Close up of a bagel

How to soften and reheat bagels

Before the hustle and bustle of a busy day begins, a soft bagel can be a great way for your family to enjoy a quick, delicious breakfast. Transform those once-dried-out bagels to their soft, chewy best with some simple techniques. Read on to learn how to soften and reheat your bagels.

Can you make bagels soft again?

With the right techniques, it’s possible to soften and help revive a bagel, making it nearly as delicious as the day it was baked. Whether your bagels are store-bought or frozen, your toaster, oven, microwave and air fryer can help get them soft again.

3 methods for softening and reheating bagels

When faced with a hard bagel, you have your pick of kitchen appliances to help restore its texture and taste. Read on to learn some possible methods for reheating bagels.

Vegetables in the oven

1. Soften stale bagels in the oven

To help rejuvenate your bagel using the oven, preheat it to 350°F. Briefly immerse the bagel in warm water by holding it beneath the tap or letting it sit in a bowl for no longer than 10 seconds. For a tender inside with a hint of crispiness on the outside, wrap the bagel loosely with aluminum foil and set it on a baking tray after the quick soak. Bake in the preheated oven for about five minutes. Be mindful of removing the bagel with care, as it will be hot.

Whirlpool® Microwave on a countertop

2. Reheat hard bagels in the microwave

The microwave is a quick solution for many kitchen tasks. To help soften a hard bagel, simply wrap it in a moist paper towel and microwave it for 15 seconds. You can also set the bagel on a microwave-safe plate, then surround it with a few water drops or lightly mist it and put it in the microwave for 30 seconds. Another method includes covering the bagel with a damp paper towel and warming it for 10 seconds at a time until you’re satisfied with the results. Avoid over-microwaving a bagel, as it can become harder instead of softer.

Food cooking in an air fryer basket

3. Revive bagels in an air fryer

Air fryers can also breathe new life into a hard bagel. Preheat the air fryer to 400°F, wrap the bagel in aluminum foil and leave it in the air fryer for about five minutes. This method often gives the bagel a crispy exterior and soft interior.

How do you keep bagels soft?

The secret to maintaining soft bagels often lies in proper storage. Keep them in a bread bin or resealable bag at room temperature. For longer storage, consider freezing bagels immediately after purchase or once cooled from the oven, and reheating them when needed.

What can you do with stale bagels?

While softening is an option, stale bagels can also be repurposed. From turning them into bread crumbs or croutons to creating a delectable bread pudding or bagel chips, there are several useful ways you can repurpose hard bagels for your family’s enjoyment.

Explore Whirlpool® Microwaves and Ovens

With a Whirlpool® Microwave or Oven, you can help revive and reheat bagels to get breakfast on the table and get back to what matters most. Select Whirlpool® Microwaves feature a CleanRelease® Non-Stick Interior to help keep spills from sticking and Sensor Cooking to automatically track the cooking progress of your food and adjust the cook time as needed. Select Whirlpool® Ovens are equipped with Frozen Bake™ Technology, which allows you to skip preheating and cook your frozen favorites in fewer steps, and a SpeedHeat™ Burner to help you sear and boil quickly.

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