Fresh bagels are one of life’s most affordable pleasures. Toasted or plain, sweet or savoury, topped with cream cheese or turned into a towering sandwich, bagels come in a variety of shapes, sizes and even textures, and Toronto is home to some of the best. Here’s where to find the best bagels in Toronto.
After opening its first Etobicoke location a few years ago, Kettleman’s Bagels has been pumping out hand-stretched, Montreal-style bagels 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to the delight of those in the community. Kettleman’s expertly cuts, rolls and bakes an average of 9,000 bagels per day, and they’re available in 12 different flavours, including traditional types like sesame and poppyseed but also specialty flavours like herb and cheddar and chocolate chip.
Bubby’s New York Bagels
With more than 30 bagels on the menu, a range of hand-packed schmears and even a full breakfast and lunch menu, Bubby’s New York Bagels offers one of the most varied selections in the city. Choose from an array of classics or try something new and different, like the French toast bagel or the Montreal steak spice bagel topped with everything from a fried egg and cheese to more than 20 different kinds of herring.
Hand-rolled bagels and a variety of sweet and savoury spreads and generous toppings await those who set foot in Primrose Bagel. Open seven days a week, Primrose Bagel has seven thick, doughy bagels to choose from, including specialty flavours like the honey oat bagel and the rock salt bagel. A variety of cream cheeses are also available, including a vegan black olive cream cheese and, for something with a bit more bite, the horseradish cream cheese.
St. Urbain Bagel
One of the first things that you smell walking through the doors of the St. Lawrence Market was St. Urbain Bagel. As the oldest bagel shop in Toronto with a colourful history dating back to the early 1900s, St. Urbain is a staple in the downtown core. They offer a mix of traditional, healthy and sweet bagels, all made using fresh ingredients. St. Urbain also serves flatzls (a flatter version of their original fluffy bagels), as well as bourekas, a phyllo pastry usually stuffed with sweet or savoury ingredients, like sweet cheese or potato and mushroom. A selection of bagel sandwiches is also available.
NU Bügel puts a Venezuelan twist on Montreal-style, bagels, which are made in a 20,000-pound, wood-fired oven in the heart of Kensington Market. There are nine types to choose from, including a range of gluten-free bagels. If you’re looking for the classics, try the everything bagel or the sesame. If you’re after a taste of something you can’t find elsewhere in the city, opt for a toasted coconut bagel or the rosemary and sea salt bagel paired with one of the bakery’s nine different cream cheese spreads. There are also 20 bagel sandwiches, including a smoked chicken sandwich topped with baby spinach and pesto mayo.