The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron


Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower
Best of LifehackerBest of LifehackerWhether we’ve made a complicated recipe absurdly simple, illustrated how to survive a natural disaster, or explained a political crisis in terms even your great-grandma would understand, these are some of our favorite stories from the past year.

The air fryer may have been the most talked about appliance of 2020, but the waffle iron was the actual hero of quarantine cooking. Whether you’re reheating leftovers, transforming cake into breakfast, or mashing two pieces of pizza together to make a sandwich (or “panino,” if you will), the waffle iron is your friend (some might say your best friend). Here are a few of my favorite things I waffled this year. I hope you’ll enjoy them as much as I do.

Claire is the Senior Food Editor for Lifehacker and a noted duck fat enthusiast. She lives in Portland, Oregon with a slightly hostile cat.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

Cold slices of congealed mac and cheese go into the waffle maker, and—like magic—golden, crispy, hot slices of cheesy noddles come out. The cheese forms a delicate, crisp and lacy outer layer, while the insides stay tender and gooey for an excellent contrast in flavors and textures.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

This is, quite simply, the best tofu I’ve ever tasted. It’s crispy on the outside and slightly chewy on the inside, with lots of little divots for holding your favorite sauces. My current favorites are this chili oil and a mixture of infused soy sauce and hot honey, but you could drench it in BBQ for a meatless McRib kinda deal.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

I would never suggest you waffle your beautiful, homemade crab cakes made with tender hunks of crab meat, but I must insist you try waffling one of the pre-formed, store-bought, mostly-filler crab cakes you can get at the store for four bucks a piece. A four-dollar crab cake is not a precious item, and you should have no qualms about squashing it between the plates of a hot waffle maker. Doing so transforms it into a crispy, crabby patty perfect for sandwiches, Benedicts, or a super easy appetizer.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

Frozen foods are always good candidates for the waffle iron treatment, but this pound cake exceeded my expectations. It’s the perfect brunch item—a buttery, cakey waffle with a sweetness that’s tempered by its slightly crispy golden peaks and valleys. You can serve it with butter and syrup, or fresh fruit like you would any waffle, or be truly bold and use it to make a breakfast sandwich.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

This is by far one of the most absurd things I waffled this year, but it was also one of my favorites. It’s a perfect little packet of crescent dough and hot dog, all golden brown, with plenty of crispy nooks and crannies, which are perfect for holding condiments.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

I love cold, leftover pizza, but sometimes you crave something hot and cheesy, and nothing else will do. In those moments, waffled pizza is there for you. The key is to waffle two slices at the same time, laying them on top of each other with their toppings facing towards each other. The crust crisps up against the hot grates, while the cheese—which is pressed up against more cheese—warms and re-melts. Once the pizza is nice and hot, you can pull the pieces apart and eat them like pizza, or you can eat them like a sandwich (you can even add extra cheese in between the two slices, if you’re feeling decadent).

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

It was not sausage ball season when I originally wrote about this waffle, but it is now. For the uninitiated, sausage balls are a combination of sausage, baking mix, and shredded cheese, rolled into balls and baked served as a holiday party snack or Christmas morning treat. When cooked in a waffle iron, the mixture of meat, cheese, and biscuit mix flattens into a crispy waffle with divots that can serve as a delivery system for eggs or maple syrup. It’s very good.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

This is pretty much the only way I cook SPAM now. The waffle iron maximizes the surface area of the canned meat, which maximizes crispy edges. It’s the perfect salty, meaty treat, and it’s good in rice bowls, on breakfast sandwiches, and all by its (perfect) self.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

Melted cheese is a weighted blanket for your mouth. It’s calming, comforting, and warm. Not all cheese waffles well, but the ones that do—brie, curds, paneer, halloumi, bread cheese, and Parmigiano-Reggiano—do so beautifully. Firmer cheeses form brilliant, savory crusts and get all soft on the inside. Waffled brie is similar to baked brie, except that waffled brie has convenient little waffled dimples for honey to pool in, which is a pretty major improvement.

Claire is the Senior Food Editor for Lifehacker and a noted duck fat enthusiast. She lives in Portland, Oregon with a slightly hostile cat.


