We’re in limbo between Christmas and New Year’s, and to me this is the perfect time to talk about homemade bagels.  Many of us have a blessed extra day or two off of work, and may find ourselves with an extra moment to spend in the kitchen.  New Year’s resolutions and diets are looming so if there was ever a time to enjoy an amazing homemade carb bomb, it would be now.  Of course if one of your resolutions is to make yeast breads and doughs at home, then bagels might help with that.  Basically I can always find a way to justify the making of bagels.

This base bagel recipe is not new to the blog but I felt the topic could use some updating and that it might benefit from step-by-step pics.  I am also quite giddy about finally finding the perfect ratio for the “everything” seed topping.  In the past I would just mix together the necessary ingredients until it looked right, except it never tasted quite right.  Now it does.  I really should have Googled that sooner.  You can make these with a stand mixer or simply by hand.  Once you’ve got the basic bagel concept down, the sky is the limit.  You can customize your bagels however you see fit with mix-ins, toppings, and spreads.  If I’m going to put in the effort to make bagels, I always make a full batch.  I find that they freeze very well and it’s always nice to be able to pull a few out of the freezer if you have unexpected company over for breakfast or brunch.  I freeze after boiling and baking completely, then thaw briefly on low power in the microwave and toast as usual.  I must say though, once you start making your own bagels store-bought just won’t cut it anymore.  You’ve been warned.


For the sponge:
1 tsp. (0.11 oz.) instant yeast
4 cups (18 oz.) unbleached bread flour
2 ½ cups (20 oz.) water, at room temperature

For the dough: 
½ teaspoon (0.055 oz.) instant yeast
3 ¾ cups (17 oz.) unbleached bread flour
2 ¾ teaspoons (0.7 oz.) salt
2 teaspoons (0.33 oz.) malt powder OR 1 tablespoon (0.5 oz.) dark or light malt syrup, honey, or brown sugar

To finish:
1 tablespoon baking soda
Semolina flour or cornmeal, for dusting
Desired toppings (such as cinnamon-sugar, shredded cheese, seeds, etc.)
*”Everything” topping: combine 4 tsp. each of poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried minced garlic, dried minced onion and 2 tsp. kosher salt)


  • 01

    To make the sponge, stir the yeast into the flour in a medium mixing bowl.  Add the water, whisking or stirring only until it forms a smooth, sticky batter (similar to pancake batter).

  • 02

    Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for approximately 2 hours, or until the mixture becomes very foamy and bubbly.  It should swell to nearly double in size and collapse when the bowl is tapped on the countertop.

  • 03

    To make the dough, in the same mixing bowl (or in the bowl of an electric mixer), add the additional yeast to the sponge and stir.  Then add 3 cups of the flour and all of the salt and malt. Stir (or mix on low speed with the dough hook) until the ingredients form a ball, slowly working in the remaining ¾ cup flour to stiffen the dough.

  • 04

    Transfer the dough to the counter and knead for at least 10 minutes (or for 6 minutes with the mixer). The dough should be firm, stiffer than French bread dough, but still pliable and smooth.  There should be no raw flour – all the ingredients should be hydrated.  The dough should pass the windowpane test and register 77 to 81˚ F.  If the dough seems dry and rips, add a few drops of water and continue kneading.  If the dough seems tacky or sticky, add more flour to achieve the stiffness required.  The kneaded dough should feel satiny and pliable but not be tacky.

  • 05

    Immediately divide the dough into 4 ½ ounce pieces for standard bagels, or smaller if desired. Form the pieces into rolls.  Cover the rolls with a damp towel and allow them to rest for approximately 20 minutes.

  • 06

    Line two sheet pans with baking parchment and mist lightly with spray oil.  Proceed with shaping the bagels by pushing a hole through the center and stretching out the hole to 2 ½ inches in diameter.  Place each of the shaped pieces 2 inches apart on the pan.  Mist the bagels very lightly with the spray oil and slip each pan into a food-grade plastic bag, or cover loosely with plastic wrap.  Let the pans sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes.

