Our tests are independently conducted and reflect the test editor's honest and objective opinions. Selection of products and test results are in no way influenced by manufacturers, retailers or other internal or external parties.
We tested all waffle makers with a ready-made waffle mix from the same manufacturer, to rule out different recipes for waffles affecting the quality. All waffle makers have been tested on at least three occasions by at least five different people, and with different heat settings. The following areas are some of those we examined extra carefully:
The waffle: We assess colour – which should be golden brown, neither burnt nor pale. We assess crispiness – the waffle mustn’t be too dry. And we also looked at the shape of the waffle.
Time: Both the heating time and the time from when the batter is added until the waffle is completely done.
Functions: Among other things, we examined whether the heat can be regulated and what indications there were to indicate that the waffle maker is ready for use.
Heat: We also checked to see if the handle gets too hot to touch and whether you can adjust the heat on the waffle maker without burning yourself.
Cleaning: Since you can’t wash a waffle maker under running water, we checked to see how clean you can get it by wiping it off, and whether the machine's design prevents the batter from overflowing.
Most waffle makers in our test produce a decent waffle, but there are some that stand out and give that little extra crispness.
A well-designed premium waffle maker if you want to make Belgian waffles without batter splatter
Model: Circular waffle maker Power: 900 W Weight: 3.7 kg Width: 24.1 cm Height: 14.6 cm Depth: 29.2 cm Off/on button: Yes Adjustable heat: Yes, 7 settings Ready to use indicator: Yes Waffle ready indicator: Yes Waffle diameter: Approx. 17 cm Cleaning: Only wipe with paper towel and damp cloth Warranty: 2 years
This No-Mess Waffle Maker really lives up to its name. This is a circular waffle maker that has a deep moat to catch any excess batter. With 7 browning settings and an acoustic signal that tells you when the waffle maker is ready to use and when the waffle is ready, making waffles has never been easier.
The No-Mess Waffle Maker is well-balanced and stable, even when the lid is open. The control on the front is used to both switch it on and set the temperature – the test panel tested pale golden as well as darkly toasted waffles, and even the highest setting never burnt the waffle. The design is well thought-out: While the top of the waffle maker gets really hot, the parts that you might accidentally touch, such as the handle or the sides, do not. There’s a small catch to lock the handle to reduce the risk of curious fingers touching the inner plates. Underneath the waffle maker is a sturdy cord winder where you can wind up the cord for storage.
In fact, it feels almost superfluous to say that the waffle maker is easy to clean. It hardly gets messy. Sure, you may need to wipe off some excess grease or blow away a few crumbs, but that’s all. Thanks to the moat, excess batter never runs onto the outside of the waffle maker, something that can be a real chore to clean
Our testers all loved the acoustic signal. The waffle maker takes a while to warm up, almost 7 minutes. But from the moment the waffle maker’s switched on, you can ignore it until a beep tells you that it’s ready. And after adding the batter, you can do the same: Whether you’re preparing the jam and whipped cream, helping a child blow their nose, or reading the paper, a loud beep lets you know when the waffle has achieved the level of browness you’ve set.
Our testers mostly used the hottest setting for crispy brown waffles, which are completely baked through but soft and fluffy in the middle. This waffle maker will immediately became your firm favourite for homemade waffles. It’s particularly convenient when you want a smaller waffle that’s firm enough to hold in your hand – think appetisers with a little salty topping.
The only negative thing we can say about the Sage No Mess is actually the price, which seems rather inflated, but almost certainly for good reasons. No shortcuts have been taken and it feels like a sturdy waffle maker with a high build quality and hopefully a long lifespan.
