Oster Belgian vs Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Side-by-Side Comparison

Matthew Lee
Matthew Lee
Reviewer
Nguyen Ntk
Nguyen Ntk
Visual Specialist
Reviewed
Our recommendations are made independently through research and testing following our review procedure. We may receive commissions from purchases made via our links at no additional costs to you.
Tested Using Methodology v1.1
Updated Dec 8, 2022
Tested Using Methodology v1.1
Updated Dec 8, 2022
Oster Belgian Waffle Maker Hands-on Review
Holstein Housewares Mini Waffle Maker In-depth Review
Power
1080W
350W

Our Verdict

5.7
Overall Score
  • Performance (50%)
    6.0/10
  • Design (20%)
    6.2/10
  • Ease of Use (30%)
    5.0/10
6.5
Overall Score
  • Performance (50%)
    6.3/10
  • Design (20%)
    7.0/10
  • Ease of Use (30%)
    6.5/10

Although it is larger and more expensive, the Oster Belgian delivered one of the worst cooking performances in our tests. The unit we received at the lab has very unstable heating elements. Their erratic heating patterns caused the test waffles to look and taste bad. One side of the waffle would be burnt, while the other would still be undercooked. Texture tended to be mushy and taste bland.

The Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B fared better in our tests. Its performance wasn’t spectacular, but at least its waffles were relatively even, and its texture and taste were acceptable.

Another thing worth mentioning: the Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B is a mini waffle maker, while the Oster Belgian waffle maker is a full-size model. The former can only cook 4-inch waffles, while the latter cooks 7-inch waffles.

Still, even if you’re looking for a full-size Belgian waffle maker, other models are just as cheap as the Oster while performing far better!

Performance

6.0
Performance Scores
  • Self-Mixed Recipe (50%)
    5.2/10
  • Birch Benders Mix (50%)
    6.8/10
6.3
Performance Scores
  • Self-Mixed Recipe (50%)
    6.4/10
  • Birch Benders Mix (50%)
    6.3/10
5.2

Self-Mixed Recipe

6.4
Oster Self-Mixed Recipe
Top
Oster Self-Mixed Bottom Color
Bottom
Oster Self-Mixed Texture
Oster Waffle Maker  Self-Mixed Recipe
Color: 5
35% * 5 = 1.8
Texture: 5
25% * 5 = 1.3
Taste: 5.5
40% * 5.5 = 2.2
  • Heat Level: Max
  • Cooking Time: 5 minutes

The Oster didn’t do well in our performance test. The coloration of the waffle—with its blotchy, charred crust—was disappointing. Cutting it open, the waffle had a dense and under-developed interior. It translated to an underwhelming mouthfeel in the taste test. And because the batter was only half-cooked, the waffle still tasted like raw batter.

Color (35%) — 5/10

  • Color result: Very dark brown - Dark gold (Both sides)
  • Color distribution: Even

The waffle’s crust was darkly colored, especially within the wells of the waffle, which had dark brown to very dark brown coloring. Fortunately, while they may look charred, we didn’t see any carbonization when we closely looked at each well.

Outside the wells, the waffle was a rather beautiful dark gold. But it’s still not enough for us to give the waffle a higher score than a five.

Both sides have roughly the same color gradient.

Texture (25%) — 5/10

  • Texture: Wet, mushy
  • Aeration level: Low

Despite the burnt-looking crust, the interior of the waffle wasn’t as well-developed as we had hoped. Air bubbles were visible, but they were small and few. Furthermore, the waffle’s core was dense and slightly mushy.

Taste (50%) — 5.5/10

  • Taste: Bland, bitter at charred spots.
  • Mouthfeel: Dry on the outside, mushy on the inside

The contrast between the overcooked outside and the undercooked inside makes for a disappointing tasting experience. There was a hint of the batter’s sweetness and buttery taste. However, the tastiness was ruined by the bitterness of the burnt crust and the egg-like taste of the undercooked core.

Ultimately, our chef rated the Oster waffle maker 5 out of 10.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Self-Mixed Recipe
Top
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Self-Mixed Recipe 1
Bottom
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Self-Mixed Recipe 2
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Self-Mixed Recipe 3
Color: 5.75
35% * 5.75 = 2.0
Texture: 7
25% * 7 = 1.8
Taste: 6.5
40% * 6.5 = 2.6
  • Heat Level: 3
  • Cooking Time: 5 minutes

The coloration was decent but looked slightly burnt. The interior was filled nicely with bubbles and softened, though it was still mushy. As for the taste, the waffle only received a mediocre score from our chef, on account of its mushy core and slightly bland taste.

