These vegan and gluten-free Bagel Bites are the perfect healthy finger food to serve at your next gathering. They taste exactly like authentic bagel bites you might have enjoyed during your childhood, only this version doesn’t contain any chemicals or animal products. The dough is made from all-purpose gluten-free flour from Bob’s Red Mill.
It’s hard to come by vegan cheese that tastes good, is healthy, and melts. Unfortunately, I haven’t found one that checks all three marks. Here are the best options I’ve come across:
- VIOLIFE. Violife is the healthiest shredded vegan cheese I have come across. It has minimal ingredients, and none raise any major red flags. It doesn’t melt well at all, but tastes great.
- MIYOKOS. In my opinion Miyokos tastes the best out of any vegan cheese I’ve tried. I don’t mind the ingredients, though they aren’t as minimal and healthy as Violife. The bulk of the ingredients are whole foods, though it does contain less than 2% of locust bean gum, calcium sulfate, and unidentified natural flavors. Could be a lot worse, but not something I would recommend eating everyday.
- FOLLOW YOUR HEART. To be honest this brand isn’t very healthy – it contains palm fruit oil, unidentified natural flavors, disodium phosphate, sodium citrate, calcium sulfate, etc. The positive though is this is the only shredded cheese I have found melts well. If you’re new to veganism and need realistic vegan cheeses to help you through the transition, this is your best bet. Eventually though, this is not a brand I would recommend sticking with long term.
Gluten-Free Bagel Bites
If you’re not gluten-free, you can buy premade mini bagels, but keep in mind most brands are highly processed. I highly recommend making the dough – it takes a bit of time, but isn’t wildly complicated. The good news is you can make a big batch and keep what you don’t use frozen. You can also use the dough to make regular size bagels, not just mini ones. Here are the basics:
- Combine brown sugar (or coconut sugar), ACTIVATED YEAST, and warm water in the base of your stand mixer.
- If you don’t have a STAND MIXER that’s okay. Just add your ingredients to a large bowl and when it comes time use your hands to knead.
- Add in the flour first, then slowly add in the remaining water. I used Bob Red Mills’s GLUTEN-FREE ALL PURPOSE FLOUR. The dough should be slightly sticky, not crumbly. If the dough is too dry and crumbly, add in water 1/2 cup at a time. It’s important to make sure the water is at a warm temperature.
- Knead for about 10 minutes, then cover the bowl for about an hour. Pack down, then let sit for another 10 minutes. Cut into about 16 pieces and roll each one into a disc.
- If you want your bagels to be a nice golden brown, coat with a light coat of vegan butter. This step is NOT necessary at all. I use butter from FORAGER’S.
- 2 1/4 tsp dry active yeast
- 3.5 - 5 cups gluten-free all purpose flour amount varies, start with 3.5 cups. if mixture is too sticky and liquidy, add more flour in 1/4 cup increments
- 1.5 tsp brown or coconut sugar
- 2 cups warm water
- 1.5 tsp sea salt
- 3 tbsp vegan butter optional
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce
- 3/4 cup vegan shredded cheese add as much or as little as you'd like to each bagel
- add 1 cup warm water, dry active yeast, and sugar into your stand mixer (or large bowl) and wait a few minutes for the granules to dissolve.
- add the dough and remaining warm water to your stand mixer and knead on a low speed for about 10 minutes. if the mixture is too dry and crumbly, add more water. if the mixture is too wet and sticky, add more flour. if you don't have a stand mixture, knead with your hands in the large bowl.
- cover bowl with a towel and let rise for about an hour. punch down and let sit for another 10 min or so.
- preheat oven to 400 degrees. add mixture to a clean surface and cut into about 16 pieces. roll each piece into a disc.
- boil a pot of water and add each disc to the boiling water until it floats to the top - should take anywhere from 30 seconds to a minute. coat discs with vegan butter (optional) and arrange on a baking tray. bake for 20 minutes.
- let the discs cool, then cut each disc in half leaving you with 32 bagels. spread tomato sauce onto each bite and sprinkle with vegan shredded cheese. add back onto your baking tray and bake for about 15-20 minutes.