Bagel (starch free, paleo, vegan)

Paleo Vegan BAGEL - low carb, gluten free, recipe

A Starch Free, Vegan, Paleo Bagel, Oh, and it’s Nut Free Too!

These paleo, starch free bagels went with me to a picnic today, and EVERYONE LOVED them! Everyone = people not on restricted diets! They all agreed the cinnamon raisin one is just like the real thing, perfect chewiness – and it encompassed everything a bagel should be. My friend said if she just saw them on a table and didn’t know that “I” made them, she would’ve just thought they were regular bagels after tasting them. Now that is a compliment, because the ingredients in these bagels are anything but ordinary.

I started experimenting with making starch free bagels last year when I found a paleo recipe posted by Spunky Coconut, but it was based with quite a few ingredients that I can’t have, arrowroot [starch] flour, cashew milk, guar gum, baking powder, so I reworked the recipe to work for me, and made it starch free! My version is now quite a bit different, but I must thank her for the inspiration! THANK YOU! As I really do love these chewy, starch free bagels. And my addition of the psyllium husk really does make them chewy, like a real bagel, wait til you taste the cinnamon raisin one! It passed the test as a “bagel” even with my hubby how has an iron stomach and eats all the “real” breads & bagels he wants.

Paleo Vegan BAGEL - low carb, gluten free, recipe

So the one ingredient that might throw you for a loop is the psyllium husk. What is it? It is plant fiber, like crazy dense plant fiber, it is what they put in things like Metamucil to bulk up your fiber intake and help with digestion issues. This also means it is filling you up, giving you a satisfying “full meal” feel, while it helps clean you out. Read more about all the digestive health benefits of psyllium here! But let’s not focus too much on the end result, (though I got to say, feeling full and later cleansed is quite nice). For the most part it seems folks on low carb, grain free diets seem to tolerate psyllium husk pretty well, as it is a common ingredient to be found in homemade gluten/grain free breads. I know I tolerate it really well! And I have quite a long laundry list of ingredients I do not tolerate well, but luckily I tolerate psyllium well! So each bagel will have less than 1 Tablespoon of the psyllium fiber, which is a perfect amount to help you take care of business.

And when you read about psyllium husk you may come across the warnings about it being a choking hazzard, but that is only when you drink the powder straight in a glass of water as it is so fibrous, and if you don’t add enough water, as it just keeps expanding. But this does not happen when you eat it in the form of these bagels. No unusual added choking hazards there, though they will fill you up, so be sure to drink some water when you eat the bagels, so the fiber can expand in your tummy and help sponge out your insides! Good stuff. Nice and filling, which is sometimes hard to accomplish on a starch free diet. Also, those of us on starch free diets often don’t get enough fiber in our diets, which is super important for good colon health. So eat your bagels peoples!! Read more about the health & digestion benefits of psyllium husk here!

Is psyllium husk paleo? Well it is one of the ingredients in “paleo bread” I have seen in the market. And using it in paleo breads made the list here too.

This is the brand of psyllium husk powder I like to use in my recipes – and this $10 bag will last you a LONG time!

12/11/14 UPDATE:  Since most of the comments were requesting a low carb bagel without the 1/2 cup of applesauce, I have updated this recipe to include the low carb applesauce-free version also! They work really great either way, though my favorite version is with the natural sweetness of the applesauce.

Paleo Bagel (starch free, low carb, vegan)

Author Andrea Wyckoff


  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup ground white chia seeds* or ground flax seed
  • 1/4 cup psyllium husk powder I used THIS one
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup applesauce + 1/4 cup water (or just use 1/2 cup water no applesauce for low carb)
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil softened
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 pinch sea salt

For Seed Bagels:

  • 2 Tablespoons of each kind of seed you want to use: sesame seeds or a combo of hemp seeds chia seeds, poppy seeds and sesame seeds., I used black & white seeds

For Cinnamon Raisin Bagels:

  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup raisins omit raisins for low carb


  1. Mix dry ingredients together in a bowl
  2. Add wet ingredients into dry ingredients, in order they are listed. You can use a mixer for best results, or mix by hand. (I mix by hand)
  3. Decide if you are making cinnamon raisin bagels, or sesame bagels, or make some of each. (if making cinnamon and raisin, add them now)
  4. Separate dough into 4 or 8 balls, equal size Makes 4 large bagels, or 8 mini ones. (You can also bake these into buns without the hold in the middle.)
  5. Roll each ball into a long "snake" shape, and then stick together to form a bagel shape. (roll in sesame seeds)
  6. NOTE: if the dough is falling apart, just add a little more water. Once baked they hold together really well. I find it helps to form them into a loose bagel shape, then smash them down which spreads out the sides, and then I adjust the edges if needed.
  7. Bake on parchment paper at 350*F for 25 to 30 minutes. (Update: Slightly longer baking time for non-applesauce version, at 30 minutes)
  8. I see recipes as a constant work in progress - if you try these, please let me know what you think of them! Thank you.

