Pumpkin Bagels

Last year, I stalked Einstein’s Bagels for about a month, waiting for their pumpkin bagels to arrive.  I searched the website, followed Einstein’s on twitter and Facebook and checked in at the store regularly (just in case they didn’t have time to update their social media).  From the magical day that they finally showed up until Thanksgiving, I found any excuse I could to stop by Einstein’s and get one of them.  I knew that I was eating way too many calories, but I had no other choice (except to not eat them, I guess, but who wants to live in a world like that).  No one has yet made pumpkin bagel thins.

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Still, this year, I decided that I would not be held hostage by Einstein’s for my pumpkin bagels but instead make my own!  I have not mastered the bagel thin, but I make bagels a bit smaller than the average store bought version to save a few calories.  These bagels smelled amazing while they were cooking/cooling.  The pumpkin flavor was a little less vibrant once I started eating them, but I think that’s because I topped them with pumpkin cream cheese, which totally stole the show.

Pumpkin Bagels
These bagels freeze very nicely for a few weeks.  Heat in a microwave before eating to bring out the pumpkin flavor.

1 Tbsp instant yeast
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 cup water, lukewarm
2 tsp salt
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger powder
1/8 tsp ground cloves
3 – 3 1/2 cups Flour

Water Bath
2 quarts water
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp granulated sugar


1. Combine the 1 T yeast, 1 T sugar and  1/2 c water in a bowl and let it rest for 5 minutes, in order to proof the yeast, while you gather the remaining ingredients.

2.  Once the yeast mixture is bubbly, add the 2 t salt, 1 c pumpkin, 1 t cinnamon,1/2 t nutmeg, 1/4 t ginger powder, 1/8 t ground cloves and 2 cups of flour and stir until a dough forms.

3. Gradually add the rest of the flour (1-1 1/2 c) until the dough becomes a ball that isn’t too sticky to be handled.

4. Knead the dough by hand for about 10 minutes.

5. Place the dough in a bowl that has been greased with some nonstick spray.  Set the dough aside in a non-drafty area to rise for 1 – 1 1/2 hours, until it has almost doubled in size.

6. Preheat your oven to 425°F.

7. Transfer the dough to a lightly-floured work surface and divide it into 12 pieces.

8. Roll each piece into a smooth, round ball.

9. Cover the balls with a towel and let them rest for 30 minutes.

10. While the dough is resting, prepare the water bath by heating the 2 quarts of water, 2 T brown sugar and 1 T sugar to a gentle boil in a large saucepan.

11.  Use your finger to poke a hole through the center of each ball, twirling the dough on your finger to stretch the hole to roughly an inch or two in diameter.

12. Transfer the bagels, three at a time, to the boiling water.  Cook the bagels for 2 minutes on one side and then flip them over to cook for an additional minute.  Using a skimmer or strainer, remove the bagels from the water and place them on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper or another non-stick baking surface.

13. When all of the bagels have been boiled, bake them for 20-25 minutes, turning once, until browned.

14. Let the bagels cool before storing.

Nutritionals (12 bagels) Cals: 156, Fat: 1, Carb: 35, Fiber: 2, Protein: 4