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These 3-ingredient cottage cheese bagels will be your new obsession. Make them in the oven or the air fryer and enjoy them as a healthy, savory snack (or part of a sandwich) any time of day!

Looking for more cottage cheese recipes? Try cottage cheese toastcottage cheese dip, or creamy avocado dip next time.

cottage cheese bagels with everything bagel seasoning sliced on a tray
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Cottage Cheese Bandwagon

It seems like cottage cheese has been having its moment for a while now. And I’m all about the cottage cheese trend!

Cottage cheese eggs, cottage cheese toast, cottage cheese pancakes, cottage cheese pizza crust, you name it. 

Lately, my own obsession has been savory cottage cheese bowls with cherry tomatoes, avocado, and balsamic glaze.

So, when I discovered I could make high-protein bagels from just three simple ingredients, including cottage cheese, I was all in. I’m always looking for a healthy breakfast recipe to start my day with extra protein for both me and the kids. Now I can’t stop thinking about all the sandwich and topping combinations I want to try with it!

Testing this Cottage Cheese Bagels Recipe

I’ve seen many variations of high-protein bagels on TikTok using greek yogurt, but very few with cottage cheese. I tested them both and the difference in taste and texture was minimal. But, cottage cheese has more protein than Greek yogurt!

I also tested this recipe using a gluten-free flour with baking powder. They didn’t rise quite as much, as expected, but they were still delicious and soft!

Lastly, I tested a batch of these in the air fryer to make sure they worked, and I had a reliable air fry time. I recommend preheating your air fryer like an oven for even cooking! They were just as delicious and actually took almost half the time as the oven!

protein bagel dough in the air fryer basket

While this was my first experience making bagels with cottage cheese, I’ve always enjoyed baking bread. Some of my favorite bread recipes to make are these healthy sourdough buns or pull-apart sourdough dinner rolls

Why You’ll Love These 3 Ingredient Bagels with Cottage Cheese

  • Quick: Just mix, knead, roll, and shape before baking. No rising required!
  • Easy: With three simple ingredients, this recipe doesn’t require a lot of mess or effort.
  • High proteinHaving cottage cheese first thing is a great way to add protein to the day. They have (11 grams of protein per serving), much more than regular bagels.
  • Make-ahead: Whip up a double batch, slice and freeze them, and pop one in the toaster each morning.
  • Any time of day: Enjoy them as your breakfast, afternoon snack, or as part of a sandwich. Top them any way you’d like!

How to Make Cottage Cheese Bagels

Here are the basic steps, with images, for these cottage cheese protein bagels. Skip down to the recipe card below for the full printable recipe.

Blend the Cottage Cheese

Blend or pulse one cup of cottage cheese on high in a blender or food processor until smooth.

cottage cheese blended smooth in a vitamix

Mix with Dry Ingredients

Transfer it to a large bowl and add the flour. Mix until completely combined and the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. 

cottage cheese and self rising flour in a bowl

Divide the Dough

Roll it into a ball of dough and knead until smooth. Divide dough into 4 equal balls. 

bagel dough divided into four equal pieces

Shape Into Bagels

Roll each ball out into a 6-7-inch rope, about 1-inch thick. Join the ends to make a bagel shape and pinch the seam, laying them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

3 pieces of dough shaped into bagels and one rolled into a rope

Brush with Egg Wash and Season

Brush the tops with a beaten egg white and top with your seasoning of choice.

brushing unbaked bagel dough with egg wash

Bake Until Golden

Bake at 375 on the very top rack position for 25-30 minutes, until puffed and golden brown. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.

freshly baked everything cottage cheese bagels on a parchment line baking sheet

What Type of Flour to Use

This recipe calls for self-rising flour to keep them easy and three ingredients. However, you can use whole wheat flour, all purpose flour or gluten-free flour instead of self-rising flour. Add 2 teaspoons of baking powder and a pinch of salt to mimic self-rising flour. 

I don’t recommend swapping another type of flour, like the almond in this gluten-free pizza crust. That and coconut flour absorb too much moisture, and you’ll have very dry bagels.

Recipe Variations

  • For gluten-free bagels, use 1 cup of a quality gluten-free flour blend with xanthan gum. (I tested this with King Arthur’s.) Mix it with 2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.
  • Different toppings: Sesame seeds, everything bagel seasoning, shredded asiago cheese, or poppy seeds are just a few ideas.
  • Spread butter or cream cheese overtop just like you would with traditional bagels.
  • Make lox, tuna salad, chicken salad, or any of these tasty bagel sandwich ideas.
  • Spread this Boursin cheese overtop and make a savory turkey sandwich.
high protein cottage cheese bagel cut in half on a plate

Freezing and Storing Tips

Allow the bagels to cool completely and store them in an airtight bag at room temperature (not in the refrigerator, which can make them stale faster) for 3-4 days. Or freeze them immediately for up to 4 months. 

Success tip: Be sure to slice them almost all the way through before freezing them so you can toast them from frozen.

