Bagel bombs stuffed with cheesy sauce are a great snack for everyone!
One of my favorite food concepts is bread stuffed with filling because it’s mess-free, convenient, and perfect for on-the-go, which I seem to always be. It’s also satisfying for me to break apart the bread and find something on the inside. That’s why I love stuffed bagel buns aka bagel bombs, except instead of stuffing the bombs with cream cheese, I stuffed it with cheddar cheese sauce! I just wanted to mix things up a bit, and I figured a bagel + cheese combo is basically a pretzel + cheese combo. These chewy bagel buns ooze with melty cheese and are topped with everything bagel seasoning. It is such a fun breakfast and snack for kids and adults!
This recipe is pretty straightforward and simple, although it requires some time since we are working with yeast. The dough process is simple, especially with a stand mixer, but the poaching process may be a bit surprising for those who aren’t familiar with how bagels are made. Bagels are poached in liquid prior to baking. Sounds strange doesn’t it? It sounds as if the bagels would become soggy, but this actually helps the bagels form an exterior crust, resulting in a chewy bagel. Without the poaching process, you would be baking regular buns and not bagels. Let’s quickly look at the science behind poaching bagels. The poaching water is composed of baking soda and molasses. The baking soda makes the water bath alkaline which helps the crust brown. The molasses also helps with browning the crust as the sugars caramelize. Once the dough hits the boiling water, the starch particles immediately gelatinize and expand, forming a layer on the dough exterior. Because the dough exterior is formed, water can no longer penetrate the dough, so the dough will not become soggy. Enough of the science talk, let’s get baking!
Cheesy Bagel Bombs
yield: 10-12 buns (3 in. diameter)
total time: 5 hours
For cheese filling:
- 115 g. or 4 oz. velveeta cheese
- 45 g. or 3 tbsp. milk
- 410 g. or 3 c. bread flour
- 5 g. or 1 tsp. active yeast
- 42 g. or 2 tbsp. molasses
- 6 g. or 1 tsp. salt
- 236 g. or 1 c. lukewarm water
- bagel seasoning to top
- 1 beaten egg for egg wash
For Water Bath:
- 1090 g. or 8 c. water
- 15 g. or 1 tbsp. baking soda
- 42 g. or 2 tbsp. molasses
- Combine the velveeta and milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Mix until the mixture melts together. Turn off heat and set aside to cool. Chill the mixture for at least 3 hours, or until set. Use a tablespoon to scoop 10-12 spoonfuls of cheese onto a piece of parchment paper or non-stick mat and place in the freezer for at least 45 min.
- In a stand mixer, combine the bread flour, yeast, molasses, salt, and lukewarm water and knead on medium speed with the dough hook for 10 minutes. Place dough in a large oiled bowl, cover with a clean towel or lid, and allow to rise for 1 1/2 hours in a warm place.
- Preheat the oven to 400 F. When the dough has risen, pour the dough out onto a clean surface and separate it into 10-12 pieces. Cover with foil lightly and allow to rise for about 20 min.
- Remove the frozen cheese balls from the freezer.
- Take a piece of the dough, lightly flatten out the edges, and place a ball of frozen cheese in. Pinch all the edges of the dough and roll the ball up. Repeat for the remaining dough.
- In a pot, add the water, molasses, and baking soda and bring to a boil. Add in the bagel buns (about 4 at a time) and allow the bottom side of the bun to sit in the water for about 30 sec. Flip the buns around and allow the other side to sit in the water for an additional 30 sec.
- Place the buns on a non-stick baking tray, brush with egg wash, and sprinkle the top with bagel seasoning.
- Bake the buns in the oven for 20-25 min or until buns are completely baked. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a cooling rack for at least 10 min.
- Break open the buns and enjoy!
- The bagel bombs freeze well. Freeze for up to 2 months in an airtight bag or container. To heat up, bake in the oven or air fryer.
- Make sure to seal the dough well. If you do not seal it well, the cheese may ooze out during baking.