Homemade Everything Bagels

Here’s a complete recipe and video tutorial for hot ‘n’ fresh homemade everything bagels. Skip the store-bought because bagels are easier than you think!

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

I dedicated the past month to homemade bagels. There are only so many ways to successfully make bagels, so I used a mix of kitchen-tested recipes as inspiration. I tested several recipes before figuring out what I like best. Never in 1 million years did I think I could EVER make New York bakery-style bagels in my own kitchen. It’s possible!

These everything bagels are:

  • hot ‘n’ fresh
  • extra chewy
  • soft in the center
  • golden brown
  • complete with a salty, crunchy crust

Incredible plain, toasted, with cream cheese, as a turkey sandwich, topped with a fried egg, avocado, and so much more.

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

Homemade bagels aren’t difficult as long as you take your time. By the 2nd time you make them, you’ll breeze right through all the steps. I promise!

How to Make Homemade Everything Bagels

The first step is to prepare the bagel dough. There’s only 5 ingredients.

  • Warm Water: Liquid for the dough.
  • Yeast: Allows the dough to rise. I recommend an instant or active dry yeast. Red Star Yeast is my #1 choice.
  • 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.
  • Salt: Flavor.

The bagel dough is a little dry, dense, and shaggy. This is perfectly normal and exactly what you’re looking for. It will come together as you knead it. I recommend kneading by hand because the dough is VERY heavy and could do damage to your mixer!

Baking with Yeast Guide

Reference this Baking with Yeast Guide whenever you work with baker’s yeast. I include practical answers to all of your common yeast questions.

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

After the dough rises, it’s time to shape the bagels. First, divide the ball of dough into 8 equal parts. It does not have to be perfect! Some can be a little smaller than others. Smooth them out as best you can.

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

How to Shape Bagels

Shaping everything bagels is easier than it looks. Poke your finger through the center of the ball of dough. Make a hole about 1.5 – 2 inches large. That’s it! As you can see, mine aren’t totally perfect looking. Perfection is overrated and the bagels taste the same no matter how awesome they look. 😉

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

What is the Purpose a Bagel Water Bath?

The bagel water bath is the most crucial step in bagel making. Boil the shaped bagels for 1 minute on each side.

  1. Boiling bagels give the crust its beautiful shine. But looks aren’t everything. This shine is actually a result of the dough’s starches becoming gelatinized. Cooks Illustrated teaches us that these starches cook to a crisp, shiny coating in the oven.
  2. Boiling bagels cooks the outer layer of dough, which guarantees they’ll hold their shape when baking.

Honey: Add a little honey to the boiling water. Honey provides extra caramelization on the bagel crust. Barley malt syrup works too– see recipe notes below.

Water Bath for Homemade Bagels

Everything Bagel Seasoning

Before baking, let’s top the bagels. Brush with a little egg white, then coat in everything bagel seasoning. This is a blend of poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried minced onion, dried garlic flakes, and coarse salt. Feel free to use more of one seasoning than another, or leave one out if you don’t like it. Or use all poppy seeds, all sesame seeds, all coarse salt, etc. You can make so many bagel varieties from this homemade bagel recipe!

Highly recommended: Top homemade soft pretzels with this seasoning!!

Everything Bagel Seasoning

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

Last step is to bake the bagels until golden brown perfection.

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

After you make the homemade everything bagels, you’ll realize how simple they are! The instructions look overwhelming, but I’m extra thorough so you have the best success. Save your money and make bagels at home!

More Homemade Bread Recipes

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Homemade Everything Bagels

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 8 bagels
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Here’s a complete recipe and tutorial for hot ‘n’ fresh homemade everything bagels. Skip the store-bought and bakery because bagels are easier than you think! Don’t skip the water bath and egg wash- both provide an extra chewy and golden brown crust.


Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/2 cups warm water
  • 2 and 3/4 teaspoons Red Star® Quick-rise™ yeast*
  • 4 cups (480g) bread flour*
  • 1 Tablespoon packed light or dark brown sugar (or barley malt syrup)*
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • coating the bowl: nonstick spray or 1 Tablespoon olive oil

Water Bath

  • 2 quarts water
  • 1/4 cup honey (or barley malt syrup)*

Topping

  • 2 Tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon dried minced onion
  • 1 Tablespoon dried garlic flakes
  • 1 Tablespoon coarse salt
  • egg wash: 1 egg white beaten with 1 Tablespoon water

Instructions

  1. 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.
  2. Add the flour, brown sugar, and salt. Beat on low speed for 2 minutes. The dough is very stiff and will look somewhat dry.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. With lightly floured hands, knead the dough for 4-5 minutes. The dough is too heavy for the mixer to knead it!
  4. 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.
  5. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  6. 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 above for a visual. Loosely cover the shaped bagels with kitchen towel and rest for a few minutes as you prepare the water bath.
  7. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
  8. 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.
  9. Combine the everything bagel seasoning ingredients together. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash on top and around the sides of each bagel. Dip into the everything bagel seasoning. 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.
  10. 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.

Notes

  1. Overnight Instructions: Prepare the dough through step 4, allowing the dough to rise overnight in the refrigerator. 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.
  2. Freezing 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.
  3. Yeast: Use instant or active dry yeast. If using active dry yeast, the rise time may be up to 2 hours. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
  4. Bread Flour: Bagels require a high protein flour. Bread flour is a must.
  5. 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.
  6. Everything Bagel Seasoning: Use store-bought everything bagel seasoning if desired. You can mix and match these seasonings, add more/less of any, leave 1 out, etc. These are just basic measurements to follow.
  7. 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.
  8. By Hand: If you do not have a mixer, you can mix the dough together in a large bowl then knead by hand for 10-15 minutes.
  9. Special Equipment: stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, large baking sheets (I love these), big pot (I use my 5.5 quart dutch oven), pastry brush.
  10. Adapted from a mix of recipes I’ve tried: King Arthur FlourCook’s Illustrated, and Complete Book of Breads.

Keywords: everything bagels, bagels

Bagel with cream cheese

Here is a complete step-by-step instructional tutorial (and recipe!) for homemade bagels. I love the everything flavor!

215 Comments

  1. Just tried making this. Tasty but a little doughier than I liked. Should I try boiling a little longer? A!so, little dark on bottom, do they need to be flipped halfway through baking? Or pan just rotated as stated in recipe?

    1. Hi Kay! It sounds like the bagels are not cooked through. No need to boil longer, but it would help to bake longer at a lower oven temperature. This would help with the burning issue you are experiencing. No need to flip them.

  2. This is my go to recipe the only change I made was I added 1Tablespoon of baking soda to the water and when rising the dough I place a heating pad on the counter put it on low and put the bowl on top an cover it with a damp kitchen towel. It cuts your rise time in half, (like a mini proofing box) this works for all recipes that say (place in a warm place to rise) it works great best begal recipe ever!!

  3. Best bagel recipe! Have tried a few and this one was the easiest and the most authentic tasting. We all loved it! Thank you!

  4. Hi – I tried your bagel recipe recently and am amazed how good they are and how easy they were to make. I was preparing to send the website link to my daughter for her to try and it struck me that something had changed when I printed out the recipe (last week) and today. I have been baking for decades and and always viewed with suspicion recipes that gave exact times for kneading and that is what is now missing from your recipe. No longer do you recommend an 8 minute knead of the dough nor do you recommend the use of a mixer. Seems like some kind of explanation might be in order. Nonetheless the bagels are excellent and worth a try. Happy new year!

    1. Hi John, after additional recent testing, I recommend kneading the dough by hand as this bagel dough can be pretty heavy for the mixer to mix for a full 8 minutes. 2-3 minutes is OK, then finish up by hand. The recipe is exactly the same otherwise. Thanks for trying and sharing the bagel recipe!

