Eating a bagel may seem simple enough, but microwaving bagels require instructions, too. Believe it or not, three ways exist to microwave a bagel. The instructions must be followed carefully to prevent a bagel from becoming hardened or soggy. A toaster can give your bagel a crisp taste and feel, while a microwave can soften the entire bagel.

Things You'll Need

Slice the bagel in half. Place it on a microwavable plate with the insides facing up. You can add any ingredient such as butter or cream cheese. Place in microwave for 10 seconds.

Alternatively, wrap the bagel in a paper towel, which will soak up excess moisture. On a microwave-safe plate, microwave the bagel at high setting for 20 seconds. Let it cool for 30 seconds.

Place your cold or frozen bagel in a plastic bag. At a medium setting, microwave for 30 seconds. Increase the time by 15 seconds if the bagel is still cold.


  • If you’re microwaving a bagel for more than 30 seconds it will become rubbery.

  • Microwaving a bagel for more than a minute will result in a stiff bagel.

  • Warm bagels shouldn’t be placed in a plastic bag.

  • If bagel is stale, on top of the bagel, put 7 drops of water and then microwave for 20 seconds.