13 Upgrades For The Best Frozen Waffles Of Your Life

Frozen waffles are a quick and affordable solution for breakfast on the go. Or, you can dress them up with fruit and syrup for a good meal before Saturday morning activities. This is all fine and good, but what if you could upgrade your Eggos?

You can enhance your frozen waffles in several ways beyond great toppings: Cook your waffles without a toaster, slice and dice them and integrate them into a recipe, or turn them into crumbs for easy baking.

Before starting on these amazing waffles hacks, here are a few simple tips to keep your waffles fresh and edible. Throw out waffles that are past their sell-by date or they can lose their flavor. The sooner you make them, the better. Store your box of waffles in the back of your freezer, which is the coldest part. Be sure it's set to the optimal temperature so your food items don't get freezer burn.

Now that you know how to keep them tasting great, let's upgrade those frozen waffles!

Make them taste homemade

The biggest problem with frozen waffles is that they don't always taste as good as homemade ones. But, the flavor can be enhanced with a few simple hacks. First, ditch the toaster. There are far better ways to crisp up a frozen waffle.

The first is this stovetop waffle hack from rapper Tyler, The Creator. Preheat a pan, and then butter each side of your frozen waffle. We recommend using Earth Balance if you need a dairy-free substitute. Briefly cook each side of your waffle for about 45 seconds.

Too easy? We agree! Upgrade this hack by adding sweet seasonings to your butter first. Some ideas include adding cinnamon and vanilla extract to sweetened butter or brown sugar and almond extract to unsweetened. In the fall, add your favorite pumpkin spice seasoning. You can also try popcorn seasonings, like caramel popcorn seasoning with salted butter, for a fun take on your grilled waffle!

French toast waffles

The possible uses for waffles go far behind toppings. For example, you can use them just like bread. One way is to make French toast waffles. Sounds crazy? This is a great option if you want to add protein to your waffle through the egg batter. And, since you'll be cooking on a stovetop, feel free to incorporate that flavored butter, too.

Thaw frozen waffles in the microwave on high for 10–15 seconds on each side. Then, whip up your French toast batter. Eggs and a little milk or almond milk will do, but you can upgrade your egg batter by adding things like vanilla extract, orange flavor, or cinnamon. You can even upgrade this recipe by using half-and-half instead of milk.

You can also boost your French toast by adding flax seeds to the batter. Flax seeds have several health benefits, according to Healthline: They are a good source of protein, fiber, and omega-3 essential fatty acids, making them an ideal addition to your breakfast.

No matter how you make your batter, don't let the waffles soak for too long or they'll get soggy. Next, heat some butter in your skillet, and cook both sides until they are just right. Remove your waffles and top them with syrup, honey, or whipped cream.

Waffle sandwiches, sliders, and paninis

You can also use frozen waffles as a substitute for sandwich bread, even in savory sandwiches. Leave your sweet tooth behind and try different waffle recipes, like a BLT.

Serve scrambled eggs, breakfast sausage, and melted cheese between two waffles. If you add smoked bacon, you've created a quick imitation of the old McDonald's McGriddle sandwich. Want another simple sandwich hack? Try a waffle Monte Christo! Start by making a French toast waffle. Then, add ham, turkey, and Gruyere cheese to your waffles for an elegant take on this sandwich.

If you've got mini frozen waffles, you can also make sliders. These mini sandwiches work well with saucy meats such as pulled pork, which pairs with the sweetness. Top your meat with fresh and tangy coleslaw and close up your slider with another waffle.

Waffle paninis? Yes, please! These work best with a combination of ham, turkey, bacon, or chicken pressed with soft cheese. A Thanksgiving dinner panini fits the bill well: turkey, cheddar cheese, and mayo mixed with cranberry. Chicken, goat cheese, apple, and honey mustard form another mouth-watering, waffle-panini combo!

Waffle tacos and empanadas

It may sound wild, but waffles make excellent tacos. After all, both are holders for delicious toppings! Before getting into the options, remember that there are plenty of frozen waffle brands, including gluten-free and whole-grain varieties. If you're making savory tacos, choose one with less sugar.

Microwave frozen waffles for about 15 seconds on high, then roll them out with a rolling pin. Once they are malleable, you'll shape the waffles into a taco or cone shape. If you have a wire rack, drape them over the rack in a taco shape. Or, you can place them on their sides and use a toothpick to close them just enough to leave space for toppings. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes. Make sure they keep their shape as you remove them from the oven.

Waffle tacos work well with chicken, grilled shrimp, or vegan/vegetarian toppings. Add black or refried beans, corn, cotija cheese, and guacamole. We recommend topping it off with mango or peach salsa.

