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overhead shot of two homemade waffles topped with strawberry sauce and dairy free whipped cream

Our breakfasts have become fairly routine – toast, overnight oats or quick scrambled eggs during the week and dairy free pancakes or egg in a hole on the weekend. Sometimes we switch it up with my cheddar and chive waffles or no milk french toast  on the weekend, but we are creatures of habit after all.

But, lately, we’ve been loving this homemade waffle recipe, and it’s been a really great change of pace. I love that they’re just as easy to make as pancakes, but totally more fun.

Plus, we’ve been topping them with all sorts of fun stuff – like this beautiful strawberry sauce which would be perfect for Valentine’s Day breakfast in bed. They would even be a great option for Mother’s Day brunch.

More dairy free breakfast options: tater tot breakfast casserolebananas foster pancakes / maple sausage dutch babies / breakfast tacos

closeup of two homemade waffles topped with strawberry sauce and dairy free whipped cream

What is the difference between pancake and waffle mix?

I did a ton of testing for this recipe. I didn’t want to just throw pancake batter into a waffle iron and call it a day – although, I’m sure it would turn out just fine.

I really wanted to get perfectly crispy waffles that were light an airy in the center. I think we ended up eating waffles 2 times a week for the past month or so. Not that I’m complaining.

After doing a decent amount of research, I learned that the sugar and fat quantities are high in waffle mix, which is what allows the waffles to get that crispy exterior. So, I experimented with different sugar/oil ratios until I found one that made the ultimate homemade waffles.

Just in case you didn’t know, read this post: are eggs dairy?

two homemade waffles topped with strawberry sauce and dairy free whipped cream

What can I substitute for milk in waffles?

To make this recipe dairy free, I used almond milk instead of dairy milk and canola oil instead of melted butter. Read this post if you want to know more about dairy free substitutes.

I like to use vegetable oil rather than coconut oil or vegan butter because it’s just easier. There’s no need to melt anything and it’s really easy to measure.

If you don’t want to use almond milk, you can swap it for a different nut milk (I love using cashew milk) or any other dairy free alternative, like oat milk or coconut milk.

Just stay away from the full-fat canned coconut milk for this recipe. It just won’t work because it’s too rich and thick.

How to make homemade waffles

Preheat your waffle iron.

Following the instructions provided with your machine, preheat the waffle maker so it’s ready to go when you’re batter is ready. You will want to experiment to find what heat setting you like best for your waffle iron. We keep ours at 3 1/2 (out of 5), but each machine will be different.

I would recommend starting somewhere around medium-high when testing, to prevent any burning. You can always cook your waffles longer if needed. And, be aware that even though the signal beeps or the light says the waffles are done, you can keep cooking if needed.

Mix your batter.

In a large bowl, mix your dry ingredients together. This helps evenly distribute the leavening agents (baking powder). Then whisk in your wet ingredients, one at a time, until smooth. Some small lumps in the batter are ok, but you don’t want to leave any major clumps.

overhead shot of two homemade waffles topped with strawberry sauce and dairy free whipped cream
Waffle your batter.

I use a 1/2 cup measuring cup or a ladle to transfer my batter to the waffle iron. Fill each section and close the lid. Don’t be give into the temptation of opening the iron to check on the waffles.

Just let the machine do it’s job and check when it beeps. If they aren’t crispy on the top, leave them in a little bit longer.

To keep cooked waffles warm and crispy, I like to place mine on a cooling rack inside a cooking sheet to keep the air circulating and prevent them from losing their crispiness.

I will either pop this in the oven on a warm setting or just keep it next to the waffle maker (it depends on how many batches of waffles I’m making or if we’re eating them right away, etc.).

Serve your waffles.

I love to serve my waffles with this homemade strawberry sauce (recipe in the section below), but you can serve your waffles with whatever you choose.

Just be sure to serve them immediately or keep them warm using the method I mentioned to keep your homemade waffles nice and crispy.

two homemade waffles topped with strawberry sauce and dairy free whipped cream

How to make strawberry sauce for waffles

To make this easy strawberry sauce, I used a 1 pound bag of from strawberries that I thawed in the fridge. They were slightly frozen still, but enough to cut through.

I halved each of the strawberries and placed them in a large skillet, but you could easily leave them whole or cut them small if you want.

