Pear & Pomegranate Protein Waffles

With just a couple of weeks left in the year and the holidays quickly approaching, I personal find December to be an easily overwhelming month: considering all the things that didn’t happen this year, planning for next year, panicking about what to get my father and brother for Christmas, getting increasingly irritated every time “Santa Baby” comes on the radio, and still attempting to maintain some sense of productivity at work. It can be so easy to forget to take quiet reflection time to rest and recharge but the fullest times of year are those during which we should make the most effort to do so.

Pear & Pomegranate Protein Waffle {{Baking Bytes}}

Make any morning special with these gorgeous and delicious waffles. Waffles are particularly nostalgic for me, having grown up eating copious amount of Belgian waffles on holidays and birthdays and the occasional breakfast for dinner. It’s a common Christmas morning breakfast at my parents’ house and something I always wish I made time for more often.

pear_pom_waffle_4

After a trip to Norway where a traditional Sunday morning means a hike and a waffle hut,  complete with jam and lightly sweetened whipped cream, I started to think I may have more Scandinavian traits than I thought. (Reading The Year of Living Danishly served only to validate this hypothesis.) While every week isn’t something I’ve managed to work into regular life, a morning run and a waffle never fails to feel like the perfect start to the day. (Full disclosure: actual Norwegians use substantially less cream and jam than I did here; it seems I have at least some ‘Merica in me too.)

Knutehytta Waffle {{Baking Bytes}}

The one things that has changed throughout the years is my preference on toppings. Instead of a flood of maple syrup or copious amounts of whipped cream and berries, I typically reach for a spoonful of peanut butter and a banana. After boosting the protein in the waffle itself with Kodiak Cakes Flapjack & Waffle Mix, protein powder and chia seeds, I dressed up this version with a colorful and festive combination that trends much more towards sophistication rather than cloying in its sweetness. (Although banana and peanut butter remains my go-to year round.)

Pear & Pomegranate Protein Waffle {{Baking Bytes}}

Creamy goat cheese is one thing I never tire of and it works beautifully all day long in sweet and savory dishes alike. Paired with sweet pears and tart pomegranate, a small drizzle of maple syrup pulls the whole thing together into a breakfast fit for a queen. A touch of sweetness keeps it from being an overwhelming start to the day, but I have certainly enjoyed this for brinner instead. Whichever time of day you choose to indulge, I’m confident this will not disappoint. (For a more reasonably sized meal when serving these with sides like eggs or breakfast meat, I personally find half of a waffle to be plenty. But you do you.)

Pear & Pomegranate Protein Waffle {{Baking Bytes}}

As a note, you do taste the protein powder a bit so make sure it’s a brand you like! Alternatively, you can skip it and substitute more flour instead. Either way you’ll have a delicious and freezer-friendly adventure ahead of you. However, if waffles are not your thing, check out these flavors in salad form instead.

Pear & Pomegranate Chèvre Protein Waffle

Makes about 6 waffles

Ingredients

Protein Waffles
1 3/4 cups Kodiak Cakes Flapjack and Waffle Mix1
1/2 cup plain or vanilla protein powder (or all-purpose flour)2
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cardamom, optional
1/8 tsp vanilla bean powder, optional

2 cups milk (almond, skim, whatever)
1/4 cup oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

2 eggs, separated

Toppings
8 oz goat cheese, crumbled
4-6 oz pomegranate seeds
1 ripe pear, thinly sliced
pure maple syrup, to taste
cinnamon or cardamom, optional

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, protein powder, baking powder, chia seeds, and salt.
  2. In a separate small bowl, whisk together egg yolk, milk, oil, and vanilla.
  3. Gently fold wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined. Set aside.
  4. In a small bowl or jar, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. (I like to use the whisk attachment on my immersion blender for this.)
  5. Carefully fold in egg white until almost no streaks remain, trying to keep as much volume as possible in the mixture. Let rest for about 5 minutes.
  6. Spray your waffle iron with nonstick spray and heat according to its manufacturer’s directions.
  7. Add about 2/3 cup of batter to the waffle iron and cook to desired darkness.
  8. Top each waffle with 1-2 oz goat cheese, pear slices, 1-2 Tbsp pomegranate seeds, and 1-2 Tbsp maple syrup. Sprinkle with cinnamon or cardamom, if desired, and enjoy immediately.3

Notes

1 If you don’t have this flour mix, you can substitute 1 3/4 cup whole wheat flour plus 1 Tbsp of baking powder, but the resulting protein content will be substantially lower.

2 You definitely get a little of the flavor of protein powder here, so make sure it’s not a flavor you hate. Or just substitute more flour in its place.

3 You can also freeze the cooked waffles! Wrap each serving carefully in plastic wrap and freeze until ready to use. Defrost on the counter or in the microwave, then lightly toast for a crispier texture.

Pumpkin Belgian Waffles

Ahh, fall.

Just kidding, it’s still in the 60’s here. But I can pretend right? Mid-October is definitely time for pumpkin so I whipped up these pumpkin Belgian waffles last weekend despite summer still hanging on. These waffles don’t need much up-selling so I’ll keep this short and sweet. I was actually originally planning on sharing a different recipe, but I’ll save that one for next week so you can get right to these amazing waffles.

