Why chef Rocco DiSpirito thinks you should make your waffles with this 'amazing' ingredient

Naomi Tomky
·4 min read

Take the Yahoo Life post-Thanksgiving 5 Day Reset Your Breakfast Challenge to kick start your week. Follow along with us as we feature celebrity chefs who show us how to make a different breakfast every day this week.

Chef Rocco DiSpirito shares his chocolate-y, keto-friendly breakfast.
Chef Rocco DiSpirito shares his chocolate-y, keto-friendly breakfast.

Rocco DiSpirito makes a splash everywhere he goes – winning a James Beard Foundation award as a chef with his more than a dozen cookbooks, and whenever he shows up on television. These days, he speaks less of the fancy food that originally made him famous and more about how to find ways to eat energy-boosting food that also just happen to be delicious – like his recipe for Yahoo Life’s Reset Your Breakfast challenge.

The Keto Chocolate Chip Waffles from his most recent book, Rocco’s Keto Comfort Food Diet are, “delicious, keto, simple, and fun to make,” he tells Yahoo Life. “Jam-packed with protein, no sugar, and no gluten – a great way to start the day.”

Even with all the changes to the holidays this year due to the pandemic, DiSpirito says his family’s schedule stays packed. “Breakfast changed during quarantine,” he says, but it remains as important as ever. “I make sure everyone gets something delicious in their bellies before they go out for the day.”

Before he shares his recipe, DiSpirito gives some sage advice: there’s no need to spend a ton of money on a fancy Belgian waffle maker: the one he uses to demonstrate is a simple $19 shelf sample model that he sets to the minimum heat setting.

With less than a dozen ingredients and even fewer steps, the recipe is simple and flexible. Though he uses almond butter, he says it works with any nut butter. The recipe also calls for granulated erythritol, which he explains is a non-caloric sweetener, but any other type works as well. He suggests brands such as Swerve and Lakanto.

I make sure everyone gets something delicious in their bellies before they go out for the day." Rocco DiSpirito

DiSpirito says the most important step in making the waffles comes in the mixing. Because it uses a nut flour instead of wheat, he explains, there’s no need to wait for the dough to build protein from gluten –preparing the batter just requires making sure it’s well-mixed.

Rocco DiSpirito's Keto Chocolate Chip Waffles
Rocco DiSpirito's Keto Chocolate Chip Waffles

At first it will look like dry sand, but as you add the milk, the solids dissolve and meld with the other ingredients – a good time to switch from a spoon to a whisk for the task – until it has the ideal wet-sand texture.

The final addition to the dough comes with the sugar-free dark chocolate chips. As if anticipating the question from viewers, he laughs: “Yes, they make them, and they’re good.” After the waffle finishes cooking, he offers one last piece of advice: be careful flipping it out of the iron, because the lack of gluten makes it a bit more fragile.

Then he ends with one more generous garnish of chocolate chips. “Chocolate is so good for you,” he says. He tries to avoid sugar, but once he gets the sugar-free kind, he relishes in having as much as he wants. “It’s just an amazing thing.”

DiSpirito usually looks forward to the excitement of as many as 40 family members getting together for their big Italian holiday celebrations. This year, he plans to celebrate with only his immediate family, but he still tries to weave a little something special into the season – like these waffles for breakfast and as much chocolate as he can eat.

Ingredients:

  • 6 tbsp unsalted grass-fed butter

  • 1/2 cup nut butter of your choice

  • 4 large egg yolks

  • 1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

  • 2 cups almond flour

  • 3 tbsp granulated erythritol

  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • 1 tsp Celtic sea salt

  • 1/2 cup whole milk

  • 1/2 cup stevia sweetened dark chocolate baking chips

  • Olive oil or avocado oil cooking spray

Instructions:

In a small microwave-safe bowl, combine the butter and nut butter and heat in 15 second intervals, stirring after each, until melted and smooth. Place the egg yolks in another small bowl. Whisk the nut butter mixture into the egg yolks and add the vanilla.

In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, erythritol, baking powder and sea salt and mix well. Pour the egg yolk mixture into the almond flour mixture and mix to combine. Stir in the milk until the batter is smooth, then folk in the chocolate chips.

Preheat a waffle iron. Coat the waffle iron with cooking spray.

Pour 1/3 cup the waffle batter into the waffle iron (or more depending on the size of your waffle iron) and close. Cook according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Remove the waffle and continue with the remaining batter.

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