This easy and delicious homemade cinnamon crunch bagel recipe is just as good as Panera and can be made in your own kitchen with just a few staple ingredients!
Making your own bagels at home might sound intimidating, but it really could not be easier. Once you have made the homemade version in your own kitchen, you will never want to the store bought bagels again. These homemade bagels are made with instant yeast so it does not have the rise time found in other traditional bread or bagel recipes using active yeast. These chewy bagels are made even better by adding the cinnamon crunch topping. You can skip the cinnamon topping and opt for plain bagels…which are equally as good! Just add an egg wash and bake plain or add Everything seasoning.
To add even more depth of flavor, you can make these bagels with sourdough discard for the sourdough taste without using an active sourdough starter. Using an active starter instead of the instant yeast, would require a long fermentation or a long bulk rise time. So, using discard and adding the active yeast, yields the sourdough taste without the long wait.
Discard also helps make baked goods stay slightly more moist in my opinion, which make these bagels even better! If you don’t have any sourdough discard hanging out in your fridge, no worries, you can use plain greek yogurt or sour cream in its place. Just use a 1-1 ratio. In place of 1 cup sourdough discard, use 1 cup greek yogurt or sour cream.
I found the original sourdough discard bagel recipe on Acts of Sourdough Instagram. Courtney is a great resource for all things sourdough!
What You Will Need-Grocery Store List
- Bread flour-I prefer King Arthur’s Bread Flour
- Sourdough Discard, Plain Greek Yogurt or Sour Cream
- Instant Yeast
- White Sugar
- Brown Sugar
- Unsalted Butter
- Baking soda (for soda bath)
- Stand Mixer with paddle and dough attachments
- Dough Whisk or wooden spoon if mixing by hand
- Dough scraper or pizza cutter
- Slotted spoon for soda bath
- parchment paper
- baking sheet
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Making the Dough
In the bowl of a stand mixer, you will want to mix together one cup of warm water, one package of instant yeast (or 2 and 1/4th teaspoon) and 2 tablespoons of white sugar. Allow yeast mixture to sit until it becomes foamy. This usually takes about 5 minutes.
With a paddle attachment on your stand mixture add in discard (or greek yogurt or sour cream) and salt and mix on low speed. Slowly incorporate bread flour a cup at a time until just combined. You can also mix by hand using a dough whisk or wooden spoon.
Switch over to a dough hook attachment and knead dough on medium speed for 7-8 minutes. Dough should start to form a ball and pull away from sides of the bowl. If dough is not pulling away from sides and still sticky, you can add one tablespoon of flour at a time. If dough is too dry and not forming a ball, you can add a little more water one tablespoon at a time.
Cover dough with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise in a warm place for 2 hours or until doubled in size
Shaping the Bagel and Soda Bath
Once dough has risen and doubled in size, turn dough out onto a floured surface. Using a dough scraper or a pizza cutter, cut dough into 8 equal parts. Roll the dough into balls and poke your index finger into the middle of the ball. Spin the dough ball around your finger in a circular motion to form the bagel shape. Place bagel on a parchment-lined baking sheet and prepare the soda bath.
To prepare the soda bath, boil a large pot of water and once it comes to a full boil, add in 1 tablespoon of baking soda to the boiling water. Drop bagels into the bath for a minute, flipping them over after 30 seconds. Remove the bagel from the bath with a slotted spoon, draining the excess water and place back onto parchment sheet. The purpose of the boiling process is to help give the bagels their traditional golden brown, shiny, crisp exterior, just like soft pretzels!
Now this is where you can add an egg wash for plain bagels. Mix together 1 egg white beaten with 1 tablespoon of water until just foamy. The egg wash will help brown and crisp up the exterior of the bagel. You could add a little sea salt or Everything seasoning before baking as well, but for this recipe we will be adding the cinnamon crunch topping… YUM
Making the Cinnamon Crunch Topping
Once you have shaped and boiled the bagels, mix together 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/4th cup white sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon in a small mixing bowl. In a separate small mixing bowl, melt 1/2 stick of unsalted. butter. You will want to dip the bagels into the melted butter and then dip into the sugar and coat on both sides prior to baking. Place the cinnamon sugar coated bagels back onto the parchment lined baking sheet and bake on 425 for 20 min. Allow the bagels to cool completely before slicing. Serve warm with cream cheese…..SOOOO GOOD! I hope you love these copycat Panera cinnamon crunch bagels. Enjoy!!