What’s inside this buyer’s guide
- Types of waffles
- Types of waffle makers
- Styles of waffle makers
- Waffle maker sizes/thickness
- Settings, features and functionality
- Accessories/specialty products
- Best makes of waffle makers
- Frequently asked questions
- Waffle makers glossary
- Keep your cash, use ours!
Starting a waffle business? Smart move!
Waffles are so beloved in the U.S. that we celebrate National Waffle Day every August 24th.
Their affordability, coupled with a high-quality waffle maker, can form the foundation of a successful venture.
With this guide, we'll help you select the perfect commercial waffle maker, enabling you to craft everything from syrup-laden classics to health-conscious versions.
Let's get waffling!
Types of waffles
Let's begin by exploring the different types of waffles available, each with its own distinct taste and style, so you can find the perfect addition to your restaurant's menu:
Belgian waffles, hailing from Belgium, are renowned for their delightful combination of a crispy exterior and light, fluffy interior.
They typically have a rectangular shape with deep, uniform pockets that are perfect for capturing toppings like maple syrup, fresh fruits, or whipped cream.
In the USA, Belgian waffles have achieved widespread popularity and are a common sight in restaurants across the nation, cherished for their indulgent texture and ability to cater to both sweet and savory preferences.
Brussels waffles, originating from Brussels in Belgium, are known for their thin and crispy texture.
They have a rectangular shape with shallow, large pockets.
Unlike Belgian waffles, Brussels waffles have a lighter and crispier exterior, making them a perfect canvas for powdered sugar, fresh fruit, or chocolate spreads.
American waffles, a staple of breakfast tables across the United States, are characterized by their moderate thickness and golden-brown color.
They typically have a round shape with shallow pockets.
American waffles have a fluffy interior with a slightly crispy exterior, striking a balance between lightness and indulgence.
They are often served with butter, syrup, or a variety of toppings like berries, whipped cream, or chocolate chips.
Liege waffles, originating from the city of Liège in Belgium, are a true indulgence for waffle enthusiasts.
Unlike their counterparts, Liege waffles have a denser, chewier texture with a caramelized exterior and a soft, buttery interior.
They are typically round or irregularly shaped, featuring small pockets filled with pearl sugar that caramelizes during baking, creating a delightful sweet crunch.
Liege waffles are often enjoyed as a handheld treat, perfect for on-the-go snacking.
Types of waffle makers
Now that we have explored the different types of waffles, let's shift our focus to understanding the various types of waffle makers required to cook them to perfection.
Belgian waffle maker
Distinguished by its square or rectangular shape, a Belgian waffle maker stands out as a specialized waffle maker that produces thick, fluffy waffles with a delectably crispy exterior.
Unlike other waffle makers, it creates larger waffles, thanks to its unique shape.
The deep grids of a Belgian waffle maker yield waffles with spacious pockets, perfectly suited for holding an array of toppings like syrup, fruits, or whipped cream.
Key features include:
- Deep grid design: Creates waffles with ample space for toppings.
- Accommodates thicker batters: Results in a fluffy texture distinct to Belgian waffles.
- Square or rectangular shape: Provides an appealing presentation different from traditional round waffles.
- Pearl sugar caramelization: Adds a delightful crispy texture and subtle sweetness.
Classic/American Waffle Maker
The classic or American waffle maker is a versatile option that caters to those who prefer a lighter and crispier waffle experience compared to Belgian waffle makers.
With its round shape and shallow grids, it creates waffles that are thinner and have a delicate texture.
Key features include:
- Round shape with shallow grids: Produces waffles that are uniform in thickness and have a golden-brown, crispy exterior.
- Light and crispy texture: Classic waffle makers result in waffles that are lighter, with a subtle crunch and a soft interior.
- Ease of use and cleaning: The straightforward design of classic waffle makers makes them user-friendly and easy to clean.
- Versatility: Besides traditional sweet waffles, these waffle makers can be used to make savory waffles or explore various flavor combinations.
Liege waffle maker
The Liege waffle maker is specifically designed to replicate the distinctive Liege waffle, originating from Belgium.
Liege waffles are known for their dense, chewy texture and irresistible caramelized sugar crunch.
To achieve these characteristics, a Liege waffle maker incorporates specific features.
Key features include:
- Thicker waffle batter: Liege waffle makers are engineered to accommodate a thicker, yeast-based batter that typically includes pearl sugar.
- Unique irregular shape: Liege waffle makers often produce waffles with an irregular shape, resembling a more rustic and artisanal appearance.
