Last week we made from-scratch bagels. They’ve always been on my ‘must make’ list and i’m so happy that we finally tried out a recipe. A friend of mine has always raved about Montreal bagels and that nothing compares to them. We found a great recipe from The Gouda Life, and goodness, I don’t think we’ll ever go back to store-bought bagels. These were so the best I have ever had. My friend even approved and said they were very similar to the real deal. Now I just need to head up north and try one for myself! These bagels will definitely be made again and again. The kids devoured them and that’s always a good sign.

You will need:

1 1/2 cups warm water
2 1/4 tsp (1 packet) active dry yeast
1 tsp granulated sugar
2 tsp salt
3 tsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1 whole egg
1 egg yolk
4 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour

For boiling:
1 tbsp baking soda
1/3 cup honey

1 cup sesame seeds
1 cup poppy seeds and 1 tbsp kosher salt (mixed together)

In a bowl, stir yeast and warm water together. Cover with a kitchen towel and let sit for 5-7 minutes, until bubbles appear. Next, pour sugar, salt, oil, honey, egg and the yolk into the bowl of yeast, whisk until combined. Pour in 1 cup of the flour and stir until incorporated. Add in the remaining 3 cups of flour and stir with a wooden spoon until a dough forms. It will be kind of sticky and shaggy, but no worries.

Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead together, slowly adding the 1/2 cup of flour if needed. We ended up only needing about half the amount. Knead everything together for about 10 minutes. The dough should feel supple and smooth. With the dough remaining on your work surface, cover it with an inverted bowl and let it rise for 30 minutes.

Take the risen dough and divide it into 18 equal portions. Carefully stretch and roll the dough pieces out until they are about 8 inches in length. Bring the ends together to form a circle and pinch the ends to seal. Make sure the ends are sealed well or else they will open during the boiling process. Place bagels on two parchment lined baking sheets, cover with a kitchen towel and let them rise for 20 minutes.

While the bagels finish rising, bring 16 cups of water to a boil in a large pot. When the water comes to a boil, add in the baking soda and honey. Turn down the heat to a simmer. When ready, add the bagels into the simmering water, two at a time. Allow the bagels to cook for 1 minute per side. Remove with a slotted spoon and place into either seed mixture. Coat one side of the bagel and place back on the baking sheet. Repeat with all bagels.

Pre-heat oven to 500 degrees. Place one sheet of bagels into the oven to bake for 10-12 minutes or until they begin to brown on the bottom. Flip bagels over and cook for another 5-8 minutes, watching carefully after 5 minutes to make sure they don’t overcook. The bagels should be golden brown.

Serve warm alone or with your favorite toppings. The bagels keep well in airtight container in the fridge for about one week…but trust me, they won’t last long!


  • Delia

    those look amazing and Montreal style is for sure the best! these are on my list now to make this week now!


  • Sylvie

    i’m from montreal and i love st. viateur and fairmount bagels – the best!
    would love to try one of yours to compare… :-)

  • Caitlin T.

    These look so delicious—-yum yum yum!

  • Emma

    Wow, you really are adventurous in the kitchen! I live in Montreal and people fall in one of two camps – “Fairmount” or “St-Viateur.” Both are located in the Mile-End, an area I think you would love if you were to visit again! x

  • Taylor

    Wow these looks fantastic! I’ve always wanted to make bagels as well, and it’s great to know it’s pretty easy!


  • Ariana

    Great job! They look fantastic! I lived in Montreal for 13 yrs and would do middle-of-the night runs to the bagel shop for the freshest out of the oven (combats the cold! Ha, but I was raised in New York so that’s quite the bagel war :)
    Best bagels in Montreal: Fairmount Bagel (and St-Viateur is a close second).

  • Leeloo

    NYC Bagels and bialys…with smear and lox. Nothing comes close.

  • Naomi

    Mmm, these look delicious. I’ve always wanted to try making them myself, but never got round to it. Think I’ll have to try this recipe!

  • Paprika

    Oh these look amazing! I’m on holiday at the moment so its the perfect time to try things like this!xx

  • Lovisa

    omg that looks so goood O.o

    Love it!

  • Heidi

    OH Montreal bagels – be still my heart. There really is nothing like them! (I live in Ontario). My husband has been asking me to try making some , may be just the inspiration I needed. :)

  • Katie

    My husband made homemade bagels over the Winter – the recipe looked very similar to this one. It is a long process! The bagels looked just like yours. They tasted more like soft pretzels than store bought bagels – not sure if that is good or bad – depend on what you want.

  • Kelly @ The Gouda Life

    So thrilled to see these worked out for you as well as they did for me. The picture are stunning, to boot. xx K

  • Zoe

    They look pretty close!

    <3 Zoe from Montreal

  • amanda

    Oh how fun! My husband and I went to Montreal for my 30th birthday and stayed in Mile End a block or two away from St-Viateur. Best breakfast everrrrrrrrrr.

  • tRiSh

    I’ve been looking for an easy recipe for a while. Thanks for sharing, it looks delicious!

  • Heather

    Yum! They look almost like soft pretzel consistency.

  • JD

    They look delish !

  • aloyse

    They look so good! I have to try.

  • Rachel

    These look delicious! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe with us! Homemade treats are the best!


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