The best bagel shops in NYC are all well and good, but what about when you stumble out of some random person's bed at 7am and are in desperate need of an everything oozing with cream cheese but are NOWHERE NEAR any of those best bagel shops? WHAT THEN, HUH THRILLIST?
Then this: 30 neighborhoods, 30 bagel shops, all ready to feed you on your stumble of shame home.
A large selection of bagels, sandwiches, and spreads dominate this no-frills shop, including an ever-changing cream cheese flavor of the week.
Battery Park City
A classic shop featuring fresh hand-rolled bagels, Leo’s menu focuses on timeless bagels and spreads, egg sandwiches, deli meats, and smoked fish.
This dependable bagel shop offers up a simple selection of dough rings and cream cheeses, plus it's got a huge variety of wraps, sandwiches, and paninis for under $7.
Brooklyn’s answer to Russ & Daughters, Shelsky’s is all about the lox (no treble), with a whopping 10 varieties of salmon to pile onto the substantial selection of bagels and cream cheese spreads.
Freshly baked bagels, croissants, and muffins dominate this Brooklyn mainstay with an additional outpost in Staten Island.
A bona fide East Village institution, weekend lines at Tompkins Square Bagels routinely go beyond the front door. But with hand-rolled bagels, cream cheese flavors like chipotle avocado and jalapeño cheddar, and a large selection of specialty sandwiches for $8 or less, TSB is well worth the wait... for the intern in your office who’s getting everyone bagels.
Customers can watch a variety of bagels, flagels, and mini bagels being baked on premises at this Downtown shop, a rare treat that’s sweetened by the massive selection of spreads, sandwiches, and salads.
This kosher shop serves up solid bagels and spreads in a cozy no-fuss environment.
After nearly five decades in business, Bagel Oasis has definitely earned its name. An expert in old-fashioned bagel preparation (the shop uses malt instead of sugar, a key to that perfect crunchy outside, soft inside texture), its sizable selection of spreads and sandwiches only add to its cozy neighborhood appeal.
The lines are always long at this Greenwich Village hub, but with freshly made bagels, a solid selection of cream cheeses, sandwiches like the Red Hook Brooklyn (roast beef, Swiss, and roasted peppers), and that Crossy Road app you just downloaded on your phone, it’s totally worth the wait.
An innovative variety of cream cheese flavors including mango, basil, and banana nut only serve to highlight the dependable bagels and service at this chain’s Gramercy outpost.
This straightforward hub for grab-n-go bagels is a commuter favorite, with extra-cheesy BECs and famously rapid-fire service.
This sizable outpost on the border of Kips Bay offers a classic selection of bagels and spreads, plus it's got a create-your-own pizza bagel, which is amazing.
Little Italy is known for a lot of things, but great bagels aren’t one of them. That’s why we’re thrilled to have discovered Baz, where the bagels are crisp, the service is reliable, and egg sandwiches are served all damn day.
Lower East Side
This legendary outpost serves the best bagel & lox in the city, bar none. NONE.
Its Downtown location may be closed, but Ess-a-Bagel Midtown is alive and well with the classic bagels, spreads, and bustling environment it’s become famous for.
A reliable NY chain for satisfying bagels and spreads in a pinch.
This unassuming bagel shop gets the job done with a variety of circular breakfast options and cream cheeses, cheap prices (just $2.50 for a bagel w/ cream cheese), and egg sandwiches served ‘til 3pm daily.
A Columbia campus favorite, this Jewish deli-meets-bagel shop specializes in traditional bagels and spreads, plus it's got famous black & white cookies, which, turns out, aren’t even actually cookies (whaaaaaa?).
This Insta-famous standout is one of the hottest bagel shops in NYC, and there are plenty of reasons why. With bagels that’re rolled by hand, boiled in honey water, then baked in a wood-fired oven, Black Seed’s bagels have an unmistakable texture and taste that no one in NYC is matching anytime soon. And when you order up a No. 13 (egg, cheddar, and maple-baked ham) on a toasted multigrain everything? That’s what we call #EEEEEATS magic.
This corner shop might not seem like much, but take a closer look and you’ll see why locals have been enjoying the made-from-scratch bagels since 1985, with 11 tasty varieties and counting.
All ordering at this no-frills establishment is done through a walkup window, an old-school attribute that only adds to the retro appeal of the classically baked bagels and simple menu that focuses on doing the basics right.
Classic bagels, a solid variety of spreads, and a huge selection of smoked fish dominate this family-friendly shop at the tip of Tribeca.
A favorite amongst the NYU set/people who aren’t bothered by confusing apostrophes, Bagel Bob’s delivers classic bagels and spreads at prices anyone can afford.
Upper East Side
Serving the city fresh bagels since 1974, H&H is a classic shop with reliable dough circles and spreads that’s open 24 hours a day.
Upper West Side
Don’t let the dingy storefront fool you -- these are some of the best bagels in the city, and they’re cheap, too.
This timeless shop focuses on classic bagels and spreads at bargain-basement prices -- it’s just $1.80 for a bagel with cream cheese.
