Everything You Need To Know About Waffle Makers

Everything You Need to Know About Waffle Makers

The waffle has long been a favorite breakfast of American families and is also enjoyed throughout the world. Most households in this country have likely owned a waffle maker or at the very least had some readymade waffles stored away in their freezer.

Waffles are popular for two reasons: the delicious taste and how versatile this amazing food can be. When you own an electric waffle maker or waffle iron, your ability to enjoy this delicious treat becomes even easier! And when waffles are easy to make, you can enjoy them anytime of the day- waffles are no longer just for breakfast!

Differens Types Of Waffle Makers

A waffle maker is a simple appliance that allows you to create amazing treats and there is a wide range of different models and products intended to bring you the fluffiest waffle possible. Some waffle makers create Belgian waffles while others have an easy to use flipping mechanism. You can even find heart-shaped waffle makers and others that make fun waffle designs- so many options!

No matter which device you choose to make your own waffles, there’s no denying that this breakfast treat is one of our country’s favorite foods. If you are excited to enjoy restaurant quality waffles at home, it is time to begin the hunt to find the best waffle maker around!

Waffle Maker GuideThe History Of The Waffle MakerTypes Of Waffle MakersClassic Round Waffle MakerBelgian Waffle MakerHeart Waffle MakerSquare Waffle MakerCeramic Waffle MakerWaffle IronWaffle FlipBenefits Of Owning A Waffle MakerSaves MoneySaves TimeCustomizableHealthierVersatilityHow To Use A Waffle MakerThe Healthy WaffleHow To Clean A Waffle MakerWhat To Look For In A Waffle MakerOutputWaffle StyleShapeThicknessGrill SurfaceLights And DisplayFlip AbilityTop Waffle RecipesPotato WafflesHash Brown WafflesWaffled BrowniesVegan WafflesConclusion

The History Of The Waffle Maker

Although the waffle is hugely successful in America, this is not where the waffle originated. . Still relatively unknown where exactly the waffle began, it’s believed to have started as a Western culinary tradition. Waffles have now seen many variations to reach the shape and taste that we know and love today.

The Ancient Greeks cooked waffles as a flat cake without any of the famous holes we now associate with waffles. When the recipe reached Medieval Europe, they began stamping waffles with various symbols and signs. Family crests and landscapes were frequently seen on waffles before eventually the design settled on the grid effect we’re so familiar with.

Old-Fashioned Waffle Maker

The Dutch had quite a huge effect on making the waffle into the form we know today and it’s believed that Thomas Jefferson brought the first waffle iron to America in 1789. Many years later in the 1800s, a patent was filed for the first stovetop waffle iron and, since then, waffle makers have only gotten more compact and easy to use.

Although many people prefer to eat out at their favorite diner or restaurant to indulge in the perfect waffle, kitchen appliance manufacturers are finally taking note and creating products that allow anyone to create the ideal waffle right in their own kitchen. Today, the waffle iron can take a few different forms when found in American kitchens.

Types Of Waffle Makers

While you might not think of it, the world of waffle makers can be quite vast with a number of different types of waffle makers to choose from. . Because there are so many different types of waffles themselves, from Belgian to heart-shaped waffles, the devices used to create them are also quite unique. Here are just a few popular types and what they offer as a waffle maker.

Classic Round Waffle Maker

These are sometimes referred to as an American waffle. They have a distinctly round shape commonly found with cast iron waffle maker varieties. Many people prefer the round shape of non-Belgian waffle makers as they resemble the ready-made varieties found in stores and are usually thinner as well.

Belgian Waffle Maker

Arguably the most popular type of machine, the Belgian waffle maker cooks a square waffle which can be quite thick. A Belgian waffle vs regular waffle generally ranges from 1” to 1 ½” in thickness, and they have a crispy outside and a fluffy inside.

Heart Waffle Maker

Shaped waffle makers have become a big novelty item in recent years, with everything from hearts to star-shaped waffle makers being available. Heart shaped waffles are the traditional shape of waffle from Scandinavia but they’re also extra enticing for kids too.

