How to Make Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Bagels

You’re going to love the taste of homemade cinnamon raisin bagels. So much better than store-bought!

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

Alright, homemade bagels round 2! In case you missed it yesterday, I showed you exactly how to make homemade everything bagels. Complete with a billion photos, tips, and tricks as per usual! Well, today I’m showing you how to make a cinnamon raisin variety because cinnamon raisin bagels > any other bagels. Right??

Also! If you missed it yesterday, I shared some photos from my trip to Seattle the other week on my photography blog. I’ve been traveling so much lately for my book tour (New Hampshire tonight, Boston the rest of the week!) that I am filling up my memory cards soooo fast. Lots of pics to share!

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

So let’s get right to this bagel business. Correction: cinnamon raisin bagel business. Cinnamon raisin bagels, as you know by now, are my very favorite variety. My go-to when I have a sea of bagel choices. I love you blueberry and whole wheat, but you will never been cinnamon and you will never be raisins! Raisins are actually one of my favorite ingredients in desserts. I know. WHO AM I.

Step Photos and Why Rustic Bagels are Cool

So making my cinnamon raisin variety is pretty much the same as making yesterday’s everything bagel. And I have a few step photos to share with you. The steps are all the same as yesterday’s, but we’re going to add a few special extras to the dough. First thing’s first: prepare the dough. It’s a very basic dough; not too much goes into it. Remember, you need a high protein flour like bread flour to make bagels. Bagels = bread, so it’s a no brainer, right? Brown sugar is used in my basic bagel dough– I use brown sugar as a replacement for barley malt syrup from time to time. Barley malt syrup is a little tough to find, but truly gives bagels that traditional malty flavor we all know and love. It’s what most bakeries or bagel shops use. I find brown sugar does something similar. If you can find barley malt syrup, definitely pick it up though! See more about this ingredient in my recipe notes.

Raisins will go directly into the dough. I use about 3/4 cup– anywhere around that amount is perfect. The cinnamon swirl comes from a mix of granulated sugar and cinnamon and that is added after the dough is prepared. What we’ll do is place the prepared bagel dough onto a pile of cinnamon-sugar. Just right on top! Like so:

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

Then, knead the dough a few times in the cinnamon-sugar to incorporate it. This method, rather than just mixing it all in, helps create little swirls and pockets of cinnamon-sugar. The dough will become a little moist as a result of the sugar, but that’s completely fine. See photo above (on the right).

Once the dough rises, shape it into 8 separate balls. Aren’t they pretty? I love all the raisins and cinnamon swirls! Best bagels everrrrrrr.

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

Oh and remember: they don’t have to be perfectly round or shaped.

“Rustic” is totally in right now any way.

Shaping bagels isn’t too tricky. Like I mentioned yesterday, there are plenty of ways to do it– but I prefer a super simple method. Just poke your finger through the center of the ball of dough making a hole. Then, poke two fingers through and widen the hole by moving your fingers in a circular motion. You want a hole that is about 1.5 – 2 inches wide. Remember, rustic looking bagels are trendy. ↓ ↓

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

The water bath is next. And it is the most important step. I suggest you read why right here. And here’s another great article on it too! I add honey to the boiling water bath because it adds caramelization on the bagel’s crust as it bakes. Barley malt syrup works too– remember what I just mentioned about it above? See recipe notes about this ingredient.

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

A brush of egg wash helps give the baked bagels that beautiful sheen. Bake the cinnamon raisin bagels until they’re golden brown. The edges will be just the right amount of crisp. And oh my gosh, the centers are so tender and chewy. I made three batches of these homemade bagels just to test them out and I had to freeze most of them because I couldn’t STOP EATING THEM. So, consider that a warning.

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

They’re perfection. No need to waste money on store-bought or stand in line at the bakery. Homemade is the ONLY way to do cinnamon raisin bagels. You’re going to love these!

PS: Don’t feel overwhelmed by all my instructions in the recipe! I’m just a little very crazy about being thorough because I don’t want you to feel lost. I encourage you to read through the steps before beginning.

Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Bagels

You're going to love the taste of homemade cinnamon raisin bagels. So much better than store-bought!


  • 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) warm water
  • 2 and 3/4 teaspoons Red Star® Quick-rise™ yeast1
  • 4 cups (520g) bread flour, plus more for work surface and hands
  • 1 Tablespoon (13g) light or dark brown sugar (or barley malt syrup)2
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup (112g) raisins
  • 3 Tablespoons (38g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Water Bath

  • 2 quarts water
  • 1/4 cup (85g) honey or barley malt syrup2


  • 1 egg white beaten with 1 Tablespoon water

Special Equipment

  • Stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment or bread machine (see notes)
  • Three large baking sheets (I own and love these)
  • Wire cooling rack
  • Large, wide pan (I use my 5.5 quart dutch oven)
  • Pastry brush


  1. Prepare the dough: Measure 1 and 1/2 cups warm water in a liquid measuring cup or bowl. Whisk in the yeast until completely dissolved. Allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment3, beat the flour, brown sugar, and salt for a few seconds on medium speed. With the mixer running on medium speed, slowly drizzle in the water/yeast making sure to scrape out any undissolved yeast with a spatula. You want all the yeast in the dough. With the mixer still running on medium, add the vanilla extract.
  3. Switch mixer to low speed and mix until all the flour has been worked into the dough. The dough will look shredded; that's ok. Once it appears this way, increase the speed to medium and beat for 8 minutes straight. During the last minute, add the raisins. The dough is incredibly stiff and will be somewhat dry; do not be tempted to add more liquid. During the 8 minutes, if the dough splits or breaks apart-- stop the mixer and fold the dough back together with your hands-- then continue to beat until smooth and cohesive. Use your hands to shape the dough into a ball inside the bowl.
  4. Mix the sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle it all onto a clean surface. Place the dough on top. Knead the dough only a few times to pick up all that cinnamon sugar. If the dough isn't picking it all up, sprinkle some on top and knead a few more times. The dough may become a little wet from the added sugar. This is OK.
  5. Lightly grease a large bowl with oil or spray with nonstick spray. Place the dough in the bowl, turning it to coat all sides in the oil. Loosely cover the bowl with aluminum foil or a clean kitchen towel and allow the dough to rise at room temperature for 1 and 1/2 hours. You want the dough to be larger and puffy, but not quite doubled in size. This could range from 70 - 100 minutes. Use your best judgement.
  6. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Place a wire rack over a third baking sheet. Set all three aside.
  7. Shape the bagels: When the dough is ready, gently punch it down if you notice any air bubbles. Turn it out onto a clean surface. It will still be a little stiff-- not sticky. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces. Just eyeball it. Makes no difference if one is slightly larger than another. Shape each piece into a ball and place 4 balls onto the two lined baking sheet. Then, hold up one ball and press your index finger through the center of each ball to make a hole. Poke two fingers through and widen the hole by rotating your fingers in a circular motion. You want the hole about 1.5 - 2 inches in diameter. Cover the shaped bagels with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest as you prep the water bath.
  8. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
  9. Water bath: Fill a large, wide pan with 2 quarts of water. Whisk in the honey. Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to medium or medium-high so that the water remains simmering. Drop bagels in, 2-3 at a time, making sure they have enough room to float around. Cook the bagels for 1 minute on each side. Transfer each bagel to the wire rack. They will look a little shriveled-- that's ok!
  10. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash on top and around the sides of each bagel. Place 4 of the bagels back onto each of the lined baking sheets. Bake for 20-25 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through. You want the bagels to be a dark golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow bagels to cool on the baking sheets for 20 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  11. Slice, toast, top, whatever you want! Enjoy your homemade everything bagels.
  12. Make ahead tip: These bagels freeze wonderfully! Freeze them for up to 3 months, thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then warm to your liking.

