Fluffy Whole Wheat Waffles

stack of whole wheat waffles on a white plate with berries, maple syrup, and butter

Ok, speak up. When’s the last time you had a truly phenomenal, omg-I’m-going-to-cry-these-are-so-good waffle?

Wait, don’t you talk like that?

But seriously. Name your last great waffle. I don’t even think I can remember it. Maybe last year when I made my recipe for buttermilk waffles again? But I honestly don’t think I’ve used my waffle maker in our new house. In fact, I had to search boxes in the basement for it to test this recipe.

WAFFLES ARE UNDERRATED! Why don’t we make them more often??

stack of whole wheat waffles on a white plate with berries, maple syrup, and butter

Face it– they’re better than pancakes. Waffles have nooks and crannies for maximum melted butter and maple syrup storage. You don’t have to stand there and flip each individual one; the waffle maker does all the work for ya. When done right, waffles are a texture freak’s dream; they’re crisp on the edges, but soft in the centers. I don’t even want to dream about a “crispy” pancake. I think that just means burnt. A burnt pancake.

So yeah, waffles vs pancakes. There’s really no contest.

I suppose the reason I don’t make waffles often is because they aren’t the healthiest way to begin the day. And aren’t those the rules? Always start healthy? ish? And if I’m going to splurge before 12pm, it’s going to be a plate of overnight cinnamon rolls or frosted donuts with enough rainbow sprinkles to make a unicorn jealous.

But that all changed last month. I had a hankering for waffles one weekend. Didn’t feel like starting my day with a plate of empty calories, so I worked on a whole wheat version.

2 images of ingredients for whole wheat waffles in bowls and whole wheat waffle batter in a white bowl

Turns out, it’s pretty difficult to produce a whole wheat waffle that’s not only crisp on the edges, but soft and airy in the centers. Not too dense, not too heavy. Light and fluffy like the white flour version. It’s a tall order, but the secret lies within the ratio of ingredients. You see, whole wheat flour is much heartier than all-purpose; it weighs down anything it touches. To keep things springy, I used enough baking powder for lift. Buttermilk prevents the waffles from drying out (as whole wheat flour does to everything!) and melted butter keeps it all so very… yum.

(Seriously, don’t leave out the butter. They’ll taste bland! They’ll taste dry! They’ll taste… blah! While these are definitely healthier waffles, we don’t want them to taste healthy. We want them to taste like an indulgence.)

whole wheat waffles on a waffle maker

So all super basic ingredients, but like I said– it’s the ratio that matters. Make sure you add a dose of cinnamon for flavor and for a little necessary sweetness, a little brown sugar. If an unrefined sugar sounds better to you, I’ve tried these with coconut sugar, honey, and maple syrup over the past several weeks (yes, baby’s been getting A LOT of whole wheat waffles in the 3rd trimester). All very good. Especially the maple syrup– you get extra extra maple flavor in your stack!

stack of whole wheat waffles on a white plate with berries, maple syrup, and butter

And now? It’s your turn to enjoy waffles for breakfast. Because we all know it’s been too long!

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stack of whole wheat waffles on a white plate with berries, maple syrup, and butter

Fluffy Whole Wheat Waffles

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8-9 waffles
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Here’s how to make fluffy whole wheat waffles with easy healthy ingredients. Best way to start your morning!


  • 2 cups (260g) whole wheat flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 3 teaspoons (1 Tbsp) baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 6 Tablespoons (85g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar*
  • 1 and 3/4 cup (420ml) buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat waffle maker on medium-high heat.
  2. Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt together in a large bowl. Whisk the remaining ingredients in a medium bowl until combined. Pour into dry ingredients and whisk until combined and no large lumps remain.
  3. Pour 1/3 cup of the batter into each well of the waffle maker (or less if your waffle maker is on the smaller side) and close the lid. Cook the waffles util golden brown and crisp, 5-6 minutes. (You can keep waffles warm in a 200°F (93°C) preheated oven until all are finished!)
  4. Serve warm waffles with your favorite toppings!


  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Waffles are best enjoyed the same day. Refrigerate any extras for a couple days. Waffles can be frozen up to 3 months, then warmed in the toaster.
  2. Sugar:You can also try coconut sugar, granulated sugar, or honey.
  3. Buttermilk: You can substitute whole milk for buttermilk if desired. Acidic buttermilk isn’t needed in order for the waffles to rise since we’re using baking powder. However if you’d like the tangy flavor, which I highly recommend, you can make your own sour milk substitute. Add 1 Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice or white vinegar to a liquid measuring cup. Add enough milk to make 1 and 3/4 cups. Whisk together, then let sit for 5 minutes before using in the recipe. Whole milk is best for the DIY sour milk substitute because you’ll get the best, fluffiest, richest tasting waffles. However, lower fat or nondairy milks can work in a pinch.


  1. I tried these this morning with whole wheat pastry flour! Other than that I followed the recipe. They were delicious- not too wheat-y as my daughter put it.

  2. Hadassah Danielle says:

    I made these waffles yesterday, and I cannot believe how good they are! I used honey instead of brown sugar, and I was able to make exactly seven waffles in my Belgian waffle maker. These are the best waffles I have ever tasted, and I highly recommend any waffle lover to try these. Thank you for posting the great recipe, Sally!

