Make brunch even better with a batch of homemade herb and onion bagels! Homemade vegan bagels are easy and perfectly fluffy.

herb and onion bagels with cream cheese

Would you believe me if I told you I’ve never made homemade bagels before? While it’s bee on my ‘to bake’ list for forever, I just never got around to the process of making onion bagels until this past weekend. Between the kneading, rising, and boiling process, some people might think it takes too much time, but I find it downright meditative. Forcing myself to commit to one activity for an entire afternoon has proven to be an exercise in patience, especially since I know one wrong move or trying to juggle too many cooking projects at once could result in a batch of over proofed bagels.

One thing I’ve been trying to do more of lately is mindfully completing one task at a time, especially in the kitchen. For so long, I’ve been operating with the mindset that doing more is better. Doing three things at once? Multitasker! Cooking 4 recipes all in the same day? No problem! But really what I’ve been doing is giving each task partial attention, rather than trying to commit wholly to one thing, giving every step and piece of the process my full, undivided attention.

vegan herb and onion bagels

When I made these onion bagels last Sunday, I was so tempted to start on another recipe for the week. I really could have easily done it, roasting the veggies I’ll need and assembling everything while the bagels take their second rise. But I stopped myself because I knew if I tried to do another task at the same time, I might miss out on taking notes for rolling out the perfect bagel or ignore how many seconds I let them boil before baking.

I think committing wholeheartedly to the one task of making bagels in an afternoon forced me to see and appreciate the beauty in bread baking. Yes, you have to wait for the dough to rise for an hour the first time, but you can read a book while it does! It also helps that I used Red Star Quick Rise Yeast in this recipe to speed the process along just a bit. And yes, the process of boiling the bagels and then baking seems like too much work, but trust me, once you pull a fresh, crispy homemade bagel out of the oven and crack it open, everything is worth the time and patience it took to get there.

herb and onion bagel topped with cream cheese

Tips on how to make bagels

  • Don’t let the dough for these overproof — If you let the dough rise for too long), you could end up with deflated bagels. This is an instance where longer isn’t necessarily better and could end up ruining your batch of bagels.
  • Substitute in your favorite dried herbs — If you don’t have thyme or sage on hand, feel free to substitute in your favorite dried herbs. I went with dried herbs and onions here because I didn’t want to end up with soggy bagels, in case their fresh counterparts weighed down the dough with their extra moisture.
  • Remove the bagels from the oven as soon as they turn brown — I would 100% recommend taking these out right when you think they are done! I was tempted to keep mine in a few minutes longer, but I think I would have ended up with rock hard homemade bagels if I had. Keep in mind that anything you take out of the oven keeps on baking slightly after it’s removed from the oven due to the residual heat, so early is better. I always pick one apart to check for doughy spots, but somewhere in the 20-25 minute range is the perfect bake time.
  • Boiling the bagels is a must — I know boiling the bagels first seems like a lot of work, but that’s what gives bagels their signature shiny exterior and smooth crust. If you skip this step, all your work beforehand would go to waste!

packet of yeast next to a bagel

herb and onion bagel with cream cheese on top

I hope you’ve had a lovely Wednesday so far! I’m crossing my fingers that I’ll get a recipe done in time for Thursday, bringing you a sweet potato salad that will be perfect for those summertime parties coming up.

More vegan bread recipes on Heart of a Baker:

Vegan Onion and Herb Bagels- Make brunch even better with a batch of homemade onion and herb bagels!

Herb and Onion Bagels

  • Author: Abby Bayatpour
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American


Make brunch even better with a batch of vegan homemade onion and herb bagels!



  • 1 1/2 cups warm water (110-115ºF)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 envelope Red Star Quick Rise Yeast
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons dried, minced onion
  • Pinch of garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried sage
  • 10 cups water


  1. Combine 1 1/2 cups warm water, the sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Set aside for 5 minutes, or until the mixture foams.
  2. Add the flour and olive oil and mix on low speed with the dough hook attachment until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add in the dried, minced onion, garlic powder, dried thyme, and dried sage. Knead for 30 seconds to 1 minute longer, or until herbs are incorporated.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl and oil it lightly with olive oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside in a warm place for 1 hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.
  5. Once dough has risen, turn dough out onto a floured work surface.
  6. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces, dividing the dough in half, then halving each half twice, creating 8 pieces total.
  7. Roll each dough piece into a 10-inch long rope, rolling the dough with your hands outward until rope has formed.
  8. After dough has been rolled out into a rope, squish down one end of the rope and form into a bagel (circle) shape, pushing the squished end into the side of the bagel. Repeat the rolling and forming process until all bagels have been formed.
  9. Place formed bagels on a greased, rimmed baking sheet. Cover lightly with a kitchen towel and allow to rise for 15-20 minutes, until bagels are puffy and slightly risen.
  10. After the bagels have risen, heat the oven to 425ºF. Line 2 half sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with oil. Set aside.
  11. Bring the 10 cups water to a boil in a large dutch oven.
  12. Three at a time, place the bagels in the boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula and return them to the sheet pans, brush the top of each bagel with a little more olive oil and sprinkle with extra dried onion and herbs.
  13. Bake until dark golden brown in color, 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving. Best served within the first day of baking.

Keywords: onion bagel, homemade bagels, how to make bagels

This post is sponsored by Red Star Yeast. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this space possible! 

mug of tea next to an herb and onion bagel