Let’s be honest, waffle makers aren’t exactly essential kitchen appliances. Shopping for store-bought waffles is faster and less messy than making them. If you’ve never been in the market for a waffle iron before, you may be wondering, is it worth it? Or why get this when you can buy frozen waffles you can just pop in the toaster? Well, we can tell you right now, that nothing beats homemade waffles! They are far superior to their store bought counterparts and fun to make. You also get to fill your home with the smell of waffles (which is never a bad thing!) If you’re thinking about getting one, our list of the best waffle makers might help you find the perfect match for your needs and budget.
How to Choose the Waffle Maker
Before pouring over hundreds of models, it helps to spend a bit of time looking at some of the most important features of an ideal waffle maker.
American Style Waffles Or Belgian Style Waffles
Some people like Belgian style waffles while others prefer American style waffles. So it is purely a matter of personal preference. But what’s the difference between Belgian waffles and American waffles (also called classic waffles), exactly?
In general, Belgian waffles are thicker than American waffles. They also have larger squares and deeper pockets that you can fill with butter, jam, cheese, bacon or whatever toppings you crave. Plus, made with a yeasted batter, they’re typically light and fluffy, which is not always the case with American style ones.
Because most waffle makers can make only one style, knowing your favorite beforehand will help you make a better choice. This is a great excuse to go try out different waffle dishes!
Waffle makers can cost anywhere between $40 to over $200. The price depends largely on the type of materials used and especially on the number of features included. So, just because it’s cheap, doesn’t mean that it's any less efficient. It still works well doing what it’s supposed to do: making crispy golden waffles, batch after batch. It just doesn’t have as many fancy features as others.
For instance, the medium-high priced items typically come with the variable and adjustable settings to expand your cooking options. For instance, waffle irons with different browning levels allow you to adjust the desired waffle color from light to dark. Some also have the auditory indicators and/or the visual indicators that will inform you when the waffle iron is completely preheated or when the cooking is done.
Thus, it’s important to be clear about what you would like in terms of added features; what you can and can’t do without. Since in most cases, the more you spend, the more you‘re going to get.
Speed and Size
A good waffle maker should cook the batter consistently and evenly, in around 5-6 minutes. The faster it makes waffles that are golden brown and crisp on both sides, the better.
In general, smaller-capacity devices will preheat and cook faster than the bigger ones. Waffle iron sizes vary quite significantly, with some as small as round dinner plates and others as big as robotic vacuum cleaners. Think about the space you have available in your kitchen and how many you plan to make waffles for.
No one wants to spend more time cleaning up than actually cooking. So rather than witnessing your kitchen end up a huge splattery, crusty mess, you should try to find waffle machines with non-stick plates.
The non-stick coating will keep the cleaning hassle to a minimum by preventing the batter from sticking. It also helps ensure that your waffles do not break into small pieces while removing them from the cooking plate. It also significantly minimizes the amount of oil normally used, giving you a healthier way to enjoy your breakfast.
- Make sure your iron comes with a heat-resistant handle that always stays cool to the touch so as to prevent burns during operation.
- Waffle makers are not bulky appliances. Lightweight and compact, they can fit inside a cabinet or drawer without taking up too much space. But if you are limited on storage space, we recommend finding a product that has a retractable cord and locking handle, so you can store it upright in your pantry or in any narrow space.
- If you buy a waffle maker with a number of features, it helps if its controls are intuitive and easy to understand, even for beginners.
Reviews of The Best Waffle Makers 2021
Now we’ve got our foundational knowledge and specifications in place, let’s take a look at some spectacular waffle makers so that you can choose the best one for your needs.