Color (35%) — 5.75/10

  • Color tone: Very dark brown
  • Color distribution: Uneven

Most of the waffle’s crust was a light gold color but within the deep wells are dark brown spots that indicate overcooking. Several of the wells were darkened beyond the point of “overcooked” and into “burnt” territory.

The color distribution is messy. The upper left-hand side is darker than the rest, which is a symptom of an uneven heating grid.

Texture (25%) - 7/10

  • Texture: Soft and fluffy, but still slightly mushy
  • Aeration level: High, with multiple air bubbles and pockets within the waffle’s core

Texturally, the waffle had filled out nicely with bubbles and air pockets all through its interior. This resulted in a decently soft and airy consistency. But our chef assessed the interior to be excessively moist and mushy still, resulting in only a “Good” score.

Taste (40%) - 6.5/10

  • Flavor: Sweet and buttery, but has off-tastes from burnt spots on the crust (bitter) and undercooked spots in the interior (raw batter taste)
  • Mouthfeel: Soft and fluffy, dry at burnt spots, and mushy on the inside

The overall taste was flavorful. The waffle’s flavor profile was sweet and buttery. However, burnt spots on the crust imparted a slightly bitter taste. And within the waffle, the mushy, undercooked spots also gave the waffle a raw batter-like taste. They effectively ruined the overall tasting experience.

In the mouth, the waffle was generally soft and spongy, but it wasn’t a consistent experience. Burnt spots on the crust felt dry on the tongue. And the undercooked portions within the waffle’s interior were disconcertingly wet and mushy.

6.8

Birch Benders Mix

6.3
Oster Birch Benders Mix Color
Oster Birch Benders Mix Bottom Color
Oster Birch Benders Mix Texture
Oster Birch Benders Mix Taste
Color: 6.3
35% * 6.3 = 2.2
Texture: 6.5
25% * 6.5 = 1.6
Taste: 7.5
40% * 7.5 = 3.0
  • Heat Level: Max
  • Cooking Time: 3 minutes

Although color distribution is uneven, the brighter and more palatable color tones are a big step up. The interior has developed this time, resulting in a soft and fluffy waffle. Our chef also rated the waffle’s taste highly, appreciating its sweetness and velvety texture.

Color (35%) — 6.3/10

  • Color result: Very light gold and dark brown (Both)
  • Color distribution: Uneven

Coloration is slightly better this time around with the pre-made mix. Unfortunately, the difference between this one and the earlier sample made from our self-mixed batter isn’t drastic enough to give it a significant score boost.

The color tone is better with a nice golden brown shade at the center of the waffle. Surrounding the center is a noticeable “ring” of burnt batter that ruins the aesthetic of the waffle. Out along the edges, the crust there has a light gold of undercooked batter.

It’s because of this unequal distribution of colors is the reason why it doesn’t get a higher score in this segment.

Texture (25%) — 6.5/10

  • Texture: Mediocre
  • Aeration level: Medium; air bubbles were beginning to form, but their sizes were still small

Texture is acceptable. Despite the unattractive coloring, the inside of the waffle has nicely developed. The aeration process has formed a lot of tiny air bubbles on the inside, creating a soft, fluffy texture. Although it is not excellent, the texture of this one is at least acceptable.

Taste (50%) — 7.5/10

  • Flavor: Sweet
  • Mouthfeel: Soft, no excessively dry spots

Taste is the best part of this test. Compared to the earlier test done with self-mixed batter, the sample produced with the pre-made mix tastes better, according to our chef. Because there’s very minimal burnt spots, the flavor is sweet without any hint of bitterness. This, combined with the fluffy texture, creates a decently-tasting waffle that comes closer to the “restaurant-quality waffle” slogan that Oster has placed in its advertisements.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Birch Benders Mix
Top
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Birch Benders Mix 1
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Birch Benders Mix 2
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Birch Benders Mix 3
Color: 5.25
35% * 5.25 = 1.8
Texture: 6.5
25% * 6.5 = 1.6
Taste: 7
40% * 7 = 2.8
  • Heat Level: N/A
  • Cooking Time: 5 minutes

Though the waffle may not be the most attractive or have the best texture, it was edible and, most importantly, quite tasty. It would do the trick for breakfasts or snacking.