This recipe is sponsored by American Dairy Association Mideast. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to brands like theirs who believe in our mission and recipes so we can continue to share free ones with you. Visit their website for dairy nutrition facts, cooking tips and to learn about dairy farming.

freshly baked cottage cheese bagels with cream cheese spread in the middle of one

If you make these easy protein bagels, I’d love for you to give them a star rating ★ below. You can also tag me on Instagram so I can see it!

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4.71 from 17 votes

Cottage Cheese Protein Bagel Recipe

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
These 3-ingredient cottage cheese bagels will be your new obsession. Make them in the oven or the air fryer and enjoy them as a healthy, savory snack (or part of a sandwich) any time of day!

Save this Recipe!

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Servings: 4 bagles

Ingredients

  • 1 cup self-rising flour (Note 1)
  • 1 cup full-fat cottage cheese (Note 2)
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • Toppings: sesame seeds, everything bagel seasoning, shredded asiago cheese, or poppy seeds

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 375 and position the rack to the top position. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Blend cottage cheese: Place the cottage cheese in the food processor or blender and pulse or blend on high until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed.
  • Add flour: Transfer it to a medium bowl and add the flour. Mix until completely combined and the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Transfer the dough to a gently floured work surface and knead the dough 8-10 times, until smooth. Skip this step if you’re using gluten-free flour (there’s no gluten to knead).
  • Shape and season: Roll the dough into a ball and divide it into 4 equal balls. If you want them to be the exact same size you can weigh out each piece of dough to approximately 80g. Roll each ball out into a 6-7-inch rope, about 1-inch thick. Join the ends to make a circle and pinch the seam tightly to seal. Brush the tops with a beaten egg and top with your seasoning of choice.

Bake

  • Bake in the preheated oven until puffed and golden brown, 25-30 minutes. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving. Bagels stay fresh in an airtight container at room temp for up to 4 days.

Air Fry

  • Preheat the air fryer to 350 for 5 minutes. Spray the air fryer basket with nonstick spray and air fry for 10-12 minutes, until golden brown.
Last step! If you make this, please leave a review letting us know how it was!

Notes

Note 1. Flour. For gluten-free bagels, use 1 cup of a quality gluten-free flour blend with xanthan gum (I tested this with King Arthur’s). Mix it with 2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. If you don’t have self-rising flour, you can follow the same instructions as the gluten-free option, but use all-purpose flour.
Note 2. Cottage Cheese. A full-fat cottage cheese is best. I’ve also seen people make these with plain Greek yogurt.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1bagel | Calories: 180kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 182mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 134IU | Calcium: 54mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Recipe Rating




48 Comments

  1. Maggie says:

    3 stars
    I was excited about these but my gluten free version turned out hard and small 🙁 used bobs red mill 1:1 GF flour and added the salt and baking powder per the recipe. Did I overmix or something? If anyone has suggestions for the GF version would love to hear!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Hi Maggie! Thanks for the feedback. The gluten-free version doesn’t rise quite as much as the regular version in general, but they shouldn’t be hard and small. Did you bake or air fry them?

  2. Debby Kirshen says:

    5 stars
    This tastes so much better than the ones made with yogurt! Thank you for this recipe.

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      You’re welcome!!

  3. Tana says:

    5 stars
    Love these bagels!! I can’t stop making them! Just today my daughter and I made 40 of them. We doubled the recipe and made plain, choc chip, cinnamon, and apple cinnamon. Of course we had to taste test a couple and they were delicious. We are freezing them so I don’t have to make them weekly. Thank you for the recipe

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Hey Tana! Oh my gosh this is amazing! Apple cinnamon sounds so good. Did the moisture in the apples affect the bagel at all? I tested these with cinnamon crunch on top too and they were amazing. So glad you shared this with me!

      1. Tana says:

        5 stars
        No they didn’t!! I also baked them 5 minutes longer. I did try frozen strawberries but they didn’t come out so good! I’m going to try blueberries next batch. My son in law just request a crunchy topping for his cinnamon ones! How did you make the topping?

  4. Samantha says:

    5 stars
    These are great! They are so light and fluffy. I cooked them in my oven for 25 mins, but I think they could’ve gone a little longer for the inside. Other than that, I’m already planning on making this again and doubling the recipe!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Love that, Sam! I actually had a similar result one of the times I tested this. Give it some extra time and cover them with foil if they’re starting to brown too much.

  5. Maureen says:

    5 stars
    Oh my gosh were these delicious!! And SO easy!! I will definitely be doubling the batch and freezing some next time. So glad I found this recipe!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Thanks, Maureen!!

  6. Lisa says:

    5 stars
    Loved them! Very easy, I topped with everything but the bagel seasoning, delicious!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Thanks, Lisa!

  7. Kristen Livingston says:

    5 stars
    So easy I made gluten free and regular! Will be a staple in my house thank you for this! Breakfast sandwiches were loved by my family!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      It’s on my list to make these into breakfast sandwiches! So glad you liked both versions. Thanks!

