Think your waffle iron is a one-trick pony? Prepare to consider it a kitchen workhorse instead. Whether you’ve got a simple plug-and-go design or one of the fancy ones with the dual chambers and smart timers, this handy countertop appliance is essentially a shortcut to crispy, browned edges—without a deep fryer or long stint in the oven. These ingenious non-waffle applications will have you and your kids attempting all sorts of creative concoctions for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. (Warning: plenty of word mashups ahead!)
Waffle-iron omelet-frittatas: Dare we call them frittaffles? (You were warned.) Simply whisk up eggs and your desired fillings—from ham and cheese to veggies galore—and pour them into the waffle iron. Because each frittaffle only takes a few minutes, the whole family can customize their eggy breakfasts to suit their tastes. Tip: If your waffle iron is slightly less than nonstick, spritz it with cooking spray or brush on some butter first.
Leveled-up comfort food: You’re a parent—of course you have a few boxes of macaroni and cheese on hand. The next time you and the kids whip up a batch, take the whole thing up a notch and waffle them. And while we’re talking comfort, we can’t leave out leftover pizza waffles!
Bibimbaffles: That’s right, bibimbaffles—Korean bibimbap with rice, vegetables, eggs, and kimchi cooked in the waffle iron. Maybe not every child will be down for kimchi in the morning, but you could probably sell it as fried rice without much complaint.
Veggie fritters: Crispy fritters don’t require long sessions of flipping things in hot oil when you recruit your waffle iron to do the job. Once you master the basic recipe for zippy zucchini fritters, get creative with your shredded ingredients—potatoes and sweet potatoes, broccoli, and even hearty greens like kale or chard are fritter-able.
Crispy polenta: You know those tubes of ready-to-heat polenta that get sliced up and fried into coins? Yep, you can waffle those, too. Add a simple stovetop sauce made with a can of diced tomatoes and some Italian spices, and you’ve got a major winner of a pantry dinner in under 15 minutes.
Bake some cookies: Did someone say snickerdoodle waffle cookies? Can we call them wookiees? Because, of course, we’re going to.
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