Plain Bagel Recipe

These homemade Plain Bagels are chewy, flavorful, and just like your favorite bakery’s- all you have to do is add some cream cheese or jam! This simple breakfast bagel recipe is healthy, filling, and an easy way to feed your kids in the morning!

a bagel with jam on a white plate

Low Carb Plain Breakfast Bagel Recipe

Sometimes in the kitchen, I love to try to make things from scratch that you traditionally buy. Bagels are one such example. I know that you can run to the store or the bagel shop to pick some up, but half the fun of this recipe is trying to make something you’ve never made before. Bagel making takes a bit of time and moderate bread-making knowledge, but it really isn’t as hard as you would think. Think of bagel-making more as a journey and enjoy the process, plus the end results are delicious. Perfectly chewy little circles of happiness just begging for some butter and jam or cream cheese can’t be bad.

Bagels Made With King Arthur Flour

This bagel recipe comes from the King Arthur Flour test kitchen. They did a knock-off Panera bagel recipe and broke it down step by step with pictures and detailed instructions. I highly recommend checking out their post if you are new to bagel-making; it was very well written and thorough.

a stack of bagels on a plate on top of a multicolored cloth

How Are Bagels Chewy?

The trick to making nice, chewy bagels is boiling them before you bake them! Boiling gives a nice chewy, hard exterior while the inside stays soft and fluffy.

How Do You Store Homemade Bagels?

Bagels can be stored in an airtight container on the shelf for a few days or in the fridge, though they can dry out in the fridge a little bit. You can even freeze bagels and store them in the freezer for 3 to 4 months!

How Can You Soften a Bagel if It Gets Dry and Hard?

Sometimes bagels dry out after a while but you can revive your bagel by brushing a small amount of water on the top, cover with a paper towel, and microwave for 10-20 seconds. It softens again in no time.

Plate of plain bagels

King Arthur Flour’s Plain Bagels

  • Author: Melissa Griffiths - Bless This Mess
  • Prep Time: 11 hours
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 11 hours 25 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 12 bagels 1x


These homemade Plain Bagels are chewy, flavorful, and just like your favorite bakery’s- all you have to do is add some cream cheese or jam! This simple breakfast bagel recipe is healthy, filling, and an easy way to feed your kids in the morning!



For the sponge/starter:

  • 1/2 cup bread flour
  • 1/4 cup cool water
  • pinch of instant yeast, about 1/16 teaspoon


  • 1 1/4 cups cool water
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 4 cups bread flour

For Boiling the Bagels:

  • 5 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar


  1. To make the starter, mix all of the ingredient together in a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and allow it to sit at room temperature overnight
  2. To make the dough, add all of the starter, after it’s overnight rest, the water, salt, yeast, and half of the bread flour called for. Using the dough hook of your stand mixer, mix these ingredient for 5 minutes. Continue adding the rest of the bread flour, ¼ cup at a time, until the dough starts to come together. The dough should still stick to the bottom of the bowl but it will pull away from the sides. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until the dough is lightly tacky. Form into a ball. Let the dough rise in a lightly greased bowl for one hour. Gently deflate the dough and let it rise for another half hour.
  3. While the dough is rising, prep the water for boiling. Mix the water, baking soda, and brown sugar in a large pot. The water needs to be at least one inch deep.
  4. When the dough has risen a second time, remove it from the bowl and cut it into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a round ball. Cover the balls with plastic wrap and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
  5. Heat the water in the pan over medium heat until it starts to gently boil and the baking soda dissolves. Reduce the heat so that the water stays at a very gentle boil. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment or a baking mat.
  6. Take one piece of dough and poke your finger through the center. Using your finger gently stretch the hole in the center until it is about a 2 inch circle. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  7. Gently drop 2 or 3 bagels in the boiling water and let them boil on the first side for 2 minutes and then flip them over in the water and let them cook on the second side for 1 more minute. Remove from the water with a strainer or the end of a wooden spoon and place the bagels on the parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat the boiling with the remaining bagels.
  8. Bake the boiled bagels in the hot oven for 25 minutes or until they are a deep brown. Let the bagels cool on a wire rack before enjoying.

  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American
Nutrition Information: YIELD: 12 SERVING SIZE: 1 bagel
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 189.2 Fat: 9g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 656.6mg Carbohydrates: 38.1g Sugars: 9g Protein: 6.3g Vitamin A: 0µg Vitamin C: 0mg

Keywords: bagel recipe, plain bagel recipe, hot to make bagels, king arthur flour bagel recipe, breakfast bagel recipe, how to make bagels, homemade bagel recipe, healthy breakfast recipe

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a bagel with jam on a plate and a bowl of bagels next to it

More Tasty Bread Recipes:

This post was originally published in 2013 and has been updated in August 2019.

Plain Bagels are a fun new recipe to try for yourself and eating chewy, delicious bagels will feel so rewarding after you’ve learned how to do it!

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about me

About Melissa

I have a lot going on, and I’d much rather spend my time enjoying my messes than fretting about what I’m going to make for dinner. Over the past few years, I’ve nailed down a few strategies that helped me keep my kitchen running like a well-oiled machine, so I started Bless This Mess to help other mess-loving parents solve the nightly dinner delimma—no stress, no drama, just really great food your whole family will love. Read more...

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i want to try…in the winter…weather’s getting too hot. i never want to bake anymore

I just happened upon your blog, looking for a homemade oreo recipe, and I am SO HAPPY! First of all, because you had the recipe I was looking for, and then I start looking around and your blog is SO cute! I read your bio and I am amazed at the things you do! I thought, “this must be a good strong woman….Hmmm…I wonder where she lives?” “Look, she’s dressed modest in all these pictures, and they look HAPPY!” Then I found it, the “Yes, I live in Utah” button, with a link to I KNEW IT!!! It makes me so happy to see that something makes us different, especially when I can see it in 5 minutes, from 3 pictures and the way your blog makes me feel. Thanks for having the button, the recipe, and the glow!

Yum! It seems labor intensive, am i just lazy? I will say, home made bagels completely blow store bought bagels out of the water. So good.

Bless This Mess - About Me

I’m Melissa, and I want to help you feed your family wholesome food.

As a hobby farmer and mom of five, I’m all about keeping it simple in the kitchen. I want healthy meals that feed my family well, and then I want to get back to my (messy) life. Let’s work together to find something yummy for your dinner table.