How To Clean a Waffle Maker

Fluffy Waffles recipe

 The Spruce

Waffles are a welcome breakfast treat on a Sunday morning, but what's not welcome is the task of cleaning the gunked-up waffle maker. All of those crevices in the grid are prime batter traps and it can be frustrating.

Don't give up on waffles just yet. Cleanup doesn't have to be a pain if you have a few tricks in your arsenal. Before you cook another waffle, commit these tips to memory.

Steps to Getting That Waffle Maker Clean

The trick to cleaning a waffle maker is timing. It should not be hot, but don't put it off or forget to clean it either. Make a habit of cleaning it as soon as it cools down and you should have no problems.

  1. Wait for the waffle maker to cool before cleaning.
  2. Use a dry paper towel or a damp cloth to wipe away crumbs and soak up excess oil drips on the grid plates.
  3. Use a damp cloth to wipe down the exterior.
  4. To remove stubborn, baked-on batter drips, pour a few drops of cooking oil onto the batter. Let it sit a few minutes to soften, then wipe it away with a damp cloth or paper towel.
  5. Removable cooking plates can be gently washed in warm, soapy water, rinsed clean, and air-dried.
  6. Make sure your waffle maker is completely dry before putting it away.

Don't Forget the Oil in the Grid

After every few uses, you will need to clean up oil that collects in the grid. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Wrap a small piece of paper towel around the pointy end of a chopstick.
  2. Moisten it slightly with white vinegar.
  3. Use it to wipe away the oil and residue within the grid.

5 Tips for Waffle Maker Maintenance

A good waffle maker that you know and trust is a great tool in the kitchen. With a few tips, you can keep it working and looking as good as new.

  1. Always refer to your instruction manual or the manufacturer's website for cleaning tips specific to your waffle maker.
  2. Nonstick waffle makers should only need a light coating of cooking oil before the first time they're used for the day (not before each waffle is made). It's better to use cooking oil either in a refillable spray bottle like a Misto or to brush it on with a pastry brush. Aerosol cooking sprays can leave a gunky residue on the nonstick surface. 
  3. Never submerge an electric waffle maker in water.
  4. Don't use sharp or metal tools to remove the cooked waffles or to scrape off caked-on batter. This may scratch the surface and create future problems with stuck waffles.
  5. If your waffles do begin to stick, make sure that you're greasing the grid with a proper amount of oil. Also, the butter in your batter will play a significant role. The more butter in your recipe, the fewer problems you'll have with stuck waffles.