Best Waffle Makers of 2018

Rebecca Spear ·
Digital Photo Editing & Small Appliance Writer
Updated
We maintain strict editorial integrity when we evaluate products and services; however, Top Ten Reviews may earn money when you click on links.

We have been reviewing waffle makers since 2013. In our most recent evaluation, we spent over 50 hours making waffles, evaluating each unit’s cook times while also comparing warranties and ease of cleanup. We have determined that the All-Clad Classic Round waffle maker is the best overall due to its seven heat settings, easy-cleaning design, small footprint and consistently crispy waffles. It also features a steam release to prevent your waffles from getting soggy, and the top stays cool to the touch while cooking.

Best Overall
All-Clad Classic Round
The All-Clad Classic Round is the best waffle maker in our comparison because it offers seven different heat settings, creates fluffy waffles and requires very little cleanup.
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Best Value
Cuisinart WMR-CA
The Cuisinart WMR-CA is one of the least expensive waffle makers in our comparison, but it offers five temperature settings and is covered by the longest warranty.
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Best Non-Stick Surface
Chef’s Choice
The Chef’s Choice offers the best non-stick surface to make removing waffles from the griddle incredibly easy. It also happens to offer the most stylish waffle pattern in our comparison.
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Product
Price
Overall Rating
Utility
Prep & Cleanup
Design
Warranty & Support
Outside Stays Cool
No-drip Feature
Time to Ready
Assembly Time
Waffle Removal Grade
Clean-up Time
Removable Plates
Heat-resistant Handles
Waffle Maker Size
Cord Storage
Depth
Height
Upright Storage
Width
Warranty
Phone
Instructional Video
Email
Ready-to-Use Accuracy
Audio Beeper
Ready-to-Eat Light
Multi-tasking
Number of Waffles
Waffle Diameter
Waffle Quality Score
Browning Control
Ready-to-Use Light
Ready-to-Eat Accuracy
$129.50 Amazon
9.3 9.4 8.8 10 9.4
-
6:16
0:30
A
3:31
-
Small
11.75
4.5
8.5
2 years
-
100
-
1
6.5
97
90
$69.99 Amazon
8.6 8.1 9.4 8.8 6.3
-
3:47
0:05
A
4:11
-
Small
9.5
3.5
9.25
1 year
-
-
95
-
1
6.5
89
65
$34.76 Amazon
7 8.8 5 6.3 7.5
-
8:06
2:10
B
8:02
-
Medium
-
11.5
5
-
12
1 year
-
100
-
1
9
77
95
$37.49 Amazon
6.9 6.3 7.5 6.9 7.5
-
-
5:21
1:19
B
3:09
Large
-
14
8
9.75
1 year
-
100
-
-
1
7.5
72
65
$26.95 Amazon
6.8 3.1 10 9.4 10
-
-
2:38
0:10
A
4:41
-
Small
-
9.25
3
7.5
3 years
100
-
-
1
7
59
95
$69.98 Amazon
6.6 6.3 5.6 9.4 7.5
-
3:42
0:05
D
4:49
-
Small
-
9.5
4.5
7.75
1 year
-
90
-
-
1
7
63
-
95
$25.49 Amazon
6.5 5.6 7.5 6.3 7.5
-
3:24
0:05
B
8:57
-
Large
-
13
8.5
-
10
1 year
-
100
-
-
1
7
73
50
$29.90 Amazon
5.6 4.4 5.6 8.1 8.8
-
3:16
0:05
D
4:52
-
Medium
-
11.25
4.25
10
1 year
90
-
-
1
7
71
-
25
Best Value
The Cuisinart WMR-CA is a favorite among waffle makers because it doesn’t cost much, is easy to clean and creates consistent cooking results. Surprisingly, it also has the longest warranty we’ve seen on a waffle maker, spanning three years. This device offers five heat settings to allow you to find the perfect cooking temperature. We did find that the heat levels made our waffles a little crispier than the instructions indicated, but once you adjust to this you will be able to regularly make perfect waffles.
This device makes waffles that are 7 inches wide, which is an average size. We found that any sugary recipes we made were likely to stick to the plates, but this was reduced when we used cooking spray. This machine is pretty easy to clean up since it features a built-in overflow and doesn’t have any crevices where batter can build up. The cord can be wrapped around the base of the unit to save space, and the unit itself can be stored upright. You’ll want to be careful with this unit as the top gets very hot and could easily burn fingers. A light comes on both when the device is ready for batter and when the waffles are done cooking, but there is no audible beep so you need to watch the device while it cooks to prevent burning.
Pros
  • This is an inexpensive device.
  • It has the longest warranty.
  • It produces reliable and consistent cooking results.
Cons
  • The top of the device gets really hot.
  • It doesn’t beep to let you know when cooking is done.
  • Sugary recipes will likely stick to the plates.
$26.95Amazon
Read the full review
Best Non-Stick Surface
The Chef’s Choice waffle maker is designed to help you cook beautiful waffles without making cleanup a huge hassle. The grid plates are made of a non-stick surface that really helps you remove waffles easily and quickly every time you use it. There are a few spots in the unit’s design where batter can pool and get stuck in crevices, which could potentially make cleaning the unit take a little longer. However, this device had one of the quickest cleanup times of any we tested. We love the look of these waffles with their clover design, but they are a half inch smaller than average.
Once plugged in, this device takes under four minutes to be fully heated and ready for cooking. A light turns on when the iron is ready, and there’s an audible beep when waffles are done cooking so you won’t have to constantly monitor it. We noted that the iron was ready for another scoop of batter the moment a waffle was done cooking so you can create plenty of waffles in a short amount of time. Its upright storage design and wrap-around cord helps you save counterspace. The warranty only covers one year, which an average length for a waffle maker but isn't the best we've seen.
