How to Make Bagels

In this post we want to show you how to make bagels. Homemade bagels are easy and delicious. They do take sometime but it is worth it! My friend Mercedes from Guam makes these beautifully. You can watch her in the video below.

The only ingredients you need to make perfect bagels are flour, yeast, salt and water. You will need some honey for the water as this will make them shiny after they boil. Please don’t skip this step as it will make your bagels chewy and not bready. Perfect.

You can bake these plain or you can add toppings such as sesame seeds, poppy seeds or salt.

This is what you are going to need for this delicious bagel recipe:

Makes 12
2 pounds (907 grams) bread flour
1 TBS (9.3 grams) instant yeast
2 ½ cups (473 grams) warm water (110 degrees F)
1 TBS (18 grams) salt – preferably Kosher

2 liters (8 cups) of water
2 tsp. of kosher salt
2 TBS honey

Sesame seeds
Poppy seeds
Kosher Salt

Mix 1 pound of bread flour with the yeast. Add the water and mix until it is all incorporated. Cover the bowl and let it rest for about an hour until it doubles in size. We are making a sponge.

Once the sponge is ready add the remaining flour and the salt. Use your hands to incorporate the flour to all the wet ingredients.

Dump the dough onto a floured board and knead it for about 10 minutes – until it is no longer sticky and it is elastic. You want the dough to spring back when you poke it with your fingers.

Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover it. Let the dough rest for 30 minutes. The dough should be shiny and if you poke it with your finger it should remain indented.

Transfer the dough onto a board and divide it into 12 to 13 equal sized balls. Do not flour the board. Weigh them is you want them to be exactly the same size. 4 oz. (113 grams) is a very good size. If you have dough left over make a small bagel with it.

Roll out each ball of dough into a one-foot long rope approximately and wrap it around your fingers – like a bracelet. Pinch the edges to seal them well. Keep your fingers in the hole and roll the dough against your board as you slowly rotate it. This will even out your bagel.

Cover your formed bagels with a clean kitchen towel and let them rest for 30 minutes.

Heat your oven to 450 degrees F (220 C).

Bring the water, salt and honey to a boil in a large pot or wok. Stir until the salt and honey are dissolved. Start with the ones you finished rolling first and add them to the boiling water. Do not crowd them and boil them for about 2.5 minutes.

Flip them with some chopsticks and boil them for an additional 2.5 minutes. Remove them form the water and place them on a cooling rack to drain for a minute.

Transfer the boiled bagels on to a lightly sprayed cookie sheet and sprinkle them with your topping of choice. You can also leave them plain if you prefer.

Place the bagels in the oven and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes – until they are browned and shiny.

Slice the bagels through the middle but not all the way through. If you have left overs place them in a sealed bag and freeze them. When you are ready to eat them place them in the oven (frozen) at 350 degrees F – 176 C – for 10 to 15 minutes. If you want to toast them thaw them until you can separate them and then place the halves into the toaster.


Print the Recipe Here


  • October 20, 2016

    Waleska Nobre

    Thank you so much for sharing this great recipe!!! I’m from Brazil, and when I lived in US, few years ago, I just felt in love with bagels… I’ve tried every recipe I could, but this one stands up. So, THANK YOU again, it’s awesome! Bless you.

  • October 27, 2016

    mary ann allen

    Hi Waleska!
    I am so happy that you like this recipe! Mercedes is such a great baker and we are so lucky that she shared it with us. Thank you for the message! I hope you make these and they come out perfect for you!
    Mary Ann