated half of them in cinnamon and sugar for the kids. Can't wait to try them.

(I think I made them a little too big, next time I'll make the snake shorter and keep them a little tighter when I roll)

Jan 4 years ago

What is instant yeast? Is it rapid rise yeast?

Bagel Spud 4 years ago

Nailed 'em didn't I! Now I am North London's premier bagel maker. I've already put two bagel shops out of business and I don't even sell mine. I think they're intimidated by my skills.

I've even adopted a new nickname!

You've got to boil your bagel!

kxdorey profile image

kxdorey 4 years ago from Beverly Hills, California, USA

Way to make me hungry! Mmmmmm. They look bakery quality.

Elisa 4 years ago

I live in Italy and I can't find bagels here. With your recipe I can make them now!!!! Thanks a lot, they are really good and easy to make!

Angela 4 years ago

I've tried this before and after I boil my bagels, they deflate some and get very dense and lumpy. What did I do wrong?

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Irenevosburgh 4 years ago from Philadelphia, PA

Hi, I was looking on Yahoo search for my own HUB page Bagel Recipe to see where it ranked and yours was on the first search page...CONGRATS!

Very nice HUB.

ScottB 4 years ago

Very similar to my pizza dough! Tried that and it came out pretty good. I used to be GM of a bagelshop, we boiled them, but I haven't even tried them in over a decade though.

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