  • 07

    Check to see if the bagels are ready to be retarded in the refrigerator by using the “float test”.  Fill a small bowl with cool or room-temperature water.  The bagels are ready to be retarded when they float within 10 seconds of being dropped into the water.  Take one bagel and test it.  If it floats, immediately return the tester bagel to the pan, pat it dry, cover the pan, and place it in the refrigerator overnight.  (At this point, the bagels can be refrigerated for up to 2 days).  If the bagel does not float, return it to the pan and continue to proof the dough at room temperature, checking back every 10 to 20 minutes or so until a tester floats. The time needed to accomplish the float will vary, depending on the ambient temperature and the stiffness of the dough.

  • 08

    The following day (or when you are ready to bake the bagels), preheat the oven to 500° F with the two racks set in the middle of the oven.  Bring a large pot of water to a boil (the wider the pot the better), and add the baking soda.  Have a slotted spoon or skimmer nearby.  Have your toppings ready.  (Please excuse the fingerpaint situation in the background.  It’s sort of a constant part of our weekend mornings.)

  • 09

    Remove the bagels from the refrigerator and gently drop them into the water, boiling only as many comfortably fit (they should float within 10 seconds).

    After 1 minute flip them over and boil another minute.  If you like very chewy bagels, you can extend the boiling to 2 minutes per side.

    While the bagels are boiling, sprinkle the same parchment-line sheet pans with cornmeal or semolina flour.  (If you decided to replace the paper, be sure to spray the new paper lightly with spray oil to prevent the bagels from sticking to the surface.)  If you want to top the bagels, do so as soon as they come out of the water.

  • 10

    When all the bagels have been boiled, place the pans on the 2 middle shelves in the oven.  Bake for approximately 5 minutes, then rotate the pans, switching shelves and giving the pans a 180˚ rotation.  (If you are baking only 1 pan, keep it on the center shelf but still rotate 180˚.)  After the rotation, lower the oven setting to 450° F and continue baking for about 5 minutes, or until the bagels turn light golden brown.  You may bake them darker if you prefer.

    Remove the pans from the oven and let the bagels cool on a rack for 15 minutes or longer before serving.


  • Anonymous

    I had to laugh when you said “if one of your resolutions is to make yeast breads and doughs at home, then bagels might help with that” because it actually is one of my goals this year! :-) So you can bet I’m going to bookmark this and when the intimidation of yeast anything dies down, I’m diving in!

  • do you think you would be able to freeze some of the dough if you didn’t want to cook up a whole dozen at once?

  • As much as I love bread, bagels have never been on my radar….until now. Yum-o

  • They look devine. I am off to the kitchen right now to make the dough so I can have some for breakfast tomorrow. Can’t wait…

  • These look so perfect and delicious – I can’t wait to make some of my own!

  • I’d love to make my own bagels! Thanks for including step-by-step directions for this recipe!

  • I love the topping on everything bagels, and loved when I was sent a sample of Everything Bagel spice – it can be used on top of bagels like you’re making or I use it in and on top of my Irish Soda Bread. It gives me the illusion of the delicious carb bomb bagel with a bit more fiber!

  • Fashionablecollections

    This is insane. I absolutely love bagels but idk if I could ever do this!!

  • <3 carb bombs. You've been such an inspiration with the home baked breads this year, girl. I take such pride in making my own burger/dog buns, and now tortillas. These are next on the hit list. Thanks so much!

  • natasha

    which type of malt powder do you use? The diastatic or non-diastatic

  • sweetsugarbelle

    You really amaze me. As swing as I saw homemade bagels in my reader I thought,”cool, but there’s no way…” then I clicked over and see, my goal is to make you fearless in the kitchen and I had to lol. You did. I know you make this loom easier than it is! Thank you so much for all you do! Im looking forward to a year of yeast bread from you!

  • Kelsey

    Great post, Annie. I’ve wanted to make homemade bagels for quite some time now and this has given me just the push I needed to go for it!