Recipe Notes

*I happen to white chia seeds on hand, so that is what I use. You can also use black chia or ground flax. The bagels will be the lightest in color with the ground white chia seeds.

*I use expeller pressed coconut oil as it doesn't really have any coconut taste. My favorite source for it is Tropical Traditions. You can also use a different oil like organic palm shortening or olive oil instead.

Paleo Vegan BAGEL - low carb, gluten free, recipe

Recipe shard at Gluten Free Wednesdays – Allergy Free Wednesdays – Happy, Healthy, Green & Natural Party Blog Hop + Savoring Saturdays

87 thoughts on “Bagel (starch free, paleo, vegan)

  1. Your bagels look delicious! Nut free, starch free and vegan…genius! I will be making these today…thank you for making so much effort to develop great recipes!


  2. Thank you for taking the time to perfect this recipe. I am going to make them today for my “kicking” husband. I’ll let you know how they turned out.

  3. These were amazing! I added some garlic powder with the sesame and chia seeds! I also noticed that I totally forgot the coconut oil and they were still really good.. Thank!

    1. Oh, I am so excited to hear that!! YAY!! I am so with you on the garlic powder – we were talking about doing an Everything Bagel yesterday with onion, caraway seeds, garlic…. YES!

      Wow! Thanks again for letting me know they turned out well!!

    2. Onion! Yes I need to add that, and the coconut oil. Since these will not last long I will make another batch soon.

  4. I made the bagels today…2 with cinnamon and raisins and 2 with sesame seeds…I just had to try both and they were delicious! This is a great recipe and I felt so good about all the healthy ingredients.

    Thank you for sharing!


    1. Hi June!!

      Wow! You just made my day! So glad to hear you enjoyed the recipe!!


    1. Hi Michelle!!

      Thanks so much for the great comment! I really appreciate it! Theses ingredients are staples in my kitchen too!!


  5. Woot, woot! I’m so gonna make these. My niece is arriving Thursday from Texas to visit for a couple weeks, this will be a fun project for us to do together.

  6. I LOVE that you didn’t use any starch or sweeteners in this recipe! Genius! 😉 I was linking up at Shirley’s GF Weds and came across your recipe/blog. I have spondylitis too. 🙁 And psoriatic arthritis. Looking forward to checking out more of your blog and reading more about you!

    1. Hi Megan!!

      Thanks so much for checking out my blog! I love your website, by the way!! Spondylitis can be such a monster, I just do my best to silence it everyday!! So thankful that eating pure, grain free foods (low in starch) has offer me so much pain relief. Cheers to that! Thank you for creating and sharing such beautiful recipes!!

      Keep in touch!!
      Andrea Wyckoff
      “Betty Rawker”

    1. Hi Adrienne!

      I would love to join your link up! And I am a big fan of Whole New Mom!!

      Thanks so much!!

  7. I have made these three times now. Even my daughter and boyfriend love them. Being grain free it’s so satisfying to eat something like this. Also there is so much fiber I am stuffed!

    1. Ali! That is the best compliment EVER!! So glad you told me that!!

      I made a double batch this past weekend (4 cinnamon raisin + 4 “everything” – onion/garlic/sesame/hemp) and brought them on a road trip with me to Montana this week. They have been the best “travel food” as they fill me up too! Preventing me from “hunger emergencies”. I love the feeling of fullness from the fiber too!

      Thanks so much for the feedback!!

    1. Hi Keira!

      You guess is as good as mine! If you try it let me know!

      I have made this recipe over and over with the finely ground psyllium husk powder, and it works so well, I never tried it with the flakes or any other way!

      Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Laurie!

      Yep. I would say they freeze well. Though I do like them best fresh!

      I bet if they were defrosted, then warmed in the toaster oven, they would be really great too!


