Bagels | Peri's Place For Recipes

Prep Time
24+ hours
Oven Temp
500F then 450F
Cook Time
5 mins 550F, 5 mins 450F
12 Large, 24 Mini


For the sponge:

  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 4 cups unbleached white bread flour
  • 2 1/2 cups water, room temperature

For the dough:

  • 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 3 3/4 cups unbleached white bread flour
  • 2 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon barley malt syrup or honey

To finish:

  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • Cornmeal or semolina flour, for dusting
  • Sesame seeds, poppy seeds, kosher salt or other toppings


To make the sponge

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the yeast and flour.
  2. Add the water and mix together with a spoon until it forms a sticky batter. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature about 2 hours, or until foamy and bubbly. The mixture should nearly double in size and collapse when the bowl is tapped on the counter.

To make the dough

  1. Set the bowl with the sponge in the mixer with the dough hook attachment.
  2. With the mixer on low, add the yeast, then 3 cups of the flour and all of the salt and malt syrup or honey. Mix on low speed until the ingredients form a ball, slowly adding remaining 3/4 cup flour.
  3. Let the mixer knead the dough 6 minutes. The dough should be pliable and smooth, and feel satiny but not tacky. Add a few drops of water or a bit of flour as needed to get desired texture.

To make the bagels

  1. Wipe down a clean work surface with a damp cloth. Transfer the dough to the work surface, then divide into 12 pieces (for large bagels) or 24 pieces (for mini bagels).
  2. One at a time, cup each piece in your hand and firmly press it into the counter. Move your hand in a circular fashion while pressing the dough against the table. In a short time, the dough should form a tight ball.
  3. Cover the dough balls with a damp towel and let them rest 20 minutes. Meanwhile, line two baking pans with parchment paper. Lightly mist the parchment with cooking spray.
  4. To shape the bagels, pick the dough pieces up one at a time and push your thumb through the center. Gently rotate your thumb around the hole to stretch it to about 2 1/2 inches wide (slightly less for smaller bagels). Try to keep the bagel evenly shaped (no thick or thin parts).
  5. Arrange the bagels on the prepared baking sheets 2 inches apart. Mist them lightly with cooking spray, then cover loosely with plastic wrap and let them sit at room temperature another 20 minutes.
  6. Refrigerate the bagels overnight (or up to two days).
  7. When ready to bake the bagels, arrange the oven racks in the middle of the oven and preheat to 500 degrees. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the baking soda. Have a slotted spoon ready.
  8. Remove the bagels from the refrigerator and gently place two or three (or as many as will comfortably fit) into the boiling water. After 1 minute, flip the bagels and boil another minute. If you prefer chewy bagels, extend boiling to 2 minutes per side.
  9. While the bagels boil, sprinkle the same parchment-lined pans with cornmeal or semolina flour. As the bagels finish boiling, return them to the baking sheets. If you want to top the bagels, do it as soon as they come out of the water.
  10. When all the bagels have been boiled, place the pans in the oven and bake for 5 minutes. Rotate the pans 180 degrees, switching shelves, lower heat to 450 degrees and bake an additional 5 minutes, or until they are a light golden brown.
  11. Let the bagels cool on a rack for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Good to Know

From the Register-Guard, May 2, 2007.