  • I haven’t made homemade bagels in ages! I should try to whip some up again in the near future, especially since I’m on the search for THE perfect onion bagel. Maybe homemade is the only way. :)

  • Cpower79

    Wow. These look amazing and I cannot wait to try them!

  • these look amazing! :)

  • Christina Coursey

    I love everything you do but I just started making bagels and will never change my recipe now. They are amazing! http://selfishlyhappy.blogspot.com/2011/12/recipe-bagels-make-this-today.html

    A little less time involved.

  • Kristen

    Mmm… I’m salivating over here in New Jersey! These look awesome :) Can’t wait to try it out!

  • Haley

    These look so, so good Annie! I’ve heard homemade bagels are the dig and have been wanting to try it. I bet raisin nut would be awesome too. So many different combinations! :)

  • These look gorgeous, and the pictures are so helpful! I am in fact resolving to try out more yeast breads at home this year, so I am bookmarking these!

  • Anonymous

    I just use brown sugar.

  • I have always wanted to try homemade bagels! Thank you so much for posting the step by step photos, they will definitely come in handy!

  • Thank you so much for this! Making bagels in on my cooking/baking bucket list and now I know where to turn when I do make them.

  • your bagels looks wonderful

  • Heather W.

    Yummmm! I’ve been wanting to try making bagels forever. I’ve been a little chicken because of all the steps but you make it look less intimidating. I may try them this weekend!

  • Maria Powers

    Yes, I think New Years Weekend will be a great time for a baking project like this. Do you have any tips for doubling the recipe? That seems like a lot of work for 12-16 bagels.

  • so, if I want to do blueberry bagels do I add the blueberries after I add the 3/4 cup flour to stiffen the dough? thanks for the advice!

  • Melissa

    I want to come live at your house!!!

  • Anonymous

    It’s not much work at all. I’ve never doubled it myself but would probably just make two separate batches.

  • Anonymous

    I plan to post about those specifically later. You can’t just mix in fresh berries because they will be crushed. I’m going to try a few options and see what works best.

  • Anonymous

    I have only frozen them as outlined above. Feel free to experiment!

  • Courtney Tigney

    looking forward to trying this, thanks for sharing!

  • I was actually thinking about making bagels this weekend! This looks like the perfect recipe.

  • These look fantastic! So skilled :)

  • Christalh


  • Those look great. I’m so going to make those soon.

  • Angela

    I am a bit scared of baking bread at home….fear of it not turning out and wasting that much time….anyway, I would like to start trying. So, what is the “window pane test?” Thanks.

  • Adthomas218

    I’ve been wanting to make my own bagels for quite sometime now! I know my husband will appreciate them. : )

    And may I ask: WHERE DID YOU GET THAT BEAUTIFUL TURQUOISE POT??? It looks nice & heavy duty!

  • Anne Lee

    Wow these look great! I would love to make homemade bagels!

  • Anne Lee

    Wow these look great! I would love to make homemade bagels!

  • Anonymous

    It’s a Le Creuset pot. I love it!

  • Anonymous
  • Traci

    Annie, did you weigh your ingredients, or did you measure?

  • Anonymous

    I generally weigh whenever weights are provided.

  • Samilees

    OMG I’m tired. I want to go to sleep. BUT I just saw that freaking wonderful looking bagel with all those delightful seeds and want to take a huge giant bit out of my monitor because I’m hungry and I don’t have anything that good in my kitchen.

  • Joshgitchel

    I have made these too, they are great. If you want I could send you some pictures of what I have ended up with. They aren’t easy by by stretch of the imagination though. You really need to know about the basic steps of baking.

  • YUMMY! Love bagels!

  • thanks so much, and that’s what my fear was that i would have blue blueberry bagels instead of bagels with blueberries in them. appreciate the response, and looking forward to your discovery.