Efficiency can be a rarity amongst bagel shops, but Bagels on the Square has it covered. With rapidly turned orders, an impressive selection of bagels and cream cheeses, and 24-hour service (yes, we’re serious) there’s nothing we don’t love about this West Village outpost.
Specializing in old-fashioned bagels served in a neighborly setting, The Bagel Store whips up an impressive selection of bagels including the buttery salted pretzel, egg challah, and an utterly epic bacon, egg, and cheddar cheese bagel.
Sign up here for our daily NYC email and be the first to get all the food/drink/fun New York has to offer.
Christine Fischer is a freelance writer dedicated to a strict diet of Champagne, cookies, and the occasional pizza. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.
1. Leo's Bagels3 Hanover Sq, New York
2. Bagel Boy8002 3rd Ave, Brooklyn
3. Shelsky’s Smoked Fish141 Court St, Brooklyn
4. Dyker Park Bagels713 86th St, Brooklyn
5. Tompkins Square Bagels165 Avenue A, New York
6. Long Island Bagel Cafe125 Fulton St, New York
7. Gezunte Bagel121 W 19th St, New York
8. Bagel Oasis18312 Horace Harding Expy, Flushing
9. Murray's Bagels500 Avenue of the Americas, New York
10. Bagel Express III340 3rd Ave, New York
11. Best Bagel & Coffee225 W 35th St, New York
12. Bagel Café & Catering429 3rd Ave, New York
13. Baz Bagel & Restaurant181 Grand St, New York
14. Russ & Daughters179 E Houston St, New York
15. Ess-a-Bagel831 3rd Ave, New York
16. Pick-A-Bagel891 8th Ave, New York
17. Daniel's Bagels569 3rd Ave, New York
18. Nussbaum & Wu2897 Broadway, New York
19. Black Seed170 Elizabeth St, New York
20. The Bagel Hole400 7th Ave, Brooklyn
21. Empire Bagels3101 Westchester Ave, Bronx
22. Zucker's Bagels & Smoked Fish146 Chambers St, New York
23. Bagel Bob's51 University Pl, New York
24. H&H Bagels1551 2nd Ave, New York
25. Absolute Bagels2788 Broadway, New York
26. Mike's Bagels4003 Broadway, New York
27. Bagels On The Square7 Carmine St, New York
28. The Bagel Store349 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn
Adam Pomerantz (co-founder of Murray's Bagels) is behind this classic New York shop, so expect the same caliber of bagels that his breakfast alma mater delivers. The bagels are all hand-rolled and baked in small batches on site, and you can top them with a bevy of cream cheese flavors, in addition to lox or the classic bacon, egg & cheese combo. Leo's offers lunch options as well, from soups and sandwiches to salads, and effectively caters to a community of both workers and residents of the Wall St area.
This shop offers up a simple menu of bagels and creams cheeses, plus a huge variety of wraps, sandwiches, and paninis for under $7.
Shelsky's is Brooklyn's answer to Russ & Daughters, it's all about the lox with 10 different varieties of salmon to choose from.
There's no better place for some late-night noshing than Dyker Park Bagels. Open 24 hours, the bagels come with nearly a half inch of cream cheese and a mildly sweet tang.
Right by Tompkins Square Park, this Alphabet City bagel shop has a ton of unique homemade cream cheeses (bacon scallion, chocolate chip cookie dough, birthday cake, chipotle avocado, etc). The plump and chewy bagels range in flavor from plain, sesame, and poppy to French toast, pumpkin, and spelt. The line typically goes out the door on Saturday and Sunday mornings, and note: it's cash-only.
You can watch a variety of bagels and flagels being made on-site at this downtown joint, plus choose from their massive selection of spreads, sandwichs, and salads.
Gezunte, which also goes by the name Books and Bagels, is a cozy kosher bakery serving bagels, sandwiches, and coffee alongside books on Jewish spirituality and food. It's a far cry from the packed bagel shops in commuter-laden areas, as you're invited to sit and enjoy within the cafe. In a unique twist on New York bagel preparation, if you ask for yours toasted you'll be getting it flattened in a panini press. This gives more all-around crunch and warmth to the bagel, so we're not complaining about this unique method.
Hidden behind a weathered, nondescript facade, Bagel Oasis shelfs some of freshest NYC bagels across all varieties, including salt, whole wheat, egg, and bialys. Best of all, it's open 24/7, so even your post-3am sliced-nova-on-pumpernickel cravings can be satisfied.
Opened in 1996, Murray's is a definitive New York institution. Expect some of the best traditional, hand-crafted bagels in the city, along with delicious smoked fish and pastries.
Bagel Express III is the Gramercy outpost of a dependable and no-frills local bagel chain. The lines get long on the weekends, but the service is fast and reliable. The massive menu includes breakfast favorites like bacon, egg, and cheeses and open-face lox sandwiches, plus a vast selection of cream cheeses including the spot’s signatures like mango, jalapeño asado, avocado cilantro, and banana nut.
