Learn how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with this simple recipe tutorial. You only need a handful of basic ingredients and they taste WAY better than store-bought!
Let’s all agree that cinnamon raisin bagels are the best bagel variety. Everything bagels, you hold nothing on cinnamon and raisins. 🙂 Today I’m teaching you how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with a few basic ingredients and a deliciously dense bread dough.
These bagels are:
- hot & fresh
- extra chewy
- soft in the center
- golden brown
- sweet & cinnamon-y
Let’s do this!
Ingredients in Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Bagels
This cinnamon raisin bagels recipe is similar to my homemade everything bagels and plain homemade bagels recipes. The only difference is that we’re adding a little vanilla extract, sugar, cinnamon, and raisins to the bagel dough.
- Yeast & Warm Water: Allows the dough to rise. I recommend an instant or active dry yeast.
- Bread Flour: A high protein flour is necessary for making bagels. We want a dense and chewy texture, not soft and airy like cinnamon rolls. Bread flour is the only solution!
- Brown Sugar: Bakeries use barley malt syrup to sweeten the bagel dough– it can be a little difficult to find, but brown sugar is a fine substitute. Read more in my recipe notes below.
- Vanilla Extract: For extra delicious flavor to these sweet bagels.
- Raisins: Use around 3/4 – 1 cup. Dried cranberries are a delicious substitute!
- Sugar & Cinnamon: Knead the dough directly on the mixture. We’ll use our hands to work it into the dough! This method, rather than just mixing it all in, helps create little swirls and pockets of cinnamon sugar. The dough gets a little moist from the sugar, but that’s completely fine.
Reference this Baking with Yeast Guide whenever you work with baker’s yeast. I include practical answers to all of your common yeast questions.
After the dough rises, shape it into 8 separate balls.
Shape Bagels in 2 Easy Steps
Shaping bagels is a lot easier than it looks. You can watch me shape bagels in the video below, where I’m preparing plain and everything bagels. Same method applies to these homemade cinnamon raisin bagels.
- Poke your finger through the center of the dough ball.
- Widen the hole to about 1.5 – 2 inches wide.
Boil the Bagels Before Baking
After you shape the bagels, it’s time to boil them. Why?
- Boiling the bagels gives the bagel its beautiful shine. But looks aren’t everything– this shine is actually a result of the dough’s starches becoming gelatinized. These starches cook to a crisp, shiny coating in the oven. I learned this from Cooks Illustrated.
- Boiling bagels cooks the outer layer of dough, which guarantees they’ll hold their shape when baking.
Add honey or barley malt syrup to the water bath because it adds caramelization and crisp to the crust. Brushing the boiled bagels with egg wash does the same. Don’t skip either!
These homemade bagels are 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!
More Homemade Favorites
- Homemade Cinnamon Swirl Bread
- Easy Jalapeño Cheddar Bread
- Homemade Cinnamon Sugar Pop Tarts
- Homemade Brownies
- Homemade Biscuits
- Homemade Everything Bagels
Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Bagels
- Prep Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 3 hours
- Yield: 8 bagels
- Category: Bread
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Learn how to make homemade cinnamon raisin bagels with this simple recipe tutorial. Don’t skip the water bath and egg wash- both provide an extra chewy and golden brown crust.
- 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) warm water
- 2 and 3/4 teaspoons instant or active dry yeast*
- 4 cups (520g) bread flour (spoon & leveled), plus more for work surface and hands*
- 1 Tablespoon (13g) packed light or dark brown sugar (or barley malt syrup)*
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup (110g) raisins
- 3 Tablespoons (38g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- coating the bowl: nonstick spray or 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 2 quarts water
- 1/4 cup (85g) honey (or barley malt syrup)*
- 1 egg white beaten with 1 Tablespoon water
- Prepare the dough: Whisk the warm water and yeast together in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment. Cover and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
- Add the flour, brown sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Beat on low speed for 2 minutes, then beat in the raisins until combined. The dough is very stiff and will look somewhat dry.
- Mix the sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle onto a clean surface. Place the dough on top. Knead the dough for 5 minutes, picking up all that cinnamon sugar. Work as much of the cinnamon sugar mixture as you can into the dough. The dough may become a little wet from the added sugar– that’s ok.
- Lightly grease a large bowl with oil or nonstick spray. Place the dough in the bowl, turning it to coat all sides in the oil. Cover the bowl with aluminum foil, plastic wrap, or a clean kitchen towel. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature for 60-90 minutes or until double in size.
- Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- Shape the bagels: When the dough is ready, punch it down to release any air bubbles. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces. (Just eyeball it– doesn’t need to be perfect!) Shape each piece into a ball. Press your index finger through the center of each ball to make a hole about 1.5 – 2 inches in diameter. Watch video below for a visual. Loosely cover the shaped bagels with kitchen towel and rest for a few minutes as you prepare the water bath.
- Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
- Water bath: Fill a large, wide pot with 2 quarts of water. Whisk in the honey. Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-high. Drop bagels in, 2-4 at a time, making sure they have enough room to float around. Cook the bagels for 1 minute on each side.
- Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash on top and around the sides of each bagel. Place 4 bagels onto each lined baking sheet.
- 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.
- Slice, toast, top, whatever you want! Cover leftover bagels tightly and store at room temperature for a few days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Overnight Make Ahead Instructions: Prepare the dough through step 4, but allow the dough to rise overnight in the refrigerator instead of at room temperature for 60-90 minutes. The slow rise gives the bagels wonderful flavor! In the morning, remove the dough from the refrigerator and let the dough rise for 45 minutes at room temperature. Continue with step 5. I don’t recommend shaping the bagels the night before as they may puff up too much overnight.