  • Emma

    Oh my goodness, Annie, I started making these pretty much immediately after I read your post yesterday, and we just ate some for breakfast. They were … incredible! I agree with you in that I’m going to have a very hard time buying storebought (or even bakery-made) bagels from now on! It will be so much better to just make these in advance and store in the freezer. And a big thumb’s-up on the “everything” topping as well — it tasted spot-on. Thanks for the step-by-step post! I’d seen this recipe floating around before, but seeing those photos of the process made it seem much more achievable, and it actually ended up being a fairly easy process, like you said. Thank you so much.

  • Mayalaurent

    I have a recipe pulled from Cooking Light to make these today or tomorrow. Might have to try your recipe instead. Yum!

  • I had the very same question~ Thanks for the link:)

  • I’ve only made homemade bagels once, but they were fantastic. I need to get back into making them again. This tutorial is excellent!

  • hannahbanana_123

    I’ve always wanted to make bagels (especially everything bagels) and you’re right, now is the time!

  • The Cooking Teacher

    These look delicious, almost identical to the ones I made a few weeks ago from Cooking Light. http://lessonsinfood.wordpress.com/2011/11/25/real-bagels/ I ordered some great toppings from Penzey’s online as well as some malt syrup. Looking forward to seeing how they are with that addition.
    The Bread Baker’s Apprentice is such a great resource, I will have to try this version as well.

  • Yum! Definitely going to give these a try – so excited that you perfected the everything bagel, too–those are the best!

  • wowwww that is awesome! they look so delicious!

  • rebecca

    Just pulled these out of the oven! They are delicious both un-toasted and toasted. I don’t think I will buy bagels at the store ever again!

  • Thia

    These look soooo good. I can’t wait to try them.

  • SARA

    question: Would you change much if you used a homemade sourdough starter? I hate using instant yeast when I already have starter but I don’t know if its wise to mess with the recipe if I haven’t even tried it yet! Also can you do it all on one day or is the refrigeration necessary?

  • Anonymous

    Honestly I wouldn’t even know where to begin with making that sort of alteration. I have starter in my fridge but still use instant yeast all the time. When a recipe is already well tested and reliable, I have no desire to mess with it. Good luck!

  • Dina

    Question: Do they have to be refrigerated? I’m super impatient!

  • Anonymous

    To have the proper end texture and taste, yes.

  • Do you reuse your parchment? I’m wondering what gives it the pretty rustic brown color :)

  • Anonymous

    I buy the unbleached kind, so it’s naturally brown :)

  • Ohh I didn’t know they bleached it, ick. The grocery stores only carry one kind, or at least ours does!

  • mfoisy

    When you substituted brown sugar for the malt powder in the dough, did you use 2 tsp or 1 tbsp of the brown sugar in the dough? Thanks!!

  • Anonymous

    I did it as detailed in the ingredient list.

  • Oh my, these look AMAZING! Having hot, fresh bagels sounds so luxurious! I might have to try this on my day off this Monday.

  • Michelle

    I’m so happy I found your recipe! It’s so simple and clear. I live in a tiny town in Spain, and we can’t get bagels here. I’m dying to try these! Its been two years since I’ve had one. :) Thanks!!

  • T.J. Thering

    I’ve got the bagels in the fridge overnight, ready to bake tomorrow, but I’m not too sure if they’ll turn out or not. For one, mine didn’t seem to “puff” up as much as yours. And also, they never floated in room temperature water, even after I waited additional time. Any clue why this would be? Thanks :)

  • Anonymous

    It sounds like your yeast was not activated enough. Either water was too warm initially and killed the yeast, too cold to activate it, or possibly just old and inactive altogether.

  • T.J. Thering

    Yeah, it must be something with the yeast. It’s brand new yeast though, and I activated it with the right amount of warm (110-115 degree) water and sugar. (I didn’t have instant yeast on hand, so I used the correct equivalent amount of dry active yeast). I’ll be baking them tomorrow morning, so we’ll see what the verdict is :)

  • T.J. Thering

    Success! I gave the recipe a second try, and I got got them to pass the “float test”! Not sure what happened the first time, but I’ll definitely be passing this recipe on to friends. Thanks again :)

  • Anonymous

    Great! I’m glad they worked out for you.