Color (35%) — 5.25/10

  • Color tone: Very light gold (Both)
  • Color distribution: Even

The waffle had a very light gold crust, with the deep wells having a dark brown tone. Although the color distribution on both sides of the waffle was even, we noticed the wells at the top to be more erratically colored. Notably, some wells are darker than others. This may indicate that the top lid's heating element is slightly unbalanced.

Texture (25%) - 6.5/10

  • Texture: Soft, but overly moist and mushy
  • Aeration level: Medium

The waffle’s texture was acceptable. It had a medium aeration rate, and air pockets had populated the waffle’s interior. But many portions of the waffle were still quite dense. These thick, mealy parts significantly affected the overall texture.

Taste (40%) - 7/10

  • Flavor: Sweet and slightly savory
  • Mouthfeel: Soft, but certain parts are mushy

The flavor was well-developed. Our chef appreciated the sweet and slightly savory taste of the waffle. The tasting experience was impacted by the mushy mouthfeel of the underdeveloped parts, though.

Design

6.2
design Scores
  • Build Quality (60%)
    4.5/10
  • Waffle Plates (30%)
    8.5/10
  • Control Panel (10%)
    9.0/10
7.0
design Scores
  • Build Quality (60%)
    7.0/10
  • Waffle Plates (30%)
    9.5/10
  • Control Panel (10%)
    0/10

In The Box

Oster Waffle In the Box
  • Oster waffle maker
  • User manual

In the box, you get the waffle maker and a simple user manual. There are no extra accessories. This is not surprising considering the budget price point of this waffle maker.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B In The Box
  • Holstein Housewares 4” Personal Waffle Maker
  • User manual

The box contains the waffle maker itself and the instruction manual.

Dimensions

Oster Waffle Maker Dimension
  • Length:
    10.0" (25.4 cm)
  • Width:
    8.0" (20.3 cm)
  • Height:
    4.0" (10.2 cm)
  • Weight:
    3.2 lbs (1.5 kg)

The Oster waffle maker is quite compact. Thanks to its size, it won’t take up much space on the countertop, and storage is easy. Notably, you can also store the waffle maker standing upright (vertical).

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Dimensions
  • Length:
    5.1" (13.0 cm)
  • Width:
    6.5" (16.5 cm)
  • Height:
    3.5" (9.0 cm)
  • Weight:
    1.1 lbs (0.5 kg)

The Holstein 4-inch waffle maker fits perfectly into the Mini class size, weighing only one pound and compact enough to fit in the palm of your hand. Its compact, lightweight design may put it on the radar of hikers and travelers who want a portable waffle maker to cook on the go.

For those at home, the small size takes up very little space on the countertop. And when you have to put it away for storage, it can fit easily into a cupboard or a drawer.

4.5

Build Quality

7.0
Oster Waffle Maker Build Quality
Oster Waffle Build Quality

The stainless steel housing gives the Oster waffle maker a sharper, pricier look. However, the waffle maker’s rough edges are clearly revealed when you scrutinize it up close. Fingerprints can easily smudge the stainless steel surface. Even when you lightly scrape the surface with your fingernails, ugly scratches can appear on the metal.

After a couple of days in the lab, the top surface of the waffle maker lost its original shine. We couldn’t restore it even after several attempts at wiping it down and polishing it.

Like most affordable waffle makers, detailing like the handle, base, and control panel section are made from plastic. They look and feel cheap.

Build quality is poor on the review unit we received. The lid’s hinges are loose and rattle even when lightly tugged. On the backside, we found poorly tooled parts with rough edges, scrapes, and dents. Worse still, the backside of the waffle maker has gaps that reveal its guts, exposing its internal wiring and circuits.

For these reasons, we assess the Oster’s construction quality as mediocre at best and sub-par at worst.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Build Quality

The build quality of the Holstein 4-inch is acceptable.

It is made almost entirely from plastic except for the cast-aluminum waffle plates. The plastic shell feels far cheaper than some other waffle makers we have tested that are made of metal. And of course, compared to metal, plastic can be more prone to damage, too. Still, at this price point, we can't ask for more.

Certain parts of the waffle maker are very well-built. The lid hinges, for example, are solid and don't wobble a lot when opened or closed.

