Spelt Bagels – London Style

Spelt Bagels, dairy-free and delicious

Spelt Bagels

Easy and fun to make with children, these delicious spelt bagels hit the spot.

Grace loves fresh baked bread (who doesn’t right?), the smell of bread baking in the oven that then fills the house is hard to resist. One of our favourites, apart from flat breads is the humble bagel.

We tweaked this recipe for spelt flour and they worked out brilliantly, even Grace helped knead the dough and make the holes for the final bagels.

You can adjust the crust toppings to your favourite choices, but the main ones include: sesame seeds, nigella seeds, onions or poppy seeds, we chose sesame seeds as Grace loves them.

The difference between a New York style and a London bagel is the ‘chew factor’. Personally we like our bagels a little chewier this is achieved by boiling the bagel for 2 mins on each side. For a less chewy bagel adjust the boiling to 1 min on each side before baking.

Happy baking…

Slightly modified recipe to cater for Gracie’s dietary requirements original courtesy of the Sophisticated Gourmet.

Spelt Bagels - London Style

Print Recipe
Serves: 8 Cooking Time: 1 Hour 45 Minutes


  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 ½ tablespoons coconut sugar (replace with normal sugar if not available)
  • 300ml warm water (you may need ± ¼ cup /60ml more, I know I did)
  • 500g spelt flour (will need extra for kneading)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt



In ½ cup /120ml of the warm water, pour in the sugar and yeast. Do not stir. Let it sit for five minutes, and then stir the yeast and sugar mixture, until it all dissolves in the water.


Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast and sugar mixture.


Pour 1/3 cup / 90ml of the remaining warm water into the well. Mix and stir in the rest of the water as needed. Depending on where you live, you may need to add anywhere from a couple tablespoons to about ¼ cup/60ml of water. You want a moist and firm dough after you have mixed it.


On a floured countertop, knead the dough for about 10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. Try working in as much flour as possible to form a firm and stiff dough.


Lightly brush a large bowl with oil and turn the dough to coat. Cover the bowl with a damp dish towel. Let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in size. Punch the dough down, and let it rest for another 10 minutes.


Carefully divide the dough into 8 pieces (I used a scale to be extra precise, but it’s not necessary). Shape each piece into a round. Now, take a dough ball, and press it gently against the countertop (or whatever work surface you’re using) moving your hand and the ball in a circular motion pulling the dough into itself while reducing the pressure on top of the dough slightly until a perfect dough ball forms. Repeat with 7 other dough rounds.


Coat a finger in flour, and gently press your finger into the center of each dough ball to form a ring. Stretch the ring to about ⅓ the diameter of the bagel and place on a lightly oiled cookie sheet. Repeat the same step with the remaining dough.


After shaping the dough rounds and placing them on the cookie sheet, cover with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 425ºF / 220ºC / Gas Mark 7.


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce the heat. Use a slotted spoon or skimmer to lower the bagels into the water. Boil as many as you are comfortable with boiling. Once the bagels are in, it shouldn’t take too long for them to float to the top (a couple seconds). Let them sit there for 1 minute, and them flip them over to boil for another minute. Extend the boiling times to 2 minutes each, if you’d prefer a chewier bagel.


If you want to top your bagels with stuff, do so as you take them out of the water, you may use the “optional toppings” (listed above) to top the bagels and if you’re risky like me, make a combination of the toppings to top the bagels with, but before hand, you will need to use an egg wash to get the toppings to stick before putting the bagels into the oven.


Once all the bagels have boiled (and have been topped with your choice of toppings), transfer them to a lightly oiled baking sheet.


Bake for 20 minutes, until golden brown.


Cool on a wire rack


Dig in an enjoy warm!


If you have kitchen scales it definitely helps, as cup measurements for baking can be off.

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  • Reply
    April 11, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    Lovely – I’ve never made bagels so must give this a try asap

  • Reply
    April 11, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    This recipe looks great!

    • Reply
      July 4, 2020 at 2:38 pm

      Thanks, enjoy 🙂

  • Reply
    March 19, 2018 at 4:03 am

    I’ve just made a batch of these. My 10yo *loves* bagels and my other half can only tolerate spelt flour so this is a perfect recipe for us. Thumbs up all round, they are delicious. Thanks for posting the recipe 🙂

    • Reply
      March 24, 2018 at 7:02 am

      Thanks for your feedback!! So glad you and your family liked them 🙂

    • Reply
      Tracey Ayele
      March 30, 2019 at 12:40 am

      Did you boil and bake? I’ve nrver boiled them baked any flour . I’m nervous. How did they turn out.

      • Reply
        April 7, 2019 at 7:08 am

        Hi, yes you boil and bake these ones 🙂

  • Reply
    April 12, 2018 at 3:21 pm


    Great recipe, do you think we could use a stand mixer to knead instead of hand kneading? Would I need to adjust the timing? Also, can I use honey/agave in place of sugar?

  • Reply
    January 22, 2020 at 11:01 am

    I was very happy with this recipe. Do you have a sourdough English muffin recipe?

    • Reply
      March 22, 2020 at 4:51 pm

      Not at this stage sorry

  • Reply
    Aimee Hand
    March 20, 2020 at 12:21 am

    I want to try this recipe but How many cups is 500 grams? Siri says 4.17 cups.
    I don’t usually bake in metric.

    • Reply
      March 22, 2020 at 4:51 pm

      Hi Aimee, usually two cups is approx 500gm but we use digital scales.

  • Reply
    April 15, 2020 at 9:48 pm

    I didnt realise it was so easy to swap out for spelt flour…. I love making cinnamon and raisin bagels, orange and cranberry but my favourite has to be parmesan, I just grate the parm (or grana pedano) straight onto the bagels when they come out of the water bath before baking – no need for an egg wash either. Sometimes I go for herbs du provonce in the mix and cheddar on the top too. Thanks for encouranging me to try out alternative flours rather than the ususal white bread flour.

    • Reply
      July 4, 2020 at 2:36 pm

      Hi Kate,
      That all sounds really yummy!

  • Reply
    May 23, 2020 at 5:44 am

    Hi this recipe is great but at the moment I can’t find spelt what can I substitute with?

    • Reply
      July 4, 2020 at 2:40 pm

      Hi there, just normal flour and just adjust the water (spelt needs more water).

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