  • Kat

    I made the bagels with my daughter (who is in from Kauai), her boyfriend, his 2 girls (ages 12 and 8), my daughter’s friend, and my niece (who is in from Flagstaff) and, despite the very crowded and noisy kitchen, they were WONDERFUL! Very “ono” as my daughter says. (I actually made a batch the day before so they could experience the whole recipe from mixing to boiling and baking, then the next day I boiled and baked the batch they mixed up.) Every bagel was thoroughly enjoyed. The kids especially liked the cinnamon sugar ones. (I managed to squirrel away 4 in the freezer for my husband and me to eat later. ) Thank you SO much for this great recipe that created great memories for us.

  • OMG! I love bagels, but they’re such a carb bomd like you said and my resolution was to eat healthier… ahhh nooo!

  • Kristine Robbins

    what is that color called?!!? a good portion of my stuff is martha stewart blue (mixer, FP, blender, hand mixer, utensils, towels…you get the point) and a lot of other light blue things around the kitchen. i have been looking for a cast iron in that exact color!!!!

  • Jenn

    I finally made these yesterday/this morning and boy were they good! I have been baking homemade bagels for awhile now, but have yet to find the perfect recipe. This one is it! Tastes just like something you’d get at a bagel shop. Thanks for a great recipe Annie!

  • You bagels look exactly like my faves from this deli in Memphis! Since I live four hours from Memphis, I only get them when my Dad makes a trip and remembers to pick some up. I’m saving this recipe for a day when my husband and my child are out of the house.

  • Anonymous

    Caribbean blue.

  • Kristine Robbins

    if you dont have a kitchen scale yall should def get one (this is the one i own..hands down the best i have ever owned http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000WJMTNA?ie=UTF8&ref_=sr_1_1&qid=1325960667&sr=8-1)

    i just started measuring for the sponge and it calls for 4 cups of flour or 18 oz…which also equals 510 grams if you want to get really precise…i measured it out in my one cup measuring cup and by the time i reached 510 grams there was still almost a third of a cup of flour left in my measuring cup! using a scale makes better results! i dont know how long its been since i have used a recipe that used cups instead of oz or grams!

  • Rosie

    Wow! I have just made bagels for the first time in my life – they won’t win any beauty contests but they taste AMAZING! Thanks Annie, for posing such clear step by step photos, I’m going to need a lot more practice before my bagels are as beautifully round as yours!

  • Kellyn

    Thanks, Annie! I’ve been following you for a few months and have made many of your recipes. These bagels came out so much better than the first time I made bagels (with another recipe a few years ago).

    Question – how do you prevent your toppings from falling off? I made dried onions in a food dehydrator, sprinkled them on when the bagels came out of the water, but they have mostly fallen off. Also, the onions were quite burned from the oven. Not sure if this is specific to this particular topping, or if you have any advice on keeping the toppings from getting too crispy. Thank you for all of the work you do!

  • Anonymous

    I think it’s important to put the toppings on immediately after the bagels come out of the boiling water and are still moist so they adhere (in other words, don’t wait to top until all the bagels are ready to go in the oven). I’m not sure why the onions were so burned – could be a quirk of your oven or something to do with the fact that you made your own? I hope that helps a little.

  • Christina

    I’m really excited to try this recipe. By Instant Yeast do you mean Rapid Rise?

  • Anonymous

    Yes. See the FAQ page for more info.

  • Claire

    These are in the oven! :-) I am hoping the gravlax to accompany them turns out well, too. I had to smile – someone at work had your amazing cupcake calendar in their cube. She wasn’t familiar with your blog, so it was exciting to tell her about it. You are just awesome, Annie! (BTW, I love all the “happy” colors that appear in your pictures — whether it be your Le Creuset, backdrops, etc.)

  • Anonymous

    Well, thank you!

  • Ashley

    How do you get your bagels to have such nice shape? Mine look kind of lumpy and are not as tall or round as yours! I am sure that they will taste great when I bake them in the morning though!