But when inspected closely, various manufacturing flaws reflect this waffle maker's budget price. We observed hideous gashes on the plastic at the back of the unit and exposed electrical wirings.

8.5

Waffle Plates

9.5
Oster Waffle Plates
Oster Waffle Maker Plates
  • Numberof Plates:
    2
  • Grid Pattern:
    Belgian-style
  • Plate Area:
    7.8 inch2
  • Plate Length:
    7.1 inches
  • Plate Width:
    7.1 inches
  • Material:
    Die-cast aluminum
  • Non Stick Coating:
    Yes
  • Removable:
    No
  • Dishwasher Safe:
    No

The waffle plates are made from die-cast aluminum. It is imprinted with the classic Belgian-style grid pattern. The total diameter of the waffle plate (with the outer anti-spill moat included) is 7.8 inches. It is able to produce a 7-inch waffle.

According to Oster, the non-stick coating is food-grade polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE — also known as Teflon), and has been approved by the USDA.

The inclusion of PTFE can be a deal-breaker for many. However, note that, unlike PFOA, PTFE is inert and relatively harmless at temperatures under 400°F. Only when the temperature exceeds 400°F can the PTFE coating become a problem by releasing toxic gasses. During normal operation, the waffle maker isn’t going to come even close to this threshold. Thus, the waffle plates are still classed as safe for use.

The waffle plates are not removable.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Waffle Plates
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Waffle Plates 1
  • Numberof Plates:
    2
  • Grid Pattern:
    Classic-style
  • Plate Area:
    17.72 inches2
  • Plate Length:
    4.75 inches
  • Plate Width:
    4.75 inche
  • Material:
    Cast aluminum
  • Non Stick Coating:
    Yes
  • Removable:
    No
  • Dishwasher Safe:
    No

The waffle maker has a set of two cast-aluminum waffle plates. They are treated with a layer of smooth non-stick that, throughout our performance test, seemed to work very well. We never had to deal with a sticky waffle, and we could easily wipe off debris and residues.

Surrounding the plates is a small anti-spill channel. It will help minimize the mess in the event of a minor batter spill.

9.0

Control Panel

0.0
Oster Waffle Maker Control Panel
  • Indicator Lights:
    Yes
  • Audible Alarm:
    No
  • Timer:
    No
  • Browning Control:
    Yes

Though the control interface is barebones, that is to be expected for such an affordable waffle maker. There are two indicator lights. One will glow red when you plug it in (POWER light), and the other green light will light up when the waffle maker is heated to the correct temperature.

Above the indicator lights is a temperature control knob. The knob takes some force to turn and makes a distinct clicking sound as it does so.

  • Indicator Lights:
    Yes
  • Audible Alarm:
    No
  • Timer:
    No
  • Browning Control:
    No

The Holstein 4-inch waffle maker doesn’t come with a control panel. The only thing it has is an indicator light at the top. When you plug the unit in, the light will brighten to indicate that it is receiving power. Once the plates are heated and ready for use, the light will turn off.

Power Cord

Oster Waffle Maker Power Cord
  • Plug Style:
    Type A (Flat Blade Attachment Plug)
  • Length:
    27.5 inches
  • Cable Management:
    Yes

The unit’s power cord is short. You will either have to move the waffle maker very close to a power outlet or use an extension cord.

The back foot of the waffle maker has a grommet. You can wrap the power cord around it for easier management and storage. However, since there’s no lock or notch to hold the cord in place, it can unravel easily.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Power Cord
  • Plug Style:
    Type A (Flat Blade Attachment Plug)
  • Length:
    25 inches
  • Cable Management:
    Yes

The power cord measures roughly 25 inches long, which is shorter than average compared to other models in our database. Some users may have to rely on an extension cord.

Integrated to the back foot of the waffle maker is a small grommet. When you have to put the waffle maker away into storage, you can wrap the cord around it for easier management.

N/A

Accessories

N/A
  • Material:
    N/A
  • Removable:
    N/A
  • Dishwasher Safe:
    N/A

The Oster waffle maker doesn’t come with any extra accessories. Once again, at this price point, that’s what we expected.

  • Material:
    N/A
  • Removable:
    N/A
  • Dishwasher Safe:
    N/A

The Holstein 4-inch waffle maker does not come with any accessories.