  8. Pingback: Goo Goo Clusters, Paleo Bagels, Only Coconut Cookies, Grain-free Molasses Cookies & 3 Things Your Doc Won't Tell You About Mammography - Whole New Mom
  9. Thanks to Whole New Mom – I found your recipe (thanks Adrienne!) I plan to make these Friday, if I can get some help in the kitchen (broken foot). They sound so wonderful! And if they freeze well, like you said they would, hello freezer! Have a road trip coming up and have been fretting about what to take with me… 🙂

    1. Hi Sara!

      I am on a 2 week road trip in Montana right now and brought a double batch with me!!

      I froze them before I left and have been enjoying them on the road! Hope they work out well for you too!!


  10. Anything I can use in place of applesauce? I know you developed recipe with specific ingredients and I so hate to ask BUT I am a diabetic and keep everything as absolutely low carb as possible. I am pretty carb sensitive but I would love to try these.

    1. Hi Laura,

      I honestly don’t have any idea! If you do find a good substitution, please let me know, I would be happy to share it!


    1. I think the apple sauces adds both great texture and flavor! Sounds like you girls can come up with a substitute though! I am on vacation in Montana right now, and I won’t dare suggest something I have never tried before.

      When you find the right sub for the applesauce, let me know, I will be happy to share it!


  11. I CANNOT WAIT to try this recipe!!! I also saw the recipe from SpunkyCoconut, but I also cannot have many of the ingredients. So THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for creating this recipe. With 50+ allergies eating “yummy” baked goods is such a treat.

    1. Sweet!! I can’t wait to hear what you think!!

      I am a queen of food allergies myself, and I am super happy to be able to enjoy these!!


  12. I made them twice now, cinnamon raisin, really chewy and delicious. However mine look like buns, as the holes always fill in for some reason. Also they collapse when I take them out of the oven. I used grapeseed oil instead of coconut oil. I also used the ground flax, and had to grind my own psylium husks into the powder. Still good, but what can I do to improve them?

    1. Hi Debbie,

      I am happy to hear you like them and found them chewy and delicious!! Awesome!!

      I don’t know what other advice I can offer you!? Mine collapse a bit too after baking, but honestly seeing as we are not using any grains or any starches, I don’t know what to suggest to make them better other then using real wheat flour, or adding in some starches, both of which I had to give up years ago to save my health!

      If you do find a way to make them better, check back and let me know, I would love to share your changes.

      Thanks again!!

    2. I will definitely keep making them, and try other flavors. It is so nice to bite into something that resembles bread since going wheat free! So chewy good.

    3. Making them as hamburger buns with grapeseed oil, and oninon and garlic powder. I’ll bet this would be a good pizza crust recipe also. Need to play with it some more.

    4. I have been playing around with psyllium in my pizza crust recipes too! About to give it another whirl tonight with almond flour based pizza crust….

      Would love to hear what you come with as a pizza dough too!

      Loves getting the feedback, thanks again!!

  13. Made my second batch this time and added some bacon. I like to try it with some herbs as well. They are wonderful, thank you for all your work

  14. This may sound like a stupid statement given all the coconut products involved, but they really taste like coconut. I don’t think I would want to make a sandwich out of them because of the strong coconut flavor. They were soft and chewy though!

    1. Marianna! Such great advice! Thank you! I should add that I also love using the expeller pressed coconut oil from Tropical Traditions! I buy it by the gallon!!

      In my recipe, I actually link to the same exact expeller pressed oil. It’s wonderful!! And so affordable, I like the organic best!


    1. Hi Gigi!

      Oh, pumpkin sounds great!! I haven’t ever tried it, but seems like it should work well?
      Let me know if you try it!!


  15. Thank you very much Andrea for sharing this recipe. I never leave comments but I must say it brought me so much joy when I tasted it!!!! Being on a strict diet make us forget some flavors and sensations, I felt like I was eating regular bread <3 I can't eat applesauce so I simply left it aside, I replaced vinegar with Kombucha and magic happened anyhow. All the best from Paris, France.

    1. Awesome!! Reading your comment just made my day!!

      So glad to hear it worked well without the applesauce too!!

      Thanks for the great feedback!!

      “Betty Rawker”

    1. Hi Katie,

      Sure thing, if your batch seemed to need to be baked longer, you should probably bake em longer 😉

  16. YUM!!! Just made these bagels with cinnamon and dried currants. Thanks for such a good recipe! They were chewy and so satisfying. Had to bake for 40 minutes. I was out of coconut flour (used banana flour instead), added dried currants (I had to plump them in boiling water first. Next time I make them I’ll use the leftover water in used to plump the currants in place of the plain water in the recipe). I loved the texture of the dough. It was so fun to roll them into shape. It’s been so hard to find a bread recipe without eggs or tapioca starch. Thanks a ton!!!

