Waffles are an excellent choice for snacking or a hearty breakfast. These delicious beloved English lattice cakes are wonderful, lovely vessels for a variety of toppings ranging from fruits to pastry flavours like cream and chocolate.
While the toppings or fillings can often take the spotlight, a little added attention to the waffle ingredients and how you cook them can make the difference between a euphoric experience and a regular one.
For the Crispy Waffles, of course, we are Team TEXTURE! We believe in CRISPY – we like our waffles to have a nice crunch with the bite but an indulging melty softness with the chew.
Are you a fan of the crunchy and tender combo or another enjoyable mouthfeel? Tell us in the comments below how you like your waffles or what crispy-to-soft ratio you like.
Making the Crunch
Waffles are usually made with these essential ingredients: flour, eggs, a liquid (usually water, milk, or a mixture of both), butter, sugar, some lard or oil, flavouring like vanilla extract, a leavening agent like baking powder or baking soda, and a little salt.
The cooking process, more often than not, involves a waffle iron or waffle maker, which can be professional or conventional appliances.
While you will often get a regular texture, the resulting waffles from these traditional ingredients can result in a crunchy exterior if you can find the sweet spot of cooking duration using your waffle iron or waffle maker.
But the primary key is in tweaking the ingredients. How you treat the eggs, some alternative or additional components favour, and other techniques will have you effectively get the crispy and light waffles that we love.
It can take some trial and error, but once you get into the Goldilocks Zone, you’ll fall in love with the results. But to make things easy for you, here’s a recipe that you can use as a jumping-off point.
Recipe for Light and Crispy Vegetarian Waffles
You can go thin or a little bit thick when it comes to crispy and light waffles. However, thinner ones will add more crunch, but the ratio of light to crisp is all about preference.
To ensure you are going vegetarian with this, do not use lard.
We recommend ½in-1in thick waffles for this recipe.
Cooking time: 10min – 15min
Total duration: 20min – 25min
- Two mixing or regular bowls
- A hand mixer
- A plastic spatula
- Measuring spoons and cups
- Waffle iron or waffle maker (any shape and size will do)
- 2 cups flour (You can use whole wheat flour or gluten-free)
- 2 ½ tablespoons of cornstarch – our secret ingredient for crispiness
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp sugar (You can cut it in half for low-sugar)
- 2 cups milk (You can use dairy replacements)
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil (You can also use other neutral oils like peanut or sunflower oil, not flavoured ones like olive or sesame oil )
- 2 tbsp water
- 1 tsp vanilla flavouring or extract
- 4 tbsp melted butter or margarine
- 1 Flax Egg
What the Ingredients Do
This is the go-to flour for most waffle recipes. However, as an alternative, you can use whole wheat flour for a healthy twist – expect that your waffles will have a slightly heavier texture.
This is the secret ingredient for making your waffles crispy.
The mixture of flour and cornstarch ensures that you get a perfectly crisp waffle exterior while keeping things light and tender on the inside – an exciting crunch leading to a satisfying chew.
Baking Powder and Baking Soda
These leavening agents produce carbon dioxide when it comes in contact with moisture and heat. The air or gas inflates your waffles, making them rise and become fluffy and not flat and biscuit-like.
Also, they help your waffles have a lovely browning colour that makes them look appealing and delicious. You don’t want extra-pale waffles, do you?
To make your waffle extra light, you would have to use our recommended mixture of baking soda and baking powder.
Sugar and Salt
We want sweetness in our waffles, but did you know that without salt, the sugar you will put in your waffle batter will taste stale and stagnant?
Salt brings out all the other olfactory sensations – it is the core taste that gives body to all, including sweetness, sourness, bitterness, and even umami.
Sugar will bring sweetness in your waffles, and salt will make it “literally have a taste.”
Here’s a tip. You should adjust your sugar depending on your waffle plan.
If you intend to use plenty of syrup or top it with verily sweet ingredients, you should tone the measure down.
Eating involves smelling, and vanilla extract will give you a whiff of sweet, heavenly pleasure in each bite of your waffle.
With this ingredient, the air pockets created by the carbon dioxide released by baking soda and the baking powder will be filled with the concentrated scent of lovely vanilla.
When you bite into the waffle’s crispy exterior, break your teeth into the sweet, tasteful, chewy, and satisfying interior, and release the vanilla scent into your olfactory senses… 3, 2, 1….
Milk is the main liquid component of the recipe. It mainly acts as a moisturising glue but also contributes to the flavour of your waffle.
You can always substitute dairy milk with alternatives like almond milk, soy milk, coconut oil, oat milk, and hazelnut milk.
You can use butter, grape seed oil, sunflower oil, coconut oil, or other fats for your waffle. Each of these will alter the flavour profile of your waffles – some will be more neutral, and others will give a prominent character.
For example, coconut oil will certainly give you a coconut flavour, and butter is butter. To ensure you are making a vegetarian waffle, avoid lard – that’s it.
