Recipe share: Bearded Baker bagels

Today in our recipe sharing series, I need to tell you about these incredible homemade bagels. The perfect crust, soft and a little sweet inside, I was surprised how easy they were to make.

Just around the corner from my office in Edinburgh is a little bakery and cafe, The Bearded Baker, and it was a Friday treat to pop in for a fresh bagel topped with avocado or a sticky cinnamon bun. When lockdown started so many customers reached out to the cafe letting them how much they missed their home baked goodies, so the owners kindly shared their recipes so we could try to recreate them ourselves.

Bagels, as part of the bread family, might seem labour intensive and too much hard work, I thought so too, but these are super simple and actually quite quick. Yes you need to put a little elbow grease into kneading but the prove is only 40 minutes and the boiling of the bagels weirdly satisfying, watching them expand and take shape. It’s also fun to practice getting the perfect shaped hole, too big, too little, not quite even, it doesn’t matter, they’re homemade and taste great!

To follow a video how-to of the recipe, see The Bearded Bakers Instagram highlight named “Bagel Tutorial.”

The recipe that we used below sticks to their recipe exactly and makes 10 good-sized, fill-able, spreadable bagels that you can also roll in seeds as we tried. You can use your hands to knead the dough or get a helping hand with an electric whisk and dough hooks, as we did. The bagels are best eaten warm and on the day they’re made but also freeze and defrost well.


6 cups strong white bread flour

7g dried yeast

10g salt

2 tbsp golden syrup

2 1/4 cups luke warm water



  1. Mix the flour, salt and golden syrup together in a large bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, cup or jug, mix the water and yeast and leave for a few minutes.
  3. Add the water and yeast mix to the large bowl and stir until combined to form a dough.
  4. Knead the dough for 10 minutes.
  5. Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and leave the dough to prove for 40 minutes.
  6. Preheat the oven to 220C, line two trays with baking parchment and bring a large saucepan of water to a boil.
  7. Divide the dough into 10 (approx 125g/bagel) and roll into balls.
  8. Shape each ball into a bagel. Place the ball onto a hard surface and push down into the centre with your middle finger to form a hole. Pick up the ball with your two index fingers inside the hole and spin to slowly increase the size of the hole, then increase it further using a pulling action with both hands (watch the Bearded Baker video to perfect this technique!)
  9. Boil each bagel for 1 – 1 1/2 minutes on each side – simply place 2 bagels at a time into the boiling water and use a slotted spoon to flip halfway and remove onto the baking tray. If you want to top your bagels with seeds before baking, place the seeds onto a plate or chopping board and roll the bagels in the seeds once they have finished boiling.
  10. Bake the bagels for 20 minutes at 220C until golden brown.

Enjoy warm and fresh from the oven, sliced and topped with your filling of choice, or leave to cool before freezing.

Would you attempt bagel making? and what’s your favourite topping?

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