The Best Way to Keep Pancakes and Waffles Warm

published Nov 29, 2016
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(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

Arguably the trickiest part of making big-batch breakfasts of pancakes and waffles is delivering everything to the table at the same time, still warm and just as good as it is right off the griddle. But it’s totally possible, and actually pretty easy to pull off when you’ve got this strategy up your sleeve.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Grab a wire cooling rack and a warm oven.

To keep waffles and pancakes in pristine condition before the whole lot of them are ready to head to the table, you’ll need a baking sheet, a cooling rack, and a warm oven.

Before you start whipping up any batter, place the cooling rack inside a baking sheet. The wire cooling rack, raised above the baking sheet, allows air to circulate freely, which helps to keep pancakes and waffles warm and prevents them from becoming soggy. If you’re making an extra-big batch of pancakes, double that setup.

Set the duo on a rack arranged in the middle of the oven, and set the temperature to 225°F. This temperature will keep the pancakes and waffles warm without continuing to cook them. By the time your first waffle or batch of pancakes is cooked, both the oven and the rack are warmed and ready.

Respect the single layer.

As you transfer items to the oven, place them in a single, uncovered layer on the wire rack. The problem with stacking doesn’t have to do with keeping food warm — it’s the way it affects the texture of the pancakes and waffles. Instead of coming to the table with light, crisped edges and soft interiors, they become compressed when stacked and held in the oven. Additionally, without the air circulation you get with a single layer, the heat and moisture cause them to steam, and sometimes develop a rubbery or soggy texture. Avoid covering pancakes and waffles with foil for the very same reason.

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