Best Bagels in Sydney

Updated February 24th, 2023


Bagels have a murky history. Although they’re believed to be related to the kaak, a ring-shaped Arabic biscuit, most agree that bagels as we know them originated in Poland in the 16th century – a byproduct of the prominent Jewish population there.

A couple of hundred years later, they headed westward – first to the beigel shops of London, then onwards to the bakeries and delis of New York City. And that’s where these boiled, baked beauties really took off. But it took a little while for the NYC-style bagel (and its smaller and sweeter cousin, the Montreal-style bagel) to reach our shores in large quantities.

But thanks to the persistence of bagel aficionados such as Michael Shafran in Marrickville, who’s been running Brooklyn Boy Bagels since 2013, and the hard work of bakers in the eastern suburbs (which is still the heartland of Sydney’s Jewish diaspora), we’ve seen an explosion of excellent bagel-based businesses in recent years. And they’re selling every style and topping imaginable.

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  • Bagel maestro Michael Shafran has been serving Sydneysiders with hearty New York-style bagels since 2013. His wares are carefully made over two days in his neon-lit industrial bakery, with options ranging from an eye-popping rainbow-dyed to the fan favourite “everything” (topped with poppy, sesame and caraway seeds, plus garlic and onion).

  • Seven kinds of chewy, pleasantly dense bagels are boiled on-site at this Bondi favourite every day. They’re not too sweet – and if it’s a traditional Ashkenazi-Jewish deli experience you’re hankering for, go for the signature number. It’s chopped liver, egg and onion on a sweet onion bagel with a side of pickles.

  • This laid-back neighbourhood cafe is an island of great coffee on an otherwise barren stretch – but it's the fantastic baked goods that keep us coming back. There's a different type of pastry and focaccia to enjoy every day, plus some of the best bagels in town. Now with a second outpost in Glebe.

  • The flagship cafe for the popular Northern Beaches coffee roaster serves a range of New York-inspired bagels, alongside melty, show-stopping toasties and quality coffee. Find the lot within a low-key warehouse space tucked away in Brookvale's industrial area, or at Barrel One locations in Manly, Cromer and Potts Point.

  • George St Deli brings a slice of New York's bagel scene to Redfern. Tuck into a classic lox number packed with house-made cream cheese and smoked trout, paired with house-made lemonade. Then follow it up with a giant, chewy, double-choc-fudge cookie.

  • The grandson of a legendary Melbourne baker is behind this bagelry and cafe in Sydney's east. Generations-old family recipes informs every chewy bagel and coiled challah – but you can also grab wholesome brunches, simple pastas, wholesome salads and more to have in or take away.

  • A hole-in-the-wall spot where you can grab chewy bagels stuffed with cured salmon or salted beef, with a side of crisps and pickles. Or grab house-made egg dip and schmears to take home. It’s the same story at further beachside shops in Manly and Coogee.

  • Batch brew topped with whipped cream is about as fancy as it gets at this airy, unpretentious cafe. The star of the menu could well be the black-sausage sanga – but the simple and satisfying bagels here shouldn't be overlooked.

  • A sunny corner shop filling bagels with fresh, sustainably sourced ingredients. While the smoked salmon and dill with cream cheese is a daily go-to, the shop mixes it up with monthly bagel takeovers from hospitality gurus.

  • Members of the Soulmate crew are also involved in this sleek, specialty coffee joint. You’ll find the same laid-back energy, but a much bigger focus on bagels – try the smashed avo with togarashi, coriander and lime; or the Sweet Boy with ricotta, banana, toasted almonds and honey.

  • Instead of swearing by secret recipes, baker Igor Ivanovic believes it’s the love and energy he puts in that creates the real difference in his products. His bread is arguably Sydney’s best, and you can bet his bagels are right up there, too.