Pros
  • The non-stick surface makes it easy to remove waffles.
  • It beeps when waffles are done.
  • This waffle maker is one of the easiest to clean.
Cons
  • The waffles are relatively small.
  • Batter will likely get stuck in some spots.
  • The warranty only lasts a year.
$69.99Amazon
Read the full review
Best Overall
The All-Clad Classic Round waffle maker is the best in our comparison because it consistently makes a crispy waffles, is easy to clean and takes up little counterspace. It is definitely the most expensive unit in our comparison, but it offers many convenient features that justify the price. There are seven different heat settings to help you find the perfect toasting level for your waffles. Since it features a steam release, you won’t have to worry about making soggy waffles. When we tested this device, it consistently made crisp, fluffy waffles every time we used it.
It makes waffles that are 6.5 inches in diameter, which is a little smaller than average. A light turns on when the machine is ready to cook, and it beeps when your waffles are done cooking so you don’t have to constantly monitor it. The locking clips on this device get very hot, so you’ll need to unclip it before you turn it on or you might burn your fingers. While most waffle makers claim to have a non-stick surface, the All-Clad truly does. Even mix-ins such as blueberries and chocolate chips come off easily. There are no tricky areas where batter can sneak in and build up, so we found cleaning this device to be very easy. When you are done cooking, the cord wraps around the base of the unit and it can be stored standing up to help save counter space. All-Clad covers this waffle maker with a two-year warranty, which is longer than many of the other warranties in our comparison.
Pros
  • The cord wraps around the base to save you counter space.
  • This is one of the easiest waffle makers to clean.
  • It lets you know when you can add batter and when your waffles are done cooking.
Cons
  • This is a pricey unit.
  • It makes relatively small waffles.
  • The locking clips get very hot.
$129.95Amazon
Read the full review
Best Value
The Cuisinart WMR-CA is a favorite among waffle makers because it doesn’t cost much, is easy to clean and creates consistent cooking results. Surprisingly, it also has the longest warranty we’ve seen on a waffle maker, spanning three years. This device offers five heat settings to allow you to find the perfect cooking temperature. We did find that the heat levels made our waffles a little crispier than the instructions indicated, but once you adjust to this you will be able to regularly make perfect waffles.
This device makes waffles that are 7 inches wide, which is an average size. We found that any sugary recipes we made were likely to stick to the plates, but this was reduced when we used cooking spray. This machine is pretty easy to clean up since it features a built-in overflow and doesn’t have any crevices where batter can build up. The cord can be wrapped around the base of the unit to save space, and the unit itself can be stored upright. You’ll want to be careful with this unit as the top gets very hot and could easily burn fingers. A light comes on both when the device is ready for batter and when the waffles are done cooking, but there is no audible beep so you need to watch the device while it cooks to prevent burning.
Pros
  • This is an inexpensive device.
  • It has the longest warranty.
  • It produces reliable and consistent cooking results.
Cons
  • The top of the device gets really hot.
  • It doesn’t beep to let you know when cooking is done.
  • Sugary recipes will likely stick to the plates.
$26.95Amazon
Read the full review
Best Non-Stick Surface
The Chef’s Choice waffle maker is designed to help you cook beautiful waffles without making cleanup a huge hassle. The grid plates are made of a non-stick surface that really helps you remove waffles easily and quickly every time you use it. There are a few spots in the unit’s design where batter can pool and get stuck in crevices, which could potentially make cleaning the unit take a little longer. However, this device had one of the quickest cleanup times of any we tested. We love the look of these waffles with their clover design, but they are a half inch smaller than average.
Once plugged in, this device takes under four minutes to be fully heated and ready for cooking. A light turns on when the iron is ready, and there’s an audible beep when waffles are done cooking so you won’t have to constantly monitor it. We noted that the iron was ready for another scoop of batter the moment a waffle was done cooking so you can create plenty of waffles in a short amount of time. Its upright storage design and wrap-around cord helps you save counterspace. The warranty only covers one year, which an average length for a waffle maker but isn't the best we've seen.
Pros
  • The non-stick surface makes it easy to remove waffles.
  • It beeps when waffles are done.
  • This waffle maker is one of the easiest to clean.
Cons
  • The waffles are relatively small.
  • Batter will likely get stuck in some spots.
  • The warranty only lasts a year.
$69.99Amazon
Read the full review