Innovative waffle maker with built-in funnel, makes very good Belgian waffles
Model: Single waffle Watt: 700 Weight: 1.9 kg Width: 21 cm Height: 22 cm Depth: 27 cm On/off button: No Adjustable heat: No Maker ready indicator: Yes Waffle ready indicator: No Waffle diameter: Approx. 18 cm Cleaning: May only be wiped with kitchen paper and a damp cloth
At first glance, the design of the Steba WE 20 doesn’t look anything remarkable, but actually some thought has gone into it. On the top of this Belgian waffle maker there’s an opening, where an accompanying funnel can be attached. The funnel is stored on the underside of the waffle maker when not in use. It also includes a measured scoop, to pour the batter into the funnel. However, the dosage indications feel a bit stingy for a whole waffle, so we added a bit more batter. Despite this seemingly intelligent system to add the batter to the waffle maker, there will always be some mess. The inside of Steba WE 20 is convex – which is a bit unusual, but the baking is still effective. Since the handle has a catch which must be undone before the waffle maker can be opened, there’s no risk of it accidentally being opened before the waffles are completely done.
Storage is simple. The waffle maker can be set upright and the cord can be wound up on the underside. The colour indicators showing that the waffle maker is ready or the waffle is cooked also work well. The waffle maker gets hot during use, but the handle remains cool enough to be able to open and close the Steba WE 20 without burning your fingers. It’s not possible to regulate the heat on the waffle maker, but you don’t really miss the function either. The Steba WE 20 is perfectly regulated to do its job. The waffles are very good, full and perfectly golden brown. The outside is crispy and the inside is a little soft. The underside is also good, although the top could be a bit more aesthetically pleasing. But if you flip the waffle before it’s served, there’s no doubt that you get almost perfect crispy Belgian waffles with the Steba WE 20.
Easy-to-use waffle maker with adjustable heat that bakes perfect crisp waffles
Model: Double waffle Watt: 1200 Weight: 2.5 kg Width: 34 cm Height: 8 cm Depth: 25 cm On/off button: No Adjustable heat: Yes Maker ready indicator: Yes Waffle ready indicator: Yes Waffle diameter: Approx. 16 cm Cleaning: May only be wiped with kitchen paper and a damp cloth
The Cloer 1329 is a really solid, double waffle maker with all the stability and quality you’d expect from a German manufacturer. The waffle maker is slimline and quite lightweight. It’s easy to store, as it can be set upright and it’s possible to wind the cord around the foot of the waffle maker. The Cloer 1329 is also easy to understand. Before the first baking, it should be heated and then wiped off, but unlike some other waffle makers, there’s no plastic smell or dirt. Once the power cord is connected, a light comes on and when it goes out, that means the waffle maker is hot enough for the batter to be poured in. The same light then comes on again and goes out again when the waffle is ready,
The heat can be set on a five point scale. We made waffles at heat level 4 and think the result when the lamp goes out is exactly what you'd want. Both waffles are evenly baked, beautifully golden brown and the edges are just right, crisp without being dry. The warm-up time and baking time are both normal. The waffle maker gets hot, but the handle maintains a reasonable temperature and the lid can be opened without an oven glove. The waffles have five hearts and are decorated with a decorative waffle pattern. Cleaning is done as usual with kitchen paper and a damp cloth, and it’s easy to freshen up the waffle maker after it’s been used. Simple, stable and a really good waffle – the Cloer 1329 knows exactly how to make a waffle.
Classic cast-iron waffle maker for those who want to make waffles everywhere
Model: Single iron Weight: 3.15 kg Width: 21 cm On/Off switch: No Adjustable heat: No Heated iron indicator: No Waffle ready indicator: No Waffle diameter: 19 cm Cleaning: handwash with hot soap-free water is recommended
The cast-iron waffle maker from Skeppshult is a classic, and many people have probably encountered this type of iron at their grandparents' house. Theres' a reason that they come with a 25-year warranty – they probably last for generations.
It should already be acknowledged that a cast-iron body can seem a bit messy if you're used to an electric and Teflon-clad piece – but with a little practice the result is worth the effort. Skepphult's waffle iron is a heavy piece weighing more than three kilograms, and it is a little difficult to get a grip on the narrow handle with a loop when you are turning the iron around. Sometimes it feels like the induction hob could get scratched when you turn the pan over to have the waffle cooked on the other side (it doesn't).
