How to make and eat a bagel.

Adapted from


  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 ½ tbps granulated sugar
  • 1 ¼ cups (300ml) warm water. May need up to ¼ cup (60ml) more.
  • 3 ½ (500g) bread flour or high gluten flour
  • 1 ½ tsp salt


  • cinnamon sugar
  • everything but the bagel
  • poppy seeds
  • egg wash (egg yolk and milk or water)


Part 1

  1. In ½ cup /120ml of the warm water (note: this is only a portion of the water), pour in the sugar and yeast. Do not stir. Let it sit for five minutes, then stir until it all dissolves.
  2. Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast and sugar mixture.
  3. Pour 1/3 cup (90ml) of the remaining warm water into the well. Mix and stir in the rest of the water as needed. Anywhere from a couple tablespoons to ¼ cup (60ml) of water may be needed (elevation). You’ll want a moist and firm dough after you have mixed it.
  4. On a floured countertop, knead the dough for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Try working in as much flour as possible to form a firm and stiff dough.
  5. Lightly brush a large bowl with oil and turn the dough to coat. Cover the bowl with a damp dish towel (paper towel not a good replacement). Let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, the dough size should double.

Part 2

  1. Punch the dough down, and let it rest for another 10 minutes.
  2. Carefully divide the dough into 8 pieces (scale useful, but not necessary). Shape each piece into a round shape. Take one in your hand, and press it gently against the countertop, and roll it in a circular motion like you would to shape silly putty into a ball. Repeat with 7 other dough pieces.
  3. Coat a finger in flour, and gently press your finger into the center of each dough ball to form a ring. Stretch the ring to about ⅓ the diameter of the bagel and place on a lightly oiled cookie sheet. Repeat the same step with the remaining dough.
  4. After shaping the dough rounds and placing them on the cookie sheet, cover with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 425ºF.
  5. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce the heat. Use a slotted spoon to lower the bagels into the water. A big pot should fit three at a time. The bagels should quickly float to the surface. Let them sit there for 1 minute, and them flip them over to boil for another minute. Note: I have found them to come out a little chewey with 1 minute each side. Consider a shorter boil time to make them more bready. Extend the boiling times to 2 minutes each, if you’d prefer a chewier bagel (New York Style bagel).
  6. If you want to top your bagels with stuff, do so as you take them out of the water. If you do this, gently brush your an eggwash over the top (doesn’t take much, don’t let it drip). Then you may use any “optional toppings” you like. Everything but the bagel is my fave. The wife like cinnamon sugar. Plain (no eggwashh) is great, too, so you can skip this step if you don’t care.
  7. Once all the bagels have been boiled and optionally topped, transfer them to a lightly oiled baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  9. Cool on a wire rack if you have one. Or don’t. Slice and cover in whipped cream cheese.