Every recipe differs a bit, but there are some waffle ingredients that show up again and again. Knowing how to make minor adjustments to a recipe will prevent a last-minute trip to the supermarket!
How to make waffles from scratch
As with baked goods, waffles begin with staple ingredients like flour, eggs, oil, and sugar. From there, your imagination is the limit! Add fruits, vegetables, spices, and seasonings to make each batch unique. Read more about common waffle ingredients and how they’ll impact your recipe below. For a step-by-step guide to making waffles, go here.
Waffle ingredients: Flour
This is the base of every waffle recipe, with the exception of some gluten free waffle recipes. When we say “flour” in a recipe, that generally means all purpose flour. Most all-purpose flour is bleached. If you’re particular about the pure whiteness of your flour, this is what you want to use. This flour is bleached using benzoyl peroxide and chlorine gas (among others). If you’re trying to reduce your exposure to chemicals like this, look for bags of unbleached flour. Nobody will know the difference!
As a general rule, you can substitute wheat flour or spelt flour for up to half of the flour in a recipe without impacting the outcome. Whole grain wheat flour has about three times as much fiber as all-purpose flour.
Gluten free wafflers can use a gluten free flour blend 1:1 to replace all purpose flour. Other gluten free flours — like almond flour and coconut flour — require specifically formulated recipes in order to work well. You can’t just swap those in. Instead, try these specialized recipes:
Liquid for waffle recipes
Milk and buttermilk are the most common liquids called for in waffle recipes. If your recipe calls for milk, feel free to substitute your favorite milk alternative (such as soy milk, almond milk, or oat milk). If you happen to have buttermilk on hand, you can use that to replace milk, too. If you do, substitute baking soda for some (or all) of the baking powder. Buttermilk is somewhat thicker than dairy milk, so if you find that your waffle batter becomes too thick with this substitution, stir in a few tablespoons of water.
Buttermilk is slightly more sour than whole milk. If your recipe calls for buttermilk, there are a number of substitutions you can use. To replace ONE CUP of buttermilk, use:
- 1 cup milk combined with 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice (let stand for 10 minutes before using in recipe)
- 1 cup milk combined with 1-3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar
- 1 cup water mixed with 4 tablespoons powdered buttermilk
- 1/4 cup milk combined with 3/4 cup yogurt
- 1/4 cup milk combined with 3/4 cup sour cream
Waffle ingredients: Oils and fats
You’ll see vegetable oil as an ingredient throughout this site. Almost any vegetable oil will work. If you’re trying to avoid genetically modified ingredients, skip the canola oil and corn oil. Avocado oil is nice and light. If you like to use olive oil, opt for an extra light version so that you don’t taste the oil when your waffles are cooked.
Coconut oil and butter are reasonable (and tasty!) substitutes. You’ll need to melt them before incorporating them into a waffle recipe, though.
Waffle ingredients: Eggs
Eggs are a pretty crucial waffle ingredient. The hold the waffle batter together and help with leavening. If you find yourself in a pinch, you can try these substitutes for one egg.
- 1/4 cup applesauce
- 1/4 cup mashed banana
- Combine 1 tablespoon ground chia or flax seeds with 3 tablespoons of water
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
Duck eggs are an acceptable substitute. They tend to be larger than chicken eggs. One duck egg is roughly equal to one and a half chicken eggs.