Add 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to the pan and heat the strawberries over medium heat until they start to soften and produce juice.

In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons cornstarch with 2 tablespoons cold water. Add to the pan and stir to combine. Simmer until the strawberries break down and the sauce that forms has thickened.

two homemade waffles topped with strawberry sauce and dairy free whipped cream
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FAQs about homemade waffles

What is the best waffler maker?

We used this Belgian waffle maker for this homemade waffles recipe, but you could really use whatever waffle iron you have (or end up purchasing). Technically, these aren’t Belgian waffles, but we’ve were given this waffle maker as a wedding gift so I wasn’t going to run out and buy a new one.

If I was going to be a non-Belgian one, it would be this one. But, I also think this heart shaped or bubble waffle maker would be really fun.

How do you make waffles crispy?
  • The key to getting crispy waffles is really in the batter. You need the proper sugar/fat ratio to make get a crispy waffle. This means use a batter that isn’t the same as pancake batter.
  • You also want to make sure your waffle iron is at the right temperature. You may have to experiment with this until you find the perfect setting for your waffle batter.
  • You can also ensure you’re waffles stay crispy by placing your finished waffles on a cooling rack while making the rest of the waffles. This allows air to circulate and prevents them from getting soggy.
Can I make waffle batter ahead of time?

You can make your waffle batter ahead of time and store it in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to two days.

How do I reheat leftover waffles?

These homemade waffles can be made in advance and reheated in the toaster or the oven when ready to serve. This is a great option for making waffles on weekday mornings.

10 EASY DAIRY FREE SUBSTITUTIONS

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    Homemade Waffles Recipe

    The BEST homemade waffles made from scratch – This easy recipe is made without milk or butter. The waffles are totally dairy free and still super fluffy and crispy on the outside. #waffles #dairyfree

    • Author: Melissa Belanger
    • Prep Time: 5 minutes
    • Cook Time: 15 minutes
    • Total Time: 20 minutes
    • Yield: 8 waffles 1x
    • Category: breakfast
    • Method: waffle iron
    • Cuisine: American, Belgian

    Ingredients

    Scale
    • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 2 tablespoon sugar
    • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
    • 1 1/2 cups almond milk
    • 6 tablespoons canola oil
    • 2 eggs
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    Instructions

    1. Preheat waffle oven.
    2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and coarse salt.
    3. Add milk, canola oil, eggs and vanilla extract – one ingredient at a time – whisking until smooth.
    4. Prepare waffles according to waffle maker directions, using about 1/2 cup of batter for each waffle.*

    Notes

    *amount will vary by waffle iron.

    Nutrition

    • Serving Size: 1 waffle
    • Calories: 241
    • Sugar: 5.6 g
    • Sodium: 112 mg
    • Fat: 12 g
    • Saturated Fat: 1.2 g
    • Carbohydrates: 27.3 g
    • Fiber: 0.8 g
    • Protein: 5.9 g
    • Cholesterol: 47.4 mg

    Keywords: waffles, homemade waffles, homemade waffles recipe, dairy free waffles

    Last Updated on November 5, 2021 by Melissa Belanger

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    Recipe rating

    43 Comments

      1. Yes! Sorry. We used almond milk, but you can use whatever dairy free milk you like (just not canned coconut milk).

    1. This recipe is really good! The waffles are nice ans fluffy inside and crispy on the outside. The taste is very nice too. Definitely a keeper!

    2. Tastes just like regular waffles! These are my favorite breakfast and I love that all the ingredients are things that were already in my kitchen! Definitely recommend making these. Tomorrow I’m going to make them again, but with olive oil instead of canola and see how it goes.

    3. I just made these for my dairy free teens!!! They are hard to please and they loved these. Thank you for sharing!! ?

      1. An excellent recipe! I used oatmilk instead of almond(allergies) and it came out great. I only needed 1 cup.

    4. I just made these! I used olive oil because I didnt have any other kind. Also added about 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of nutmeg. Delicious!!!

      1. Unfortunately, the recipe doesn’t call for olive oil. Even if you love it, the recipe wasn’t developed with that so there isn’t enough to compensate for the strong flavor of olive oil. I’m sorry you didn’t care for them, but it was probably because of the change you made.

