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Homemade bagels are the ultimate treat for your Sunday brunch. And they sure make a cool weekend project! Made with only a few ingredients, they will beat any store-bought bagels. You can start the recipe the day before to simplify the preparation, or you can bake them and freeze them for later. I love these bagels with whipped cream cheese, thinly sliced red onions, capers, dill and lemon zest. This zesty and tangy filling pairs amazingly well with a bright Sauvignon Blanc wine. Just saying!

sesame bagel filled with whipped cream cheese, dill, red onion, capers and lemon zests

A few details about the ingredients

The dough

Active dry yeast: makes the dough rise.
Lukewarm water is the ideal temperature both to activate the yeast and to use in this recipe.
Bread flour is a high protein flour is that is ideal to reach a chewy bagel consistency. In France, this type of flour is called T65 flour.
Maple syrup: most bagel bakeries use barley malt syrup both in the dough and cooking water. It can be difficult to find, this is why I love using maple syrup instead. It works wonder too!
Salt: to enhance the flavors.

The cooking liquid

Making bagels require two cooking steps : boiling and baking. The bagels are first cooked (poached) in a boiling liquid made of water, baking soda and maple syrup. This helps achieve the delightfully golden crust typical of bagels.

The toppings

Everyone has a favorite bagel topping. Choose the one(s) you love, and don’t be afraid to mix things up. I used sesame seeds, poppy seeds, black sesame, sunflower seeds, go crazy!

bagel dough in a mixing bowl

shaped bagel dough proofing on a tray

🍷Wine Pairing for Bagels

The Match

Sauvignon Blanc!

The filling of your bagels will determine the wine pairing choice! If, like me, you like simplicity, I suggest whipped cream cheese, capers, thinly sliced red onions, lemon zest and dill. And with this vibrant filling, Sauvignon Blanc is your best ally.


  • White Sancerre (Loire Valley, France)
  • White Menetou-Salon (Loire Valley, France)
  • Sauvignon from Marlborough (New-Zealand)
  • Sauvignon from Casablanca Valley (Chile)

sesame bagel filled with whipped cream cheese, dill, red onion, capers and lemon zests


Can I freeze the bagels?

Yes! Baked bagels freeze wonderfully. Freeze them for up to 3 months, thaw overnight in the refrigerator or at room temperature, then warm to your liking.

I don’t have bread flour, can I use regular flour?

Yes, you can use all-purpose flour. The bagels will just a bit less chewy than bagels made with bread flour.

Other delicious Brunch recipes


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Bagels in a bowl

Homemade Bagels

  • Total Time: 3h30
  • Yield: 12 bagels 1x



For the yeast mixture

2 cups (500 ml) of lukewarm water

1 packet (7 g or 2 and ¼ teaspoons) of active dry yeast

2 teaspoons (8 g) of granulated sugar

For the bagel dough

8 cups (1 kg) of bread flour (T65 flour)

1 tablespoon (20 g) of salt

3 tablespoons (50 ml) of maple syrup

For the cooking water

67 ounces (2 liters) of water

1 tablespoon (15 g) of baking soda

4 tablespoons (60 ml) of maple syrup

For the toppings

the seeds of your liking: sesame, poppy, sunflower, everything bagel mix


Start by activating the yeast

  1. In a large mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer), stir together lukewarm water, active dry yeast and granulated sugar.
  2. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes. Foam and small bubbles will form on the surface: this is a sign that the yeast is activating.

Prepare the bagel dough

  1. Sift the flour on top of the activated yeast mixture, and add salt and maple syrup.
  2. Knead the dough for 5 minutes. If  using a stand mixer, use the dough hook. Otherwise roughly bring the dry and wet ingredients together. Then, pour the mixture onto a floured surface and knead by hand. After 15 minutes, the dough should be smooth and elastic. It should not stick to your fingers.
  3. Cover the dough with a damp kitchen cloth and let it proof for 1 hour or until it has doubled in size.

Shape the bagels

  1. Remove the air from the proofed dough by pressing with your fist.
  2. Then cut the dough into 90 g (3 oz) pieces.
  3. Using your hands, roll each 90 g (3 oz) pieces into 25 cm (10 inches) sausages.
  4. Wrap the sausage dough around your hand. Using your palm, join the two ends of the sausage dough by rolling them gently on a flat surface until they are sealed. Here is the bagel shape!
  5. Place the bagels onto an oven tray lined with lightly greased parchment paper (you can either brush the parchment paper with neutral vegetable oil or use a cooking spray).
  6. Covering with loose cling film and let the bagels proof for another hour. Alternatively, you can leave your bagels rise overnight in the fridge.

Boil the bagels in a water bath (first cooking)

  1. In a large sauté pan or large pot, bring water, maple syrup and baking soda to a boil.
  2. Reduce the heat to a simmer and dip the bagels into the boiling water. 
  3. Cook the bagels for one minute, then flip them over and cook the other side for another minute.
  4. Using a strainer, put the boiled bagels back on the oven tray.
  5. Repeat the operation until all the bagels are cooked.

Bake the bagels in the oven (second cooking)

  1. Preheat the oven at 450°F (230°C). 
  2. Coat the bagels on both sides with the seeds of your choice (sesame, poppy, sunflower, black sesame).
  3. Bake each batch for 15 minutes until golden.
  4. Serve with the filling of your choice!

Nim Keys

  • Let the dough rise somewhere warm. Choose the warmest place of your house for optimum proofing. If your oven has a Proof Mode, this is great too!
  • Traditional bagels undergo two cooking processes. They are first boiled in water, then baked in the oven at high temperature for a short amount of time. These two processes are very important to get the goldenest and moistest bagels.
  • Adding maple syrup and bicarbonate soda to the cooking water will give the bagels the beautiful dark golden color. Do not skip this step!
  • Removing the air from the risen dough is a technique called “dégazage”, which literally means “removing gas”. It is an essential step to ensure that your bagels rise and develop nicely.
  • Author: Ninon
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Category: Bread
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Keywords: homemade bagels

sesame bagel filled with whipped cream cheese, dill, red onion, capers and lemon zests

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