Heart Shaped Waffles And Waffle Maker

Square Waffle Maker

The square is the most popular shape along with the circle and the waffles are usually then cut into four smaller pieces. Belgian waffles are this shape, however, it is possible to get a square waffle that isn’t as thick as the European type.

Ceramic Waffle Maker

These are a great alternative to Teflon coating, waffle makers and many people believe the ceramic waffle maker is easier to clean and imparts less flavor on the waffle than a metal waffle maker. Another added bonus is that ceramic is free from harmful chemicals which can sometimes be found in kitchenware.

Waffle Iron

Technically speaking, a waffle iron makes waffles over the stove and is commonly referred to as a stove top waffle maker. However, many people use the term interchangeably with electric waffle makers as they often mean the same thing.

Flip Waffle Maker

A waffle flip is a maker which is capable of flipping around once the batter is poured in and is intended to spread the batter over the grill for even cooking. Some people prefer this style to the traditional waffle press as it makes less mess and ensures that there’s no uncooked batter in the finished product.

Benefits Of Owning A Waffle Maker

Although some people might swear by their favorite diner or restaurant to create the best-tasting waffles, with the newest range of waffle makers you can create something just as good or better at home. Here are a few ways you can benefit from having your own waffle maker in your kitchen.

Waffles With Bananas And Nuts

Saves Money

A study last year found that the average American spends more on eating out each week than they do on groceries for their own kitchen. Say you had one meal per week at a restaurant, the cost of the entire bill would be enough to purchase the best home waffle maker product on the market! As waffle makers can last for many years, you’d be effectively saving hundreds of dollars with just the one device.

Saves Time

When you get a craving for waffles, you’ll likely head to your favorite diner or restaurant to get a fix. However, if you have a waffle maker that can get you the perfect combination of fluffy and crispy waffles, you can whip them up in under 5 minutes. Compared to getting the family ready and heading out to a restaurant, this can save phenomenal time. Waffle makers also prepare an easy and mess-free breakfast option to save you time in the morning.

Customizable

If you order your waffles at a restaurant, you’re pretty much stuck with how they make their batter and what toppings are listed on the menu. However, having your own quality waffle maker gives you freedom to make the batter the way you like it and select any topping you enjoy . This is particularly handy for families as you’ll be able to create a waffle to suit everyone’s tastes and dietary requirements.

Healthier

Another benefit of being able to customize your waffles is that you can choose to make them so much healthier! There are plenty of waffles recipes available now that are low fat, low sugar, gluten free, dairy free, and any other requirements you might have. Not only that, but you can top them with fresh fruit and homemade toppings for a more nutritious option for your kids.

Versatility

Having a waffle maker at home isn’t only a great appliance to make breakfast with, they can be even more versatile than you think. There are countless ways to turn your waffles into a savory treat fit for eating at lunch or dinner and it’s all possible with just one product!

All of these are great reasons why you should invest in a waffle maker for your home but the most obvious benefit is the taste. With the newest range of waffle makers available that can create a restaurant quality waffles and all of the variations you can try, you might find yourself eating them around the clock.

How To Use A Waffle Maker

Every waffle maker is unique and the method you may use to make the perfect waffle may vary from machine to machine. However, you still might be wondering how to make basic waffles in a regular waffle maker? The first step involves preparing your batter. Waffle batter can be bought pre-made, or you can whip up your own batter using any number of recipes available.

Making Waffles With Waffle Maker

Turn your waffle maker on so that it begins to heat up as this can take a couple of minutes depending on the machine you’re using. Even if you have a non-stick waffle iron, you should still grease it gently with either butter or cooking oil. Some people even season their waffle maker as a further step, so choose a blend of herbs and spices if this is your style.

Once the indicator light shows that it’s ready for batter, gently begin to pour your waffle mix into the middle of the machine on the lowest grill. Close the lid gently and wipe away any batter that may come out or leave it to be caught in the drip tray. If you have a flip waffle maker, you’ll need to turn this now before the batter starts cooking.