  8. Aubrey says:

    Have you tried a dairy-free version of this recipe? These look good, but I avoid dairy. Thanks!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Hey Aubrey! I haven’t tried a dairy-free version, but I have tested these with greek yogurt and they worked well. You could try a plant-based greek yogurt (I like Kite Hill). If you do let me know how it is! I’m sure others would love to hear how it turns out too. Thanks!

      1. Mary Vogel says:

        3 stars
        The bagels are good. I have had an issue with the consistency. I have had to add more flour to each batch I made. First batch came out pretty fluffy, still sticky to make. The second were considerably flatter than the first. When I mix the flour and cottage cheese it is so sticky. I have it stuck all over my counter and hands. I keep checking the recipe to see if I got it wrong. I am using AP flour with the added baking powder and salt.

        1. Molly Thompson says:

          Hey Mary! Yes, the dough will be very sticky. It gets all over my hands too. A good tip for this is to wet your hands with some water periodically while you’re working with the dough. You want to add some flour to the work surface while you’re kneading, but not too much more than the recipe calls for. The second batch is likely flatter because you added too much flour to the dough. Hope this helps!

      2. Sarah says:

        5 stars
        These were great. I made my own self- rising flour, using your recipe. I made half whole wheat and half all purpose flour.

        1. Molly Thompson says:

          So glad it worked for you! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Patti says:

    4 stars
    Haven’t made yet but from others Comments looks yummy! Question: Just found out am allergic to egg yolks. Do you have a recommendation for a substitute? What does the egg contribute to recipe?

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Hey Patti! They are so yummy! You can do an egg white wash on the top or just spread a little milk. The egg just helps them brown better. Omitting the egg won’t affect the baked bagel texture. Thanks!

  10. Amy Curci says:

    5 stars
    Loved this recipe! Just made them with Everything Bagel seasoning and they are delicious! Thank you for sharing!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Thanks, Amy! Love to hear that!

  11. Heidi Pursley says:

    5 stars
    Perfect recipe !! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      You’re welcome, Heidi!!

  12. Rachel says:

    Mine still seem gooey in the middle even tho air fried them 14 mins. Suggestions?

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Hey Rachel! Hmm….maybe try them a little longer! Were the tops browning too much?

      1. Rachel says:

        Yes they were browning too much.

        1. Molly Thompson says:

          Hey Rachel! Try covering them with foil next time just like you would in the oven! This likely depends on which air fryer you have.

  13. Andrea says:

    5 stars
    These were so yummy and so easy! Love how much protein is in one serving! We did regular cream cheese on some with everything seasoning and we did butter and honey on plain ones and both were super yum! Will definitely be keeping this in my recipe box! Thank you!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Love that, Andrea!! I agree, having 11 grams of protein in a bagel is such a win.

  14. Tana K says:

    5 stars
    I just made the cottage cheese bagels and I have to say…They are delicious!! Soft and fluffy. I used bread flour instead of all purpose and added the B.P. and salt. I made two with everything bagel seasoning and 2 with cinnamon sugar. I will definitely be making up several more batches so I can freeze 6!! Thank you for the recipe!!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      You’re welcome! It’s on my list to make cinnamon sugar ones too!

  15. Kayee says:

    5 stars
    These r so good. Thank you for the recipe

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Thank you!!

  16. Jane Fitter says:

    How much Xanthum gum do we use?

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Hey Jane! I tested these with a gluten-free flour mix that already included xanthan gum. But, a good rule of thumb is 1/2 teaspoon of xanthan gum for every 1 cup of flour. Hope that helps!

  17. Phyllis says:

    I just made this, but substituted Einkorn flour…..absolutely delicious! Next time, Im making double bathes and freezing them. Thank you!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Thanks for sharing you’re substitute! I haven’t tried that so I’m sure people will be grateful to know it works. Highly recommend freezing:) Thanks!

  18. Laura T says:

    5 stars
    I just made this recipe for Cottage Cheese Bagels and WOW!!! I mistakenly added the beaten egg to the batter and the recipe still worked. Used “everything bagel” seasoning. Did not wait 15 minutes to eat…smells way too delicious to wait!

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      LOL love this!! Good to know it still works with the egg in there. Just a little extra protein:)

  19. Valerie Marshall says:

    Looks delish. Can I use all purpose flour instead of self raising?

    1. Molly Thompson says:

      Yes you can! Just add a pinch of salt and 2 teaspoons of baking powder to the dough. Thanks!

      1. Sadagat Aliyeva says:

        Hi there Molly.
        Can I use baking soda instead of baking powder? What’s the difference?

        1. Molly Thompson says:

          Hello! No, you can’t use baking soda instead. Baking soda needs an acidic ingredient in the recipe to react to like lemon juice, buttermilk etc. Baking powder already has the acidic component so it will react and help them rise. If you have cream of tartar (it’s acidic) you can mix that with baking soda as an alternative. Thanks!