Another Mexican-inspired recipe you can make with your waffles is strawberry cream empanadas. Coat the center of your defrosted waffles with cream cheese. Add egg white mixture to the edges, adding the other ingredients before folding them over to crimp them shut, then bake for a delicious, gooey treat. Is your mouth watering yet?

Chicken and waffles shortcut

Chicken and waffles are the ultimate comfort food in the South, but its history is complicated. The concept of waffles with meat may have come to America from Germany, the Pilgrims, or the Pennsylvania Dutch. And, fried chicken was likely brought here by Scottish slave owners and perfected by enslaved African in the South. As a dish, chicken and waffles did not exist until 1915 in Harlem, NY. The area's jazz musicians would play well past dinner service, except for at one club where they were offered breakfast and dinner at once. Over time, the dish was born!

Most people eat this recipe when they dine out due to its difficulty of making at home, but now you can easily make chicken and waffles at home in as little as 15 minutes. How? Just use frozen chicken tenders, frozen waffles, and honey or syrup. Cook the tenders as directed, grill the waffles on the stovetop, then assemble the dinner. Top it off with hot honey sauce for extra flavor, and voilà! You've just made a freezer meal into a delicious, restaurant-style dish. Try swapping out a spicy, hot honey for a flavor with a little Southern kick.

Waffle strips or dippers

What if you dipped your waffles in food instead of adding topping to it? You can if you make waffle dippers. We recommend cooking your waffles on your stovetop to get them nice and crispy before slicing them up into strips.

Creating a waffle dipper board is an excellent idea when you invite guests for breakfast, brunch, or morning events. You can use round waffles, but square ones will give a cleaner, more uniform appearance. Place the strips in a stemmed dessert cup. Give your guests different waffle options: plain, blueberry, chocolate chip, and so on.

Next, set out a variety of dip options. Offer different flavors of syrup and honey, such as orange blossom, blueberry, and rata honey. Other sweet dips options include Nutella, chocolate hummus, sweet yogurt mixed with whipped cream and fruit, jams, and jellies. Put out a can of whipped cream to top it all off.

For quick and easy savory dips, choose plain hummus, guacamole, and Hollandaise sauce. Or, create your own dips, like a Thai peanut sauce or fruit chutney and salsa.

Waffle Churros

If this title made your mouth water, you're not alone. Frozen waffles are the perfect base for easy churros because they go so well with cinnamon sugar. Almost every culture boasts its own fried dough recipe, so the exact origins of churros are not easy to track. But most of us think of churros as a fun, Spanish dessert ... and that's right, too!

This simple dish is even easier if you make your churros with frozen waffles. Use a plain brand or try cinnamon waffles to amplify the flavor. You can also try flavors, like blueberry waffles. First, slice defrosted waffles into sticks the width of the churros. 

Normally, churros are deep-fried, but for those of us wanting a sweet treat without all of the oil, use your air fryer instead. Set it to 355 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the waffles stick on a tray or parchment and coat with a few drops of healthy oil, such as coconut or avocado, and add a little cinnamon. Of course, if you're using cinnamon waffles, you won't need to add more! Air fry for two or three minutes on each side. 

Mix cinnamon and sugar at a ratio of 1:2. You can also use a sugar replacement, like Stevia or erythritol, but be sure to adjust the measurement. Once the waffle churros cool, toss them in the sugar mixture until they are well coated. We recommend a nice chocolate sauce or fruit compote for dipping.

Waffle breadcrumbs and stuffing

Instead of finding new ways to cook your waffles, what if we found a way to crumble them? Pretty cool, huh? Now you can finally stop throwing out your broken waffles from the freezer.

Start by cooking them on the stovetop, in the oven, or in your toaster oven to get them nice and crunchy, but beware of burning them. Then, grind them. Bread products can be ground in cleaned-out coffee grinders, pulsed in a food processor, or chopped in blenders with fine blades.

You can directly replace regular breadcrumbs or mix the waffle crumbs with ground nuts for a more complex flavor like a pecan topping for salmon. But, we warn you to choose your dishes wisely — waffle breading may be overkill for your chicken and waffles recipes!

If waffles make great breadcrumbs, they make even better stuffing. Cut your toasted or baked waffles into small cubes to replace bread for an amazing twist on a traditional side dish. We recommend Belgian Waffle Stuffing With Duck Confit.