Ease of Use

5.0
usability Scores
  • Handling (25%)
    6.5/10
  • Safety (40%)
    1.7/10
  • Cleanability (25%)
    9.0/10
  • Indicator Light Visibility (10%)
    4.5/10
6.5
usability Scores
  • Handling (25%)
    9.0/10
  • Safety (40%)
    1.8/10
  • Cleanability (25%)
    10/10
  • Indicator Light Visibility (10%)
    10/10
6.5

Handling

9.0

Generally speaking, the Oster waffle maker is easy to handle. Even when it’s heated up, the large plastic handle at the front remains cool to the touch. However, the lid’s hinges are shaky. They make the closing and opening motion a bit awkward.

Since the waffle maker lacks any control feature, the Holstein is a “plug-and-play” device. You only need to plug it in and let it handle the rest.

We can open and close the lid smoothly. When pushed back, the lid leans at an angle. As a result, there’s no risk of it unexpectedly snapping shut on your hand while you’re pouring the batter.

However, the lack of a control panel greatly reduces the waffle maker’s versatility.

1.7

Safety

1.8
Oster Waffle Maker Bottom-side temperature
Oster Waffle Maker Handle temperature
Oster Waffle Maker Top-side temperature
  • Top Side Temperature:
    176°F
  • Bottom Side Temperature:
    143°F
  • Handle Temperature:
    189°F

Using a thermometer, we checked the temperature of the waffle maker’s various parts.

The handle was dangerously hot, with a temperature of 189°F. After several cooking sessions, the heat from the heating element and the hot steam raised the handle’s temperature to the point that it could easily cause a burn injury. This is the most serious safety problem of the Oster.

Not just the handle, the control panel area was also piping hot at 176°F.

On the underside of the waffle maker, the front plastic “leg” got quite toasty at 143°F.

So, be careful if you pick up the waffle maker by grabbing the bottom legs. The front part may be quite hot.

The exposed electronics and wiring on the backside could turn the machine into an electrical hazard. A point was further deducted from the overall score.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Safety
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Safety 1
Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Safety 2
  • Top Side Temperature:
    234°F
  • Bottom Side Temperature:
    85°F
  • Handle Temperature:
    105°F

The waffle maker doesn’t do well in our safety assessment. It suffers from the same all-surface heating issue as the other mini waffle makers that we have tested. Particularly, after two or three cooking sessions, every surface on the unit becomes piping hot, including the handle. It warrants wearing oven mitts throughout the entire process.

But with our thermometer, the waffle maker fared significantly worse than any other mini waffle makers we have tested.

The top lid measured 219°F. This is hot enough to cause a serious burn injury.

The bottom is considered warm at 113.7°F, which is great if you need to move the waffle maker immediately after cooking. However, we still recommend wearing your oven mitts when you touch the unit, just in case.

At 160.7°F, the handle is unacceptably hot.

We also noticed a problem with steam. After a few cooking sessions and when the plates are thoroughly heated, a plume of hot steam can eject from the plates whenever the lid is lifted. It’s not going to seriously injure, but it can be startling if you’re unprepared or aren’t wearing oven mitts to insulate your hands.

9.0

Cleanability

10
Oster Belgian Cleanability

The Oster receives a good score in cleanability. Although it doesn't have a drip tray for spilled batter, it can be dealt with fairly easily when a batter spill does happen. Even when the batter dries out and settles on the waffle maker’s body, all surfaces can be scrubbed down easily with a dash of mild detergent.

Holstein Housewares HH-09125016B Cleanability

The waffle maker has excellent cleanability from a variety of factors. The non-stick waffle plates are helpful during post-cooking clean-ups. Any cooking residue can be easily wiped off with a cloth. And if there were to be a batter spill, the anti-spill channel surrounding the plates will minimize the amount of batter ending up on the table.

As it is made from smooth plastic, the exterior of the waffle maker doesn’t grip the batter tightly. So, even after the batter had dried out, we could quickly deal with it with a few spritzes of light detergent followed by a little buffing with a cloth.

4.5

Indicator Light Visibility

10
Oster Indicator Light Visibility

The unit we received has very dim indicator lights. Under normal lighting conditions, the two lights are hardly visible.

It’s only when we cupped our hands above the lights to shade them from the ceiling lights that the indicators became clear. The lights aren't visible in harsh daylight and studio lights.

The sole indicator light on top of the lid is fairly bright. We could easily observe it from afar, under harsh studio lighting.