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You have the secret to easy crispy waffles in your pantry

Top crisp waffles with berries and whipped cream.
(Caroline Marks / For The Times)

With so many of you having to stay home and cook for the first time — ever or more than you have in a long time — we get that it can be overwhelming to have to cook all your meals from scratch. So we’re here to get you started. Each day we’re going to post a new skill here and go into detail about how to do it — a resource for cooking basics so you can get food on the table and get through this.

A series of simple tutorials for making some basic recipes at home.

Lesson 48: Crisp Waffles

I think Amy Poehler’s character in “Parks and Recreation” said it best: “We need to remember what’s important in life: friends, waffles, work. Or waffles, friends, work. Doesn’t matter, but work is third.” Especially now.

Dead simple and nearly instant, this pantry-staple waffle batter includes an ingredient you already own to guarantee crispness: oil. A few spoonfuls stirred into the blend ensure a shattering golden-brown shell. Usually, you have to take the time and energy to whip egg whites into foamy peaks while dirtying another bowl to get the same crunch effect. Here, you simply whisk the dry ingredients, then the wet, and fold them together. The one technical trick to keeping these waffles tender is to stir gently once you pour those wet ingredients into the dry ones and stop as soon as you can’t see any more traces of flour in the lumpy mix.

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You can get the batter ready in five minutes and cook the whole batch in less than 30. The speed of this recipe makes it doable any weekday, but its keeping power is what makes it special. That oil-induced crispness stays intact — maybe even improves — after freezing and toasting leftovers.

I realize that you can buy frozen waffles, but do they really compare? An Eggo, while amazing, is to a homemade waffle as a Donette is to a freshly glazed doughnut from Randy’s. With waffles, the gap between store-bought and from-scratch is wide enough to notice the difference even after both spend months in the freezer.

With this formula, the neutral-flavored oil not only heightens the waffles’ crispness, it also replaces some of butter’s dairy-sweet creaminess so they’re as tasty with savory toppings as with sweet ones. That makes these versatile waffles ideal for any meal.

Waffles are already the undisputed queen of breakfast foods (sorry, pancakes); the ability to have them every day with toaster-level effort only secures their reign.

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Crisp Everyday Waffles

Time 35 minutes
Yields Makes 6 (7-inch) waffles


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