Top Ten Bagel Toppings

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Bagels, the ultimate breakfast indulgence, are made even more delectable with the right choice of toppings. In this article, we’ll unveil the top ten bagel toppings that are sure to tantalize your taste buds.


From classic cream cheese variations infused with the sweetness of berries, to timeless combinations of lox and traditional accompaniments, we’ll explore a range of savory and sweet options.

Whether you prefer gourmet and artisanal toppings or unique and unexpected combinations, join us as we delve into the world of bagel perfection.

Key Takeaways

  • Cream cheese is the most popular bagel schmear and can be flavored with herbs or fruits.
  • Lox, tomato, red onions, and capers make for a classic and savory bagel topping.
  • Sweet spreads like Nutella, orange marmalade, and honey add indulgence and flavor to a toasted bagel.
  • Fresh fruit toppings and quick jams provide a refreshing burst of sweetness to the bagel, while savory options like hummus and pimiento cheese offer variety and flavor.

Cream Cheese and Flavor Variations

Cream cheese is a versatile and popular topping for homemade or store-bought bagels, offering a creamy and flavorful base for various flavor variations. When it comes to creative cream cheese blends, the possibilities are endless.

Incorporating ingredients like herbs, such as dill or chives, can add a fresh and aromatic touch to the spread. For those with a sweet tooth, mixing in fruits like strawberry or blueberry creates a sweet and tangy flavor that pairs perfectly with a toasted bagel.

Additionally, experimenting with unique bagel seasoning ideas can elevate the taste even further.

From classic options like everything bagel seasoning to more unconventional choices like sriracha or truffle salt, these seasonings can add a burst of flavor and spice to your cream cheese topping.

Lox and Traditional Toppings

When it comes to traditional bagel toppings, one standout is lox, thinly sliced smoked salmon that pairs perfectly with a variety of classic garnishes.

Lox is a staple in Jewish cuisine and has become a beloved topping for bagels around the world. The combination of the smoky, salty salmon with the creamy texture of a toasted bagel is truly a match made in heaven.

In addition to the traditional toppings of tomato, red onions, and capers, there are also creative ways to incorporate lox into other dishes.

For example, lox can be used as a filling for omelettes or scrambled eggs, or even rolled up with cream cheese in a sushi-inspired bagel roll.

Regional variations of traditional bagel toppings also exist, such as the addition of pickled herring in Scandinavian cuisine or avocado in Californian bagel shops.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to exploring the delicious world of lox and traditional bagel toppings.

Sweet Spreads

Among the array of delectable options for bagel toppings, one category that stands out is sweet spreads. These spreads add a delightful sweetness to the bagel and can elevate its flavor profile.

Nutella, a chocolate and hazelnut spread, is a popular choice, offering a creamy and indulgent element to a toasted bagel.

For a chunky and flavorful schmear, orange marmalade is a great option and pairs well with a cup of hot tea.

Another simple and delicious topping is honey, which adds a natural sweetness to a hot toasted bagel.

When it comes to sweet spreads, there is room for creative twists and unexpected pairings. From crushed fruit with sugar to fresh fruit toppings, these spreads provide a refreshing and natural burst of sweetness to the bagel.

Fruit-based Toppings

For a burst of refreshing and natural flavor, fruit-based toppings provide an excellent option to elevate the taste of a bagel. Homemade jam recipes can be a delightful way to incorporate fruits into your bagel experience.

Whether it’s a classic strawberry jam or an exotic combination like mango and passionfruit, these sweet spreads add a burst of sweetness and tanginess to your breakfast.

The beauty of fruit-based toppings is that they bring a vibrant and natural taste that perfectly complements the doughy texture of a bagel.

From the chunky texture of crushed berries to the juicy slices of fresh fruit, these toppings provide a refreshing twist to your morning routine.

Savory Options

One savory option for topping a bagel is hummus, a versatile spread that complements the bagel well.

Hummus is a Mediterranean inspired spread that is made from mashed chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil. It offers a creamy and smooth texture with a nutty undertone.

It comes in various flavors such as roasted red pepper, sun-dried tomato, and garlic. These bold flavor combinations add an extra kick to the bagel.

For those who enjoy a spicy twist, adding chopped olives on top of the hummus can create a delicious and tangy flavor.

Another option for a savory bagel topping is pimiento cheese, a nostalgic choice that combines cheddar cheese, mayo, and red peppers. This spread provides a rich and creamy taste that pairs perfectly with a toasted bagel.

When it comes to savory bagel toppings, the possibilities are endless, allowing you to explore and create your own unique flavor combinations.

Nutella and Chocolate Spreads

Continuing the exploration of savory options, hummus and pimiento cheese are delicious choices for topping a bagel.

But now, let’s delve into the realm of sweetness with Nutella and other chocolate spreads.

Nutella, a heavenly combination of chocolate and hazelnut, is a unanimous favorite among chocolate lovers. Its creamy texture and indulgent flavor make it the perfect schmear for a toasted bagel.

However, there are other chocolate spreads on the market that deserve attention. To conduct a taste test comparison, we must consider factors such as richness, sweetness, and overall flavor profile.