  3. Made ’em. Loved ’em. Froze ’em. Loved ’em again. Thanks again!!

  4. Can you make the batter ahead of time or would that cause them to be flat?

    1. Hi Kristin! I don’t recommend it as the baking powder is initially activated once wet.

  5.  OMG! Being a diabetic, I have been forced to abandon “sweet” breakfasts for more “savory” ones, for obvious reasons. Waffles are one item that I have missed terribly, but with your recipe (very little sugar, whole wheat flour, added cinnamon), I not only can eat waffles again for breakfast (and not go into a diabetic coma), but actually enjoy the taste of them as well! LOL Thank you so much! 

  6. Fabulous waffles for this preggers mama, and toddler approved!

  7. Can I make pancakes from the same batch or do I need to need to make any changes, like more milk?

    1. Same batter, yes!

  8. This recipe is my new favorite it is delicious and healthy too! I would give it 5 out of 5 stars for sure.

  9. These were excellent! I have been looking for a good whole wheat waffle recipe, and finding one where you don’t have to separate the eggs is a nice bonus! I used 1 cup of whole wheat pastry flour and 1 cup of whole wheat flour. I also added a splash of milk because the batter was a little thick – not sure if that was because of the pastry flour. Really good with fresh berries on the side.

  10. These were absolutely delicious, did recipe as written, but substituted ricotta cheese for the melted butter, a trick I learned from my future son- in-law! So light and fluffy! We also added blueberries and topped with raspberries and real maple syrup! So, so good! Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  11. Delicious recipe! These waffles are great, even for being made with entirely whole wheat flour! Yum!

  12. These are great! The perfect chewy outside and fluffy inside.

  13. These are my very favorite waffles! I’ve made them twice now, the first time I followed the recipe exactly. the second time I made them I forgot the brown sugar and didn’t realize it until I took the last waffle out, they still turned out delicious! Once they had syrup and fruit on top you couldn’t even tell.

  14. I veganized these and have been enjoying all week, legit tastes like Christmas. Used vegan butter, flaxseed “eggs, and for buttermilk subbed almond milk with lemon juice. Sadly am out of batter but will definitely be whipping up more tomorrow!

  15. I used molasses instead of sugar. So good!

  16. We love these! So filling, fluffy yet still crispy on the outside. I replace the brown sugar with maple syrup and it decreases the need to have as much, if any, maple syrup. My toddler loooooves these

  17. Sally, these waffles are amazing. Making another batch this morning!

  18. Jessica Flory says:

    Holy WOW!!! Sally, these waffles are the BEST I’ve ever had!!! Just the perfect texture and flavor. I almost swapped coconut oil for the butter but I’m so glad I didn’t. Use the butter!!!

  19. I have made these an ABSURD amount of times since finding the recipe a little over a year ago. No need to consult the recipe any longer. I grind whole wheat flower, use a can of coconut milk (which happens to be 1 3/4 cups), and make in a flipping Belgian waffle maker. I usually double and save the rest for the next day (if I can keep the children from snacking on them throughout the day). THANKS!!

  20. Sally, these are great! Thanks for sharing. With fall just around the corner I’m thinking of adding a smidgen of pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice and see how that works.

    1. Adding pumpkin/apple pie spice to these would be incredible! So happy you enjoyed this recipe 🙂

  21. These were so fluffy and delicious! The cinnamon and brown sugar really add a special touch. This recipe made 4 giant Belgian-style waffles. Can’t wait to make them again for my family!

  22. Delicious! Tender on the inside and crispy edges. Just had this morning with some super ripe fresh figs. Thanks for the great recipe. Followed recipe.

  23. I had a 1/2 whole wheat recipe that just wasn’t good enough. This was my last go at a whole-wheat waffle before I decided it just couldn’t be done. Sally proved me wrong!!!! These are so. good. Crispy on the outside. Light and fluffy on the inside.

  24. Hi Sally! Would white whole wheat flour work in this recipe? I bought a bag to make the Nutella muffins and am searching for more recipes to use with this bag!

    1. Yes, it should work in these too! Enjoy!

  25. I usually make bisquick waffles, but decided to try this while changing my diet to improve my cholesterol numbers by eating more whole grain and less processed flour. I used regular milk because I did not have buttermilk and did not want to make my own. These were so much better than I expected. Tasty and light.

  26. I was so surprised how fluffy these turned out to be! Has anyone frozen them and toasted them up? Hoping they’ll still taste well bc I love having homemade waffles for the kids in the am!

    1. I love toasting them after freezing. No need to thaw before toasting, though you certainly could.

  27. This recipe is awesome! I make them on Sundays for my 2 year old daughter to have during the week. I store them in the fridge and pop them in the toaster for a quick to-go breakfast. I’ve made them with buttermilk and regular milk and they are always delicious

  28. AMAZING!!! My VERY picky eater loved them! I made a bunch in my mini waffle maker and froze them to use for breakfast. I also added chopped up frozen blueberries. Delicious!

  29. These waffles were fluffy, light and just the right amount of sweet that you almost forgot they were made with whole wheat flour. Not your typical heavy, dense, cardboard like wheat waffle by any stretch, and I might even get our teenager to eat it without complaining. I did use homemade buttermilk (vinegar and milk) because I didn’t have any and I packed the brown sugar but these have been the best wheat waffles we’ve made by far. Will make them again!

  30. Hi Sally!
    I was thinking of trying these waffles, but don’t have buttermilk. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Kasey, You can easily make your own buttermilk at home using regular milk + lemon juice or vinegar. Here’s how I’ve done it before: Measure 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice in a measuring cup. Then, add enough milk to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1 cup. Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes.

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