Here’s a tip. Oil will produce lightness and airiness than butter.
Try to mix and match because who doesn’t like the flavour that butter gives?
Egg and Egg Alternatives
While we don’t use real eggs for this recipe, we should still talk about the ingredient because it is one of the staples for most waffles.
The egg adds the needed tenderness you want in a waffle while providing structure and integrity.
Do not overdo your egg measurement – one does the trick. Too much of the ingredient, and you’ll have an overly-custardy feel that is not waffle-like.
You are cooking waffles, not flans.
For this recipe, we do not use eggs but rather substitute with flax seeds or flax egg. If you choose to, you can have the following ingredients as alternatives to an egg.
- Mashed Banana
- Commercial Egg Alternatives
- Chia Seed
- Silken Tofu
- Arrowroot Powder
Keep in mind that there are many kinds of “vegetarian.” Some use or consume dairy or eggs, and some don’t.
On another note for this recipe, if you choose non-dairy milk and egg alternatives and ensure you are using vegan-approved brands when it comes to the other ingredients, you can totally go vegan.
Also, you can go organic by making sure you get the components from the correct sources.
- In a bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch baking powder and baking soda, and sugar.
- In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients – flax egg, milk, oil, water, vanilla, and butter.
- Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients.
- Gently mix them until integrated but slightly lumpy – dot over mix, or you will have dense waffles.
- Rest the batter for a few minutes to puff up a little bit
- Cook the batter in your waffle maker or waffle iron, using the measurement, setting, and duration recommended by the manufacturer.
Waffle Making Tips
Do not overwork the waffle batter.
What you have to do is stir or whisk it until it is just mixed. Do not beat it and mix it thoroughly because you want it incorporated but not entirely homogeneous.
Test your waffle.
Most people will tell you that, like pancakes, the first waffle will always be a throwaway mess. Hence, it is best not to expect a perfect first try and consider it as a test that can either succeed or fail.
The lesser the expectations, right?
On the other hand, testing will help you figure out how much batter you need each time, what temperature is perfect at the moment, and how long it should take. Remember that the environment will always affect heat and cooking, and there is no constant when it comes to nature, even in your kitchen.
Pre- and Post-Heat
Do not forget to preheat the waffle iron or waffle maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Also, after cooking your waffles, place them on a rack inside a 94°C oven to keep them crispy and warm before serving.
Additional Tip for Egg Users
- Separate the egg white from the egg yolk.
- Include the yolk when mixing the wet ingredients.
- Whip the egg white until you form stiff peaks.
- Combine the dry and wet ingredients.
- Fold in the whisked, airy egg whites.
The air in the whisked egg whites will lighten the batter more, making for airier waffles.
Enjoy Your Waffles!
Now, you can enjoy your vegetarian crispy and light waffles.
All you have to do is pick a topping for a full spread or a filling for waffle sandwiches.
Here are some waffle flavour ideas.
Cream Cheese and Crushed Chocolate Wafer – This is an excellent pair with unsweetened coffee like espresso.
Coconut Cream, Mango, and Grated Ginger – The flavour combo gives an excellent summer afternoon treat to match with a cup of hot, sweetened dark chocolate. Also, you can kick it up a notch with chilli flakes if you fancy.
Apricot Jam, Vanilla Custard, and Marshmallows – This is perfect with any citrusy caramel-tasting drink like a caramel macchiato with orange zest or just Baileys topped with orange liqueur.
Margarine and Sugar – This alternative to butter and syrup adds a more crunchy texture from the sugar in a bed of decadent margarine. Pair this with warm and neutral but fragrant tea like jasmine or green tea.
Honey and Cinnamon – This simple spread will add sophistication to your waffle. Double down on the lovely spice with a cup of cappuccino.
Jackfruit Jam, Sliced Bananas, and Coconut Shavings – You can buy these ingredients from a Chinatown or an Asian speciality store. The flavour shouts South East Asia and is perfect with any milk tea – *coughs TARO.
Ube and Cantaloupe – Ube or purple taro/yam is a staple in South East Asia and is now famous around the world for its unique creamy and earthy flavour and highly violet, appetizing tint. It is now common in cakes and ice cream, but who says it won’t be perfect for a waffle? Just find some Ube jam and slice thin pieces of cantaloupe.
No time to cook?
You can always have waffles even during the busiest of days. So take a break in the middle of your daily hustle and re-energize with waffles without hassles!
Suppose you don’t have the luxury of time to prepare ingredients to make waffles and do the cooking but are craving a vegetarian-approved yummy, crispy, and light treat. In that case, you can order waffles any moment of the day from Waffles and More.
You can pick up or have delivered your favourite English flavours, including Lotus Biscoff, Strawberries and Cream, 99 Flake, and more.
Also, you can book a seat in any of our locations. Just click here to find a store near you.