- Freezing Make Ahead Instructions: 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. You can also freeze the bagel dough. After punching down the dough in step 6, wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap, then a layer of aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then punch the dough down again to release any air bubbles. Continue with the rest of step 6.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Stand Mixer | Baking Sheets | Parchment Paper or Silicone Baking Mats | Large Pot (such as a large 5.5 quart dutch oven) | Pastry Brush
- Yeast: Use instant or active dry yeast. If using active dry yeast, the rise time may be up to 2 hours. 1 standard packet is about 2 and 1/4 teaspoons, so you will need a little more than 1 packet of yeast. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
- Bread Flour: Bagels require a high protein flour. Bread flour is a must. Here are all my recipes using bread flour if you want more recipes to use it up. All-purpose flour can be used in a pinch, but the bagels will taste flimsy and won’t be nearly as chewy.
- Barley Malt Syrup: This ingredient can be 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.
- 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.
- Halve or Double: You can halve this dough recipe by simply halving all of the dough ingredients (do not halve the water or honey for the boiling step). No changes to the recipe instructions. For best taste and texture and to not overwhelm your mixer with excess heavy dough, I do not recommend doubling this dough recipe. Instead, make separate batches of dough.
- Adapted from a mix of recipes I’ve tried: King Arthur Flour, Cook’s Illustrated, and Complete Book of Breads
Keywords: cinnamon raisin bagels, bagels
Reader Comments & Reviews
Rather than turning the dough out onto the counter and kneading by hand for 5 minutes, could you knead it using the stand mixer?
Hi Deb, it can sometimes get a bit heavy for the mixer, but feel free to give it a go if your mixer seems to handle it okay!
I made these exactly as written and they are perfect. Might use a tad more cinnamon next time. My first attempt a bagels. Not at all difficult.
These look delicious! Could you make these using whole wheat flour? Would it be the same amount as using bread flour?
Hi Kelsey, we don’t recommend using all whole wheat flour, but you could try half whole wheat, half bread flour. The bagels may be a bit dense and won’t be quite as chewy. Hope you enjoy them!
I make these bagels all the time just as the recipe says, and they are delicious. If I wanted to make 16, would I double all the ingredients .. particularly the yeast?
Hi Jennifer, for best results, we recommend making two separate batches rather than doubling. Glad to hear you enjoy these bagels!
Thanks, I guess I’ll continue to do what I have been doing! They are so good, I don’t want to mess them up 🙂
I am leaving this review for the likelyhood that there is somebody out there like me that’s way too lazy to go buy bread flour. I made these today with 3 cups of all purpose flour, and added the cinnamon and sugar right to the dough because (again lazy)
And they turned out perfect. Had zero problems with gooey dough. Perfect bagel texture.
Made the first batch cinnamon raisin and they turned out so good I’m now making a second batch with chocolate chips!
I made these for my husband yesterday. They may be the most gnarly looking bagels I’ve ever seen, but they taste wonderful. Making them is much easier than I thought it would be. Poppy seed bagels for me today.
If you love cinnamon, add more. Thank you for the great directions, but… I don’t know how these can be cinnamon bagels with only one teaspoon for the whole recipe. I added one tablespoon of cinnamon to the flour, and instead of using only one teaspoon with the sugar I used one tablespoon.
I have made these bagels MANY times (more than 12) and continue to struggle with the gooeyness of the dough. The flavor is fantastic. I have tried less water, more flour, even putting the cinnamon sugar in while mixing ((not a good idea!). It’s a bit better in winter, but so difficult in summer, I rarely make them. My dough always looks soggy and slack, not like yours. I weigh my flour. Anything else I could try?
Hi Grace, There are a lot of variables that go into the consistency of dough, even down to the weather and humidity in the air. There’s nothing wrong with adding just a little more flour to bring the dough into a less sticky and knead-able consistency.
These were good, but I couldn’t taste very much cinnamon. I will increase the amount next time. The dough was also super sticky which made them hard to shape and they turned out ugly. I will definitely try again though!
Hi Maggie, practice definitely makes perfect with bagel shaping! Don’t be afraid to add a Tbs or two extra flour to help bring the dough to a more kneadable consistency – and make sure to flour your hands and work surface! Let us know how they go if you give them another try 🙂
Hello, is barley malt syrup the same as maltose? Thanks!
I am allergic to egg whites, could I use egg yolk instead?
Hi Cecily! Instead of egg wash, try brushing the bagels with some milk before baking.
Absolute heaven. I must say, homemade bagels are way better than store bought and a bakery. My 12 year old wanted to make these but with chocolate chips. So we did for New Years and I assisted. They were possibly one of the best things I’ve ever eaten. We added a smidge more water and substituted the raisins for one cup of milk chocolate chips. This is definitely a keeper recipe. A must try and ty for sharing all your recipes. I wish I could submit a pic.
I didn’t really like the taste or texture. A bit spongy and needs a little more cinnamon. I prefer store bought.
I had no problems with the dough being too sticky. Water and flour is always a guide in bread doing recipes. I added just a sprinkle or two during the kneading process. A common mistake is adding too much flour to dough at that stage. Sticky dough becomes manageable and comes together as it’s kneaded. I kneaded mine in the bowl with my Irish dough whisk to avoid messy hands and needing extra flour. I strongly recommend purchasing one.