  5. Egg wash replacement? I plan on making these for brunch next week but my friend has an egg allergy – i’m struggling to come up with anything to make the toppings stick but without changing or overpowering the flavours…

  6. Saving this to try soon. Couple questions (its just my wife and I):
    – how many days are they good for if you eat one per day?
    – do they freeze well after baking?
    Thanks,
    MikeB

    P.s. love getting your FB posts, always share them to my timeline for future use.

    1. Hi Mike, leftover bagels tightly and store at room temperature for a few days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. 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.

  7. Hey Sally, loved this recipe. I made these and they tasted delicious, but were a bit flat. Any idea what went wrong? In the photos yours are so round and fluffy. Mine were a bit more like Montreal bagels.

    1. Hi Dan! Did they puff up during the boiling water step? They should be nice and plump after that. Make sure your yeast is active as well and that the dough is rising properly.

      1. Hi, I can’t seem to find what it is you are referring to when you say baking soda bath. In the steps the only thing you mention putting in the water is honey?

      2. Thanks for catching that! I meant the boiling water step– I use baking soda in my pretzel recipe!

  8. This recipe was awesome! I’ve been wanting to try it for a while now, but was afraid it would be challening to get it right. But they were very easy! It’s just my husband and I so I cut the recipe in half thinking 8 bagels would be way too much, but I’m already wishing I made a full batch! They tast great and were very easy.

  9. I’ve made this recipe three times now. I always let the dough rise overnight in the fridge, and I bake the bagels on slightly oiled parchment paper on top of a pizza stone.

    I never thought I’d be able to make bagels this legit at home. After 30 years living in California, this ex-New Yorker can finally retire her bagel envy!

  10. I have been following your site for years because I love baking cookies, but I saw this recipe and it looked straightforward so I decided to try it. I live in NYC – Land of the Best Bagels – and these might make it up to that level! I had some trouble shaping the bagels into circles because the dough wouldn’t scrunch together, do you have any advice on this? Thank you!

    1. I’m so thrilled that you tried these even with living in NYC! Mine are never as pretty and smooth as those from the bakeries – but I just embrace their rustic style 🙂

  11. Hi, what type mixer did you use to unread your dough? I have a Kitchenaid Pro 600 series with a 575 watt motor. Do you think it will stand up to kneading the dough?

  12. I love this recipe but found it is more successful when I mix it in the bread maker. However I find the everything mix to be too salty so will either reduce or eliminate the salt next time.

  13. These bagels are AMAZING! Our first attempt at EVER making bagels and they came out PERFECT. Wouldn’t change a thing. Can’t wait to impress my co-workers tomorrow.

  14. Omg! This recipe is amazing!!!! I will never buy bagels again. Shortly after making them and trying one, I ran to the store to get more ingredients to make more! I want to try and make a pumpkin spice one next :). I wish I could post a pic of the finished product.

    Only alteration I made was to add a tsp of sugar to yeast and water.

  15. Sally, this was a great recipe. I had never made bagels before, though I often make challah and foccacia. They came out well, though the topping was a bit salty. I’ll adjust next time. I do have two questions for you:
    1. Is it necessary to knead the dough (your step #3) if you’ll be refrigerating the dough overnight? I’ve read that it may not necessary, but am curious what you do.
    2. I used brown sugar in the dough ingredients and honey in the boiling water. If using barley malt syrup, should you use the same quantity that the recipe calls for in the sugar/honey? In other words, 1 Tbsp brown sugar = 1 Tbsp malt syrup?

    Thank you!

    -Brad

    1. Hi Brad, thank you for the comment! And I’m happy to help. Yes, I still recommend kneading the dough if you’re using the overnight method. And yes, use the SAME amount of barley malt syrup if you’re using it to replace the other sugars.

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