15 Bagel Toppings for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner to Try

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In terms of food, we think rules are meant to be broken, and we think that the bagel is destined for more than just boring old cream cheese. 

So whether you go for a vegan bagel, a nice toasted bagel, or you do homemade bagels we've got you covered. I really enjoy a healthy bagel sandwich with sliced banana and cashew butter.

In this article, you will find a total of 15 ideas for bagel toppings for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You could have bagels for every meal of the day! 

Breakfast 

Eggs, bacon, and cheese 

First on our list just has to be this absolute classic - bacon, eggs, and cheese! Just like everyone’s favorite McDonald's breakfast, this delicious bagel topping can be whipped up in no time at all and has everything you will need to start your day. 

For optimum results, you have to use American cheese slices (y’know, those bright yellow processed ones?). Try it with smoked bacon, too, for a bit of pizzazz! 

When it comes to the egg, our top tip is to break the yolk when you’re cooking it so it doesn’t run down your shirt mid-bite. 

Scrambled eggs 

Scrambled eggs are a classic breakfast food, providing you with all the protein you will need to start your day. Add them to a bagel and you will be satisfied for hours. 

There’s no special way to do this, so just follow your trusty scrambled eggs method, whether that be in a pan or the microwave. Serve it up with hot, buttered bagels. 

Avocado

Whether you love it or hate it, there is just no denying that avocado makes a very popular breakfast meal. It is packed full of essential healthy fats and can keep you fuller for longer, which is always a plus at breakfast time. 

Slice it up or mash it with some lime juice and chili for an interesting bagel topping. You could even add it to your scrambled egg or bacon bagel for an even healthier breakfast. 

Jelly and peanut butter

Perhaps you are looking for something a little sweeter at breakfast time. If that’s the case, you can’t go wrong with everyone’s favorite nostalgic sandwich fillings -peanut butter and jelly! 

Whether you prefer grape or raspberry, smooth PB, or crunchy, just choose your favorite combo and slather it on thick on each side of your bagel. Props to you if you choose 100% pure peanut butter to ensure you get the very best nutrients, fats, and proteins from it. 

You could even shake it up and use almond or cashew butter instead if you prefer. Choose a jam with low sugar and no artificial sweeteners to ensure you don’t get a mid-morning sugar crash! 

Cream cheese and smoked salmon 

I know we said cream cheese was too boring, but if you add some smoked salmon and perhaps a sprig or two of fresh dill, you will really amp up your boring old cream cheese bagel. 

This is a filling and nutritious breakfast that will provide you with lots of protein and a good helping of healthy, oily fish! You might just want to avoid pulling this one out on the morning commute...the smell of smoked salmon on a hot train is not ideal! 

Chocolate-hazelnut spread and banana 

Choose your favorite chocolate and hazelnut spread such as Nutella (or just plain old chocolate if you can’t have nuts) and spread a thin layer onto your bagel. Top it with some yummy banana (or any other fruit) for a sweet but filling breakfast. 

Sometimes you just need a chocolate fix first thing, so rather than grabbing a candy bar that will have you feeling ravenous by 10 am, why not choose something a little more substantial? 

Lunch

Ham and cheese bagel 

Usually, when lunchtime rolls around, people are reaching for something savory. What could be more satisfying than a ham and cheese sandwich? 

Oh, yeah...a ham and cheese bagel! This can be made ahead easily, or you can quickly toast a bagel in the office kitchen and add some cheese and ham slices to it. Choose your favorite cheese and some good quality thickly cut ham for the best results. 

BLT (Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomatoes) 

Everyone knows that a BLT is like the classic American lunchtime sandwich. Well, how about using a bagel instead of regular bread? Trust us when we say that this is revolutionary! 

Crisp, smoked bacon rasher with fresh crispy lettuce, and sweet ripe tomatoes are the perfect trio. Add in some mayo and you are golden. The perfect lunch that will be the envy of your coworkers. 