As for the versatility of chocolate spreads, they can be incorporated into a wide range of recipes. From spreading on pancakes and waffles to using as a filling for pastries and cakes, the possibilities are endless.

Get creative and let your taste buds indulge in the decadent world of chocolate spreads.

Chocolate SpreadRichnessSweetnessFlavor Profile
Reese’sRichSweetPeanut Butter
GhirardelliVelvetyBittersweetFine Chocolate
BiscoffSilkySpicedCookie Butter

Veggie and Herb Toppings

What are some popular veggie and herb toppings for bagels?

When it comes to veggie and herb toppings, the possibilities are endless. Bagel lovers can get creative with vegetable combinations and explore unique herb-infused spreads.

One popular option is to top the bagel with a medley of roasted vegetables, such as bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant. This adds a burst of flavor and a satisfying crunch.

Another delicious choice is to spread a creamy herb-infused cream cheese on the bagel, featuring herbs like basil, parsley, or thyme. This not only enhances the taste but also adds a fresh and aromatic element.

Whether you prefer a hearty vegetable topping or a fragrant herb spread, veggie and herb toppings offer a delicious and nutritious way to elevate your bagel experience.

Gourmet and Artisanal Toppings

When it comes to bagel toppings, gourmet and artisanal options provide a sophisticated and elevated culinary experience.

Gourmet spreads, with their unique and luxurious flavors, can transform a simple bagel into a gourmet delight.

Unconventional pairings of ingredients create unexpected and delightful combinations that tantalize the taste buds. From truffle cream cheese to smoked salmon pâté, these gourmet spreads offer a range of flavors that go beyond the traditional cream cheese and lox.

Artisanal toppings such as fig and goat cheese, or brie and caramelized onions bring a touch of elegance and refinement to the humble bagel.

These gourmet and artisanal toppings are perfect for those who seek to indulge in a truly exceptional and memorable bagel experience.

Unique and Unexpected Combinations

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When it comes to bagel toppings, sometimes it’s fun to step outside the box and try unique and unexpected combinations. These unconventional pairings can bring new flavors and excitement to your morning routine.

Here are five fusion flavors that you might not have considered for your bagel:

  • Avocado and Sriracha: The creamy richness of avocado combined with the spicy kick of sriracha creates a tantalizing combination that will wake up your taste buds.
  • Peanut Butter and Pickles: This sweet and salty combination might sound strange, but the tanginess of pickles adds a refreshing twist to the creamy peanut butter.
  • Bacon and Maple Syrup: The smoky, savory taste of bacon paired with the sweet and sticky goodness of maple syrup is a match made in breakfast heaven.
  • Goat Cheese and Fig Jam: The tangy and creamy goat cheese pairs perfectly with the sweet and slightly earthy flavor of fig jam, creating a sophisticated and delicious combination.
  • Prosciutto and Melon: The salty and savory prosciutto complements the sweet and juicy melon, creating a combination that is both refreshing and satisfying.

These unexpected pairings may seem unconventional, but they can bring a whole new level of excitement to your bagel experience. Don’t be afraid to step outside your comfort zone and try something new – you might just discover your new favorite flavor combination.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Make the Perfect Cream Cheese Schmear at Home?

To enhance the flavor of cream cheese schmear, consider mixing in ingredients like herbs, fruits, or even spices. Avoid over-mixing, as it can result in a runny texture. Be sure to taste and adjust the seasoning to your preference.

What Are Some Unique Flavor Combinations for Cream Cheese?

Some unique flavor combinations for cream cheese include savory options like sun-dried tomato and basil, or sweet options like cinnamon and raisin. These pairings add a distinctive twist to the classic bagel schmear.

How Do You Properly Slice and Serve Lox?

Properly slicing and serving lox requires a sharp knife and a delicate touch. Thinly slice the smoked salmon against the grain for a smooth texture. Consider serving with alternative toppings like cucumber slices or avocado for added freshness.

Can You Suggest Some Alternative Toppings for Lox Besides the Traditional Ones?

Alternative toppings for lox besides the traditional ones can include avocado slices, cucumber ribbons, or even pickled vegetables. For creative fruit-based bagel toppings, consider using sliced peaches, whipped cream cheese with raspberries, or a drizzle of honey over sliced strawberries.

What Are Some Creative Ways to Use Fruit-Based Toppings on a Bagel?

Creative bagel topping ideas using fruit-inspired toppings include making quick jams with crushed fruit and sugar, chopping fruit and sprinkling sugar to bring out the juices, and crushing berries for a sweet and tangy schmear. These refreshing and natural flavors add a burst of sweetness to the bagel.


In conclusion, the world of bagel toppings is a diverse and delicious one. From classic cream cheese variations to unique and unexpected combinations, there is something to satisfy every palate.

Whether you prefer savory or sweet, traditional or gourmet, there are endless possibilities to elevate your bagel experience. So next time you enjoy a bagel, don’t be afraid to get creative and try something new.

With the right toppings, you can take your breakfast to a whole new level of deliciousness.

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