It’s time to dust off that neglected waffle maker and waffle all the things. Here are 10+ unusual foods that are perfect for cooking in the waffle maker (that aren’t waffles).
Illustration by Fruzsina Kuhári.Photos by Serious Eats, Chow, One Good Thing By Jillee, Alexandra Grablewski.
You can make almost anything in the waffle maker, from snacks to desserts. The dual heating element lets you effortlessly make crispy tofu; turn old French fries into waffle fries; cook crispy, less messy bacon; and cook packaged cinnamon rolls.
While the possibilities are almost endless, the foods below are in some ways better made in a waffle maker than they are made traditionally.
9. Homemade “Mozzarella Sticks”
These are more like mozzarella bites than they are sticks, but the waffle maker turns out tasty, hot fried cheese. Bonus: The divots the waffle maker makes in the breaded cheese are perfect for scooping up dipping sauces.
8. Hash Browns
Throw some frozen potato gems into your waffle maker and you’ve got restaurant-style hash browns. It’s an easier way to cook potatoes for breakfast, but, for best results, let the gems thaw for a while before waffling.
7. Stuffing Waffles
Any time is a good time for stuffing waffles. Try them in place of bread for chicken sandwiches! Like the waffled mozzarella, the pockets in these stuffing waffles are perfect — for catching gravy.
6. Brownies and Muffins
Waffle makers are designed to cook flour batters, so perhaps it’s no surprise they can turn out great brownies and muffins. (Doesn’t the photo from Chow, above, look great?) You might be impressed by how quickly you can make these treats with the waffle maker, though — just five minutes or less, usually.
Love churros but not in the mood to deep-fry dough? That’s what your waffle iron is for (now). Again, nooks and crannies are perfect for capturing sauce, this time: chocolate!
Biscuit dough takes just 90 seconds to bake in a waffle maker. That means warm, tasty biscuit ASAP, like these chocolate chip cookies that are crisp on the outside and gooey on the inside.
3. Pizza Waffles
Yeah, pizza waffles taste as good as they look. Whether you make pizza pockets with croissant, puff pastry or pizza dough or turn leftover pizza into mini calzones, think of your waffle maker the next time you have a hankering for a homemade pizza creation.
2. Fried Rice
You know what’s better than rice? Crispy rice. If you have leftover fried rice or day-old rice, put it in your waffle maker for a different kind of snack.
I’ve made most of the above in my waffle maker, but these are just scratching the surface of what your waffle iron can do. Check out Will It Waffle? (and the corresponding book) to learn how you can also make steak, apple pie, prawn wontons and more with your non-unitasking waffle maker.