  • Anonymous

    I suppose maybe it comes with practice. I just shape mine as outlined in the instructions here. Enjoy!

  • Ashley

    These were FANTASTIC my husband has already had 3… He would like to know how to do cinnamon raisin (his favorite), how would you do it? Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    They are already posted on the blog actually, you can find them via the search bar or recipe index. Glad you are enjoying them!

  • Susan Horr

    You are right! Once you make these you will never go back. Love them! Thanks for sharing.

  • Susan Horr

    You are right! Once you make these you never go back to store bagels! Love them. Thanks!

  • Angel

    Finally got around to remembering to buy bread flour! Next time I need to remember to get the parchment paper! Thank you for making it so simple. They were wonderful!

  • m

    This was great! I am so proud of myself this morning, looking at my fresh delicious bagels thanks to your recipe. I never would have thought I could do something like this at home. We made blueberry, using dried bluberries and they are perfect! Thank you so much! I really appreciate the pictures. I realized measuring by cups I was way off (seeing your sponge picture) and redid my sponge by weight measurements = perfect. We can’t eat most bagels sold anywhere due to food allegies and so it was SOO nice to have a delicious bagel this morning.

  • Becca

    i have two questions! would i be able to sub bread flour or whole wheat flour? and how long do they have to retard in the fridge?

    these are incredible!

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions. The retardation instructions are included within the recipe.

  • Turtle1031

    At 500 degrees the bagels all got cooked into the parchemtn paper. Looks like I’ll be cutting off te bottoms lol

  • annieseats

    Did you sprinkle the parchment with semolina or cornmeal as instructed? This step is crucial otherwise yes, the bagels will stick badly.

  • ChristyLane

    Thank you for the step-by-step! I made these this weekend and they turned out wonderful!

  • bagelover

    have you tried substituting whole wheat flour? I would love to know how it goes!!

  • Jo_ebacon

    I did half whole wheat flour ( make sure it is a good one) and half bread flour and they came out AMAZING!!

  • Jo_ebacon

    Have you parbaked them and froze them? I did some research and was wondering what you think 85% baked is in this recipe?

  • annieseats

    I don’t think that’s necessary. I just bake them fully and freeze them that way. Thaw, toast, and they are just as good as fresh.

  • Melanie

    Thanks, Annie! I love your blog and this recipe has the clearest instructions on making bagels! Have you ever made blueberry bagels? I’d love to learn!

  • annieseats

    A post is in the works :)

  • Tiffany

    I don’t have a kitchen scale, and probably won’t invest in one (since I don’t have enough things I would use it for). The first time I made these, I measured out 4 cups of flour, but ended up adding extra water to make it the consistency of pancake batter. This time, I used 3 cups of flour and still had to add about 1/4 extra water. How many cups should we be using? The 4 cups (volume) vs. 18 oz (weight) is a big difference.

  • annieseats

    There’s no correct amount, and the “correct” weight of a cup of flour varies depending on your source. The right amount for you will depend totally on how heavy-handed you are in measuring and how humid or not your environment is when you make them.

  • Laneec

    These were excellent. I subbed 100% of the flour for all purpose whole wheat flour. I think the biggest challenge for me is finding room in my fridge for the tray of bagels.

  • Lauraclp

    Hi Annie,

    Do you think it would be ok to use Silpat instead of parchment paper? I usually use silpats instead of parchment and only cos i’m lazy to cut :)but wasn’t sure if they would affect the outcome. I believe you use silpats on some of your other baking so I was curious if using the silpat would affect the results. Thanks!

  • annieseats

    I think it should be fine, though I can’t remember specifically if I’ve ever done that with bagels before. I do remember that the most important thing is to not forget about dusting with semolina or cornmeal before baking. Even with parchment which is usually non-stick, they stick if you forget that step. Enjoy!

  • Melanie

    Thanks so much, Annie! I’m going to try it as soon as I get some dried blueberries! :)

  • Lauraclp

    thanks so much for replying Annie, I am trying these out this weekend.

