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Make your Own Bagels? Yes You Can!
It’s easier than you think, cheap as hell (about $1 a batch) and tastier than any bagels you can buy. Here’s how:
4 Cups Bread Flour*
1 TBLS Sugar
1 1/2 tsps Salt
2 tsps Instant Yeast (1 package)
1-1/4 – 1-1/2 cups Warm Water **
* I use Organic All-Purpose Flour. If you can buy it in bulk at Costco your bagel cost is cut almost in Half!
** Water needs to be 110-115 degrees for yeast to be happy. I use a candy thermometer. Though the recipe does not say you have to “proof” the yeast, I do. I like to make sure the yeast is good, and I think my bagels come out a bit fluffier if I proof the yeast first in the warm water with the sugar, 5-10 minutes)
Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer. The dough should feel stiff, but add a little water if it is too stiff or you can’t get all the dry flour incorporated. (High-Altitude note: you’ll need to use the full 1 1/2 cups water, sometimes a touch more)
Either plop the dough on your counter and knead for ten minutes, until it is uniform and smooth, or put your dough hook attachment on your mixer and run for about 8 minutes. I’m lazy, I use my Kitchenaid stand mixer.* It works fantastic. This step is important! I’ve tried skimping on the kneading time and the bagel were flat with poor texture. * I’ve had my Kitchenaid stand mixer for ten years and it still runs like a champ. I highly recommend them.
Cut the dough into 8 equal size balls, cover and set aside to rest in a warm place for 20 minutes.
This part takes some practice, but you’ll get the hang of it…Take each of the dough balls and roll into a “snake” until it is longer than the width of your hand.
Wrap the “snake” around your dominant hand, overlapping the ends. Now use your palm to squish/roll these two ends together until they fuse, and you’ll have a circular bagel-like shape.
Cover and rest your bagels for another 20 minutes.
While your bagels are resting, Preheat the oven to 425, get a large heavy pot of water boiling, rub a good splash of oil on a cookie sheet/baking tray, and get your favorite toppings ready.
Use any toppings you like. My favorite is sort of an “everything bagel” mix of kosher salt, cracked pepper, garlic, poppy seeds and sunflower seeds. Note: if you use salt, always use kosher or “large grain” salt, and use it very sparingly!
After 20 minutes your bagels will start looking puffy. It’s time to get boiling. Gently add them to fully boiling water. Do not crowd them! Boil for 1 minute, then flip them over and boil for one more minute. Be sure and time it, too long and the bagels get soggy. If you don’t have a timer, just hum the Jeopardy theme song twice, it’s exactly 30 seconds 😉
Let them dry for a minute, then dip them in your topping and place them on the baking tray.
Bake for 10 minutes, flip them over and bake for 10 more minutes, and they are done! Let them cool for 20 minutes, then grab the cream cheese and dig in. There’s nothing nicer than a hot, fresh bagel. Enjoy!
Note: Slice your leftover bagels in half and freeze. For in instant breakfast just pop in the toaster oven or toaster. Bagels also make great sandwiches.