The iron opens at a 90 degree angle and stays open on its own while you pour in the batter. The easiest way to lubricate the iron is therefore to open, pour in grease, and simply turn the iron over to lubricate the lid as well. Don't forget to turn the iron back before adding the batter, as it is designed to have a top and bottom side where the “depth” of the pan has space for the batter. For safety’s sake, it’s not possible to open the pan with the lid down without the hinge touching the base.
There are really two major advantages to the waffle iron from Skeppshult. The first is that the waffles with five beautiful hearts are fantastic. Like pancakes, you may have to fail with one or two before you get it right, but when the heat is right and you have learned both what the right amount of lubrication and the right amount of batter is, the waffles will be perfect. Golden brown, crispy and as tasty as they get with plenty of fat in the layers – something that Teflon cannot achieve.
The other advantage is that the iron can be used on all heat sources: stovetop, induction hob, gas and over open fire. It is equally at home on the stove or in the camping kitchen, and the pleasure of eating freshly baked waffles around an open fire in nature is hard to beat. Of course, it’s not as easy as using a modern electric iron, we should be honest about that. It’s quite heavy to handle, it’s easy to burn yourself, and batter and fat can easily mess all over the kitchen. But electric irons, on the other hand, stop working the moment you don't have a power socket available, while this can be used on the grill, on the stove, or in the fireplace if the electricity has gone but the waffle cravings remain.
Smart multi-iron with replaceable plates for those who want to minimise the number of irons at home
Model: Double Belgian (single heart shape) Watt: 700 W Weight: 4.3 kg Width: 23 cm Depth: 29 cm On/Off switch: Yes Adjustable heat: No Heated iron indicator: Yes Waffle ready indicator: Yes Width of layer: 20 cm Cleaning: Dishwasher-safe plates, otherwise drying with kitchen towel
Tefal snack collection is a “multi-iron” where you can use the iron for all kinds of purposes thanks to replaceable plates: sandwich grill, waffle iron, pancake iron, wafer iron... We tested it as a Belgian waffle iron (the included plates) but also as an iron for ordinary heart-shaped waffles.
As a Belgian waffle iron, it works really well and produces really crispy waffles with a soft centre. The iron heats up quickly – it takes 5 minutes for the green indicator light to turn on to indicate it is ready. The layer itself is deep and has an additional high edge that effectively prevents any excess batter from running over. It takes just over 6 minutes for the first waffles to be well-baked, shorter if you follow the indicator, but the test panel found them a little too pale and let them go for a while longer. However, the following rounds will be completed more quickly, just over 5 minutes, which indicates that the iron has warmed up properly.
Unfortunately, the iron does not have an adjustable temperature, which might have been desirable considering how many functions it needs to fulfil. The test panel felt uncertain of whether all variants of plates work equally as well with this single heat setting – for example, it is clear that the Belgian waffles are much better than the thinner, heart-shaped ones, that are well-baked underneath but a little pale on the top, a problem that does not arise at all with the Belgian ones.
It’s a really smart and fun idea to have replaceable irons. Simply click them in and out by pressing a small locking mechanism next to the pan to release it (just wait until it has cooled down completely). The interchangeable plates have the advantage that they can be easily cleaned under the tap or in the dishwasher if you wish – not that they become particularly messy, a wipe with a cloth usually helps.
The plates come in something similar to the case for old VHS cassettes, and a recipe book is also included. The cases are quite bulky in themselves, but still take up far less space than e.g. a separate sandwich grill, another waffle iron, and a wafer iron would have taken. It is also possible to store it upright, which the panel liked a lot. The accessories are expensive, so you should probably consider which ones you will use regularly. The basic package is quite well-priced for two functions in one, but if you buy a lot of plates, it quickly becomes more expensive. That said, if you like Belgian waffles and want to save the space that a separate sandwich grill takes up, this is an excellent choice with several functions in one.
