Lemon Poppy Seed Bagels

lemon poppy bagels

Lemon Poppy Seed Bagels

Servings: 8 Bagels • Prep time: 30 min • Total time: 2 hours

lemon poppy bagels

I HIGHLY recommend eating these with cream cheese and lemon curd. It’s bomb, trust me. 


3.5 cups / Bread Flour

1.5 tsp / Salt

1.5 cups / Warm Water

1 tbsp / Active Dry Yeast

4.5 tbsp / white sugar- separated into 1.5 tbsp and 3 tbsp

1 tsp / Lemon Extract

3 tbsp / Poppy Seeds

Zest of 2 lemons



  1. Add 1.5 tbsp white sugar and yeast into warm water. Set aside for 10 minutes to bloom. Meanwhile, whisk together flour, salt and poppy seeds in large mixing bowl. 
  2. Combine remaining sugar (3 tbsp) with lemon zest in small bowl. Using your fingers, rub together to combine until it looks like sand. This releases the lemon oils to make the flavor more prominent. Add to dry ingredients and whisk to combine.
  3. Once yeast mixture is foamy, add to dry ingredients. Then add lemon extract and mix until a shaggy dough forms. Dump dough out onto an non-floured work surface and knead for about 12 minutes, or until elastic, smooth and pliable. After kneading, form dough into a ball and place in a lightly oiled mixing bowl (big enough to accompany the dough doubling in size). Cover bowl with a damp dish towel and let rest at room temperature for 60-70 minutes, or until dough has doubled. 
  4. Preheat oven to 425° and lightly flour a baking sheet. Set aside. Once dough has doubled, punch down the center to release the air. Then, dump out onto a non-floured work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. 
  5. Take one piece of dough and fold the corners into the center. Flip over so the seam side is down, and using a cupped hand, roll the dough against the surface in circular motions to create a ball. This also seals the seam on the bottom of the dough ball. Place ball on lightly floured baking sheet and repeat with the other 7 balls. After all are formed, cover with the same damp dish towel and let rest for 10 minutes.
  6. While dough balls are resting, bring a large pot of water to a boil. After 10 minutes of dough resting, flour your thumb and index finger. Pick up a ball and press your thumb and index in the center of the dough all the way, making the hole. Once hole forms, take your two index fingers; one with the dough on it and one bare. Point them at each other and use both to stretch the hole, moving in a forward circular motion to make it even. Stretch until it is about 1.5 inches in diameter, place it back on the baking sheet and repeat for all dough balls. 
  7. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Now it’s time to boil the bagels. Place 2-3 bagels in the boiling water at a time (make sure to leave room for expansion). Boil bagels for 1-2 minutes PER SIDE. **The longer you boil, the more chewy the bagel. I like the boil for 1 minute to 1.5 minutes. Once both sides are boiled, place on baking sheet (4 bagels per sheet) and repeat with all. After all are boiled, brush the bagels with melted butter or egg wash (1 beaten egg + splash of water) for a golden crust. 
  8. Bake for 18-20 minutes, switching the sheets halfway for even browning. Let cool completely on wire rack and enjoy! 

*Lasts for up to 4 days at room temp in an airtight container. You can also freeze them after they cool completely so they last for 1 month. To bake from frozen, thaw at room temp until no longer frozen and toast in toaster oven.

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