These fluffy-crisp Sourdough Waffles have the most amazing flavor and texture and are made with your sourdough discard so nothing goes to waste! The overnight batter is made in advance so there is hardly any work to do in the morning to enjoy fresh, hot waffles!
Weekend breakfasts call for something special! Some of other favorite breakfast foods to make on weekends are Green Chili Egg Casserole, French Toast, Crepes, and German Pancakes.
We kind of have a thing for waffles around here. From liege waffles, which are the kind made from a yeast dough with sugar pearls kneaded in, to the American-style Belgian waffles, to these over-the-top decadent Cinnamon Roll Waffles, they are one of our favorite breakfast foods.
So obviously once I had a strong sourdough starter and began looking for ways to use my discard so it didn't just go to waste, I was tempted by the thought of sourdough waffles. Easily, these are our favorite thing to make with sourdough discard so far.
Sourdough waffles are a tangy, crispy, and delicious breakfast like you’ve never had before. You will use a portion of your sourdough starter discard to create a "sponge", which is just a fancy word for a batter-like mixture that sits out at room temperature overnight so the flavor can develop slowly over a period of time. It's just a combination of sourdough start discard, flour, sugar, and buttermilk that gets mixed together until it looks like a thick pancake batter.
The next morning when you wake up, just stir in eggs, baking soda, and vanilla and heat up the waffle maker! You'll have hot, amazing waffles in no time! If you don't happen to plan ahead and whip up the batter the night before, you can totally skip the overnight rest and still have pretty darn excellent waffles. The sourdough flavor just won't be as pronounced as when it has time to develop for the longer period.
These sourdough starter waffles go great with fresh berries and sweetened whipped cream. The mix of the tangy with the sweet is unbeatable, especially with a little real maple syrup drizzled over the top.
Ingredients in sourdough waffles
- Unfed sourdough discard: This is the stuff that you would otherwise toss before feeding your sourdough. It can be room temp or straight from the fridge. Just stir down your sourdough starter that is no longer active, measure off enough for these waffles, then feed the rest as usual.
- Buttermilk: I'm partial to buttermilk, but you could actually get away with milk in this recipe if buttermilk isn't available. Or make a buttermilk substitute by adding 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to a 1 cup measuring cup, then filling it up the rest of the way with milk. After letting that sit for 5 minutes, you've got a great buttermilk substitute!
- Baking soda
- Butter: I use salted butter. If using unsalted, just add an extra pinch of salt to your waffle batter.
How to Make Sourdough Waffles
- Make the sponge for the waffles by stirring down your sourdough starter and removing enough for the batter. Add the discard with the flour, sugar, and buttermilk in a large bowl, stirring with a wooden spoon until combined. It will be very thick. Cover and let it sit out overnight. Even though there is dairy, it will be fine at room temperature, which will help the flavor develop. Although if you are concerned, you can stick it in the fridge for up to 24 hours even.
- The next morning, plug in your waffle iron so it can get nice and hot. Stir in the eggs, melted butter, baking soda, vanilla, and salt. Unlike most waffle recipes where you separate and beat the egg whites, I skip that with sourdough waffles and still end up with the fluffiest, most wonderful waffles imaginable.
- Pour the batter into the hot waffle maker and cook until they’re golden brown and cooked through. The amount may vary slightly depending on your waffle maker, but it's usually about ⅓ to ½ cup of batter for each waffle in mine. Honestly, I just eyeball it.
- Transfer the cooked waffles to a wire cooling rack instead of a plate. This helps them not to steam on the bottom, which takes away from the crispiness. They can be kept warm in the oven set at a low temperature while you finish cooking the remaining waffles.
What goes with sourdough waffles?
Practically anything! If you can picture it tasting great with “normal” waffles then it shouldn’t be hard to imagine it with these sourdough waffles. We love it with bacon and eggs to round things out, but some yogurt and fresh fruit would be great on the side as well. Or pair them with fried chicken for chicken and waffles!
You can also top them with your favorite toppings. Syrup and whipped cream are the obvious choices, but jam, peanut butter, nutella, cookie butter, mini chocolate chips, or apple butter are also all great choices!
What kind of syrup do you put on sourdough waffles?
Classic maple syrup is always a good idea with sourdough waffles, but we also love warm buttermilk syrup. I also have a coconut syrup and apple cider syrup that you might love to try!
More breakfast recipes you’ll love
- Make Ahead Breakfast Sandwiches
- Sour Cream Coffee Cake
- Macadamia Nut Sticky Buns
- Easy Streusel Topped Raspberry Muffins
- Easy Ultimate Breakfast Frittata
- Farmhouse Baking Powder Biscuits
- German Pancakes
- Easy Breakfast Braid
- Bacon Egg Potato Breakfast Skillet
- German Apple Pancakes with Cider Syrup
- Hoe Cakes (Easy Cornmeal Pancakes)
- Danish Pancakes
- Fluffy Toasted Coconut Pancakes
- Homemade Chocolate Crepes
Did you make this recipe?
Let me know what you thought with a comment and rating below. You can also take a picture and tag me on Instagram @houseofnasheats or share it on the Pinterest pin so I can see.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1 cup unfed sourdough starter/discard
- All of the sponge
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup butter melted
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- To make the sponge, stir down the sourdough starter, which can either be room temperature or cold if you keep it in the fridge. Add 1 cup of the unfed starter discard (now is a good time to feed your remaining starter) to a large bowl with the flour, sugar, and buttermilk. It will be quite thick. Cover and let sit overnight at room temperature or up to 24 hours in the fridge.
- The next morning, preheat your waffle maker. Add the eggs, melted butter, baking soda, vanilla, and salt to the overnight sponge, stirring until combined.
- Pour some of the batter into a waffle press and close the lid. Cook until golden brown and cooked all the way through. Transfer to a wire rack and keep warm in a 225 degree F oven while you repeat with the remaining batter until ready to serve.
Reader questions and reviews
These sound amazing! Is there a way to make these if I don't have discard? I've never done anything with sourdough, so I guess I'm asking if there is a sourdough recipe I would use with it?
I used this guide for how to make a sourdough starter when I was making mine and found it to be so helpful!
I have a 100% hydrated starter. My sponge is already very liquid. What percentage do you use?
I use a 100% hydrated starter as well.
This recipe is amazing. I was looking for a recipe close to waffle house. My husband walked in while I was making these and said it smelled like waffle house! Side note: I am super unhealthy and added about a half of cup of sugar hahahah.
This is the best recipe ever! I put in some additions (collagen and super food powder) and freeze them for my kids to eat. Everyone loves them!
What do you think about making a bunch at a time and throwing them in the freezer to use later?
That works great! We have done that a bunch and it's always nice to have some on hand.
The best waffle recipe I have ever found! So happy I found one that I can control the ingredients! They're so light and crisp and the flavor is incredible! I make a batch and freeze them for my kids instead of buying the ones with tons of toxic junk. I add some superfood powder and collagen and raw milk and grass fed butter so this mama heart is happy
I'm using 100% hydration starter, but waffles are coming out paper thin; batter seems to thin for waffle batter too and I followed the recipe to the tee.
These are the only waffles I make now. They taste wonderful and are soft inside, crisp on the outside. I made my sourdough starter during the pandemic (Doughlene) and have not looked back. Fantastic, healthy products (mostly bread) are regulars and I make these about once a month. I'd love to make them more often, but....we have no self control.