Ina Garten's Unconventional Bagel-Cutting Technique Means More Cream Cheese In Every Bite

If you're one of the many bagel lovers out there, then you know that a bagel is always sliced horizontally directly through the middle, making two round pieces of bagel. From there, everyone enjoys their bagels differently — whether using it to make a sandwich or smearing it with cream cheese to eat one side at a time — but the way it's sliced is hardly a debate.

However, celebrity chef Ina Garten has a completely different and quite unconventional method: cutting the bagel into thirds. Yep, as strange as it may sound, Garten opts to cut the bagel horizontally twice to make three thinner pieces of bagel. As Garten explains, "I'm doing it with a twist. Instead of having a big, thick bagel, I like to cut it in thirds so instead you have a nice little sandwich." Basically, Garten cuts two bagels into thirds, which she turns into three sandwiches complete with an herb cream cheese and smoked salmon.

If you've ever thought that a bagel is just a little bit too thick, then Garten's method is perfect for you. After all, it allows for the flavor emphasis to be more on the ingredients inside, whether it's cream cheese or sandwich fillings.

How to best utilize Garten's three-way bagel cutting method

The best part about Ina Garten's method is that thinner slices means that you can add more ingredients to a bagel sandwich without the risk of the sandwich getting too big to fit in your mouth. With this in mind, it's the perfect opportunity to experiment with all of the loaded breakfast sandwiches that you've been wanting to try. You can start by making Tasting Table's recipe for a pesto prosciutto breakfast sandwich and swap out the bun for thin bagel slices. Or, maybe you're in the mood for a loaded lox bagel — this dish is often served open-faced but, with thinner slices, you can turn it into a sandwich without the bread overpowering the flavor of the delicious fillings.

There's also the even more unconventional option of using all three bagel slices at once. If you're a huge cream cheese fan, you can spread it in two layers and, if you don't mind a big bite, eat it sandwich style. It makes for a unique opportunity to try two types of cream cheese at once — perhaps pairing a whipped everything cream cheese with a chive cream cheese or a strawberry flavor with a blueberry flavor.

The three-way cutting method also allows for an easy way to feed a bigger crowd with fewer bagels. After cutting the bagels into thirds, you can prepare them on a serving tray alongside a variety of cream cheeses for the guests to choose from.