Sun-dried Tomato Bagels

Bagels are amazing. Unfortunately, some store-bought and bakery bagels include some less than amazing ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors, hydrogenated oils, and even azodicarbonamide (a whitening agent banned in Australia and Europe). So what is a bagel-loving girl to do? Why, make her own, of course!

This is not my first go round with bagel making, but it’s been a while. Like Garlic Turmeric Baguettes, this was originally something that weirded me out because of the water bath. Why I was so sure that raw dough plus water was going to equal disaster for me I don’t know. Because it doesn’t. It equals delicious crunchy breads.

Speaking of the water bath, as I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I make my own brown sugar as needed, so I didn’t follow those instructions exactly. As in I just put a tablespoon of molasses and a tablespoon of granulated sugar in my water bath. It seemed like it called for a lot of sugar to me and my way worked out fine. I listed the instructions as the original recipe though.

The original recipe also calls for using bread flour which is a higher protein flour. I don’t generally have bread flour on hand, so I just used unbleached all purpose flour. The bagels are still delicious. Perhaps one day I’ll actually make them with bread flour and see how it’s different.

You totally don’t have to make sun-dried tomato bagels. You can add whatever you want to this dough. One thing I like about making my own bagels is that I can put whatever flavors I want IN the dough. The seeds on top are nice and all, but I find that they mostly just fall off. Not so if they are baked inside! I’ve made garlic sesame bagels before that were also spot on delicious. I have yet to make blueberry bagels, but I would imagine you’d want to use dried blueberries instead of fresh or frozen ones.

I think that the next time I make bagels, I will roll and shape the dough instead of poking a hole in the middle. I just want to see what difference that might make.

Happy baking, friends!

Sun-dried Tomato Bagels


  • 1½ cups lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon active yeast
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 4 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano (optional)

Water Bath

  • 2 quarts water
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Gather together all of your ingredients. Chop your sun-dried tomatoes.

In the bowl of your stand mixer or a large mixing bowl, add the lukewarm water, brown sugar, and yeast. Allow to rest for 3-5 minutes to activate the yeast. (If you are using instant yeast, you do not need this rest period.)

Add the remaining dough ingredients and knead by hand 10-15 minutes, or by mixer on medium-low speed for 10 minutes.

Place dough into a lightly greased bowl, cover, and place in a draft-free area to rise for 1 to 1½ hours. Dough should be puffy, but may not be doubled in bulk.

After the rise, place dough ball onto a work surface and divide into eight pieces. Working one at a time, roll each piece into a smooth, round ball. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes. I usually place my dough balls on a cutting board and cover with a cloth napkin.

During this rest, prepare the water bath. In a wide diameter pan, heat the water and sugar to a very gentle boil. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Use your index finger to create a hole through the center of each ball, then twirl the dough around on your finger to stretch it out to about 2 inches in diameter. The whole bagel will be about 4 inches in diameter. Place each bagel on a lightly greased baking sheet and repeat with the remaining dough balls.

Transfer the bagels, four at a time if feasible, to the simmering water bath. If needed, increase the heat to bring the water back up to a gentle simmering boil. Cook the bagels for 2 minutes, gently flip, and cook 1 minute.

Using a skimmer or strainer, remove bagels from the water bath and place back on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining bagels.

Bake for 15 minutes, flip over, and continue baking for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the bagels are as deep a brown as you’d like. (Total baking time 20 to 25 minutes)

Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

Yield: 8 bagels

Kneaded and ready to rise.
Nice and puffy after the first rise.
Eight (mostly) even dough balls.
After their 30 minute rest.
Poking the hole in the middle.
Twirling the dough around to stretch it.
Ta-dah! Bagel!
Waiting for the water bath.
Water bath.
Removing bagel from the water bath.
About to go in the oven.
Bagel beauties.
I’m in bagel paradise!
Served with a homemade cashew spread and sautéed artichoke, onions, and bell pepper.



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