Model: Double Belgian waffle maker Watt: 1000 Width: 30 cm Height: 13.5 cm Depth: 28 cm On/off button: Yes Adjustable heat: Yes Maker ready indicator: Yes Waffle ready indicator: Yes Size of waffle: 11.5x12 cm Cleaning: Clean the waffle maker with a dry, soft cloth or paper towels
This is a Belgian waffle maker that oozes luxury as much as it produces great waffles. With The Smart Waffle, Sage have really run with the concept that it should be easy to do the right thing – and not once during the test period did the waffles fail with this waffle maker.
The Smart Waffle is a double waffle maker that produces perfect Belgian waffles time and time again. The waffle maker also seems to think of everything for you, which minimises the risk of stains on the kitchen worktop and unbaked (or burnt) waffles.
With a clear display that lights up on the front when the waffle maker is switched on using a screw knob, the waffle maker lets you know with colour, a message and a clear audible signal when it’s ready for use.
Getting the correct measure is easy with the (included) scoop and the recommended dosage quickly turns out to be perfectly matched to the size of the waffle maker. Should you happen to use too much mixture, the excess accumulates in a sort of gutter instead of spilling out. The gutter is also heated, which makes it easy to pick out the solidified batter when you're finished. However, it’s a good idea to be careful with your fingers around this gutter, as it does tend to get very hot.
It’s easy to choose the degree of baking, and not even when we set it in the hottest position did the waffles burn. However, it takes significantly longer for the waffles to be done. On a standard setting, it takes about five minutes for two waffles to be ready. This may feel like a long time, but it’s worth bearing in mind that these waffles consist of almost twice as much batter as a regular waffle, so you won’t be able to eat as many.
Once the waffle is done, a clear signal sounds and it’s easy to extract the waffle from the waffle maker with a plastic kitchen utensil (you should never use metal, as it can damage the coating). The baking time is also counted down on the display, which is useful, as you get on with other things in the kitchen while it’s baking. The result is a good-looking, nicely browned, tasty and aesthetically pleasing waffle.
The biggest downside to Sage The Smart Waffle is undeniably the price. It’s the most expensive waffle maker in the test. At the same time, it’s an incredibly good waffle maker, with parts that feel solid and durable. If you have a high budget for your purchase, or eat Belgian waffles often and want a professional result, then this waffle maker may be worth considering.
Uncomplicated waffle maker that takes up very little space and makes good golden heart-shaped waffles
Model: Single waffle Watt: 930 Weight: 1.3 kg Width: 19 cm Height: 10 cm Depth: 23 cm On/off button: No Adjustable heat: Yes Maker ready indicator: Yes Waffle ready indicator: Yes Waffle diameter: Approx. 16.5 cm Cleaning: May only be wiped with kitchen paper on the inside
The Cloer 1629 is a stainless steel waffle maker that makes classic waffles. A waffle from this machine consists of five reasonably large hearts. The waffle maker itself is a simple model, but the construction feels solid and the instruction manual is easy to understand. The waffle maker is stable even when standing on edge. It’s also small and easy to find space for in the kitchen cupboard. The cable can be wrapped around the waffle maker when it’s being stored. The heat on the Cloer 1629 can be adjusted on a six point scale. The control is located on the lid and is easy to adjust even with sticky hands. The red light on the front of the waffle maker starts to shine when the power cable is plugged in and goes out again when the machine is hot enough to allow waffle making to begin. Once the batter has been added, the lamp lights up again and then goes out once more when the waffle is ready. It takes one or two waffles before it really starts to work properly, but from then on you get nice golden brown and evenly baked waffles.