Most waffle makers take around four minutes to complete but it will depend entirely on your machine. Always check the guidelines to be sure or follow the digital display or indicator light.. Once done, remove your amazing waffles from the grill and top with your choice of fruits, condiments, and spices.

The Healthy Waffle

As we all make more of a conscious effort to eat better and exercise these days, you might be wondering where exactly the waffle fits into a healthy eating plan. Having a waffle maker at home is the easiest way to ensure you don’t have to give up your favorite treat. Because you’re able to customize your waffles at home, you can make them healthier and tastier than ever before!

The batter itself can be made using healthier options such as whole wheat and reduced sugar. If there’s someone with a gluten intolerance in your house, it’s even possible to enjoy gluten-free waffles that taste just as delicious. Depending on your personal preference, there’s a waffle batter recipe to suit every health requirement.

The toppings are the next part which can be fully customized with a healthier choice. The best way to keep your waffle healthy to top them with fresh fruits such as strawberries, blackberries, and bananas. For something different, you can sprinkle a few chia seeds on top or top the waffles with some other nuts and seeds. Whipped cream can be swapped for yogurt or ricotta. There’s no end to just how flavorsome and healthy your waffles can be!

When we take waffle making into our own hands and don’t rely on restaurants to create our meals, we can be sure that we’re using the very best ingredients and make more wholesome choices. For those families with children especially, it can be a great lesson for your kids that there’s no need to add loads of sugar just to enjoy a sweet treat. Best of all, you don’t have to feel guilty about eating unwanted calories every morning.

Waffles With Different Fruit

How To Clean A Waffle Maker

Although there are a few different types, learning how to clean a Belgian waffle maker can pretty much cover you for the other varieties too. Waffle makers don’t require much in the way of cleaning and maintenance, provided you’ve taken care of it during use.

Every time you use your waffle maker you should take care to wipe the sides free from batter as this can stick on quite strong once the waffle maker is hot. After every use, wipe down the grill and trays with a paper towel so there’s no residue. Don’t ever wash your waffle maker or submerge it in water.

Make sure you turn the machine off before you attempt to clean it as the electricity may present a hazard. Take a paper towel and gently wipe the oil from the plates being careful not to scratch too hard. If there is hardened batter, use a sponge and warm soapy water to soak these before rubbing them off. If this still won’t remove the hardened batter, use a rubber spatula to try and pry it free.

If you have a waffle iron with removable plates these can be easier to clean. You can simply remove the trays and wash them or even place them in a dishwasher. However, a simple wipe down should be sufficient for all other types of waffle makers.

What To Look For In A Waffle Maker

You might not know until you start searching for a new waffle maker but there are tons of variations, special features and other things you need to consider before making your purchase. Traditional waffle irons used to all come in one fairly consistent shape and design but today’s market is packed with a variety of different choices. This is great because you can find one to suit your needs perfectly.

Output

Output refers to how many waffles the machine can make and your choice will usually depend on how many people you have to feed. Most standard machines make just one or two waffles, however, some machines can make up to eight waffles and even beyond in commercial style waffle makers.

Waffle Style

There are many styles of waffle makers from traditional American waffles to classic Belgian waffles. You have many styles to choose from when purchasing a waffle maker!

Two Different Types Of Waffles

Shape

Waffle makers shapes were a huge hit in recent years The ability to make your favorite treat into a heart or star was just the beginning!, The most common shape nowadays is the classic square waffle maker or a circle.

Thickness

Depending on how thick you like your waffles, you’ll need to pick a waffle maker that can match your preference. Most waffles range from ½” to 1 ½”, with the Belgian waffle maker being the thickest of the lot.

Grill Surface

Look for a non-stick surface on the grill, preferably something made from ceramic or coated with Teflon. This will help in two ways; the cleanup will be considerably easier and your waffles won’t stick when you try to take them out to eat.

