Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Whole Wheat & Oat Bagels - #BreadBakers

Whole Wheat & Oat Bagel
Whole Wheat & Oat Bagel w/ Chickpea & Sweet Potato Burger

Do you watch the Great British Baking Show/ Bake-Off? I am catching up on Sunday's episode as I type this up. I am not sure how I feel about this show. In fact, a friend messaged me last night asking if he should watch it and I am still not sure what to say to him. The hosts are annoying. But the challenges are OK, I guess. I've learned a thing or two from the past episodes. For example, I'd never heard of a hot water crust before. It's something I definitely want to try at some point. Nevertheless, the show just doesn't excite me. Perhaps, I have gotten too used to cooking shows with gimmicks. "Make a ten tiered wedding cake with one hand tied behind your back. And oh, you can't use an oven." Yes, I'm mocking Cutthroat Kitchen.

So about these bagels. The Great British Baking Show doesn't excite but these bagels definitely did. I made bagels once before. I think they were the second bread/sourdough item that I ever made. Cinnamon and raisin. I was so proud of myself. I told everyone within hearing distance that I made bagels. That was back in 2011. It's taken me almost 4 years to make another batch. Why did it take so long? I have no idea. I tend to not repeat things because I am always trying to move on to something else. And there's the fact that bagels are pretty calorie-dense. I'll happily eat two without thinking about it. That's a lot of bagel (for me) in one sitting. That's why I made these smaller so that when (not if) I ate two at once, I wouldn't feel too stuffed.

The flavour was inspired by a Whole Wheat Oat and Honey bread that Joy the Baker challenged her readers to make. I made it and LOVED it. It smelled so amazing while being baked that I immediately tossed my other bagel baking plans. Plus, it had oats. We've already covered the fact that I like to put oats in every bread so this was perfect. I definitely had half a loaf within a couple hours.

Check out my recipe below and when you're finished, check out those AMAZING bagels baked by my fellow Bread Bakers.You'll want to run to the kitchen and start working on your own batch immediately.

Whole Wheat & Oat Bagels
Recipe by: Kelster    Dough formula adapted from Peter Reinhart's Artisan Breads Every Day
Yield: 6 - 9 bagels

1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
255 grams water
54 grams ground oats
100 grams whole wheat flour
300 grams all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Poaching Liquid
8 - 12 cups of water (enough for 4 inches of water in a pot)
1 1/2 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
Combine all the dough ingredients and knead for 3 minutes. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes then knead for an additional 3 minutes. The dough should be stiff yet supple. If it's dry and cracking, add water by the teaspoon. If it's sticky or very tacky, add flour.

Allow to rise for 1 hour in a lightly oiled bowl.
Lightly oil a sheet pan.

Divide the dough into 6 - 9 balls. Traditionally, bagels are about 113 grams (4 oz). I used ~3 oz per bagel for 9 bagels. To shape the bagels, you can use one of two methods:
A) Poke a hole in the center of the ball to form a donut shape. With two fingers in the hole, rotate the dough, gradually stretching the hole to two inches.  
B) Roll out each ball to an 8 inch rope. Taper the rope slightly at each end and moisten the last inch or so of the ends. Place one end of the dough in the palm of your hand and wrap the rope around your hand to complete the circle, going between your thumb and forefinger and then all the way around.
The ends should overlap by about 2 inches. Squeeze the overlapping ends together by closing your hand, then press the seam into the work surface, rolling it back and forth a few times to seal. Remove the dough
from your hand, squeezing it to even out the thickness if need be and creating a hole of about 2 inches in diameter.

I tried both methods. The donut way is quicker but I didn't have a preference.

Cover the sheet pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or up to 2 days.

Remove the bagels from the refrigerator about an hour before you plan to bake them. Place a bagel in a bowl of cold water. If it floats, the bagels are ready to be boiled and baked. If it sinks, shake off the water and test it again in 10 minutes.

30 minutes before baking, preheat oven to 500 F.

Bring a pot of water to a boil. There should be at least 4 inches of water in the pot. Lower heat to maintain a simmer and stir in honey, salt and baking soda. Gently lower each bagel into to the pot. After a minute, turn the bagel over. Boil for another 30 - 60 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on an OILED surface. Bagels will stick to parchment if it isn't oiled.

Place bagels in the oven and lower heat to 450 F. After 8 minutes, rotate the pan and bake for another 10 minutes.

  • You can also proof the full piece of dough in an oiled bowl overnight and then shape the bagels on baking day, 60 to 90 minutes before boiling and baking them, or as soon as they pass the float test.


#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send Stacy an email with your blog URL to


  1. i never use oats I need to try them😊

    1. It's an easy way to add some whole grain and extra fibre. Try soaking them in hot water before continuing with your recipe.

  2. These look great! I like that you used oats and whole wheat flour.

  3. These would make a wonderful bagel sandwich for lunch.

  4. Your bagels look fantastic. Oats and wheat are a great combination.

  5. I really like this flavor combination! I'm very much like you in that I almost never repeat a recipe. It's kind of a shame, because I really do like most everything I've made, but if I keep revisiting old ground, what exactly would I blog about?!

    Very smart to make your bagels smaller. Portion control, right? lol =)

    1. More like the illusion of portion control. Haha. This made me think of all the other things that I made years ago and never revisited. I wasn't blogging most of that stuff so it's really a shame that I have not made them again.

  6. I can just about smell these baking, Kelli, with that cinnamon along with the whole wheat and oats! They are such a lovely brown too.

    1. Yes, just that touch of cinnamon and honey and such a great smell. Of course, I now want cinnamon in everything.

  7. Interesting, I like that you use the honey in the liquid for boiling the bagels, not in the dough itself. And the cinnamon is a great addition!

    1. There's a tablespoon of honey in the dough also. Peter Reinhart actually uses malt syrup to get the signature bagel flavour. But I didn't go searching for any.

  8. That is the one hard thing about being a blogger is that we don't tend to go back to recipes that we love as we are always trying to move forward. I am glad you made bagels again, they look delish!

  9. I have been watching that show too-- we saw the first episode in England this summer when we were visiting family and I am happy to follow it to the end here. I agree with you-- the hosts are not the high point-- but I enjoy seeing the creations the bakers make each week.

    1. Last week they were particularly weird. But this week they were tolerable. I realise that I do like hearing Paul and Mary discuss the ins and outs of the technical challenge.

  10. Replies
    1. Chickpea and sweet potato, actually. A chicken burger would be great too.

  11. These look so hearty and delicious!

  12. These bagels look perfect for a great breakfast sandwich!

  13. These look wonderful, and so healthy! I watch those cooking shows with sort of a skepticism, disdain, and fascination at the same time =) I can't look away!

    1. I am 7 episodes into the Great British Baking Show / Bake-Off so even though I'm iffy about it, I clearly can't look away either.

  14. I love the sound of these, great use of flavours.

  15. I find bagel-making to be exhausting, but always delicious and WORTH IT. Love this flavor!

    1. Thanks, Joanne! Yeah, it definitely can be. I need to practise them more often though. Need to become good at making them.

  16. These turned out perfect! A lot of time and effort (including converting grams to ounces) but I am very pleased with the bagels.