- Presto 03510 - Best to Buy 2021
- BLACK+DECKER WMD200B - Best Economical Waffle Maker
- Cuisinart WAF-300 - Best Belgian Waffle Maker
- Breville BWM640XL 4-Slice - Best Commercial Waffle Maker
- Cuisinart WMR-CA Round Classic - Best Thin Waffle Maker
- Hamilton Beach 26030 - Best Flip Waffle Maker
|Stainless Steel||Belgian||1100||1 year|
|BLACK+DECKER WMD200B||Metal||Belgian||1200||2 years|
|Cuisinart WAF-300||Stainless Steel||Belgian||1200||3 years|
|Cuisinart WMR-CA Round Classic||Stainless Steel||Classic||850||3 years|
|Hamilton Beach Flip Belgian Waffle Maker||Plastic||Belgian||850||1 year|
Here is our list for the Best Waffle Makers.
1. Presto 03510 - Best To Buy in 2021
The Presto tops the list because it bakes a 7-inch diameter Belgian waffle with four easy-to-cut sections more evenly and consistently, compared to its peers. It’s also one of the fastest waffle makers on our list, taking three minutes to preheat and 4 minutes to make golden brown waffles.
Stainless steel housing
180° flip design
Fast > efficient
Helpful countdown timer
Non-removable cooking plates
Battery operated timer
The Presto weights 5.8 pounds, with a footprint of 3 inches tall by 12 inches wide. It’s small and portable so you can leave it on the countertop for everyday use or even take it with you if you plan on making waffles elsewhere. With the compact size, it’s also very easy to store.
When the cooking is done, just rotate the iron to the vertical position and flip the storage latch to lock it upright for space-saving convenience.
The 180° flip design ensures the waffle batter spreads evenly across the grids, making it easier for you to have waffles that are crisp on the outside and fluffy on the inside. The flip function also allows the waffles to be cooked evenly on both sides. With the Presto, you don’t need to worry about your waffles being too brown or too floppy. All you have to worry about is what toppings you’ll have with them.
The Presto is cheaper than most, but it comes with all sorts of useful features that you will love. One of which is the digital 30-minute countdown timer that lets you track the cooking progress more accurately. The timer signals two separate times, one for when there is one minute cooking left, and the other for when the waffles are ready to serve.
The exterior is brushed stainless steel so your waffle iron will not rust or tarnish over time (except for the handle which is made of plastic to avoid getting hot). The interior is ceramic nonstick to help prevent the waffles from sticking onto the cooking plates. It also allows them to be easily removed when done, thus simplifying the cleaning process (even when the grills are not removable).
The only inconvenience is that the timer requires a battery to run properly. For the best performance, we recommend the use of high-quality batteries made by reputable manufacturers.Check Latest Price On Amazon
2. BLACK+DECKER WMD200B - Best Economical Waffle Maker
We recommend the Black+Decker WMD200B not only for the affordable price but also for the quality that it offers. If you are looking for a fast, inexpensive, and well-built waffle maker that can deliver instant results in a professional manner, this is a machine to buy.
Dual cooking plates
Unique cooking system
Small drip tray
No sound indicator
The Black+Decker WMD200B has fully convinced us with its nobtable features, including the dual cooking plates, rotating waffle system, and nonstick surface. It also has extra-deep grids, a handy drip tray, and a temperature indicator light which all work very impressively.
On top of that, it’s an appliance that is well-suited to a limited cooking space and is so straightforward that there’s no learning curve to use it properly. Clearly, having an appliance designed at a low cost does not always mean that you have to miss out on convenient features.
Unlike our top pick, the Black+Decker WMD200B produces two large, thin Belgian-style waffles at a time, with the two sets of double-sided waffle plates. The waffles are thin, crispy, and evenly browned. It works as fast as the Presto, taking 3-4 minutes to get the job done.
While its special cooking system, called the Rotating Waffle System, allows batter to be evenly spread for perfect golden waffles, the nonstick surface gives it a glossy finish and keeps the food from sticking to the plate for easier food release.
To rate the levels of safety to the highest possible standard, besides the handle lock keeping the plates closed securely during cooking, it features cool-touch handles that always keep the heat at a safe distance while rotating and opening the waffle iron plates.