Lights And Display

Most modern machines have at least an indicator light which can show you when the waffle maker is heated and ready for the batter. The more complex models might also feature a light to show when your waffle is done and even a countdown timer and digital display for further information.

Digital Timer

If you don’t have a timer for your waffle maker, you may end up over or undercooking your waffle.  Overcooked waffles are usually to hard to enjoy.  Undercooked waffles will fall apart and stick in the griddle and are a mess to dig out!

Flip Ability

Traditionally, a flip waffle maker used to be quite expensive as these were usually professional quality only. However, many new designs use a flip function and are very affordable, helping you achieve an even spread of batter on the grill. We have a special post telling you which is our best rated flip waffle here.

There are many other smaller features that might attract users, such as drip trays and browning settings, however, these will all depend on what you deem necessary. Thankfully, the range today of waffle makers is now more affordable and convenient than ever before! The choices are all quite enticing.

Top Waffle Recipes

Although it’s hard to top the classics like hot maple syrup and ice cream, to get the best use out of your waffle maker you shouldn’t be afraid to try some new recipes. On our site I have included my own amazing waffle batter recipe, but here are some other great ideas. There’s nothing stopping you from using your waffle maker to make lunch or dinner either!

Savory Spiralized Sweet Potato Waffles With Eggs

Waffles with Pancake Mix

Did you know that you can make waffles from regular pancake mix? By just adding a few extra ingredients, you can reuse pancake batter to make golden brown waffles.  And make sure to check out our bisquick recipe!

Potato Waffles

You can begin to create a truly delicious and hearty dinner by cooking up some loaded “fries” but using the waffle is your base! . Add some grated cheese, herbs, and bacon to your batter and cook as usual, then top with dollops of mashed potato and sour cream for a truly decadent feast.

Hash Brown Waffles

For a twist on your usual breakfast, try adding some grated potato and zucchini to your waffle batter to cook up some savory treats. Once done, you can pair the waffles with hearty breakfast of sausages, bacon, eggs, and whatever else you choose. This spin on breakfast gives those without a sweet tooth a new option when it comes to breakfast.

Waffled Brownies

Replace your regular waffle mix with brownie batter and cook it with your waffle maker. Not only will it take far less time than cooking in the oven, but you’ll get the perfect combination of crispness and fluffiness with this recipe. Once done, you can top with anything indulgent and sweet you like such as ice cream, candy, and sprinkles.

Vegan Waffles

For the health conscious among us, there’s an easy way to turn traditional waffles into something vegan and delicious. Swap your traditional batter for a gluten-free recipe consisting of almond milk, maple syrup and other goodies, then cook as usual. Top with banana and peanut butter, or strawberries and chocolate chips for something that tastes naughty without the guilt! You can even make vegan waffles with Bisquick!

Conclusion

As American’s most loved breakfast food, it’s no wonder that the waffle maker market is still an extremely popular one. The new range of waffle makers gives the user far more creativity and convenience than ever before so you can expect that the popularity of this favorite breakfast food will continue to soar.

Different Types Of Waffle Makers On White Surface

Gone are the days when the only topping you could enjoy with your waffles was syrup With everything from gluten-free to vegan waffle batter mixes now available, waffle possibilities are endless!. With the freedom to top your homemade waffles with anything you choose, this is one of the most versatile kitchen appliances you’ll ever own.

Whether you enjoy Belgian waffles or classic American round waffles, there are so many benefits you can get from owning your own waffle maker. This one simple device can save you money, help you to eat healthier, more delicious meals and give you a quick option for breakfast when you’re in a hurry. Best of all, there’s a waffle option out there to suit everyone in the family, even the fussiest of eaters.

About the Author Amanda Bochain

I have a bachelor's degree for the Culinary Institute of America in Baking and Pastry Arts and over 16 years of food service experience. I also owned and operated a bakery cafe for several years. I have a two year old daughter who helps me write food blogs and articles as my official taste tester!

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