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Apr 24, 2019

Sourdough Bagels

These homemade sourdough bagels are just like the bagels you can buy at an authentic deli. They are chewy and flavorful. Plus, you can serve them while they are still warm. Ah-maze-ing. 

Sourdough Bagels

Serve these Sourdough Bagels for a weekend brunch along with eggs and smoked salmon, as well as garnishes such as red onion slices and capers. We loved them with this smoked salmon cheese ball.

You can also slice these and and make cheese and egg sandwiches with ham or bacon.

I topped these with "everything" topping, which is a mixture of poppy seeds, sesame seeds, garlic, salt, and dried onions, but you can top them with any seeds you like, or even leave them plain.

How to make sourdough bagels:

  1. First, you will need a 100 percent hydration sourdough starter. I have kept mine alive for about 12 years now! There are lots of resources for starting one, but I think the easiest is outlined in the book, Artisan Sourdough Made Simple, by Emilie Raffa
  2. Once you have your starter all bubbly, mix the dough before going to bed the night before you want to serve the bagels. The dough will require about 8 to 10 hours to rise. It will be ready to shape when you get up in the morning. 
  3. In the morning, shape the bagels, let them rest a few minutes, and then boil them. Yes, you will need to boil them before you bake them. This gives them their nice shiny and chewy crust. 
  4. Sprinkle the bagels with whatever topping you like and bake them in 425 degree oven. 
  5. Cool the bagels on a wire rack, or serve fresh from the oven! 
Everything Sourdough Bagels

If you are still scared about making sourdough bagels (comment with any questions and I'll be happy to answer), I have lots of bagel recipes, including jalapeño and cheddar bagels, egg bagels, onion bagels, and asiago cheese bagels

Don't be intimidated by the boiling process either. It's easier than it sounds! All you need is a good slotted spoon or spider strainer. The process is very forgiving. 

Totally classic bagels call for malt powder or syrup in the boiling water for browning and flavor. You can substitute honey or other sweeteners such as rice syrup or Lyle's Golden Syrup. For #BrunchWeek, I received a bottle of Torani Candied Sesame syrup (along with two other flavors) so I decided to experiment by adding it to the boiling water. 

Guess what? It worked. The faint sesame flavor in the water went so nicely with the "everything" topping, and the bagels were nicely browned! 

Everything Sourdough Bagels with sesame syrup

Today is day 3 of Brunch Week. We are giving away a bunch of cool prizes, including 12 bottles of your choice of Torani naturally flavored syrups. Pretty cool, right? To find out more details about the prizes and how to enter, head over to my post about zucchini cheese pancakes

You can also enter by using the Rafflecopter form after the recipe.

Take a look at what the #BrunchWeek Bloggers are creating today!

BrunchWeek Beverages:
Guava Gin Fizz from Culinary Adventures with Camilla

BrunchWeek Appetizers and Salads:
Brown Sugar Bacon Palmiers from Jolene's Recipe Journal

BrunchWeek Egg Dishes:
Breakfast Potato Skins from A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures

BrunchWeek Breads, Grains, and Pastries:
Overnight Oatmeal 3 Ways from Big Bear's Wife
Princess Toast from Seduction in the Kitchen
Sourdough Bagels from Karen's Kitchen Stories

BrunchWeek Main Dishes:
Apple Cheddar, Bacon Quesadillas from Books n' Cooks

BrunchWeek Desserts:
Bananas Foster Breakfast Yogurt Cheesecakes from The Spiffy Cookie
Chocolate Pecan Congo Squares from Love and Confections
French Lemon Yogurt Cake from Caroline's Cooking
Mango Gooey Butter Bars from Hardly A Goddess
Walnut Crumb Cookies from Rants From My Crazy Kitchen

Sourdough Bagel Recipe

Yield: 8 bagels


  • 150 grams (3/4 cup) active starter
  • 250 grams (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) warm water
  • 24 grams (2 tablespoons) sugar
  • 500 grams (4 cups plus 2 tablespoons) bread flour
  • 9 grams (1 1/2 teaspoons) fine sea salt
  • 40 grams (2 tablespoons) Torani candied sesame syrup or (20 grams) 1 tablespoon honey
  • Mixed seeds/toppings of your choice


How to cook Sourdough Bagel Recipe

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the starter, water, and sugar. 
  2. Add the flour and salt, and mix until just combined. 
  3. Knead with the dough hook for about 8 minutes on low until you have a stretchy dough. 
  4. Cover the dough with a damp towel and let rise at room temperature for 45 minutes. 
  5. Form the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for 8 to 10 hours. 
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with spray oil. 
  7. Turn the dough out onto your work surface and divide it into 8 equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball, cover with oiled plastic wrap, and let rest for 15 minutes. 
  8. Poke a hole in the middle of each ball with your finger and stretch each out into rings with 3 inch centers (they will shrink). Cover and let the rings rest for 20 minutes. 
  9. Heat your oven to 425 degrees F and bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add the Torani syrup or honey. Whisk until incorporated. 
  10. Place any toppings you are using in a shallow bowl. 
  11. Boil the bagels, 2 to 3 at a time, 30 seconds per side. Once the bagel has boiled, place it back on the baking sheet. Once it has slightly cooled, dip it in the seeds/toppings. 
  12. Bake the bagels for 20 to 25 minutes, until light golden brown. 
  13. Transfer the bagels to a wire rack. 
  14. Leftovers can be individually wrapped and frozen for up to 3 months. 
bagels, sourdough, bread, artisanbread
Bread, bagels
Created using The Recipes Generator

Would you like to comment?

  1. Made these this morning. Very good!! Boiled mine in a 1% lye solution and used Trader Joe's Everything But The Bagel topping. Thanks Karen.

    1. Thanks Dave. I have some lye but didn't want to put on the hazmat suit and goggles =) So glad you liked these!

  2. These bagels look amazing! My starter is currently sleeping in my fridge but I think it's wake up time. And I already thinking of making a roll/bun version. Thanks for sharing those great and foolproof recipes with us

    1. I had to wake mine up too and it was totally worth it. Thanks for the kind words!

  3. I LOVE homemade bagels - these look so perfect!

  4. You're killing me...bagels are my weakness...and sourdough...ugghhh!!! Carb love overload!

  5. Hi! I am attempting to make these but I don't have my KitchenAid with me and the dough seems very dry. Do you have any recommendations for those making these by hand?

    1. It is a very stiff dough that needs a lot of kneading. You will probably have to hand knead it for a long time. You could also add just a bit more water if it's too hard.


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