- Pearl sugar caramelization: During the cooking process, the pearl sugar within the batter caramelizes, creating delicious pockets of sweet, crunchy goodness.
- Durable construction: Liege waffle makers are crafted with sturdy materials to withstand high temperatures and ensure longevity.
Dessert waffle maker
The dessert waffle maker, available in a variety of designs such as hearts, flowers, or other charming shapes, adds a delightful twist to your waffle creations.
Beyond the traditional round or square waffles, these unique shapes add creativity to your desserts, making them visually appealing and perfect for special occasions or adding a touch of fun to everyday treats.
Key features include:
- Playful and creative designs: Craft waffles in charming shapes like hearts, flowers, or fun characters.
- Customization options: Personalize waffles for various occasions or themes.
- Enhanced visual appeal: Add an eye-catching element to your dessert presentation.
- Versatile dessert options: Accommodate different batters, allowing for a variety of indulgent treats.
Styles of waffle makers
Let's dive into the different styles of waffle makers, including single, double, and stacked double models, each offering unique features to suit your waffle-making needs.
Single waffle maker
Single waffle makers feature a compact and streamlined design, perfect for commercial kitchens seeking efficient production of individual waffles.
With a sturdy construction and heat-resistant exterior, they are designed to withstand high-volume usage.
These waffle makers typically include a single waffle plate, round or square in shape, with a non-stick coating for easy release and cleaning.
Their compact size allows for convenient placement in countertops or tight spaces.
Ideal for smaller cafes, food trucks, or establishments with limited kitchen areas, single waffle makers ensure quick and consistent cooking, making them an invaluable tool for customized waffle creations and satisfying customer cravings in commercial settings.
Double waffle maker
Double waffle makers are indispensable in commercial kitchens, offering enhanced productivity and efficiency.
With dual waffle plates, these versatile machines enable simultaneous cooking of two waffles, making them ideal for high-demand establishments, breakfast buffets, or serving larger groups.
They provide flexibility by accommodating different batter types and toppings, ensuring a diverse and customizable waffle menu.
Featuring non-stick plates, they allow for easy waffle release and quick cleanup.
Built for durability and consistent performance, double waffle makers optimize operations and enable efficient waffle production in commercial settings.
Stacked double waffle maker
This innovative machine features two sets of waffle plates stacked on top of each other, allowing for the simultaneous preparation of multiple waffles.
Perfect for high-volume establishments, breakfast buffets, or busy cafes, stacked double waffle makers significantly increase waffle production capacity.
With customizable temperature controls and precise cooking timers, they ensure consistent and perfectly cooked waffles every time.
The non-stick plates simplify waffle removal and cleaning, while the durable construction guarantees long-lasting performance.
Waffle maker sizes/thickness
When choosing a waffle maker, considering the size and thickness of the waffles it produces is essential to achieve the desired results.
The shape and size of the grids vary across different waffle makers and impact the texture and appearance of the final product.
For classic, thinner waffles, choose a waffle maker with shallow grids, resulting in a crispy exterior and a lighter texture.
If you prefer thick and fluffy Belgian-style waffles, opt for a waffle maker with deep grids that create those iconic deep pockets to hold your favorite toppings.
Consider the size of the waffle maker as well, ensuring it fits your kitchen space and meets your desired serving capacity.
Smaller models are ideal for individual servings, while larger ones accommodate multiple waffles at once, making them suitable for gatherings or commercial settings.
Understanding the materials used in waffle makers can help you choose the perfect model for your culinary needs.
Here is a pros/cons list of commonly used materials:
Lightweight, excellent heat conductor, affordable.
Less durable, can warp, uneven heat distribution.
Excellent heat retention, durable, even heat distribution.
Heavier, takes longer to heat, more expensive.
Unparalleled heat retention and distribution, extremely durable.
Very heavy, long heat up/cool down time, needs regular seasoning, expensive.
Easy to clean, needs less or no oil, easy waffle removal.
Varies in durability, potential toxic fumes, coating can scratch off.
Settings, features and functionality
Selecting the ideal professional waffle maker involves careful consideration of key aspects including temperature control, electrical configuration, and the inclusion of a timer.
Let's delve deeper:
In industrial waffle makers, the feature of adjustable temperature control is paramount.
This allows chefs to manipulate the heat level according to the specific type of batter used or desired crispiness, leading to perfectly cooked waffles every time.
Precision in temperature control can impact the taste and texture, so a wide range is beneficial to accommodate for different recipes and preferences.
Understanding your kitchen's electrical infrastructure is equally important as commercial-grade waffle makers often require more power to function optimally.