  • Roxy

    Dear Annie,

    Thank you so much for posting this. My “everything” bagels turned out awesome. Definitely going to make this bagel-making a routine!


  • Kawthar

    Yum!!!! I gotta make these.

  • shandy

    Do you think Whole Wheat Pastry Flour would work for these in lieu of the bread flour?

  • annieseats

    You should use bread flour for best results. Enjoy!

  • Nperko

    Thank you sooo much for this recipe. I have been on a search for the perfect recipe for bagels.
    This one worked out great for me!! Only suggestion would be the description of the center hole being 2 1/2 inches in diameter should maybe be 1 1/2 inches, but the taste was fabulous!

  • annieseats

    The 2.5 inches is correct. That’s how far you stretch them out and then they bounce back to a normal bagel shape while rising, baking. Glad you enjoyed them!

  • Tiffany T.

    With the summer winding down soon, do you forsee any pumpkin spice bagel recipes in the future?

  • annieseats

    Possibly, but there are a lot of potential issues to be worked out in that regard due to the changes pumpkin would make to the dough. Believe me, it’s on my list.

  • Erachet

    I’m so excited to try and make these tomorrow! Two questions – is instant yeast the same as active dry yeast? The other question is – does the retardation period need to happen overnight or can it be several hours in the afternoon? Is there a particular number of hours the bagels should be in the fridge for?

  • annieseats

    Re: the yeast, please see the FAQ page. For the bagels to had the best flavor, you should do the full overnight retardation. Enjoy!

  • Annie

    Where can I find Malt Powder?

  • annieseats

    Specialty baking shops or look online. Or, you could use one of the other options presented in the recipe such as brown sugar.

  • Iryna

    I don’t know if anyone pointed this out yet, but 4 cups of flour and 2.5 cups of water DO NOT make anything of a pancake dough consistency!! Instead, they make a pretty thick, sticky dough. It did not become bubbly or foamy (yes, with yiest in it), so I guess that defeats the whole purpose of making a “sponge”. I am not sure what I am going to do with it now… :(

  • annieseats

    Sorry to hear you had trouble. I make this recipe all the time and it works wonderfully. You may have killed your yeast.

  • Jennifer Koch

    I’ve made this recipe twice and today I baked a batch with cinnamon chips in it. Both times the bagels have turned out FANTASTIC! To those who have trouble with the amounts, it really makes a difference to weigh the ingredients instead of measuring in cups, especially on the sponge. Thanks so much for this wonderful recipe!

  • Guest

    Oops, under float test picture it says “retarded in the refrigerator”. Nice bagels, though!! :)

  • Guest

    Oops again, the word “retarded” was in the line below it, too. Maybe that’s a baking term I’m unfamiliar with ;) These things happen, no worries.

  • annieseats

    Yes, it’s a baking term. It is used when a yeast dough proofing is slowed down usually by refrigeration.

  • This is a fantastic recipe! I didn’t have bread flower so I used whole wheat flower and made some modifications. When it called for yeast a doubled it and added a tsp of lemon juice each time. I also had to use a lot more water this way. I read this would help with the density and rising. They are heavy but kid approved by my seven year old son. We made plain, cinnamon sugar, and onion is on its way tonight, we have to pick up the onion powder. I think next time I’ll mix my flour 1/2 bread flower 1/2 whole wheat and see how that goes. Oh, and this was my first time making bagels, your images were a huge help. Thanks again :-)

  • Jessica

    I’m on my second set of bagels in 2 weeks. I absolutely love how easy these are and I doubt I will buy a store-bought bagel again (if I can help it!). Thank you for a great recipe!

  • Amanda

    I’m looking for the malt powder online. Do you use Diastic or Non-Diastic malt powder?

  • annieseats

    I just use the honey or brown sugar instead, so I haven’t actually bought malt powder.

  • Len E Nelson

    Sounds like too much flour in the mix. When measuring flour make sure you don’t pack the measuring cup full – fill cup loosely and scrape the excess off with a knife. Or dead yeast.