    1. Your bagel recipe has become my go-to bread (since I have to be nearly grain free except for rice). After a few years with nothing bread-like to eat these are like manna. I haven’t even tried anything besides raisin cinnamon. After reading comments I am excited to try other flavor combos. Thanks for sharing it.

    2. Hi Gwendolyn!

      So wonderful to get your comments! I am so glad you are able to enjoy these bagels too!! Cheers to grain free living!!


    3. P.S. Dear Andrea, I’ve noticed a few commenters who have asked how psyllium HUSKS work versus the powder. I only use the husks, and the bagels come out very fluffy, they rise, and have a chewy texture.

  17. mmmm these are really good. I’ve baked them 3 times now. The first 2 times they didn’t raise properly (still good though) but the third time I rolled them into buns and waited 30 min before I put them in the oven and this time they were perfect, nice and fluffy! I will soon make another batch. Thank you!

    1. Thank you for the great feedback! Glad you enjoyed the recipe! I hope to play around with different versions of buns with a similar recipe base in the future. So glad it worked well for you! xo

  18. Just taken my first batch out of the oven and they smell amazing… but didn’t rise at all. they did spread quite a bit so I have 4 seriously enormous (but flat) bagels! Are they supposed to still be very soft once they cool or should they crisp up? Cant wait to try them even though they didn’t rise – garlic and herb mmmmm Looking forward to trying more of your recipes!

  19. I tried these the other night….I was very skeptical about them, and thought they would come out of the oven dry and crumbly. Wow was I wrong! These are soft and chewy!! Delicious!! Thanks for sharing this recipe…its a keeper for my family for sure! One question…..have you tried doubling the psyllium and leaving out the flax or chia? I’m on a very strict 30 day AIP protocol and am not supposed to have any seeds! Wonder if it will work to just increase the psyllium?

    1. Hi Valerie!

      So glad to hear you liked them!! Thanks so much for the feedback! ♥ I haven’t made them without the ground chia or flax before, but my best *guess* is to try 1 to 2 Tablespoons psyllium husk powder + 1 to 2 Tablespoons coconut flour to replace the chia/flax. I think it should work!?? You can always add more liquid or more “flour” to get it to the right consistency to form bagels. Please let me know if you try it though, I would love to hear back!

      Happy New Year!

  20. Hi, thanks for such a creative recipe. I’m not wheat intolerant, but i do believe that there are healthier foods out there. I made these and really like them, and I’ll definitely be making them again. But is the recipe correct? It calls for 1C dry ingredients and 1C wet ingredients….this would make a liquid slurry rather than a dough. I left out the oil and coconut milk and still needed to add extra flour to form a dough. Or perhaps I’ve misread the ingredients every time – done that before! 🙂

    1. Hi Jb!

      I am glad to hear you liked the recipe using the version you did!

      You are the first one to ask if the recipe is correct, so I will assume either you omitted something like the psyllium husk or made another substitution for an ingredient? Or possibly the coconut flour you are using is one that is not very fine and fibrous. The coconut flour from Tropical Traditions (that I link to from the recipe) is super fine, much more absorbent than any wheat flour, and works great in this recipe. Unfortunately there are some newer brands of “coconut flour” on the market that don’t work the same, since they are just finely ground up dried coconut meat,that is still quite fatty and non-absorbent. The Tropical Traditions flour is made from the fiber that is left after all of the coconut oil is pressed out, it is a very powder that to the touch feels more like a wheat flour then a coconut product. .

      Either way, it sounds like you were happy with your results and your own adjustments, which is great too!


    1. Hi Sam!

      Your guess is as good as mine! I never tried a version like that. But if it works out and you like it, let me know!


    1. Hi Sam,

      I have honestly never worked with xanthan gum. So you are on your own with that one!


  21. And also is the chia seed 1/4 cup before it’s ground or after bc when I ground it turned in to more than 1/4 cup (because of fluffiness)

    1. Hi Sam,

      It’s just like it reads: “1/4 cup ground white chia seeds”. Which for my recipes means measuring them out after they are ground. But good question, I am sure with other recipe developers it can mean the opposite.