Why Trust Us

We have been testing waffle makers for the past five years. Our goal in choosing the best overall product was to find a reliable device that makes the cooking process convenient. We brought the best machines into our test kitchen so we could try them for ourselves and make informed comparisons.

How We Evaluated

In our testing, we compared nine waffle makers by cooking more than 240 waffles. After all was said and done, we spent over 50 hours researching, testing and comparing. We wanted to determine the convenience and reliability of each product and did so by making a list of each device's features and comparing them against each other.

More points were awarded to products that feature an audio beeper since this allows you to focus on other things instead of constantly monitoring your waffle maker until it is done cooking. We measured the accuracy of each waffle maker's light and sound indicators. Points were also awarded to devices that made waffles that were 7 inches wide or larger since this gives you more food.

We determined our design ratings based on how much space the unit takes up on a countertop. Smaller products that can store upright with cords wrapped up scored higher since this saves more room. Waffle makers with heat-resistant handles were also awarded more points since they are less likely to burn you.

We timed the heat-up, cooking and clean-up times of each device and awarded more points to the machines that save you time. Since clean-up can be a tricky and unpleasant process, we also awarded more points to units that feature a no-drip design and non-stick surfaces. The standard warranty for waffle makers covers one year. We awarded more points to products that had longer than average warranties.

How Much Does a Waffle Maker Cost?

There are waffle makers on the market to fit every budget—ranging between $20 and $60. Most of the waffle makers we tested were around $50 but there are some as much as $130. We recommend buying a mid-priced model to get a longer device lifespan and cooking quality, as you get the same results you would from a high-priced model.

How to Choose a Waffle Maker

Because these appliances perform a simple task, we wanted to pick ones that are easy to use. We whipped up a traditional homemade batter and made multiple batches with each waffle iron to see if they could produce consistent results. We also tested each machine with a blueberry batch and a chocolate chip batch to see how well each device handled mix-ins.

To better understand the lifespan and reliability of these appliances, we spoke with the general manager of a popular breakfast food franchise to see how often waffle makers in his busy establishment needed to be replaced. He told us that the machines themselves last long periods, but that the waffle plates need to be replaced every six months for optimal waffle making. While it’s unlikely that you’ll use your waffle maker as often as a busy restaurant, the material your waffle plates are made of will determine how long they last and how easy cleanup is.

We spoke with Alexus, an appliance associate at Best Buy. She told us that the best waffle makers use cast iron or cast-iron-blend plates. “You can tell by how it feels if it is a quality material. It also makes the waffle maker easier to clean.” In addition to lasting longer and being easier to clean, cast iron materials make it easier to remove waffles from the warm griddle.

Most modern waffle machines come with a light or a buzzer, or both, to indicate when the surfaces are hot enough to cook and another light or alarm to indicate when the waffles are done. We observed whether these indicators could accurately tell when the appliance was ready to work and when the waffles were actually ready to eat. We also made note of which waffle makers were the fastest.

One reason waffle makers are generally only given countertop space on the weekend is their reputation for being difficult to clean. It can be hard to keep the batter from running over the sides during the cooking process and to clean everything up afterward. We timed how long it took us to get everything clean following the manufacturer's instructions.

We paid attention to how easy the waffle makers are to assemble as well. Most come fully assembled, but any that were difficult to get from box to waffle-making received lower scores.

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