Cinnamon Raisin Bagels

November 18, 2014
Photo by Bobbi Lin
Author Notes

No one can resist a chewy, golden brown bagel studded with raisins and flavored with cinnamon and vanilla. I adapted this from a recipe for plain bagels from Spoonful. —

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: is an avid cookbook collector and crafter from Seattle.
WHAT: Sweet bagels for a Sunday brunch or an afternoon snack.
HOW: Form a dough out of yeast, flour, and salt, and flavor it with vanilla, cinnamon, and raisins. Shape the dough into bagels, then boil them in lightly sugared water. Once they have cooled, paint the bagels with an egg wash and bake until golden brown.
WHY WE LOVE IT: As a New York-based company, we're all for the Sunday morning dash to the corner bagel shop, but there's something to be said for homemade bagels, especially when they're as chewy as these are. Nailing the correct consistency can be difficult, but it will all be worth it once you take your first fresh-out-of-the-oven bite. —The Editors

  • Prep time 2 hours
  • Cook time 30 minutes
  • Makes 8
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
  • 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups to 4 1/2 flour, divided
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 splash oil for greasing
  • 1 egg white
In This Recipe
  1. Add 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water to your mixer bowl and sprinkle the yeast over the top, then allow to sit in a warm room until the yeast softens, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons sugar and vanilla on top, then sift together 2 cups flour, salt, and cinnamon and add to the bowl. Mix until combined (a dough hook attachment on a stand mixer works well).
  3. Add the raisins and an additional 1 1/2 cups of flour, and mix until combined. The dough should form into a ball easily and be smooth and not too sticky to handle. Add additional flour in 1/2-cup increments as necessary.
  4. Remove the dough from the mixer bowl and knead for 1 to 2 minutes with your hands, folding the ball in on itself one way and then the other. Lightly grease a glass bowl with oil and put your kneaded ball in the bowl, turning it to coat all sides with oil. Cover the bowl with a tea towel, place in a warm room, and allow the dough to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. After your dough has doubled, punch it down and allow it to rest for 1 to 2 minutes. While it’s resting, prepare a board or countertop by sprinkling it gently with flour and cover 2 cookie sheets or baking pans with parchment paper.
  6. Bring a large stockpot 2/3-full with water to a boil and add the remaining tablespoon sugar.
  7. Whisk together the egg white and 1 1/2 teaspoon water to make an egg wash.
  8. Preheat your oven to 400º F.
  9. Turn your dough onto the floured surface and divide it in half. I found a bench scraper to be very helpful, but a knife will work.
  10. The key to this step and the next few is consistency. Cut each dough half into halves, and then each quarter again into halves, so you have 8 equally-sized balls of dough. I used a scale to weigh mine (each ball was between 4.8 and 5.1 ounces), but your eyes will work if you don’t have a scale.
  11. Gently form each ball of dough into a round and pat it flat. Repeat until all 8 are done. Rest the dough again for 2 to 3 minutes.
  12. Press your thumbs through the center of each dough ball and pull apart gently to form a center hole. Pull slowly away from the center with your thumbs until you have the shape you want. Continue until all 8 balls of dough have a hole in the center.
  13. Rest the dough again for at least 10 minutes, or until the water in your stockpot is boiling.
  14. Before you start cooking, put a cotton tea towel over a plate or rack directly adjacent to your boiling water and have ready a spider or some tongs. Make sure your baking sheets are also ready and nearby.
  15. Working with 2 to 3 at a time, add bagels to the boiling water; cook for 30 seconds, then flip on to the other side and boil for another 30 seconds. Remove them to the towel-lined plate to drain some of the excess moisture, then put them onto a baking sheet, making sure that the bagels don't touch. Repeat until all bagels are boiled.
  16. Use a pastry brush (or spoon in a pinch) to glaze the top of each bagel with the egg wash.
  17. Bake for 25 minutes, until golden brown, rotating the pans halfway through to ensure even baking. Remove from the oven and cool slightly, but make sure to eat (at least) one while it's still hot!

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