The Trouble With Bagels

November 6, 2014   41 Comments

Dear readers, there is SO much you don’t know about me. I keep many aspects of my life hidden.

I Have a Bagel Problem

For example, I have a bagel problem. This problem has been made worse by the increased sized of the average bagel - the equivalent of four slices of bread. Oh no!

When Sarah wrote to me – I knew she was a sister (not actually my sister whose name is Sarah as well but a bagel sister).

From Sarah:

For me, bagels are a problem. I like bagels with cream cheese, bagels with strawberries on top, bagels with get the idea! Anyways, I was looking through your snacks a week ago and I started making that pizza on an English muffin. Needless to say it was fantastic and it solved my pizza craving.

However, I never solved my 'bagel' craving...until today. I bought these President's Choice Whole wheat English muffins, they are fantastic. 120 cals per muffin.

Before anyone gets too excited, President’s Choice is found in Canada. Love my Canadian readers!

My first replacement for bagels was to eat only ½ the bagel. It took a while to get used to only half - but now I don’t want a whole one.

Then my bagel store (Bruegger’s) started making 100% whole wheat EVERYTHING bagels – which is close to heaven on earth to bagel lovers who want to be healthy. An “everything bagel” has all the left over seeds on it from the other bagels. It is a mix of poppy seed, sesame seed, garlic, salt, you name it!

Here are my top bagel lover suggestions:

1. Do not buy crappy bagels. If you are going to have a bagel, have a REALLY good one. We can argue about Montreal or New York having the best bagels in the universe, but we all know that doughy supermarket bagels are the worst.

2. Use Neufchatel cheese instead of cream cheese. It takes the same to me and has fewer calories.

3. Make it a treat. Use smoked salmon, capers, slices of tomatoes and red onion to get the entire bagel experience. Serve with champagne and savor each bite. Honor the bagel.

As much as you might say to yourself, “I will never have a bagel again”, it is much easier to say, “I will eat a bagel once in a while and love every bite.”

How do you deal with bagels, pasta, or bread?

Other posts you might like:

Do-It-Yourself Instant Oatmeal: Healthy and Insanely Easy

There is an entire ¼ aisle of my grocery store devoted to little packages of oatmeal....


Love Bagels and Cream Cheese? Try This Makeover

Has anyone else noticed the size of your bagel getting bigger in the last 20 years? And the amount of cream cheese spread on them seems to be growing too!...

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First 20 Comments: ( See all 41 )

just picked up a package of everything bagels at costco. these are for my son but each one is 380 calories. needless to say that is the last time they will be purchased!!!

I went looking for the small bagels we used to eat but the only ones I could find were the gigantic ones. My 7 year old loves bagels but I'd rather she not eat a whole months worth for breakfast. So tired of everything being super-sized!

I like a bagel breakfast now and then so here's what I do: I slice it into thirds, only eat the yummy top third, [my fav is onion], then chop up the remainder for my squirrels, chipmunks and doves [my wildlife are fed very well on veg/fruit peelings on a regular basis and also like bagels!].

I use delicious org. butter on my toasted bagel top, usually a scrambled egg with asparagus on the side for a pretty complete meal. This so filling I never need a morning snack; its also a good lunch. I, too, enjoy smoked salmon, onion, capers, but don't buy cream cheese, but I'll have to try neufchatel --does anyone know if it is offered organic?

I don't want to be depressing because I love the idea from Barb ^, but just make sure no dogs or cats are getting onion or garlic. I have no idea about other animals, but for those pets, they're poisonous. :(

I love bagels too and at one time Sprouts Farmers Market here in Texas carried a brand called Alternative Bagles. They had blueberrie, plain and onion flavor, I thought they were really good and low calorie.

My favorite bagels are the mini bagels from Trader Joe's. They are not, perhaps, as amazing as a really fresh bakery bagel, but they are quite good and only 100 calories. We buy them, then immediately slice and freeze them. Excellent toasted! I prefer the white bagels — the whole wheat ones, sadly, taste like little hockey pucks. My kids like the cinnamon raisin ones, too.