The drip tray seems to be quite small so it only handles small drips. The indicator light is a nice feature to have. But it only lets you know when the iron is heated up, not when your waffle is done. The cooking plates are non-removable which is a bit of a pain to clean, especially when there are tiny pieces or crumbs left over, but as long as you clean them after each use, it should be fine.Check Latest Price On Amazon
3. Cuisinart WAF-300 - Best Belgian Waffle Maker
Cuisinart is quite a popular brand at the moment when it comes to kitchen appliances. Their toaster ovens, air fryers, and coffee grinders are really good and highly rated, and the same can be said for the WAF-300 Belgian waffle maker. With the nonstick coated removable plates, this sturdy machine is guaranteed to give you perfect golden waffles that are super light, crunchy and comforting without using more cooking oil.
6 setting temperature control
Nonstick coated removable, dishwasher-safe plates
Extra pancake plate
Practical light and sound indicators
Economical > Reliable
Has no drip tray to catch excess batter
Exterior can get hot
The Cuisinart WAF-300 takes from 2 to 3 minutes to heat up and about 4 minutes to bake golden, true Belgian-style waffles. It’s the most versatile machine on our list. Besides waffles, it also excels at making grilled cheese, toasties, and panini sandwiches with an included 4-slot pancake plate. Yes, you read that right, it’s a 2-in-1 (and then some) appliance!
The Cuisinart WAF-300 is especially convenient when it comes to everything you need for a smooth cooking experience. Its cooking plates (waffle plates and pancake plate) are swappable and secured very tightly. They will never come out unless you press the release mechanism on the side. As a nice bonus, the machine comes equipped with the light and sound indicators that will let you know when the appliance is connected to power, when it is ready to cook, and when your cooking is done.
The machine is extremely easy to clean. Because the waffles always come off cleanly from your non-stick plates, you can easily wash this part by hand or in the dishwasher after each use.
To enhance your homemade waffle recipes, the Cuisinart WAF-300 offers 6 adjustable temperature controls, enabling you to set the activation temperature from levels 1 to 6, depending on which batter you use. At this price point, that is an absolutely unbeatable feature.
The machine lacks the drip tray to catch excess batter, and its exterior can get hot enough to burn you. So be mindful of this factor and do not let kids stand too close when it’s operating.
Another thing is that the power cord is too short, meaning you may need to use an extension to reach your nearest outlet. If the company could improve this flaw, we think it would be a perfect waffle iron.Check Latest Price On Amazon
4. Breville BWM640XL - Best Commercial Waffle Maker
Priced at more than $250, the Breville BWM640XL is the most expensive model on our list. But it’s absolutely worth the premium price tag, given its consistent performance, convenient features, and high capacity.
Efficiently automated features
Non-stick cooking plates
Quite heavy and bulky
Non-removable cooking plates
Equipped with the Breville waffle IQ system, the machine can automatically determine the appropriate cooking time for whatever style of waffle (Belgian, buttermilk, chocolate and classic, for example). It delivers fluffy, 1-inch tall waffles with even heat distribution.
The Breville BWM640XL is a high-performance four-slice waffle iron with an elegant stainless steel housing and die-cast aluminum cooking plates. With a solid construction, it’s strong, durable and suits commercial purpose well. It also easily matches with any kitchen decor. Despite being fixed in place, the non-removable plates are still relatively easy to clean.
Exclusively designed and made by Australian engineers, it has some unique traits that you can’t get from other models, including the whopping 12 heat settings, the top plate lid automatic timer, and the LCD indicator with a reset timer button. As a safety measure, the Breville BWM640XL has a beautiful, healthy, PFOA-free non-stick surface. So no toxins will leach into your food.