This Herald Square breakfast stop is a straightforward hub for grab-n-go bagels, with impressively rapid service.
This sizable Kips Bay location offers a classic selection of bagels and spreads, plus create-your-own pizza bagels.
At Baz's, the bagels are crisp, the service reliable, and egg sandwiches are served all damn day.
Open since 1914, Russ & Daughters is the NYC standard for cured fish, spreads, and other “appetizers,” which are the traditional Jewish food eaten with bagels. This piece of New York history (which, in 2014, opened a more formal cafe that is also located in the Lower East Side) is still the place to grab a bagel and schmear or one of its near-perfect deli counter sandwiches, like the Super Heebster, a mammoth bagel sandwich with Whitefish & baked salmon salad, horseradish-dill cream cheese, and wasabi flying fish roe.
Ess-a-Bagel is known for its deliciously dense, hand-rolled bagels and classic spreads, as well as a great mix of meat and fish add-ons. While its not the original (RIP), this Midtown location is still doing God's bagel work and often has lines out the door.
This counter-serve breakfast spot in Hell's Kitchen supplies all your morning staples. Lighter fare such as oatmeal, fruit, and yogurt, is offered alongside muffins, pastries, and, of course, custom breakfast sandwiches. The casual, NYC chain also sells a range of smoked fish platters, soups, salads, smoothies, and spreads by the pound.
This humble Murray Hill bagel spot and sandwich counter gets the job done with perfectly toasted BECs, lox, and a wide selection of various baked goods (cookies, rugelach, etc.). Known for its classic New York bagels -- at once crispy yet soft, and not too sweet -- Daniel's is a solid go-to for breakfast, coffee, and other deli comestibles.
A Columbia favorite, this Jewish deli specializes in traditional bagels and spreads, plus they’ve got famous black & white cookies.
Black Seed subscribes to the Montreal school of bagel-making, meaning its bagels, which are smaller than the quintessential New York ones, are rolled by hand, boiled in honey water, then baked in a wood-fired oven. Sandwiches made with a variety of smoked fishes and speciality spreads -- like the house-cured beet lox number with horseradish cream cheese -- continuously draw weekend crowds in search of their morning bagel fix.
Park Slope locals have been enjoying these crusty, made-from-scratch bagels from The Bagel Hole since 1985, holding strong as one of the few remaining old-fashioned bagel bakeries with eleven different varieties to choose from. These bagels are all-natural, with no additives or preservatives, and they're boiled instead of steamed. Stuff your bagel with cold cuts, lox, a variety of cream cheeses, or the famous whitefish salad.
At this retro-bagel shop, all ordering is done through a walkup window and all bagels are classically baked.
Classic bagels, a solid variety of spreads, and a huge selection of smoked fishes dominate this family-friendly shop at the tip of Tribeca.
A favorite among NYU students and Greenwich Village locals, Babel Bob's is a bustling mainstay cranking out old-school New York bagels in a counter-service setting. The staff makes 14 varieties that can be paired with one of their plain or flavored cream cheeses or used to create herculean sandwiches at lunchtime. There are also homemade muffins, soups, and salads, and prices are perfect for students or the generally budget-conscious. A bagel goes for just 90 cents, and it'll only run you another dollar to pair it with a cup of coffee.
Bagels are synonymous with New York in the same way that "deep dish" is synonymous with Chicago -- they're not only a cultural, culinary signifier of each city, but what we subsist on. As the Big Apple's OG bagel purveyor, H&H has rightfully gained legendary status because of the consistent quality of its bagels. First founded in 1972, H&H set up shop on the Upper East Side, and has been doling out the iconic NYC comestible "a bagel 'n schmear" ever since.
For the best bagels above 100th Street, look no further than this Thai-owned bagelry a few blocks south of Columbia. Absolute greets visitors with a Jenga-esque stack of freshly baked, palm-sized bagels with soft dough, a slightly crusty exterior, and mild sweetness. Service is quick, prices are cheap, and cream cheese is applied generously.
This counter-service only Washington Heights bagel shop and bakery offers a wide selection of deli comestibles (great BEC sandwiches, fresh baked cookies and rugelach, and dark roasted coffee) 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Mike's famous bagels (not too soft, but not too crispy) are worth the trek uptown.
Adjacent to Washington Square Park, Bagels on the Square is dominating the West Village breakfast scene. With rapidly turned orders and friendly, 24-hour service, it’s hard not to love this West Village outpost. Bagels are made fresh daily, and are crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. Plus, for the cream cheese aficionados, there's an impressive selection including bacon and cheddar, scallion, and peanut butter and jelly cream cheese. Slept late and now don’t want to deal with the morning rush? Text your order, and it will be hot and ready when you get there.
Scot Rossillo, the legend behind The Bagel Store in Williamsburg, turns the round-shaped bread obsession into an art form. Using classic old-fashioned techniques and top-notch ingredients, the bagels and cragels that come from his imagination are nothing short of visionary. From the Rainbow Bagel to the German Pumpernickel Beer Bagel, it's clear that no color or ingredient is off-limits.