Our sweet potato waffles are a fabulous way to use up your leftover mashed sweet potatoes. It’s an unexpected, but really delicious, twist on waffles—or on sweet potatoes?
With a natural sweetness and rich flavor from the sweet potatoes, plus a little spice and crunch from chopped pecans, our sweet potato waffles recipe works for breakfast and brunch. You can also turn these waffles into sweet potato sides for dinner. Just add savory ingredients and spices to the batter. (We shared our best ideas below!)
Ingredients for Sweet Potato Waffles
- Sweet potatoes: Naturally! Sweet potatoes are the most important ingredient, the one that gives the waffles their deep orange color and sweet flavor.
- Baking powder: This leavener makes the waffles puff and rise (essential!).
- Sour cream: The waffles are moist and flavorful thanks to the addition of sour cream.
- Eggs: Along with flour, the eggs help bind all the sweet potato waffle batter ingredients together. The whites are whipped separately to give the waffles a lighter texture. Here’s how to easily separate egg whites from yolks.
Step 1: Start the batter
First, mix together the dry ingredients in a large bowl: the flour, sugar, baking powder, cardamom and salt. Use a separate bowl to whisk up the egg yolks (just the yolks!), sour cream, mashed sweet potatoes, milk and melted butter. Pour the wet mixture into the bowl with the dry mixture. Stir them together, but only until the batter is just moistened. It’s OK if there are a few lumps, so don’t overmix. Finally, fold in the chopped pecans. (To make them extra tasty, use toasted pecans here.)
Step 2: Add the egg whites
Using a hand mixer, stand mixer or whisk, beat the egg whites until they’ve increased in volume and hold stiff peaks. Then, gently fold the whites into the sweet potato batter. Use just a few long strokes, pulling up from the bottom of the bowl so that the egg whites don’t lose too much air.
Step 3: Cook the waffles
Preheat the waffle iron according to the manufacturer’s directions. Add a scoop of the waffle batter to the iron (the amount you use will depend on the size of your waffle iron, so check the manufacturer’s directions for this, too). Close the iron, and cook the waffles until they’re golden brown and completely cooked through. For a regular-sized waffle iron, that should be about five minutes.
Keep the finished waffles warm on a baking sheet in a low-temp oven, and keep on waffling until all of the batter is used. Serve the sweet potato waffles alongside maple syrup.
Sweet Potato Waffles Recipe Variations
- Pumpkin waffles: You can easily use canned pumpkin in this sweet potato waffles recipe. Use an equal amount of canned pumpkin in its place. (Be sure to buy the puree, not pumpkin pie filling.)
- Savory sweet potato waffles: Enjoy these for a savory breakfast or as a side dish at Thanksgiving. Just add savory ingredients to the batter like diced, cooked bacon, diced spicy chorizo, or chopped, sauteed shallots. Spices that work well with sweet potato include curry, chili powder and smoked paprika.
- Even-sweeter sweet potato waffles: Perfect for breakfast or dessert: Add a splash of vanilla extract to the waffle batter, along with spices like cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. Or try sweet mix-ins like shredded coconut, raisins or white chocolate chips.
Can you freeze sweet potato waffles?
Yes! These waffles freeze beautifully, and doing so makes it easy to pull out one or a few waffles at a time to toast back to life. Stack the cooled waffles in between pieces of wax paper (or butter wrappers!). Then slide them into a freezer-safe resealable bag, and press out all the air. Keep them in the freezer for up to three months.
Sweet Potato Waffle Tips
What toppings can you put on sweet potato waffles?
The natural sweetness of sweet potatoes makes them delicious with pancake toppings like maple syrup, melted butter, confectioners’ sugar and whipped cream. A drizzle of pure honey adds a light sweetness to the waffles. Try fruit toppings, too: sliced bananas, strawberries, raspberries or a spoonful of cinnamon-spiced cooked apples.
Can you make sweet potato waffles ahead of time?
The baking powder starts working as soon as it’s mixed with liquids, so making the batter and not using it right away means the waffles won’t rise as much. Instead, the best way to make these ahead of time is to cook the waffles up, let them cool, then store them in the fridge for a few days—or in the freezer for up to three months. They can be easily reheated in a toaster or toaster oven.