Karen, thanks, I didn't know that about onions and garlic! Luckily we have no off-leash dogs but yes I do have some beautiful cats than meander through, usually to watch the birds and chipmunks from my garden nearby. However I've made sure my ''pets'' have cover and nearby escape routes, holes, lattice, etc. I've yet to have cats eat any leavings but I'll be on the lookout. :)

Oh, I looked into neufchatel. Organic Valley makes one and it sounds yummy. Thank you, Lisa for that great tip, I'm going to try it in my next mac n cheese too.

I discovered that Dunkin Donuts has a very healthy, high fiber bagel with 9 grams of fiber. It is called a multigrain bagel and is delicious. I just eat a half bagel with a skim of neufchatl cheese and that is enough.

I am from NY and love bagels. My girlfriends and I LOVE bagels, so to cut down the calories, we pull out the insides before toasting and then dress them accordingly. The outside is the part we like anyway...

Panera Bread now offers a Multi Grain thin bagel. Only 220 calories. Perfect!

I LOVE bagels but I refuse to have them in my house, there are way too many calories to justify eating one for breakfast. And out of sight, out of mind.

Thanks for this post! I, too, love bagels, but I know they are high in calories and low in nutritional value. I'll share 2 things I recently found:

1. Trader Joe's has pumpkin bagels during the fall season. I don't think they are whole grain, but they are 250 calories each and are fairly large. I toast mine in the toaster oven and get it really crunchy, and while cream cheese is not my favorite topping, I put some sugar-free apricot preserves and some cinnamon on these. Delicious!

2. To satisfy the bagel craving, I incorporate bagels as part of my dinner (and I only have one about twice a month!)--toast, top with avocado, nut-based cheese, even a few pieces of tofu, etc. and then have a large dish of vegetables on the side.

Love bagels, too. I have found the mini-bagels in a variety of grocery stores!

As for my pasta craving, my son has food sensitivities, so we can only have brown rice pasta. It's a little starchier when you cook it, but pair that with some Cabot cheddar and you've got an amazing Mac and cheese - and a great treat every once in a while!

Love bagels, but too many calories and carbs as I'm diabetic. Nutritionist says eat 1/2 of a bagel. I avoid them all together.

I, too, have a MEGA bagel problem. I know that they are beyond terrible, but I really only like the outer part and am able to peel it off if it they are just the slightest bit toasted. I like to tell myself that this makes them less evil, but also that I can polish off the whole bag, 6 at a time, sometimes 2 or 3 bags a day. ::shame::

"Everything" is my real nemesis, so I am going to pick up all the ingredients today and try putting them on something a little less evil, like an english muffin. In fact, the "Healthy Life" brand makes 80 cal multigrain english muffins that are amazing toasted with peanut butter or cream cheese.

Also, on a tangent - the "garlic is toxic for dogs" idea is a myth. Here's more information:…

No, not a myth.

Or the ASPCA has info if you'd prefer, just can only copy one link thanks to my iPad. Yes, for many animals it takes a large amount, but we don't know if it builds up, and some are more sensitive than others. I don't take risks with pets.

Ahem. Back on track. You can but everything bagel seasoning on Amazon, but my vice is everything pretzel chips dipped in cream cheese. Probably not the healthiest vice, but so good for an occasional treat.

Lot of bagel love out there! I think this dates back to the early 90s where all of a sudden bagels became less of an ethnic/regional food, and more widely available (i.e. Dunkin Donuts added them, stores like Einstein & Brueggers here in MA) - Originally, we all thought they were "healthy" because they had no fat. Now, like some others, I try to avoid them as a regular food. But, we will splurge & get them for a brunch - it just means "reframing" these foods in your mind, as a treat. And, yes, don't waste the calories on so-so bagels!

Brenda, Thanks for the Panera tip, I think I will try it!

I've been at my job over 4.5 years and we have Bagel Wednesday. There's muffins too. They are not great quality (typically Dunkin or Honeydew) so I'm not often tempted. It's hard to pretend Bagel Wednesday does not exist but I try to only eat bagels (or similar breakfast items) on weekends where I'm more active. If I eat one on a work day I'm *starving* by lunch time. :(

Does anyone have an Aldi's near them? They make awesome mini whole wheat bagels that have 110 calories.

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