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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Bagel Tips

Bagels are best enjoyed within 3 hours after baking. However, a bagel will stay fresh for up to 8 hours if kept in a paper bag. After a day, a bagel starts to go pretty hard but can still be tolerated if toasted. After a week it makes a great chew toy for your dog.

To keep bagels longer than a day it is best to first slice and then freeze them in an air tight plastic bag. Freezing bagels is a great way to preserve freshness. When thawed or toasted a frozen bagel tastes surprisingly fresh. I often bake and freeze a few dozen bagels. It makes for a tasty, quick on the go breakfast or healthy afternoon snack for my kids.

Bagel Do's
  1. Do eat bagels fresh.
  2. Do share bagels with family and friends.
  3. Do freeze bagels to preserve their freshness.
  4. Do store bagels in a paper bag when not freezing them.
  5. Do take caution when slicing your bagels. (be safe and use an official bagel slicer or practice good slicing technique)
Bagel Don'ts
  1. Don't nuke your bagels. (unless you like rubber bagels)
  2. Don't mix smelly bagels with non-smelly varieties in the same bag. (unless you like onion flavored cinnamon raisin)
  3. Don't store salt, onion, garlic or everything bagels in a plastic bag unless freezing them. (they go soggy)
  4. Don't store bagels in the fridge. (it hardens them)
  5. Don't cut bagels like you are slicing a tomato. (A bagel and countertop are two slippery surfaces that when combined with a knife can be hazardous to your fingers.)


  1. I was scarred to make these, the recipe calling for no rising time...I was dead wrong. They are delish. Fresh hot whole wheat cranberry walnut begals in under an hour! Thank you for this blog. I have wasted alot of time and ingredients attempting to make the perfect bagel. I found it here. Thanks a ton.

  2. I am glad to hear that you are having success with the recipe. Whole wheat cranberry walnut bagels do sound really good!!

  3. how does one store salt bagels then, if not freezing them?

  4. Freezing the salt bagel is the best option to preserve freshness. You just don't want to have them sitting in a plastic bag unless you are planning on freezing them soon. Otherwise they will sweat and go soggy. You can also keep them fresh for about 6-8 hours in a paper bag.

  5. how do i make a bagel board??

  6. I would love to make your bagels. I have just 1 question. I do not have a bread machine. How do the ingredients and measurements change, if at all?

  7. Anonymous,

    You can always knead the bagel dough by hand. The process is similar except you will gradually add the flour in as you mix the dough.

    Once you have added most of the four then just flatten the dough then fold it in half and flatten again. Repeat vigerously for about 30-40 minutes adding more four as needed to get the right dough consistency.

  8. Looking forward to making bagels for the first time and thanks for the recipes and tips! How do we make a bagel board...woods to use, stay away from, etc?

  9. Hi Jasper,

    Bagel boards can be made of aluminum or any type of non treated hardwood. The aluminum works best. They also should have one side covered with burlap.

    I hope this helps.

  10. I do not have a bread machine and usually use my Bosch mixer to knead bread. Would this work like the bread machine, or would I reduce the knead time (it seems like the mixer would be a stronger/harder kneading than the little bread machine paddle)? I am excited to try the recipes!

    1. I think that your mixer will do well. The kneading requirements in the recipe are more of a minimum. The dough seems to turn out even better with more kneading. Good luck with the bagels.

  11. I know this is an old post but I would love to have the recipe for the whole wheat cranberry walnut bagels mentioned here. I don't see the recipe.