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Cuisinart WMR-CA Classic vs Nostalgia MWF5AQ Side-by-Side Comparison

The Cuisinart WMR-CA can bake diner-style waffles, but it’s worth picking over the cheap and compact Nostalgia MWF5AQ Mini waffle maker?

Cuisinart WMR-CA Classic vs Nostalgia MWF5AQ: Classic-Style vs. Mini-Style


Price at publication
Sliding browning knob, indicator lightsCompact size, indicator light
Adjustable Settings
L9.7 x W7.9 x H3.3 inchesL6.75 x W6.5 x H3.5 inches
Stainless steel/plastic housing; cast iron, nonstick baking platesPlastic housing; aluminum nonstick baking plates
1 pound1.25 pounds
Waffle diameter
6.8 inches4 inches
850 watts350 watts
Number of waffles
3-year limited warranty1-year limited warranty


Build Quality
Waffle Plates
Control Panel
Overall Design Scoring

The Cuisinart WMR-CA offers a great design and build quality, boasting a glossy metal top lid. The waffle plates are coated with a layer of Teflon non-stick, which has proven itself to work quite effectively during our cooking tests. We’ve never had to deal with sticky waffles or batter residues throughout the review phase.

Although simplistic, its control panel is very simple to use.

The Nostalgia MWF5AQ is quite impressive out of the box with its eye-catching "Aqua" light blue color. The plastic construction is expected from such an affordable and compact model, but it doesn't feel cheap.

One drawback to this product is that it lacks a control panel. You only get an indicator light at the top, which helps you track the cooking process.

Usability Comparison

Indicator Light Visibility
Overall Usability Scoring

Unlike its easy-to-use control panel, the control panel of the WMR-CA can be difficult to deal with for some people due to the dim indicator lights. They can be very hard to see under bright lighting.

The Cuisinart WMR-CA did decently well during safety tests. Most of the surfaces on the waffle maker are cool to the touch, even after several cooking sessions.

The Nostalgia is extremely easy to use since it has no control panel — wait until the top indicator light signals that your plates are heated, then pour in the batter and begin cooking.

Safety is a concern, as with most mini models we’ve tested. After a few cooking sessions, the whole waffle maker becomes piping hot. To handle it, you need to wear oven mitts.

Cleanability is great. The plastic housing doesn’t grip aggressively onto the dried batter. The non-stick coating on the waffle plates also works very well to prevent messy batter residues.

Performance Test

Self-Mixed Recipe
Birch Benders Mix
Overall Performance Scoring

The WMR-CA mostly fell short of expectations, struggling to produce anything but unsatisfyingly burnt and flavorless waffles in our tests with the self-mixed waffle recipe. Its performance ratings were thankfully redeemed in later tests with pre-mixed Birch Benders mix, where it pulled out all the stops and amazed us with surprisingly tasty results.

To our surprise, the Nostalgia MWF5AQ proved to be one of the top performers in the mini category within our database. In our self-mixed recipe, the waffle that it churned out was delicious, according to our chef. While the waffle it made with the Birch Benders mix wasn’t quite as good in most respects (besides texture), it’s still considered palatable.

Overall Scores

Ease of Use
Overall Scoring

Pros & Cons

  • Affordable
  • Did a great job in our test with Birch Benders mix
  • Fast cooking time
  • Compact and lightweight design makes it easy to store
  • Affordable
  • Surprisingly decent cooking performance for the price
  • High build quality; solid lid hinges
  • Waffle plates’ non-stick coating performs excellently
  • Poor performance on self-mixed recipe
  • Heating element is too strong and can easily burn waffles
  • Dim indicator lights
  • No control feature
  • Oven mitts are required for handling


The Cuisinart WMR-CA Classic is an outlier in our database. So far, it’s the only model we’ve reviewed that has a classic-style patterning.

Also known as “American-style” patterning, the waffle plates of the Cuisinart WMR-CA are much more shallow and have fewer pockets. The result is a thinner (but no less delicious!) waffle reminiscent of old diners and waffle houses.

If you’re nostalgic for this waffle style, give the Cuisinart WMR-CA a shot!

On the other hand, the Nostalgia MWF5AQ is a mini waffle maker. Its waffle plates measure only around 4 inches across, and the waffles it bakes can fit neatly in the palm of your hand. As a result, the Nostalgia MWF5AQ has often been called a “snack machine.”

It’s perfect for making mid-day snacks!

Its small size also makes it a big hit among travelers, who can fit it in their backpacks and cook waffles on the go.

Behind the Comparison

Headshot of Matthew Lee
Matthew LeeReviewer

Matthew Lee is a writer and editor for HealthyKitchen101. With over 8 years working for various outlets and agencies, specializing in tech review and other subjects of note, such as current affairs.

Headshot of Tuyet Pham
Tuyet PhamProfessional Chef

Tuyet Pham is an award-winning Saigonese chef passionate about delicious and healthful foods. At HealthyKitchen101, she develops recipes and collaborates with our Research, Testing, and Review lab to evaluate the performance of cooking appliances. Her assessments add a strong authoritative voice to our product scoring process.

Headshot of Lap Vo
Lap VoTest Lead

Lap is Head of the Research, Testing, and Review Team (RTR Team) at HealthyKitchen101.com, where he directs and supervises the testing of kitchen gadgets and appliances.

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