Recipe Review

Martha Stewart Just Taught Me the Secret to the Best, Crispiest Waffles

published Jun 10, 2021
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waffles on a plate with blueberries
Credit: Kelli Foster

At the end of 2020, I cooked (and tasted) my way through some of the best waffles on the internet for our waffle recipe showdown. And do you know what happened? It fueled my love for waffles even more.

Out of all the contenders, Martha Stewart’s Easy Waffle recipe was hands-down the most simple and straightforward, but it didn’t win big points in the flavor and texture departments. But of course Martha has way more than just one waffle recipe in her toolbox, and recently, as I was scrolling through her Instagram page, I came across one called Donn’s Waffles. The recipe comes from Martha’s friend Donn Chappellet, creator of Chappellet Vineyard and Winery, and Martha claims it’s one of her absolute favorite breakfasts. She describes them as “light, crunchy, tender, and delicious,” and promises that “you’ll never make another.” She even had them for her birthday last year!

Because I’ll never say no to trying a new waffle recipe, I went straight to the kitchen to whip up a batch. Here’s how it went.

Get the recipe: Donn’s Waffles

Credit: Kelli Foster

How to Make Donn’s Waffles

While the waffle maker heats on the highest setting, you’ll mix together egg yolks, flour, sour cream, cornmeal, and baking soda in a large bowl. Gradually stir in buttermilk, followed by melted butter.

In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Stir half the whites into the batter, then gently fold in the remaining whites.

Spray the waffle maker with cooking spray, add the batter, and cook until golden and crisp. Lastly, right after removing the waffle, Martha suggests tossing it between your hands to release the steam, which helps retain the crispness.

Credit: Kelli Foster

My Honest Review of Martha Stewart Donn’s Waffles

This recipe calls for separating the eggs, then folding the whipped whites into the batter at the very end — a move I already knew from making Kitchn’s light and fluffy pancakes and Grandbaby Cakes’ waffles would result in crisp, light-as-air waffles. But the result was even better than I imaged.

These waffles are like none I’ve ever tasted before, and days later I still cannot stop thinking about them. They’re not the most flavorful waffles, which is fine by me, because it’s the texture that makes them so unique and memorable. The waffles are ultra-light and delicate with the most irresistible crispy, crackly exterior and a tender, creamy, slightly eggy center that instantly reminded me of a popover (which I love!). I attribute this to the fact that the recipe calls for three whipped egg whites — I’ve only ever used two. From now on, three is absolutely the way to go.

Here’s the hitch, though. The waffles are at their very best right after they come out of the waffle maker. After several minutes they soften, deflate, and lose their absolutely wonderful crunch — so eat ’em up quickly!

If You Make Donn’s Waffles, a Few Tips

  1. You’ll need 3 eggs total. The way the eggs are listed in the ingredient list may look slightly confusing — especially if you quickly skim the ingredients while make a shopping list. In total you’ll need 3 large eggs, and of that you’ll use two yolks and all three whites.
  2. Before doing anything else, melt the butter. You’ll want to give the butter a few minutes to cool slightly before mixing it into the batter. So melt the butter first, then set it aside while you gather the remaining ingredients and mix the batter.
  3. Serve them immediately. Skip these waffles if you’re cooking for a crowd and save them for a small breakfast at home. Within a few minutes of coming out of the waffle maker, the waffles deflate and lose their ultra-crisp and crackly exterior. And while they’re still okay soft, they’re best served immediately.
  4. Place the cooked waffles on a cooling rack. As for Martha’s recommendation to toss the waffles between your hands, this step very well might keep the waffles crisp longer, but you’re also likely to burn your hands. Instead, place the waffles on a cooling rack, so air can circulate around the waffles.

Have you tried Donn’s Waffles? Let us know in the comments!