BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Waffle Maker Review

Matthew Lee
Reviewer
Tuyet Pham
Culinary Consultant
Lap Vo
Test Lead
Nguyen Ntk
Visual Specialist
Reviewed
Tested Using Methodology v1.1
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Waffle Maker: Hands-on Review (2022)
Power: 1000W

Overall Verdict

7.4
Overall Score
  • Performance (50%)
    6.7/10
  • Usability (30%)
    7.7/10
  • Design (20%)
    8.7/10

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 is a great example of a value waffle maker. Despite being a budget-friendly model, it is a strong performer, capable of quickly serving up some tasty waffles. It won’t be a good fit if you’re looking for a restaurant-grade waffle maker. But if you only need a breakfast-making machine for the family, it will be a good fit.

In terms of design, the build quality is great for the price. The lack of a control panel can be both a blessing and a curse. Advanced users won’t be able to flexibly tune the temperature of the waffle maker to get the exact browning level they want. But for basic users, it significantly simplifies the waffle maker's operation.

Things We Like

  • Affordable pricing
  • Decent cooking performance across both test recipes
  • Good-looking stainless steel baking chamber
  • The lid can dampen the force of a strong push, preventing the lid from accidentally snapping close to the user’s hand
  • The non-stick coating on the waffle plates works very well
  • Excellent safety rating

Things We Don’t Like

  • Lacks control panel
  • The stainless steel baking chamber needs regular cleaning to look its best
  • Updated Sep 15, 2022:

    Review published.

The WMB500 stands in BLACK+DECKER’s portfolio as their offering to the entry-level waffle maker segment. But despite having a very wallet-friendly price tag, the WMB500 enjoys a beautiful design. It didn’t perform very well, having received mostly mediocre scores from our chef during performance tests. Nevertheless, it’s still a decent model to pick if you’re hunting for a cheap waffle maker for breakfasts.

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Waffle Maker In-depth Review

Performance

How We Tested

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 did acceptably well across both tests with our self-mixed waffle recipe and the pre-mixed Birch Benders waffle batter. The overall quality of the test waffles wasn’t gourmet, but they were perfectly edible. That makes it a premier model for families who only need a “good-enough” waffle to take care of breakfasts.

6.8

Self-Mixed Recipe

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Self-Mixed Recipe
Top
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Self-Mixed Recipe 1
Bottom
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Self-Mixed Recipe 2
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Self-Mixed Recipe 3
Color: 7
35% * 7 = 2.5
Texture: 5.5
25% * 5.5 = 1.4
Taste: 7.5
40% * 7.5 = 3.0
  • Heat Level: N/A
  • Cooking Time: 5 minutes

The coloration was decent despite the waffle’s wells looking slightly burnt, and some spots on the crust looked undercooked. It received only a passable grade due to having a low aeration rate. Fortunately, it picked up the slack with its tastiness.

Color (7) — 35%

  • Color tone: Very dark brown - Light brown (both)
  • Color distribution: Even

The crust has a very delectable light gold tone around the perimeter and on the raised lines of the waffle pattern. Inside the deep wells, the color has a darker brown color.

The color distribution is great for the waffle. Both sides have relatively similar color tones and gradients.

Texture (5.5) — 25%

  • Texture: Mediocre
  • Aeration level: Medium; air bubbles have begun filling the interior of the waffle. However, their sizes were small and their numbers were few

The concentration of air bubbles within the waffle’s core was way less than ideal. Most of the bubbles were concentrated near the crust, leaving the core dense with un-aerated batter. The result is a rather chewy waffle.

Taste (7.5) — 40%

  • Flavor: Sweet with a buttery aftertaste
  • Mouthfeel: Slightly mushy

The waffle tastes great, according to our chef. The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 was able to unlock the potential of the batter, releasing its sweetness and buttery aftertaste. But the mouthfeel was less than ideal due to the dense interior of the waffle. Its chewy texture ruined the tasting experience.

6.5

Birch Benders Mix

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Birch Benders Mix
Top
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Birch Benders Mix 1
Bottom
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Birch Benders Mix 2
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Birch Benders Mix 3
Color: 7
35% * 7 = 2.5
Texture: 6
25% * 6 = 1.5
Taste: 6.5
40% * 6.5 = 2.6
  • Heat Level: N/A
  • Cooking Time: 7 minutes

The waffle has beautiful coloration thanks to its dark golden brown crust. In terms of texture and taste, the waffle was mediocre. It was mushy and chewy inside, and the waffle was a bit too bland. Nonetheless, the waffle should still be good if you're not picky and want a simple, classic breakfast waffle. This waffle maker certainly won't be able to make anything gourmet!

Color (7) — 35%

  • Color tone: Very dark brown - Light brown (both)
  • Color distribution: Even

The waffle looked great to the eyes. The crust had a beautiful light gold color on both sides of the waffle. Inside the wells, the coloring was slightly darker, but not by much. None of the wells were charred.

Texture (6) — 25%

  • Texture: Mediocre
  • Aeration level: Medium; air bubbles have begun filling the interior of the waffle. However, their sizes were small and their numbers were few

The aeration level was low. Very few air bubbles or pockets exist within the waffle, resulting in a very crumbly and mealy texture.

Taste (6.5) — 40%

  • Flavor: Sweet with a buttery aftertaste
  • Mouthfeel: Slightly mushy

Flavor-wise, the waffle was mediocre. The sweetness was there, and so was the signature salty taste of the Birch Benders mix. However, our chef assessed that the waffle's flavors didn’t seem fully developed. It’s still a bit too bland, possibly due to the underdeveloped core of the waffle.