The handle for opening the waffle maker protrudes far enough for the Cloer 1629 to be handled without it getting too hot for your fingers. There’s no risk of it tipping over when the lid is raised, as the Cloer 1629 feels very well balanced. The waffle maker can’t be washed under running water, but the inside can be wiped clean with kitchen paper. You can also wipe the outside and the edges with a damp cloth. There are no features that stand out and the design is nothing very special either. But the waffle maker does its job without fuss, and the waffles are good. The Cloer 1629 is an easy-to-use and affordable waffle maker.
We tested a selection of the market's most popular waffle makers. Some are double machines, where you can make two waffles at the same time, and the others are single. We looked at several different aspects of each waffle maker. As it’s a product that most people only use a few times a year, smart storage is important, and we also think that a waffle maker should be stable and not have a tendency to tip over when the lid is opened. A waffle maker should have user-friendly functions and knobs, clear light indicators and be easy to clean. Most waffle makers become very hot after a long period of use and some steam a fair bit, so it’s important that the machine is placed well out of reach of children. This is also the reason why waffle makers have relatively short cords. With regard to heat generation, we also looked at what it’s like to use the waffle maker; does the handle get too hot to touch? And can you adjust the heat without burning yourself? None of these waffle makers can be washed under running water, which makes cleaning difficult and getting a well-used waffle maker completely clean is pretty much impossible. We think that if you can wipe most of it off with kitchen paper that’s fine, because a few baked on crumbs of dough aren’t all that important considering that a waffle maker is only used for one purpose.
Most important of all, of course, is the end product – the waffle itself. A good waffle should be evenly baked, have a crispy consistency and look appetising. Both the heating time and baking time are reasonably long and in our tests none of the waffle makers were particularly fast or slow. However, the quality of the waffles did vary slightly. Placement of the heating elements affects how evenly baked the waffle will be, and we think the middle of the waffle should be baked through just enough until the edges become crispy. If the heat can also be regulated, you can influence how well baked the waffle will be, and you can also ignore the waffle maker’s indication that the waffle is ready and leave it a bit longer if you prefer it to be cooked a bit more. So, given all that, which waffle maker is best? Is an expensive machine much better than a cheap one? To determine this, we compared several different aspects of each waffle maker and looked at the advantages and disadvantages of each to obtain a final score. Most waffle makers in our test produce a decent waffle, but there are some that stand out and give that little extra crispness
There are several different types of waffle maker. Of course, the traditional cast iron ones that you can use to make waffle over an open fire outdoors or in a wood-burning stove stand out the most. But today most waffle makers are electric. Some are non-stick, others aren’t. There are reversible waffle makers, waffle makers with removable plates, ceramic and aluminium waffle makers.
There are also waffle makers for different types of waffles. There is the classic, old-fashioned waffle that makes a pattern of hearts, the American waffle and the Belgian waffle – which is the square, slightly thicker type of waffle. With a good waffle maker, you should be able to make a waffle at home that looks like it’s been produced by a professional, i.e. the type of waffle you might get for breakfast in a hotel or restaurant.
The functions of a waffle maker vary. Some have a proper on/off button, while others are on all the time they’re plugged in. Some waffle makers are reversible, and others have removable plates. We also think a waffle maker should be stable and not be prone to tipping over when the lid is open. They should also ideally be easy to store. The waffle maker should have user-friendly knobs with adjustable temperature settings and clear light and/or sound indicators. The primary function of a waffle maker is, of course, making waffles, but they often also have to double up as a sandwich grill.
In Scandinavia they celebrate Waffle Day every year on 25 March. Waffle Day has its origins in the day when, in the Christian tradition, the Virgin Mary was informed that she was going to have a child. Today, most people are aware of the historical background and all that’s left is the tradition of making waffles and eating them with various accompaniments – often jam and cream. Belgian waffles, which are thicker and more square in shape, are becoming more popular. But waffles don’t have to be just a sweet dessert. Savoury waffles are also increasing in popularity and there are countless different ways to serve them. For instance, combinations of seafood, sour cream, red onion and avocado.