In the US, standard electrical outlets for small appliances are typically 120V.
However, some commercial equipment may require a 240V outlet.
Ensure the device's voltage requirements align with your establishment's electrical capabilities to avoid potential installation complications or the need for costly electrical upgrades.
A built-in timer is another critical feature. In a bustling commercial kitchen, it can be easy to lose track of time, leading to inconsistent or overcooked waffles.
With an integrated timer, chefs can set the exact cooking duration for each batch.
This ensures consistency, enhances efficiency, and reduces the risk of burning the waffles, particularly during peak times when attention may be divided.
Accessorizing your commercial waffle maker operation can enhance efficiency, broaden your menu, and create a more enjoyable experience for your customers.
Let's take a look at some key accessories and specialty products:
These are essential tools for precise measurement.
Using batter cups ensures consistency in your waffles and helps control food costs.
Waffle cone makers
Expand your offerings with a waffle cone maker.
Ideal for ice cream shops or businesses looking to diversify their menu, these gadgets allow you to create fresh, crispy waffle cones on-site.
For efficiency and consistency, batter dispensers are invaluable.
They allow for even distribution of batter into the waffle maker, reducing waste and ensuring perfectly shaped waffles every time.
These can make cleanup easier and help maintain a neat cooking area by catching excess batter that might otherwise spill over the sides of your waffle maker.
There's a wide variety of waffle mixes available, from classic Belgian to gluten-free or whole grain options.
Selecting a few can cater to different customer preferences and dietary needs.
A must-have accompaniment for any waffle-serving establishment.
Offering a variety of flavors like maple, blueberry, and caramel can enhance your customers' dining experience.
Offering a range of toppings allows customers to customize their waffles. Consider items like fresh fruit, whipped cream, nuts, chocolate chips, or sprinkles.
Each of these accessories and specialty products adds value to your waffle making operation.
From aiding in the cooking process to enhancing the final presentation, these tools and products contribute to a complete, efficient, and versatile waffle-serving setup.
Best makes of commercial waffle makers
Established in 1937 by Fred Waring, Waring has grown into a trusted name in commercial kitchen appliances in the USA.
Its reputation for quality and reliability extends to their professional waffle makers, known for superior temperature control, durability, and efficient design.
Waring's WW180X Single Belgian Waffle Iron delivers consistently delicious waffles, while the high-capacity WW300BX Non-Stick Quad Belgian Waffle Iron, with its powerful 2700W heating element, produces up to 120 one-inch thick Belgian waffles per hour.
Both models epitomize Waring's commitment to blending performance and practicality, making them a prime choice for any bustling breakfast spot.
Krampouz, a renowned French brand established in 1949, is recognized worldwide for its high-quality, durable, and efficient commercial kitchen appliances.
Famous for its crepe makers, Krampouz has also made its mark in the waffle maker segment. Its appliances are noted for their precision temperature control, sturdy build, and consistent performance, specifically tailored for high-volume settings.
Our top picks include the Hatco Krampouz KWM18.1BR46515 Single Belgian Waffle Maker, producing two 4" x 6" Brussels style waffles simultaneously.
Another standout is the Hatco Krampouz KWM18.2BR46620 Double Belgian Waffle Maker, featuring cast iron plates for uniform heat distribution and a broad temperature range of 122-572 degrees Fahrenheit, offering complete quality control.
Nemco, an American company established in 1976, has secured its place as a trusted manufacturer of innovative foodservice equipment.
Known for its reliable, durable, and efficient products, Nemco's line of industrial waffle makers is no exception.
The Nemco 7020A Belgian Waffle Maker with Removable Grids stands out for its ease of use and maintenance.
The removable grids make cleaning a breeze, while its consistent heating assures perfect waffles every time.
Similarly, the Nemco 7000A-2S240 SilverStone Non-Stick Dual Waffle Maker, recognized for its non-stick surface and dual cooking feature, enhances productivity without compromising on quality.
Both models demonstrate Nemco's dedication to merging convenience and performance, making them worthy investments for any foodservice operation.
Sephra, a renowned brand established in 2003, is a leading name in commercial foodservice appliances in the USA, best known for its premium chocolate fountains.
The brand's proficiency extends to their commercial waffle makers, which are celebrated for innovative design, superior quality, and high performance.
The Sephra 12-40420DT-110 Fry-Shaped Waffle Maker offers a fun twist on traditional waffles, creating a unique customer experience.
Additionally, the powerful Sephra 14001-A Commercial Belgian Waffle Maker guarantees consistency and efficiency, critical for high-demand environments.
