These quick sourdough discard waffles are crunchy and golden on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside.
No overnight fermentation is needed.
If you are maintaining a sourdough starter you will likely have lots of sourdough discard. I feed my starter first thing in the morning and love making these crispy sourdough waffles with the discard.
Here are some more great sourdough recipes for breakfast: Ham and Cheese Sourdough Scones, Oatmeal Sourdough Pancakes, Sourdough Chocolate Banana Bread, and Sourdough Dutch Baby.
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Why You Will Love This Recipe
- The sourdough waffle recipe comes together very quickly and doesn’t need any rising time since baking soda is used as the leavening agent.
- You can use sourdough starter at any stage. Use unfed sourdough starter, recently fed starter or sourdough discard you have been storing in the refrigerator.
- These waffles are a great way to use up excess starter and unfed sourdough discard.
- This recipe is also freezer friendly. Whip up a double batch and save some in the freezer for another day of the week.
What is Sourdough?
Sourdough is a leavening method typically used for sourdough bread. Sourdough relies on the naturally occurring yeast and bacteria in flour to leaven baked goods.
Many sourdough starters require daily feeding which creates plenty of leftover sourdough starter that can be saved for other baking projects.
I've created a guide for creating a maintaining a small sourdough starter to help reduce sourdough discard waste.
What is Sourdough Discard?
Sourdough discard is the part of your sourdough starter that you usually throw away when you feed it. I feel guilty about throwing away food and am always looking for ways to reduce food waste.
Sourdough discard adds tons of incredible flavor to baked goods. The lactic acid bacteria found in sourdough discard adds flavor and tenderizes wheat proteins.
This recipe can use sourdough discarded from any step in the sourdough starter process. It can be bubbly and freshly fed, dormant from sitting in your refrigerator, or anywhere in between. It also doesn’t matter what type of flour your starter has been fed with. All-purpose, whole wheat, or any variety of flour will work.
If you are looking for more simple ways to use your sourdough discard, try these sourdough crackers, sourdough oatmeal pancakes, some sourdough flatbread, or this sourdough snickerdoodle cookie recipe.
Sourdough Tip: Keep a glass jar in your refrigerator to store your sourdough discard. Continue adding to it until you have enough to make your chosen sourdough discard recipe.
What are the best containers for storing sourdough starter and discard?
How long does sourdough discard last?
What is the difference between sourdough starter and sourdough discard?
Most of the ingredients in these sourdough starter discard waffles are pretty typical. Below are the extra ingredients that make these waffles special.
Buttermilk: The buttermilk should be at room temperature. Buttermilk reacts with the baking soda to make these pancakes light and fluffy.
Don't worry if you don't have buttermilk. You can easily make your own. Simply add 1 ½ tablespoons of lemon juice or white vinegar to the 1 ½ cups of milk. Give it a quick stir and let it sit for 5 minutes. The milk we begin to curdle and thicken.
Sourdough Discard: If you are maintaining a sourdough starter, then you understand the constant search for new ways to use up your sourdough discard. These sourdough discard waffles are one of my favorites because they use an entire cup of discard.
Preheat the oven to its lowest temperature.
In a large bowl, whisk the all purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Add the sourdough discard, buttermilk, milk, melted butter, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. Stir until just combined.
In a separate bowl, begin whisking the egg whites. Slowly add the sugar and continue to whisk until the egg whites form soft peaks. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the beaten egg whites into the waffle batter until just combined.
Let the batter rest while you preheat the waffle iron.
Pour the waffle batter onto a hot waffle iron.
Follow the directions on your waffle iron to cook the waffles. As they finish cooking transfer each waffle directly to the oven rack to keep warm and continue to crisp. Repeat the process with the remaining batter.
Top with your favorite toppings and enjoy.
If you need instructions on how to whip and fold in egg whites check out the instructions in my original post for Crispy Waffles.
There are so many delicious waffle topping to choose from.
I love slathering these delicious sourdough waffles with butter and maple syrup.
You could also top them with whipped cream and fresh fruit or make up a batch of cinnamon-sugar apples.
Try topping them with jam like this small-batch blueberry jam or this roasted balsamic strawberry jam.
Try topping the waffles with some Greek yogurt, a drizzle of honey, and some fresh berries.
Add a side of maple sausage or smoky bacon for the perfect weekend meal.
Want to serve these easy sourdough waffles for dinner? Make up a batch of my fried sourdough chicken tenders (or baked if you prefer) and serve them on top of these sourdough waffles topped with honey and hot sauce.
- For a nuttier flavor substitute whole wheat flour for one cup of the all-purpose flour.
- Waffle batter is similar to biscuit and pie dough. The less you handle it the more tender the end result will be. Do not beat your waffle batter. Stir until all of the ingredients are just combined. A few lumps are fine.
- Figure out how much waffle batter your waffle iron will hold. The exact amount of batter you need to create full waffles that don't overflow out of the waffle iron will vary depending upon the type of waffle iron you have. I own a standard American-style waffle iron that holds a ½ cup of batter. A larger Belgian waffle maker will require more batter.
- Add some chocolate chips or chopped berries to the batter for extra flavor.
- Use wooden or rubber utensils, not metal, to remove the waffles. This will help prevent scratches and preserve the nonstick surface of the waffle iron. I like these nylon-tipped spring-loaded tongs.
Frequently Asked Questions
I wouldn't recommend it. The freezing and thawing process would deflate the whipped egg whites. It would be better to cook the extra batter and freeze the finished waffles.
My waffle maker has an indicator light that turns green when the waffles are supposedly done. But I don't think it is very accurate. The best way to tell when your waffles are ready is to wait until the steam has almost completely stopped rising out of the waffle maker before lifting the lid.
Waffles cook quickly and should be done in a couple minutes.
My biggest issue with waffles is that unless you have multiple waffle irons, you can only cook one waffle at a time. When making waffles for multiple people this just doesn't work. Here's how to keep waffles warm so that everyone can eat together.
1. Set your oven to the lowest temperature possible.
2. Place your cooked waffles directly on the oven rack to keep them warm and crispy while you cook the rest of the waffles.
Leftover waffles can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days. Reheat the waffles in the toaster for crispy waffles or in the microwave for softer waffles.
Frozen homemade sourdough waffles make a quick weekday breakfast and taste so much better than frozen store-bought waffles.
- Allow the waffles to cool completely.
- Place the waffles in a single layer on a wax paper or parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
- Place the baking sheet in the freezer and freeze for at least a couple of hours.
- Once the waffles are completely frozen, transfer them to an air-tight container or a zip-top bag. Label with the contents and date.
- Waffles can be frozen for up to six months.
- Remove the waffles from the freezer and allow them to defrost in a single layer on the counter for about 10 minutes.
- Reheat in the Oven: Preheat your oven to 300 degrees F. Place the waffles directly on the oven rack for about 5 minutes.
- Reheat in the Toaster: If the waffles fit in your toaster, toast them on medium to low heat.
If you are new to sourdough starters, I've created a sourdough gift guide that lists all of my favorite sourdough products for first time sourdough bakers.
Looking for more breakfast treats?
- Ham Leek and Hash Brown Muffins
- How to Make Amazing French Toast Using Almost Any Type of Bread
- Pumpkin Spice Pancakes
- Sourdough Banana Bread
- Mango Blueberry Muffins
- Mango Pancakes
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