The design of the BLACK+DECKER WMB500 was simplistic and blocky, as expected from an entry-level waffle maker. However, its stainless steel baking chamber improves its look by giving it a nice shine. The overall build quality is great. However, the waffle maker lacks a control panel and has only an indicator light at the top.

In The Box

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 In The Box
  • BLACK+DECKER WMB500
  • Instruction manual

The waffle maker itself and an instruction manual are the box’s only content.

Dimensions

not image
  • Length
    13.1" (33.3 cm)
  • Width
    10.0" (25.4 cm)
  • Height
    4.7" (11.9 cm)
  • Weight
    4.0 lbs (1.8 kg)

The WMB500 has roughly the same dimensions as your average Belgian waffle maker. At 4 pounds, it’s not much heavier, as well.

But the special part is that BLACK+DECKER has used a smart trick to make it more compact and easier to store for the user. The rear of the machine is flat so that you can stand the waffle maker up vertically, making storage easier.

9.5

Build Quality

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Build Quality
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Build Quality 1

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500’s baking chamber is made from stainless steel. While the metallic shine improves its look somewhat, we noticed that the metal is highly prone to fingerprints and smudges. So, to maintain the look, you must scrub down the waffle maker daily.

Except for the baking chamber, every other part of the waffle maker is made from plastic. That includes the handle, the back foot, and the lid hinges. All the components are well-built, and we didn’t find any obvious flaws during our inspection.

10

Waffle Plates

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Waffle Plates
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Waffle Plates 1
  • Numberof Plates
    2
  • Grid Pattern
    Belgian-style
  • Plate Area
    50.27 inch2
  • Plate Length
    8 inches
  • Plate Width
    8 inches
  • Material
    Cast aluminum
  • Non Stick Coating
    Yes
  • Removable
    No
  • Dishwasher Safe
    No

The thing that stood out most to us was the coating on the plates of the WMB500. While most models we have tested have a matte, rough non-stick coating, the ones found on the WMB500’s plates are glossy and smooth. Unfortunately, BLACK+DECKER doesn’t disclose the formula of non-stick it uses for the WMB500. 

But while we can’t tell for certain what the coating is made of, we know that it works very well. We have never once had to deal with a sticky waffle during our performance tests.

0.0

Control Panel

not image
  • Indicator Lights
    Yes
  • Audible Alarm
    No
  • Timer
    No
  • Browning Control
    No

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 doesn’t have any control feature except an indicator light at the top.

Power Cord

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Power Cord
  • Plug Style
    Type A (Flat Blade Attachment Plug)
  • Length
    23 inches
  • Cable Management
    No

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 comes with a power cord measuring about 23 inches long. It’s quite short, so having an extension cord close at hand.

There is no “official” cable management feature on the waffle maker. You can wrap the cord around the back foot of the machine, but only while it’s staying flat. However, the cord will prevent the waffle maker from standing upright and makes it even more problematic to put into storage. A solution we have found is to simply wrap the cord around the baking chamber.

Extra Accessories

not image
  • Material
    N/A
  • Removable
    N/A
  • Dishwasher Safe
    N/A

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 doesn’t come with any extra accessory.

Ease of Use

How We Rated

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 is beginner-friendly, thanks to the lack of a control panel. Plug it in and wait for the power light to turn off (which indicates that it’s ready for use.) Then, pour in the batter, wait however long you want, lift the lid and extract the finished waffle.

In terms of cleanability and safety, the WMB500 did well overall. It did especially well in the safety section, gaining an almost-perfect score.

3.0

Handling

The handling experience of the WMB500 is easy. When lifted, the lid doesn’t wobble like many other models we have tested in this price range.

Notably, when the lid is pushed all the way back, the hinges have a slight dampening force. It can protect you from a recoiling lid when you’re in a hurry and accidentally use too much force to open it.

9.9

Safety

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Safety
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Safety 1
BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Safety 2
  • Top Side Temperature
    156.7°F
  • Bottom Side Temperature
    104.2°F
  • Handle Temperature
    111°F

The BLACK+DECKER WMB500 did excellently in this respect, achieving a near-perfect score. Measuring temperatures at three critical points on the waffle maker—the top side, the bottom, and the handle—the figures are all within acceptable limits.

At the top, above the back foot, and near the indicator light, we measured a temperature of 156.7°F.

The bottom is where most people will hold onto when they need to pick up the waffle maker. Here, we measured a cool temperature of 104.2°F, which is merely warm.

The handle’s temperature was warm, but not uncomfortably so at 111°F.

8.0

Cleanability

not image

Cleaning up after a cooking session is fast and easy. Spilled batter can be quickly scraped off from the exterior of the machine. And since the non-stick coating already works pretty well, we only had to pick stray crumbs and pieces of debris off the plates from time to time.

The stainless steel baking chamber is the real issue in this part. As we said earlier, it’s prone to smudges and fingerprints. You will need to clean it regularly if you want to maintain a pristine look for it. Else, it’s going to lose its luster in a week or two and look very worn.

10

Indicator Light Visibility

BLACK+DECKER WMB500 Indicator Light Visibility

The light is decently bright and is visible even under studio lighting.

Compared to Other Waffle Makers

If the BLACK+DECKER WMB500 is not available for whatever reason, there are other budget-friendly models that you can choose from our database. The Cuisinart WMR-CA, for example, is a great classic-style waffle maker that’s quite affordable. Or the Chefman waffle maker with a solid, premium-looking design and decent performance is also relatively cheap.

To see more options, check out our best to buy listing!