Blueberry Bagels

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I apologize.  I have been keeping this recipe all to myself.  It's not that I didn't want to share.  I just needed to make a few dozen batches and do a little taste testing to make sure they were just right to share☺.    

When I first started toying with the idea of a blueberry bagel,  I knew I wouldn't have many options in terms of the type of blueberry I was going to use.  I wanted the taste and texture of a fresh blueberry, but not the watery mess.  I also wanted a slight purple tint that made it look like a blueberry bagel, but without any artificial color added. The obvious choice would be to use dried blueberries, but I knew they wouldn't give me that streaked blueberry look to the bagel.  Frozen blueberries would be an even bigger disaster than fresh.  Hmmm...."....self, don't give up."  

Cruisin' through the aisles at the market, I found my answer-- freeze-dried blueberries!  They are made from fresh blueberries picked at their peak for the best blueberry flavor.  A 1.2-ounce package (about 1 cup) of freeze-dried blueberries is actually 8.5-ounces of fresh blueberries.  Now that's a lot of blueberry for my bagels.  Since they are on the brittle side, I gently knead them into the dough by hand.  They soften once baked and they give the bagels that little purple streak I was looking for.  To further enhance the blueberry flavor, I first add a bit more sugar.  Then I add a touch of cinnamon and lemon zest just like I do with my blueberry pie.  The flavors really compliment one another.

Just look at all those berries!  Toast one up and spread it with butter or cream cheese for breakfast or an anytime treat. 

If you are new to making bagels, check out my step-by-step photos for homemade bagels.  
Printable Recipe

Blueberry Bagels Bagels
yields 8

2 1/4 teaspoons dry active yeast
1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
1 1/3 cups warm water
3 1/2 cups bread flour, plus extra for kneading
1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon lemon zest
1 cup freeze dried blueberries

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the flour, sugar, yeast, salt, cinnamon, and lemon zest.  With the mixer on low, slowly add the water.  Continue to mix until the dough comes together in a mass, about 4-6 minutes.  Increase speed to medium-high and knead for another 8-10 minutes until soft and smooth.   Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and gently knead the blueberries in by hand. Place the dough in a bowl sprayed lightly with non-stick baking spray. Cover with a towel or lightly oiled plastic wrap and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. 

Gently de-gas the dough and let the dough rest for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425ยบ F and bring a large pot of water to a boil; then reduce to a simmer. 

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 8 pieces.  Press each piece down to get rid of air bubbles.  Form into balls and roll the balls between your palm and the work surface, rotating to form a smooth ball. Coat a finger in flour and press it through each ball to form a ring.  Twirl the ring around the index finger of one hand and the thumb of the other, stretching the dough and widening the hole to about 1/3 of the bagel’s diameter. Place the bagels on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silpat and cover with a towel. Let rest for another 10 minutes.

Gently lower the bagels into the water in batches, 2-3 bagels at a time. Boil uncovered for about 1 minute. Turn them over once and boil for another minute. Using a perforated skimmer, remove the bagels from the pot, letting the water drain; return to the baking sheet.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  Enjoy!

Source: Adapted from Bread by Eric Treuille & Ursula Ferrigno


  1. You make it sound very easy! Perfect bagels! I love to taste the berries in my bagels too. Thanks for the recipe.

  2. Nicole, These are not only gorgeous but they sound fabulous, thanks for testing them out for us - I know that was a difficult job but best accomplished by you, for sure! :) I love the idea of using freeze-dried blueberries - I'll have to see if they have them in my area - thanks

    1. Chris-
      Thank you! Freeze-dried blueberries are more easily found in the market these days. Trader Joe's has a wide variety of freeze-dried fruit.

  3. These look pretty fantastic!

  4. I love everything with blueberrieS!!! yumm!! looks delish!!

  5. I used this recipe and substituted dried blueberries for the freezer dried. It worked very well and my testers said it was the best bagel they ever had! I did find shaping the bagels very difficult. Any tips?

    1. The best tip for working with any recipe... practice☺.

  6. Hi Nicole, question! Does the flour need to be bread flour? Or will all purpose flour yield similar results?

    1. No, all purpose flour will not yield the same results. Bread flour has a higher gluten content and will hold up nicely to the given cooking tempertures. It gives a chewier texture with a nice pull.

  7. Do you use the dough hook or paddle when mixing these?

  8. Hi Nicole! Can I replace some of the water with warm pure blueberry juice for more flavor?

  9. I cannot say for certain. If you do try it it, please let me know how it works out


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