Recipe Notes:

  1. If not using an instant yeast, expect around a 50% longer rise in step 4.
  2. Barley malt syrup is a little hard to find, but truly gives bagels that traditional malty flavor we all know and love. Most natural food stores carry it. I offer alternatives such as brown sugar in the dough and honey in the water bath; I've made bagels with these alternatives AND with barley malt syrup and honestly love both versions.
  3. Bread machine: Place the dough ingredients into the pan of the machine. Program the machine to dough or manual, then start. After 9-10 minutes, the dough will be quite stiff. Allow the machine to complete its cycle, then continue with the recipe. By hand: If you do not have a mixer, you can mix the dough together in a large bowl then knead by hand for 15 minutes.

Adapted from a mix of recipes I've tried: King Arthur FlourCook's Illustrated, and Complete Book of Breads

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Tag @sallysbakeblog on Instagram and hashtag it #sallysbakingaddiction.

© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. And if you want to follow along on my book tour, find me on snapchat: sallysbakeblog. 

Here's exactly how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with lots of step-by-step photos! Click through for the recipe on

Learn how to make cinnamon raisin bagels at home! Lots of step by step pictures. Delicious recipe on
Learn how to make cinnamon raisin bagels at home! Lots of step by step pictures. Delicious recipe on



  1. Caley on October 27, 2015 at 5:58 am

    Oh, I want to make these right now. I love cinnamon raisin bagels…probably my favorite kind too, although I also really like plain and blueberry. Yours look so big, puffy, and perfect! I can just imagine the texture…mmm! 😀

  2. My Linh on October 27, 2015 at 6:12 am

    OH MY GOSH, SALLY!!! I’m salivating like crazy right now. Wish I could have these for lunch today (at work so no time for baking). I basically love anything cinnamon raisin. These look so nice. Fluffy and full of carbs (♥) As for the warm water for the yeast, do you wing it or really measure the temperature?

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 6:38 am

      Just wing it! Not boiling hot (that will kill the yeast)– just warm.

      • JoAnn on October 27, 2015 at 9:32 am

        I was taught by my grandmother to test the water on your wrist .. about same temperature as a baby bottle .. lukewarm

  3. Mir on October 27, 2015 at 6:24 am

    There’s pretty much nothing better in the world than a cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese. And if it’s fresh out of the oven, I can only imagine the happiness. Especially if I’m snuggled under a blanket into the bargain!

  4. Tori on October 27, 2015 at 6:54 am

    Oh my yum! Yes, yes, YES, bring on the barrels of bagels! These look so delish, Sally!

  5. Dodi Golosov on October 27, 2015 at 7:52 am

    Thank you Sally!!! I’ve made your Chicago deep dish pizza a number of times and it’s come out great so a bagel recipe from you is the bomb! I really love how in detail you go, all the pictures are a real help, I’m a visual person! I was wondering, how could I make my sons favorite, cheddar cheese? Any suggestions would be great. Again, thanks for all the great recipes, keep cranking’em out!!!

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:43 pm

      That chicago style pizza recipe on my blog is my go-to on Friday nights when I’m home! I looooove it. Hmm, cheddar cheese bagel… how about making my everything bagels and topping with cheddar cheese when there is about 10-15 minutes of bake time left? The cheddar cheese will melt and bake on top.

  6. Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie on October 27, 2015 at 8:06 am

    These look great! I keep telling myself I am going to make bagels soon but I have been so busy and not home on the weekends which is when I normally bake.

  7. Rachel @the dessert chronicles on October 27, 2015 at 9:07 am

    LOVE cinnamon raisin bagels! These look better than store bought for sure!

  8. Ahu on October 27, 2015 at 9:13 am

    Homemade bagels are the BEST! I went on a kick last year and then had to stop because I couldn’t stop eating them, but I’ve never tried cinnamon raisin and now I’m getting the itch again. Thank you for the great recipe! 

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:39 pm

      I’m totally on that kick right now. And my freezer is FULL of them!

  9. Stella @ Stellicious Life on October 27, 2015 at 9:30 am

    Sally, no wonder you are crazy about these bagels and couldn’t stop eating them: they look irresistible on your photos! And I bet when they are baking and your kicthen and home is filled with the cinnamon-y goodness scent then you can’t wait for them to cool enough so you can break one up and take a huge bite!

