Waffles. Chocolate. Coffee. What else could you want?
One year after Michelle and I got married, we went on a big family vacation. By big, I mean we went to Disney World with her parents, sisters, and nieces. While that may not sound ideal, considering we were still basically newlyweds, it was actually an excellent trip. I remember few conflicts and lots of fun. Our favorite story from that trip, though, involves a trip to IHOP.
I’ve said this several times: I’m much more of a savory eater. I prefer bacon and biscuits over pancakes. But since you can get bacon and pancakes at IHOP, I’m all for it. Especially since they have a variety of syrups to try, which is great. They also leave the coffee carafe on the table, which is also great. However, my sister-in-law, being tired from our vacation and distracted by her daughters (4 and 6 at the time), got the two mixed up. Instead of syrup, she poured coffee all over her 4-year-old’s pancakes. As soon as she realized what she had done, she put the carafe down, and immediately poured maple syrup on top of the coffee-soaked pancakes. My niece had no idea and scarfed the pancakes down like they were the best things ever.
Fast forward about 14 years. I’m not sure exactly how the discussion went, but through a conversation with Michelle, I started wondering if we could incorporate coffee into waffles. (Waffles are superior to pancakes. There is no discussion to be had; it’s an indisputable fact.) We decided to try, and this was the delicious result.
Yes, you can make good waffles without egg or dairy. And you don’t even need fake eggs or some weird dairy-free wheat milk or something. Flour, sugar, water, oil, baking powder, a dash of vanilla and salt, and you’ve got the makings of a surprisingly decent waffle.
To make them Mocha Waffles, though, we just need to swap a few things out. Cocoa powder acts an awful lot like flour in baked goods, so I took our basic waffle recipe and reduced the flour by ½ cup and replaced that with ½ cup of cocoa powder. Then I replaced 1 cup of the water with 1 cup of strong brewed coffee. Bish bash bosh – mocha waffles. These can be altered if you want a stronger coffee flavor or more cocoa. However, they have to exist in a zero-sum situation, where the increase of one causes a decrease in the other. If you use more coffee, you have to use equally less water. The coffee and water have to add up to 2½ cups.
Mix the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, salt, sugar, baking soda) and wet ingredients (water, coffee, oil, vanilla) in separate bowls. Then pour the wet into the dry and whisk together. Don’t overmix, but make sure it’s all well incorporated. Lumps are ok. They will work themselves out. Let it rest for about 5 minutes or so. Because science.
Now, the one negative to waffles is that you have to a waffle maker to make them. I don’t usually like having appliances or devices that only do one thing in the kitchen, but I’ll make an exception for a waffle maker. It’s the only way. You don’t need anything fancy. Plug it in and preheat it while the waffle batter is resting. Then make the waffles according to the directions of your particular waffle maker. Ours takes about 2/3 cup of batter and makes a large Belgian-style waffle. Like this:
Top how you like. Syrup works (it would be like what my niece devoured on vacation, but better because waffles), but I figured some whipped cream would be nice since it’s a waffle version of a mocha. I made some quick Coconut Whipped Cream, dusted a little cocoa powder… mmm, mmm, good! As crazy as it may sound, Reese (our 3-year-old) loved these! So did Emily (our 9-year-old), so I think these will definitely be in the rotation for future breakfasts!
- 2 cups flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 4 tsp baking powder
- ¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp (6 Tbsp total) sugar
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1½ cups water
- 1 cup strong brewed coffee
- 5 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 1½ tsp vanilla
- Whisk together dry ingredients (first 5) in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk wet ingredients (last 4) together in a separate bowl.
- Pour wet ingredients into the flour mixture, and stir until well combined, taking care to not over-stir. Allow mixture to rest while preheating the waffle iron.
- Make waffles according to the waffle makers specifications.
- Served topped with Coconut Whipped cream and/or maple syrup.
*** Modified from a recipe from Milk Allergy Mom ***
While you enjoy your waffles think about this quote from the incomparable Leslie Knope: “We need to remember what’s important in life: Friends, waffles, work. Or waffles, friend, work. Doesn’t matter, but work is third.”