These sourdough discard bagels are one of the tastiest things to ever come out of my kitchen.

Hannah even said it’s the best bagel she’s ever had, and she used to work at Panera back in the day!

How to make sourdough discard.

My road to getting my sourdough starter to make bread has been a long one.  I started it on January 1, and here it is January 12 and today if the first day I will be able to make a loaf of bread.

This is how I made my starter:  60 grams water, 60 ounces of unbleached all purpose flour.  There are so many people who add rye flour, do combinations of whole wheat and unbleached all purpose, but I decided to pick a flour that I would use for other things.

So let’s just use this as my journey to sourdough starter:

Monday:  60 grams water, 60 grams unbleached flour.  Mix completely, place a lid (slightly ajar) on top and let it sit for 48 hours.

Wednesday:  discard half of the dough (save this!) and feed another 60 grams water, 60 grams unbleached flour

Thursday: discard half of the dough, feed another 60 grams of water, 60 grams unbleached flour

Friday: I left it alone as there weren’t many bubbles

Saturday: discard half of the dough, feed another 60 grams of water, 60 grams of unbleached flour

Sunday: do not discard, feed another 60 grams of water, 60 grams of unbleached flour

My house is kept at about 67 degrees, so at the suggestion of some friends on Instagram, I bought a seed mat and that changed everything within a couple days. Finally my starter was at a happy 79 degrees. 

You will know when your starter is ready is when it is peak at the top of your jar, and when a small piece is dropped into a glass of water, it floats.

I’ve watched dozens of videos on YouTube, but I’ll link several people that I followed to get to where I am today.

Mike from ProHomeCooks.  If you aren’t watching his YouTube’s he has amazing content that can level you up as a home cook.

For this recipe, I adapted a recipe from This Jess Cooks.  Her originally recipe called for nearly 4 cups of flour and sugar in the dough, and I reduced the flour by 1.5 cups and omitted the sugar from the dough.

these are bagels rising before baking

this is a photo of bagels made with sourdough discard

Sourdough Discard Bagels

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes

This recipe is adapted from Jess - from This Jess Cooks. I adapted her recipe to make it a little more weight watcher friendly. I reduced the flour but 1.25 cups, so when I put this in the WW calculator each one is 4 WW points. Side note: I did not add the 1 tablespoon of sugar that is added to the water to boil the bagels, as no sugar would have been absorbed into the bagel. It's merely for coloring when baking. I also didn't add sugar to the bagel dough as well.


  • 2.25 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon active yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 100 grams sourdough discard
  • 3/4 - 1 cup water (or more as needed)
  • 3 tablespoons egg white, whisked, for brushing before baking
  • 1 tablespoon everything but the bagel seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon dried onion


  1. Combine flour, yeast and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with dough hook. Mix until combined. On low speed, add the sourdough discard and water until combined.
  2. Here is where you will need to see how the dough comes together on how much water to add. Start with 3/4 cup adding a tablespoon at a time until the dough pulls away from the bowl.
  3. Knead in the mixer on low for 5 minutes. It will be a sturdy dough, not sticky at this point.
  4. Grease a bowl with a teaspoon of olive oil, tossing to coat, place plastic wrap on top and let rise in a warmish place (for me I turned my oven to 170 degrees for 2 minutes - not until it gets to 170 - literally set your oven to 170, hit a timer for 2 minutes, then turn off oven. That was enough warmth in my cold house for the dough to rise). Rise for 90 minutes,
  5. Place dough on the counter and divide into 8 sections. If you want to weight out your bagels so they are the same size, my bagels were 140 grams each.
  6. Heat oven to 425. Roll each piece into a small ball, then using your thumb, make a hole, bigger than you think you need because the hole will close when you boil and bake. Let rest on the counter with a damp cloth overtop for 20 minutes while bringing a pot of water to boil.
  7. Add 1 tablespoon sugar to the water, and boil each bagel about 20 seconds a side, draining off as much water before adding to a parchment lined paper baking sheet.
  8. Brush with egg white wash, add desired toppings and cook for 20-25 minutes, or until golden. This will depend on your oven, but I baked mine for 20 minutes.


As of the date of this publication, each bagel is 4 WW points. Click here for the WW tracker.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 179Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 406mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 6g

Did you make this recipe?

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I’ve watched so many hours of videos, and one thing I’ve learned is that are so many different ways to make a sourdough starter, and then how to make the bread.  My advice is to just pick a recipe and just stay in that lane.  At one point I was thinking “do I want to do an 80% hydration from this recipe and long ferment for two days like that recipe?”  In the end, I didn’t give up on the starter.  Keep pivoting and tweaking until it eventually works, because it will eventually work!  Don’t give up!

this is a photo of bagels made with sourdough discard