        1. Hum, I replaced the 6 Tbsp of canola oil with extra light olive oil and they came out great. To each their own I guess.

      2. Love these waffles! My 3 year old needs dairy free and this is definitely the best recipe I have found. He loves them!

    5. We inherited an under-used waffle iron from my parents recently and I couldn’t wait to bust it out for my son and his cousins who are visiting over the holidays. Trying to please two picky 7 yo and one picky 4 yo had me as nervous as a groom at the altar, but with this recipe I absolutely nailed it! The recipe performed perfectly and all the tips helped me through my jitters. The texture was light and airy inside and the outside browned perfectly with just the right amount of crunch. I think we got about 10 waffles out of the recipe which was enough to freeze for another breakfast. I’m no expert but the vanilla seemed a little light to me, though it could have been because the vanilla was a bit long in the tooth. Well done!

    6. My family loves this recipe! The waffles come out perfect every time. Have you tried turning them into chocolate waffles? Do you think adding, say, 2 tablespoons of cocoa would do the trick? Thanks again for this and your other recipes – never a disappointment.

        1. My very frank and picky father just said these were maybe the best waffles I’ve made. I used 3 medium eggs because that’s all we had and a blender. Thanks!

    7. Excellent recipe, we used soy milk and didn’t have any eggs so made a substitute using coconut oil, baking powder and water, they were absolutely delicious. My son says they are delicious. Thank you !!! Kelly and Hiero

    8. Didn’t change a thing. Perfectly light waffles. Good pareve recipe for those of us who are kosher. Thank you for this recipe.

    9. Loved them. Came out great. I only used 4 tablespoons of oil so my batter could be a little thicker. Can you use self rising flour for these?

    10. Love these waffles!
      Muy daughter is intolerant to dairy and sugar, so I just substitute the sugar for a sweetener and they come out great. She gets so excited when I make these as a special weekend breakfast. 😊
      Thank you so much!

      1. You can substitute any liquid oil you would normally use, just make sure it doesn’t have a strong flavor, but I’m not sure about the flour substitutes. I can’t guarantee that they would work since I haven’t tested them.

        1. I used avocado oil, turned out perfect! I frequently use avocado oil in recipes because it really doesn’t have flavor that interferes with the taste.

          1. Unfortunately, I won’t be testing it with whole wheat flour. I don’t typically re-write recipes that I’ve already published, but feel free to subscribe so you’ll be notified when I publish new recipes! I have a lot of great breakfast recipes coming out in the new year!

      1. I think so! We keep an extra batch in the fridge all week and they toast up just fine!

    11. I made this but used oat milk and Carrington farms coconut oil. I added chia seeds. I used a mini waffle maker so we had extra. Later we threw it in a pan with butter to heat up, put a layer of Nutella, roasted marshmallows and made waffle s’mores. They were so good!!

      1. I honestly don’t know. I don’t own one of those and I’ve never used one. I’m sorry!

      2. I did this on the Pampered chef waffle stick pan. I baked at 350 for 25 minutes and they were wonderful.

    12. This waffle recipe is superb! Our 9.5 month son can’t have dairy so we’ve been looking for a dairy-free recipe. We just bought a waffle maker and I’ve made this recipe twice in the last 2 days — about to be 3 days in a row. My wife and I were extremely surprised and pleased how good these were. We could not tell at all they were dairy free. I do all the cooking as I love food and love to cook. I almost never write recipe reviews but I had to for this because it was THAT good —— plus I can see that you put a lot of time and effort into perfecting your recipe. Thank you so much for doing the research/trials to get the ratios right and then being kind enough to share to with us. The waffle was perfectly crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Don’t think I’ve had waffles that were crispy and fluffy at the same time! It was fantastic!

      So me being me, I can’t help but leave well enough alone, so I took it a step further yesterday and add cinnamon and nutmeg to the batter and it was even better. Also experimented and added blueberries to some — those were excellent as well — my wife’s favorite. Since. I can have dairy, i added some chocolate chips to mine and that was my favorite — didn’t even need any syrup or anything. Thanks again for recipe — this will definitely be our go to recipe going forward — I’ve already memorized it lol

    13. I followed the recipe but used oatmilk instead of almond milk. I also added chopped walnuts, banana, and choc chips. Boy, it was scrumptious! Great recipe! Will use again! Thank you!