Tuna and cheese melt bagel 

This one works best when it is freshly cooked, and it’s possibly not the best choice for a poky little breakroom, so best to leave this to those days where you are working from home or on the weekend. 

Just like a tuna melt sandwich, this bagel uses delicious canned tuna and cheese to create a taste sensation that shouldn’t work, but oh my god, it does. 

Toast your bagel first, and then construct the fillings in between each slice. You can then either heat it in a pan or use a toasted sandwich/panini press! 

Turkey salad club ‘sandwich’ 

Ok, so this is not technically a sandwich, but the same concept is there. Use your bagel slices in place of bread and load it up with all the fillings needed for a good ol’ fashioned turkey salad club sandwich. 

Fresh turkey is best for this, or you can use turkey deli meat if you prefer. Choose all your favorite salad items, and don’t forget your favorite sauce, dressings, and relish. Oh, and top tip -  toast your bagel slices first!

Vegetarian ‘everything’ bagel 

The everything bagel is a bagel that has sesame, poppy seeds, onion, garlic, and more. Because of this huge flavor sensation, we like to lay it with lots of mild vegetarian flavors so you don’t overpower it anymore. 

Slice up some avocado, get some vegan cream cheese, load in some crisp lettuce, ripe tomatoes, and perhaps even some vegan ‘ham’, and you have the perfect lunchtime bagel on your hands. 

Dinner 

Bagel burger 

A bagel burger is exactly what it sounds like - simply a burger, between two halves of a bagel, rather than a burger bun! This delicious bagel topping is elite in our eyes as it partners the two best ‘B’s’. 

Hosoe a beef burger, chicken burger, veggie burger, or any other burger that you like. Hey, why not put in all three? 

You can fill this with whatever burger topping you usually choose, such as cheese slices, lettuce, pickles, relish, bacon, and whatever else springs to mind. Toast the bagel first, for the best results...just be warned, you may dislocate your jaw biting into this huge burger! 

Pizza bagel 

Pizza bagels are a delicious creation. Simply cut your bagel in half as you usually would, and then top your bagel with some passata or tomato paste, add on your favorite pizza toppings, and then cover it in mozzarella and pizza cheese mix. 

You can experiment with all your favorite pizza toppings such as ham, chicken, pepperoni, olives, salami, and more. The trick is to put a topping, such as a slice of pepperoni or salami over the bagel hole so that the cheese doesn’t drip through! 

Place it under the broiler for 2 minutes or until golden brown, watching carefully so that it doesn’t burn, and voila, a delicious pizza bagel, perfect for a dinner-time treat! The best part is, you can do different flavors and toppings on each slice of bagel! 

Philly Cheesesteak bagel 

A Philly Cheesesteak sandwich is a staple meal all over the States, and constitutes the perfect dinner, especially when served alongside golden, crispy fries. However, why not try it in a bagel instead of a sub? 

Simply prepare the steak and cheese mixture as you usually would, and then instead of layering it onto your sandwich, put it onto freshly toasted bagels. Top it with any sauces and seasoning, as well as any salad or veggies you want! 

Chicken Fajita bagel 

Sure, this is not the traditional way of eating fajitas, but it is delicious nonetheless. All you need to do is cook up your usual fajita recipe, with chicken, fajita seasoning, onions, and peppers. When it is cooked, toast some halved bagels and place them on the table in place of tortillas. People can simply fill the bagels with the mixture instead of the tortillas. Be warned, it can get messy, but it is so worth it. Just don’t forget the sour cream and cheese!

Burrito bagels 

Lastly, we have burrito bagels! This is pretty self-explanatory, as all you need to do is make your burrito fling, whether that be with skirt steak or ground beef, and instead of constructing it in a rolled-up tortilla wrap, you load it onto a bagel. Add on some refried beans, guac, onions, and jalapenos, along with some cheese for true authenticity. 

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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community.
She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
Cassie Marshall
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