Pumpkin Belgian Waffles {{Baking Bytes}}

Not overwhelmingly pumpkin flavored with all the fluffy texture of your favorite Belgian waffle recipe, these are a delightful addition to your breakfast repertoire. The spice of pumpkin pie is subtle enough to blend with maple syrup but strong enough to enjoy them plain. Feel free to up the spices if you want them to be more prominent. I added a few mini chocolate chips to some of mine (as you can see in the pictures) but they are equally delicious without.

Pumpkin Belgian Waffles {{Baking Bytes}}

Note: Because pumpkin is so moist, these waffles will likely need to cook slightly longer than your usual recipe so I recommend turning your waffle maker about a half step higher. However, if you use leftover batter on subsequent days it will not need to cook quite as long as the batter gets less fluffy. On about day three I found I was going back to my usual setting of 5 instead of the 5.5 I used on the first day.

Also, if you don’t want to make the leftovers on demand, it works pretty well to make them all at once and freeze them. Under cook them by a half step or so and let them cool on a wire rack. Then break them into halves or quarters (whichever will fit in your toaster) and pop them in the freezer. You may have to test a couple to see which toaster setting is best for you, but on mine roughly the middle of the dial was perfect. (You can also try defrosting them slightly in the microwave first if you’re concerned about them getting too crunchy before they’re warm all the way through.) If you have a toaster oven, I imagine that would work even better.

Pumpkin Belgian Waffles {{Baking Bytes}}

Don’t be intimidated by the long list of ingredients; it’s an easy recipe despite quite a bit of measuring involved. Now, stop reading this and go make some waffles!

Pumpkin Belgian Waffles

Adapted from Cooking Classy
Makes about 8 waffles

Ingredients

2 ½ cups flour1
2 tsp baking powder
¾ tsp baking soda
¾ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg

4 eggs, separated
1 pinch cream of tartar

1 cup milk
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup pumpkin puree
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla

Directions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices until completely combined. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whip egg whites and cream of tartar until medium-stiff peaks form. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolks, milk, buttermilk, oil, pumpkin, sugar, and vanilla until completely combined.
  4. Gently whisk the milk mixture into the dry mixture until everything is moistened but still lumpy. Carefully fold in the egg whites (there should still be small puffs of egg white visible).
  5. Heat your waffle iron and spray with cooking spray if necessary. Add about 3/4 cup of batter and cook to desired doneness.
  6. Serve immediately with toppings of choice. (Maple syrup or butter and cinnamon & sugar are both excellent.)

Notes

1 I also think they’d be great if you substituted ½ cup of the flour with whole wheat flour.

Best Belgian Waffles Ever

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, and I don’t subscribe to the idea that it can only be eaten in the morning. I often make pancakes or stuffed French toast for dinner because who has the motivation for that kind of thing in the morning?

My favorite breakfast is Belgian waffles. But not just any Belgian waffles. I’ve become a bit of a waffle snob and most just don’t make the cut. Restaurant waffles are generally too heavy and many people make “homemade” waffles from a mix. I almost never make anything from a mix because it kind of feels like cheating. Except with pudding, because you just can’t beat 5 minutes from box to spoon.

The fancy glass makes it classy.

These waffles are light, fluffy, and overall delicious. My favorite way to top them is with fresh berries and homemade whipped cream, although chocolate chips and peanut butter is a close second.

It’s a fairly large recipe, so if you’re just cooking for one or two, you’ll want to cut in half. The batter keeps for a few days in the fridge (just give it a good stir) and will be just as delicious, but they won’t be quite so fluffy after day one. I frequently make a batch and eat one for breakfast (and lunch and dinner…) for the next several days.

Below is my family’s recipe for the best Belgian waffles ever (as named by my mom), as well as one for homemade whipped cream.

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Best Belgium Waffles Ever

Ingredients

5 large eggs, separated
4 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup oil
2 Tbsp baking powder
4 cups milk
1/2 tsp. salt

Directions

  1. Prepare and preheat your waffle iron according to its instructions.
  2. Separate egg white into a large bowl (the one for your stand mixer, if you have one) and the egg yolks into another large bowl. Beat egg whites on high speed until light and fluffy.
  3. Add oil and milk to egg yolk and beat lightly. Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt and stir gently into wet ingredients until well blended. Let rest for 10 minutes.
  4. Gently fold in egg whites until mostly blended. Some fluffs of egg white should remain.
  5. Add 3/4 cup batter to waffle maker and cook to desired doneness. Garnish with toppings of choice and enjoy!

Vanilla Whipped Cream

Ingredients

1 cup heavy cream
2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup sugar (I generally used powdered but granulated works fine)

 Directions

  1. Whip cream on high speed to very slightly less than desired consistency.
  2. Add vanilla and sugar and beat until combined.

Notes: If you want to pipe your whipped cream, whip it slightly longer. Spoon it into a frosting bag with your tip of choice (I like a large star) and twist it shut with a plastic bread clip. I find it easiest to set it in a pint glass to store in the fridge.