  22. Hi I really want to make this recipe and I finally got psyllium husk powder but mine weighs really different than the brand you used. I dint know if I should measure it by grams or cups? The brand I used has 5 grans of fiber per rounded tsp and it weighs 6 grams. The now foods brand weighs 9 grams and has 7 grams of fiber per TBSP

    1. Hi Sam,

      Your guess is as good as mine? Overall I think this recipe is pretty forgiving, so I would start off with measuring the psyllium husk by volume the 1/4 cup, and add the water a little at a time until you reach the right consistency to roll out the bagels.

      Let me know how it turns out!

  23. Hi, sorry for bothering you again but I just made these and they were raw inside when I took them out of the oven. I baked them for another 10 minutes and they were still raw. Do u think adding too much or too little psyllium powder could have done this?

    1. I would assume it’s too much liquid and/or not enough psyllium. You might also try slightly increasing the coconut flour and ground chia to help the bagels dry out and cook more thoroughly since those are also very absorbent ingredients.


  24. Thanks for this post & recipe. I just made them today and my kids are going beezrk for them. I can’t use cane sugar, for the kids, so I used cocoa nibs instead of choc. chips. They came out with a nice texture/cruch to them. Can’t wait to see what they taste like cold, they are SO good warm. I’m thinking ice cream sandwiches, with homemade coconut ice cream.*Helpful hint is to flatten cookie dough prior to placing in oven.*

    1. Hi Mimar!

      So glad you kids enjoyed them!! I love the ice cream sandwich idea, oh yum!!

      Great tip for flattening out dough for the cookie recipe, I will update that right now!


  25. These were really good! I didn’t add any applesauce or sprinkle with any seeds and just ate them plain with cream cheese. Yum! I will definitely make again and try with flax seeds instead of chia seeds next time (because I’m out of chia).

    So far your recipes are 2 for 2! I’m loving this site!

    1. Hi Kiki!

      Thanks SO Much for coming back to leave this comment, as you totally made me smile!! I am stoked you have enjoyed the recipes so far!


  26. Wow these look awesome!!! Thanks so much for sharing them with us at Savoring Saturdays last week. Have a great weekend.

  27. I made these for the second time today! Amazing both times! I just replaced the psyllium with flaxseed and they still turned out 🙂 Thank you very much! It is very difficult to find a good bread recipe that is starch free, low carb and vegan. Most low carb recipes seem to have eggs in them. Thank you very much for sharing 🙂

    1. Hi Gen!

      Thanks so much for the great feedback! Thrilled to hear you enjoyed this recipe, and glad to know the flax seed worked as a sub for the psyllium! Cheers!

  28. Hi, Andrea! I’ve made these several times and love them. I do have a question. When do you add the coconut oil? I held off adding to the liquids bc I wondered if it would make it difficult for the dry ingredients to absorb the liquids. By the time I’ve stirred the coconut flour and ground seeds to the liquids, it’s like massaging oil into playdough! Is this your experience? Or do you simply add the coconut oil to the liquids and it works out fine?

    P.S. I make garlic/herb sandwich buns with this recipe. I top them with hemp seeds, fresh ground pepper and fresh ground salt. I pat the toppings gently into the tops and they’re delicious!

    PPS. Was the previous comment here (about cookies and ice cream sandwiches) referring to this recipe to make cookies?

    1. Hi Gwendolyn,

      I’m happy to hear you are enjoying these bagels! I honestly can’t recall having any issues with adding the coconut oil? But honestly it’s been a while since I’ve made them. It was 3 years ago that I added this recipe to my blog, and at the time I did my best to write up the process that I use. But either way, I say go with whatever method works best for you!

      And while back I did a blog update that unfortunately mixed up some of the existing reader comments on this blog, and if I remember correctly (as that ice cream sandwich comment is a couple years old) I think it was in reference to this cookie recipe:

      And here is a link to a vegan/paleo ice cream sandwich I came up with and seriously enjoyed!

      Happy Baking!
      ♥ – Andrea

  29. Wow! These are AWESOME! I just used coconut cream instead of coconut milk, and water (as suggested) in place of applesauce. They’re so light and fluffy. Thanks for sharing your recipe 😊

  30. hello and good afternoon. i tried this bagel recipe without applesauce mostly because i didnt have any and didnt have any apples to make some at home. it was a little “coconutty” for the more savory taste I was looking for, but the texture was simply fantastic and fits all restrictions in my diet. I ate almost all of them. Uh oh! Nonetheless, today I am trying to sub it with almond flour, flax, and home made almond milk along with every other ingredient(except apple sauce). I didnt see until i started cooking them that I could have used olive oil but I bet itll be amazing! cant wait and thank you for sharing the recipe

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