Page 2

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower
Best of LifehackerBest of LifehackerWhether we’ve made a complicated recipe absurdly simple, illustrated how to survive a natural disaster, or explained a political crisis in terms even your great-grandma would understand, these are some of our favorite stories from the past year.

The air fryer may have been the most talked about appliance of 2020, but the waffle iron was the actual hero of quarantine cooking. Whether you’re reheating leftovers, transforming cake into breakfast, or mashing two pieces of pizza together to make a sandwich (or “panino,” if you will), the waffle iron is your friend (some might say your best friend). Here are a few of my favorite things I waffled this year. I hope you’ll enjoy them as much as I do.

Claire is the Senior Food Editor for Lifehacker and a noted duck fat enthusiast. She lives in Portland, Oregon with a slightly hostile cat.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

Cold slices of congealed mac and cheese go into the waffle maker, and—like magic—golden, crispy, hot slices of cheesy noddles come out. The cheese forms a delicate, crisp and lacy outer layer, while the insides stay tender and gooey for an excellent contrast in flavors and textures.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

This is, quite simply, the best tofu I’ve ever tasted. It’s crispy on the outside and slightly chewy on the inside, with lots of little divots for holding your favorite sauces. My current favorites are this chili oil and a mixture of infused soy sauce and hot honey, but you could drench it in BBQ for a meatless McRib kinda deal.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

I would never suggest you waffle your beautiful, homemade crab cakes made with tender hunks of crab meat, but I must insist you try waffling one of the pre-formed, store-bought, mostly-filler crab cakes you can get at the store for four bucks a piece. A four-dollar crab cake is not a precious item, and you should have no qualms about squashing it between the plates of a hot waffle maker. Doing so transforms it into a crispy, crabby patty perfect for sandwiches, Benedicts, or a super easy appetizer.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

Frozen foods are always good candidates for the waffle iron treatment, but this pound cake exceeded my expectations. It’s the perfect brunch item—a buttery, cakey waffle with a sweetness that’s tempered by its slightly crispy golden peaks and valleys. You can serve it with butter and syrup, or fresh fruit like you would any waffle, or be truly bold and use it to make a breakfast sandwich.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

This is by far one of the most absurd things I waffled this year, but it was also one of my favorites. It’s a perfect little packet of crescent dough and hot dog, all golden brown, with plenty of crispy nooks and crannies, which are perfect for holding condiments.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

I love cold, leftover pizza, but sometimes you crave something hot and cheesy, and nothing else will do. In those moments, waffled pizza is there for you. The key is to waffle two slices at the same time, laying them on top of each other with their toppings facing towards each other. The crust crisps up against the hot grates, while the cheese—which is pressed up against more cheese—warms and re-melts. Once the pizza is nice and hot, you can pull the pieces apart and eat them like pizza, or you can eat them like a sandwich (you can even add extra cheese in between the two slices, if you’re feeling decadent).

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

It was not sausage ball season when I originally wrote about this waffle, but it is now. For the uninitiated, sausage balls are a combination of sausage, baking mix, and shredded cheese, rolled into balls and baked served as a holiday party snack or Christmas morning treat. When cooked in a waffle iron, the mixture of meat, cheese, and biscuit mix flattens into a crispy waffle with divots that can serve as a delivery system for eggs or maple syrup. It’s very good.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

This is pretty much the only way I cook SPAM now. The waffle iron maximizes the surface area of the canned meat, which maximizes crispy edges. It’s the perfect salty, meaty treat, and it’s good in rice bowls, on breakfast sandwiches, and all by its (perfect) self.

Illustration for article titled The First 9 Things You Should Make With Your New Waffle Iron
Photo: Claire Lower

Melted cheese is a weighted blanket for your mouth. It’s calming, comforting, and warm. Not all cheese waffles well, but the ones that do—brie, curds, paneer, halloumi, bread cheese, and Parmigiano-Reggiano—do so beautifully. Firmer cheeses form brilliant, savory crusts and get all soft on the inside. Waffled brie is similar to baked brie, except that waffled brie has convenient little waffled dimples for honey to pool in, which is a pretty major improvement.

Claire is the Senior Food Editor for Lifehacker and a noted duck fat enthusiast. She lives in Portland, Oregon with a slightly hostile cat.