Sweet Potato Waffles, Sweet or Savory

Each Thursday on Food52, Emily Vikre (a.k.a fiveandspice) will be sharing a new way to love breakfast — because breakfast isn’t just the most important meal of the day. It’s also the most awesome.

Today: The versatile waffle for the morning after Thanksgiving — and, really, for all other mornings. 

Waffles from Food52
Waffles from Food52

These waffles are the answer to the question: “What can I eat for breakfast the morning after Thanksgiving that also uses up leftover sweet potatoes?” This is very likely a question you’ve never asked, because the answer to “What can I eat for breakfast the morning after Thanksgiving” is: Pie. And the answer to using up leftover sweet potatoes is: Reheat and eat them, silly, they reheat quite nicely.  

But in case you did ask that question, these are the answer. And they can be the answer to other questions too. Like, “How can I make waffles even more delicious?” Or, “What can I serve at brunch for a group of mixed savory and sweet breakfast-oriented people if I don’t feel like both baking a coffee cake and a quiche?” See? Lots of questions! 

waffles from Food52
waffles from Food52


Sweet potato waffles (or pumpkin, or butternut squash — they’ll all work) are definitely nothing new, but I’ve found that they are almost invariably saddled with pumpkin pie spices. It’s like a knee-jerk reaction — orange waffles? Must add pie spices. And that’s all well and tasty, but sometimes I want to let my pumpkin pie taste like pumpkin pie and leave my waffles alone. Especially because sweet potatoes themselves are so versatile in the other foods they pair with. They’re as delicious (maybe more delicious) with bacon, chutney, or avocados as they are with marshmallows, brown sugar, or pecans.  

So, these waffles I made with only orange zest and a little ginger as spices. The sweet potato flavor really shines through. They are fabulous with just butter, and truly phenomenal with maple syrup. But they’ll also take to any number of toppings you might throw at them. I like mine with avocado and egg, but you could also try them with chorizo and spinach, fried chicken, turkey and cranberry sauce, smoked salmon and crème fraiche, tahini yogurt sauce, fruit compote, honey and cinnamon, brown butter ice cream…I need to stop now and go eat a waffle.   

Waffles from Food52
Waffles from Food52

Sweet Potato Waffles, Sweet or Savory 

Makes about twelve 4-inch waffles

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 1/2 cups flour
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 can (13- or 14-ounce) coconut milk
1 1/4 cup puréed sweet potatoes (or pumpkin, or other winter squash)

1. Preheat your waffle iron. In one bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, powder, salt, ginger, orange zest, and sugar. 

2. In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, eggs, coconut milk, and pureed sweet potatoes. Then, stir in the dry ingredients just until smooth. 

3. Griddle the waffles in the waffle iron according to the iron’s instruction, cooking until the waffles are browned and crispy on the outside. Keep cooked waffles warm in a 225F oven so you can serve them all at once. As with most waffles, these freeze well and can be toasted when you want to eat them. Serve the waffles with your choice of topping: maple syrup and pecans, avocado and a fried egg, chorizo and spinach, fried chicken and jalapeno syrup, sliced turkey with cranberries and cheddar, you name it!

Save and print this recipe at Food52.

This article originally appeared on Food52.com: Sweet Potato Waffles, Sweet or Savory

Photos by Emily Vikre