    I’ve always found bagel making quite complicated with the water bath step and all, but this recipe sold it: saving it and I can’t wait to make my own raisin-filled cinnamon bagels!

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:39 pm

      It’s not complicated– in fact, the water bath step is so simple. It’s just bringing water to a boil then dropping the bagels in it. You can do it!

  10. JoAnn on October 27, 2015 at 9:30 am

    Sound great!!  Can’t wait to try them.  Can I use whole grain bread flours?  Are there any adjustments I need to make?  Love your deliciousness .. and share with my baking friends .. even non-baking ones in hopes to convert.  Your details are so helpful.

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:38 pm

      I recommend finding a recipe specifically calling for whole wheat flour– I wouldn’t use it in place of bread flour for this recipe. Thanks for sharing my site with others!

  11. Kathryn on October 27, 2015 at 9:42 am

    Oh my gosh. Cinnamon and Raisin bagels are my favourite and you’ve got me practically drooling over her! I really have to make these, they look delicious! I for one love the rustic look of them, as long as they taste good then why does it matter what they look like?! 

  12. Madeleine on October 27, 2015 at 10:25 am

    These look amazing! Bagels are definitely on my baking bucket list. Any chance you might be willing to experiment with a whole wheat version in the future? I’d love to learn how to make those!

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:35 pm

      Not sure if I will any time soon. If you find a great recipe for them, let me know!

  13. Kristen on October 27, 2015 at 10:43 am

    I don’t have a stand mixer.. Will it hurt anything if I mix everything and knead by hand?

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:34 pm

      By hand is ok– please see recipe note.

      • Kristen on October 27, 2015 at 2:50 pm

        Oh! I saw the mixer part, but my eyes must have skipped over the ‘by hand’ portion. So sorry.. Thanks for replying despite my brain lapse! I made your everything bagels today and they’re fantastic! I crushed some fresh garlic into the dough and kneaded it in, and they’re delicious (My husband LOVES garlic. Like, eats fresh cloves, loves it).. And of course, as they were resting, I went to prepare the egg wash, and we were out of eggs =Z so I brushed the tops and sides with olive oil instead.. Not quite the same, I was cursing the fact I didn’t have eggs, but with everything bagels it kind of worked!

      • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 9:09 pm

        Perfect Kristen! The addition of garlic sounds incredible too.

  14. Stephanie on October 27, 2015 at 11:03 am

    Hi Sally! I am planning to attend your signing this Friday at Wellesley Books! Just wanted to clarify that it is okay to bring our own cookbooks that we bought from Amazon? 

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:32 pm

      You can absolutely bring your own!

      • Stephanie on October 27, 2015 at 4:56 pm

        Before I saw your reply, I called the bookstore and they said you have to purchase a cookbook there in order to participate in the signing. They said it was okay to bring additional books for you to sign, but you have to purchase at least one from them. This should be noted somewhere so folks know ahead of time. Looking forward to meeting you!

  15. Ruhma U on October 27, 2015 at 11:29 am

    Oh my gosh, these look (and probably taste) even better than yesterday’s bagels! Cinnamon and raisins beat all. Yes, I am in the wierd raisin club. 🙂

  16. Anj on October 27, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    Is it wrong that I want to lick the screen right now????

  17. Nicole @ Young, Broke and Hungry on October 27, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    I’m always in awe at your detailed instructions. You make all your recipes look so easy and approachable. I tried homemade bagels last week and omg! The taste difference is supreme. 

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:29 pm

      Thanks so much Nicole!

  18. Shannon on October 27, 2015 at 1:21 pm

    I am so excited for these! I have tried so many times to make bagels and always fail! Have you conquered whole wheat yet? I know it doesnt work to swap wheat for white flour since the protein content is different, but do you know what a good sub would be? 

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 2:28 pm

      I haven’t! If you’d like to test it out, you could try using whole wheat flour and adding wheat gluten/protein.

  19. Aarti Yogina on October 27, 2015 at 3:18 pm

    Hi Sally! I love all of your recipes. For the egg wash, what’s a good alternative? Being vegetarian I don’t bake or cook with eggs and that’s the only thing stopping me from making these delicious bagels!