Waffle crumbles and croutons

Rather than sitting under your food, waffles can be a topper, like when it's the main ingredient in a crumble. Pulse your toasted waffles just a little bit less in the food processor than when making breadcrumbs for a thicker consistency. Again, you can use regular or cinnamon waffles, depending if you are going for a sweet or savory flavor. Add waffles crumbs, and any sweetener such as brown sugar, and mix with melted butter to keep them together. Blend in additions like granola or raisins for a healthy twist to top off a bowl of vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Waffle croutons are another option for broken waffles. Toast and then slice them into cubes. Then, cook them with butter on your stovetop to ensure they stay crunchy in your salad. These go very well with vinegar-based salad dressings, giving a nice sweet flavor to your savory greens!

Finally, you can make your own sweet and salty snack mix by adding mini-pretzels, nuts, popcorn, and whatever else you like to cooked waffle croutons.

Waffle kabobs and pops

Do you have a picky eater at home? Frozen waffle kabobs are a fun way to make meals for kids, and they may even expand their culinary horizons. Just the idea of eating anything on a stick makes kids smile!

When cooking with kids, start with the familiar. Mini waffles skewered with strawberries, melon balls, bananas, or pineapple cubes are a great way to introduce this dish. Serve with maple syrup and yogurt, or blend the two for a healthy snack or breakfast. Chicken and waffles also lend themselves to kabobs, giving you a way to introduce your child to an interesting, new dish.

While you've got skewers on hand, you can also create waffle pops. Cut cooked or toasted waffles into shapes. You can even use cookie cutters to make fun shapes as long as they are well-toasted or cooked, and use the rest for breadcrumbs. Try chocolate or caramel magic shells, or make your own homemade hardening chocolate. Before it cools, dip the sauce in chopped nuts, sprinkles, or crispy rice cereal, then let it cool and serve for a great party dessert!

Frozen waffle desserts and cakes

Can you eat waffles cold? Yes, but you should cook them first because you can get sick from eating frozen waffles that have been defrosted but are not cooked. Opening a box of waffles exposes it to air, which can cause bacteria contamination. Even after returning them to the freezer, you're not safe. Bacteria can live at freezing temperatures, according to Day Mark Safety Systems.

To avoid this issue when making a frozen dessert, cook waffles with your preferred method and then refreeze them. Once frozen, you can take them out and add ice cream or frozen dessert to create a traditional ice cream sandwich. Remember that the longer you toast, fry, or bake them, the more firm they become, which is better to keep your sandwich intact.

Another great option is ice cream cake. Most of these are made with a pie crust base. But, it's even simpler to create an icebox cake with your pre-cooked frozen waffles. You can layer your mini-cake with multiple layers of ice cream and top each with a waffle. Once complete, decorate the outside with whipped cream or frosting. Top off with berries, nuts, and chocolate or caramel syrup. This is a perfect solution when you want a cake that only serves one or two people, but you can also line up square waffles in a baking dish to make a larger cake.

Waffle bread pudding and pies

What's next? How about a new take on an ancient dessert: bread pudding? According to experts, this dessert dates back to the 11th century. In the middle ages, it gained a reputation as a dish for the lower classes. Poor people made it to avoid wasting old bread. Today, bread pudding is a dessert option in fashionable restaurants. If you're making it at home, however, you can swap waffles for bread in your recipes to create this melt-in-your-mouth dessert. 

Another fun treat is to create mini waffle pies. After defrosting full-sized waffles, press them into oven-safe, 6-ounce custard cups that have been buttered to create waffle cups. Prepare your pie filling, place it on the waffles, and top with a crumble topping. Bake the pies to ensure the waffles are fully cooked. These cute desserts are sure to be a hit at tea parties and baby showers!

Waffle casserole

We can't think of a better comfort food combination than waffles and casseroles. Most recipes are a take on chicken and waffles. We like spicier version with honey and hot sauce for a nice bit of sweetness and heat. First, cook and cube your chicken. Next, toast your waffles to get them nice and crispy before cutting them into cubes. This bake includes eggs, milk, hot sauce, cheese, and honey and can be garnished with green onions, cilantro, and jalapeños for additional heat. You can do this entire recipe, from stovetop to baking, in a cast iron skillet for a real down-home taste!

But, we think the best combination is a decadent breakfast casserole, like maple sausage, eggs, and waffles. This is the kind of dish you'll get up early to eat! You'll use cubed frozen waffles, cooked maple sausage, and shredded cheddar, dispersing them over two alternating layers in your casserole. Then, whip up your eggs to add to this dish. Refrigerate for at least an hour before baking. You can also prep this ahead of time to bake in the morning. Some awesome variations of this include using maple bacon or Canadian ham in place of sausage, too. Finish it with a drizzle of hollandaise sauce!