Both models exemplify Sephra's dedication to delivering user-friendly, reliable solutions that meet the unique demands of American foodservice businesses.
Established in 1925, Wells is a trusted American brand renowned for its commercial kitchen appliances.
Their product range, including commercial waffle makers, is lauded for exceptional durability, efficient performance, and robust build quality, making them ideal for the high-demand environment of the US foodservice industry.
Our top picks from Wells are the 5B-BWB1SE-120V Belgian Waffle Maker, which features 7" grids for the perfect golden Belgian waffles, and the 5B-WB2E-120V Double Waffle Maker.
The double maker enhances output with its capability to cook two waffles concurrently, meeting high demand effortlessly.
These models are a testament to Wells' commitment to quality and efficiency, making them excellent choices for any busy kitchen.
Commercial waffle maker frequently asked questions
What features should a high-quality waffle maker have?
A high-quality waffle maker should possess several key features to ensure a superior waffle-making experience.
Here are five essential features to consider:
Opt for a waffle maker with non-stick plates, as this makes it easier to clean and maintain, preventing waffle batter from sticking and ensuring effortless waffle removal.
Look for a waffle maker that offers adjustable browning control.
This feature allows you to customize the level of crispness and browning to achieve your desired waffle texture and taste.
Consider the size of the waffle maker and the number of waffles it can produce at once.
Choose a size that suits your needs, whether you prefer making individual servings or serving a larger group.
A waffle maker equipped with a ready indicator is a valuable feature.
It notifies you when your waffles are cooked to perfection, eliminating guesswork and allowing you to multitask while ensuring consistently delicious results.
Opt for a waffle maker with temperature control, enabling you to maintain a consistent temperature throughout the cooking process.
This feature ensures even cooking and helps achieve optimal waffle texture and taste.
What are the advantages of choosing a commercial waffle maker with removable plates?
Choosing a commercial waffle maker with removable plates offers several advantages:
Removable plates make cleaning and maintenance much easier.
You can detach the plates from the waffle maker, allowing for thorough cleaning and preventing batter or residue buildup.
Removable plates enable quick and efficient cleaning between batches.
This feature is particularly valuable in busy commercial kitchens, where saving time is essential for maintaining smooth operations.
With removable plates, you can ensure proper sanitation by thoroughly cleaning and sanitizing the plates after each use.
This helps maintain a clean and hygienic environment in your commercial kitchen.
Some commercial waffle makers with removable plates offer interchangeable plate options.
This allows you to switch between different plate configurations, such as Belgian, classic, or specialty shapes, offering versatility in the types of waffles you can create.
Removable plates help prolong the lifespan of your commercial waffle maker.
By keeping the plates clean and free from residue buildup, you ensure optimal performance and durability over time.
Commercial waffle maker glossary
A feature that allows you to adjust and maintain the desired cooking temperature for your waffles, ensuring optimal results.
A removable tray located at the base of the waffle maker that collects excess batter or oil, preventing it from dripping onto the countertop and making cleanup easier.
Found in some waffle makers, these plates rotate during cooking to ensure even batter distribution and consistent browning across the waffle.
Certain waffle makers have a flipping mechanism that allows you to flip the entire unit, ensuring uniform cooking on both sides of the waffle.
LEDs or lights on the waffle maker that indicate when the unit is preheated and when the waffle is ready to be cooked or removed.
A handle designed to stay cool during operation, allowing for safe handling and minimizing the risk of burns.
Waffle makers with cord storage features have designated compartments or hooks to keep the power cord neatly organized when the unit is not in use.
Some waffle makers offer dual functionality, allowing you to use the same appliance for making waffles and other dishes like sandwiches or paninis.
Adjustable browning settings
A feature that allows you to control the level of browning and crispiness of your waffles, catering to individual preferences.
Ready tone or beep
An audible signal that alerts you when the waffle is cooked to perfection, ensuring you don't overcook or undercook your waffles.
Save your cash. Use ours!
Hospitality equipment can be expensive and paying for it outright can put pressure on your business’s cash flow.
Our finance solutions allow you to get the equipment you want now and to pay for it in small, regular amounts out of the revenue it helps generates.
Rent–Try–Buy® not only helps you maintain your cash flow, it also gives you unrivaled flexibility to adapt your equipment to the changing needs of your business.
You can upgrade or buy the equipment at any time or, after 12 months, return or continue renting it.
If you decide to buy the equipment, we’ll give you back 60% of the net rent you paid in the first year and 20% of any rental payments thereafter — to put toward the purchase price.