The only issue for some may be that it is a relatively heavy and bulky machine that measures 15.8 inches long, 8.8 inches wide, 18.5 inches tall and has a weight of 17.64 pounds. Due to that, it’s less suited for handling and carrying around. However, if it’s being used for commercial uses, it’s less likely to be a need.Check Latest Price On Amazon
5. Cuisinart WMR-CA - Best Thin Waffle Maker
The Cuisinart WMR-CA is a waffle iron for the classic-style waffle lovers. It will certainly not disappoint when taking into consideration the high quality, simplicity of use, and ease in ability to make beautiful, golden brown waffles.
5-setting temperature control
Inaccurate light indicator
Coming with the round non-stick cooking plate, it produces an approximately 7 inch diameter and 1/2 inch thick waffle with 4 easy to cut sections, fast and evenly. Its build is also extremely stylish with its brushed stainless steel exterior to keep it looking good for years to come.
Another thing that makes this waffle maker a favorite of many is its compact design which offers a simple solution for families with limited cooking space (especially in storage) as well as making the cleanup much less painful.
The machine’s control is intuitive to use and allows you to switch between 5 different temperature settings. There is a light indicator that will turn red when it is preheated and then turn green when waffles are ready to eat. Normally, it takes no more than 2 minutes on setting 3 to complete one batch.
In agreement with many buyers, the indicator light is not really accurate. It signals before the waffles are finished, when they are just barely browned in a few spots. It may take a few goes to get the timing right - maybe an extra minute once it’s green.Check Latest Price On Amazon
6. Hamilton Beach 26030 - Best Flip Waffle Maker
Hamilton Beach 26030 makes an exceptional non-stick waffle iron with the ability to rapidly (about 5-8 minutes, depending on the setting and the recipe) and evenly bake your waffles to perfection by flipping them during cooking.
Cool-touch, easy-flip handle
Brushed stainless steel exterior housing
Advanced heating technology
Removable, dishwasher-safe grids
Adjustable temperature control
Compared to “non-flip” waffle makers, this type has a more even heat distribution. It also spreads the batter more evenly, as a result, waffles will be thinner, crispier and completely cooked on both sides.
Best of all, its deep-grooved waffle grid can accommodate all types of batter, meaning it works well for classic, Belgian, butter and chocolate waffles, from basic to gourmet, so you will have even more great additions to expand your waffle recipe collection. Of course, this part can come out easily and is dishwasher safe for quick and effective cleaning.
In the event you want to find further inspiration in the kitchen, its adjustable browning control will let you adjust the waffle’s crispiness just the way you want, creating a wide variety to suit everyone's taste.
While it might be small in stature and skimpy on price, don’t let that fool you— its build quality will leave you with no doubt of its long-lasting performance.
On the whole, people who love to cook will happily take the time to make their favorite dishes at home, rather than going for store-bought, preservative-loaded foods. And if there’s anything you should take from their combined cooking expertise, it's that having the right kitchen appliances can make all the difference in ensuring all your meals will turn out just as you want them.
If you’re here because you’re a big fan of waffles and can’t stop wondering whether or not you need a waffle maker to inspire your creativity in the kitchen, let us tell you- yes, get a waffle maker and enjoy a whole new avenue of possibilities! A good, reliable waffle maker really is the easiest and least time-consuming tool to help treat your kids or friends (and yourself) to delicious enjoyment, right in your own home. For a reasonable amount of money, you can have a tool that helps create great food and great memories. We hope our tips and recommendations for the best waffle makers today have helped you in your search. Happy waffle-ing!
A writer and entrepreneur, Luna’s day doesn’t start at the computer keyboard, but in the kitchen. Half of her working hours are spent on mixing ingredients for her recipes. The other half involve working with the tech team to research and test the tools and appliances that promise to make kitchen work effortless and mess-free. From a kitchen knife or water filter to the Instant Pot, if it can help save time and effort for the home cook, Luna and her team are on it. Luna’s extracurricular pastimes include camping, travel, and photography.