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 9:10 pm

      Nothing quite compares, but you can try a brushing of olive oil instead.

  20. Rumi on October 27, 2015 at 6:02 pm

    Sally, I can’t wait to try these. I only use Red Star Platinum instant yeast for my yeast recipes. Can I skip the proofing stage adding instant yeast to the flour and then proceed with mixing in warm water? Would you recommend adding the recipe amount or could I use one packet due to the dough enhancers in the Platinum? Thanks. 

    • Sally on October 27, 2015 at 9:05 pm

      Don’t skip any stages if using Platinum– and use the same amount. That’s how I make bagels using the platinum. No changes!

  21. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet on October 27, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    This could be trouble for me as I am huge fan of bagels! I can eat an insane amount! These are pure perfection, Sally! I need to whip up a batch! 

  22. Shelby @ Go Eat and Repeat on October 27, 2015 at 8:11 pm

    It’s a great thing that you put so much detail into your recipes! It definitely helps everyone out! These look amazing!

  23. Cluck-Cluck McCluck on October 27, 2015 at 9:48 pm

    Yesssss!!!! The long awaited day of a terrific cinnamon-raisin bagel recipe!!!! Thank you heaps, I am so happy you shared this; cinnamon raisin bagels have to be my most favorite 🙂

  24. Lily on October 27, 2015 at 10:12 pm

    LOVE this recipe! Which stand mixer do you use? I keep wavering between the different Kitchenaid models (Artisan 4.5 qt, Artisan 5 qt, Professional 500 model and Professional 600 model). I’m just worried that the mixer can’t handle my cinnamon raisin bagel addiction! (and other bread products)

    • Sally on October 28, 2015 at 7:52 pm

      Haha! Well, Lily, I have two Artisan 5 quarts. My favorites. They hold up well!

  25. Karen @ The Food Charlatan on October 28, 2015 at 1:58 am

    I barely even like raisins OR bagels (I know, who am I) and yet somehow I’m sitting over here craving these babies like there’s NO TOMORROW. 

    • Sally on October 28, 2015 at 7:50 pm

      Hahaha what a compliment!

  26. Brittany on October 28, 2015 at 2:17 am

    Made your pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on my youtube channel! It was the perfect girls night activity, and my friends loved them! I made sure to link you. We may need to make these next time. I’v never made homemade bagels before… sounds like a fun adventure 😉 

    XO Brittany 

  27. Amy @ Accidental Happy Baker on October 28, 2015 at 11:53 am

    This is happening. I will not fail, because Sally never lets me down and she said I can do this! Yes, this is my personal peptalk because baking bagels intimidates the heck out of me, but I will conquer them. 

  28. Maggie on October 28, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    I was looking for a new kitchen project and look what just showed up in my feed. I can’t wait to try these bagels this weekend!! Thanks for sharing.

  29. Amy @ Amy's Healthy Baking on October 28, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    Yesssss. Cinnamon raisin bagels are my favorite!! And whoever hates raisins in bagels or desserts… I will gladly eat their fair share. And my own. And then some. 😉 You’re definitely inspiring me to finally cross bagels off of my baking bucket list Sally!

  30. Emily on October 28, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    I was just wondering what to do to make plain bagels?? I would really love to make plain bagels should I just use the everything bagel recipe without the topping?? Would that be the best recipe?? THanks

    • Sally on October 29, 2015 at 8:28 am

      Yep, I note in that recipe that you can leave off all toppings for plain. Enjoy!


  1. Meghan on July 18, 2018 at 7:32 am

    I’m a big fan of your site as well as your books. I don’t often work with yeast so am trying to get a bit more practice in and made these yesterday and they turned out great. Rustic, for sure, but they have the nice bagel outside and are still nice on the inside. Thank you for another recipe.

    • Sally on July 18, 2018 at 12:42 pm

      I’m glad you are starting to work with yeast! It will open up the possibilities of so many amazing recipes for you 🙂


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