These Healthy Chocolate Waffles will appease even the pickiest breakfast eaters in the family. They make the perfect Mother’s Day breakfast and they’re so yummy and chocolatey, your kids will never know they’re healthy too!
I don’t know about your kids, but mine are 100% obsessed with waffles. They ask for them almost every morning, so we end up making them a lot and I’ve come up with many different kinds, since the basic ones get old after awhile. When I whipped up these the other day, they quickly became their absolute favorite. Because, ummm, they’re chocolate: an instant crowd pleaser. They’re so yummy, my kids have no idea they’re actually really good for them too.
Ingredients in Healthy Chocolate Waffles
- Chocolate protein powder. I use this Garden of Life chocolate protein powder, but any brand you like can be used. Just be sure to stick to the protein powders with 3 grams of sugar or less.
- Whole-wheat flour. Any kind of all-purpose flour will work fine, however, I like to use whole-wheat flour because of the extra fiber, iron, calcium and protein found in it.
- Cocoa powder. I like to add an extra tablespoon of cocoa powder to make it extra chocolatey.
- Baking powder. Although baking soda is also used in this recipe (see below), I like to use baking powder as well, to get a little extra rise in my waffles. It also gives it a richer flavor.
- Baking soda. Baking soda is the base used in this recipe. When used in combination with an acid, like buttermilk, you get fluffy, but tender waffles. You need an acid to react with the base, which creates carbon dioxide. This process allows your waffle to rise very nicely.
- Buttermilk. This is the acid you need to react with the baking soda to create fluffy, tender waffles.
- Eggs. Adding a couple eggs in a waffle recipe will give additional structure to the batter, which will help the waffles rise sufficiently. Eggs are also a great source of protein.
- Peanut butter. I use peanut butter in this recipe purely for the rich, creamy flavor and to give it extra protein.
- Salt. This is optional, but I use a bit of salt to make the waffles more flavorful. Salt also strengthens gluten, so the waffles are less sticky and more cohesive.
- Sweeteners. This is totally optional. My kids put enough maple syrup on their waffles to make them plenty sweet enough, so I never add anything to the batter, but you could absolutely add one or two tablespoons of honey, maple syrup, or coconut sugar to sweeten up your waffle batter, if your kids are more conservative with their sweet toppings than mine. Ha ha!
How to make Healthy Chocolate Waffles
- Mix dry ingredients. Add 1 cup of whole-wheat flour, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, 1/2 cup of chocolate protein powder, and 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder to a medium sized mixing bowl and whisk together.
- Mix wet ingredients. In a separate bowl, beat 1 and 1/2 cups of buttermilk, 2 eggs, and 1/4 cup of peanut butter together.
- Mix everything together. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined. Don’t overmix, but be sure everything is combine.
- Cook. Once your waffle iron has been heated, spray it with cooking spray, then ladle about 1/3 cup of batter onto the hot waffle iron. Sprinkle a small handful of cacao chips to the top of the batter. Close the lid and cook on high. As the waffle cooks, you will see steam releasing. Wait for the steam to stop coming out and then check the waffle for doneness. It will depend on your waffle iron, but it should take around 5 minutes. Once your waffle is done, gently peel it away from the griddle with a fork.
- Eat! These are best enjoyed right away, while they’re still piping hot, with butter and real maple syrup, jam, yogurt, cream, or fruit or berries. However, you can place them on a tray in a warm oven (set at 200 degrees Fahrenheit) to keep warm while you make the rest of the waffles.
- Store. Leftover waffles can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up one week.
Alterations and Substitutions for Healthy Chocolate Waffles
- Double the recipe – Without altering it, this recipe makes about 4 average sized waffles, but it can easily be doubled or even tripled depending on how many you need. They keep well, so we usually make a big batch on the weekends and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator and heat them up for a quick mid-week breakfast. You can keep them in the refrigerator for about a week.
- Gluten-free – If you have a gluten intolerance, no problem! This recipe can definitely be altered to swap out the glutinous flour for your favorite gluten-free blend.
- Nut butter – I use peanut butter for this recipe because it’s usually what I have on hand, but it will be just as yummy if you swap it with a different nut butter. Use the same amount called for in the recipe.
- Dairy-free – Using buttermilk for these waffles is definitely ideal. The mild acidic nature of buttermilk combined with baking soda creates a soft, rich and tender waffle. However, if you are vegan or have a dairy allergy, go ahead and replace the buttermilk with your favorite plant-based milk. You will just need to add one tablespoon of lemon juice to one cup of the plant-based milk you are using.
- Egg-free – Use one mashed banana to replace the eggs called for in this recipe.
- Chocolate protein powder – The chocolate protein powder is what makes these waffles so chocolatey and full of protein. However, if you don’t have any on hand, you can substitute by using more regular cocoa powder (use 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder). You wouldn’t get the added protein, but they would still be super chocolatey.
- Add-ins – I like to hide lots of healthy things in my kids’ waffles, like extra omega-3s, fiber, and superfoods. You can easily add a scoop of ground flax seed, chia seeds, ground walnuts, or açaí berries to the batter without your kids noticing. I used these unsweetened cacao baking chips in my batch of chocolate waffles, but you could use semi-sweet chocolate chips, or even cacao nibs in this recipe instead.
- Toppings – Butter and maple syrup, jam, fruit, yogurt, berries, or whipped cream are favorite topping around here, but what doesn’t go well with chocolate?!
- Pancakes – If you prefer pancakes, you can basically use the same batter, just add a 1/4 cup extra buttermilk, to make the batter thinner.
- 1 cup whole-wheat all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup chocolate protein powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
1. Plug in your waffle iron and turn it on to the high setting. Let it heat up as you mix the ingredients together.
2. Add 1 cup of whole-wheat flour, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, 1/2 cup of chocolate protein powder to a medium sized mixing bowl and whisk together.
3. In a separate bowl, beat 1 and 1/2 cups of buttermilk, 2 eggs, and 1/4 cup of peanut butter together, and the optional sweetener.
4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined. Don't overmix, but be sure everything is well-combine.
5. Once your waffle iron has been heated, spray it with cooking spray, then ladle about 1/3 cup of batter onto the hot waffle iron. Sprinkle a small handful of cacao chips or chocolate chips to the top of the batter. Close the lid and cook on high. As the waffle cooks, you will see steam releasing. Wait for the steam to stop coming out and then check the waffle for doneness. It will depend on your waffle iron, but it should take around 5 minutes. Once your waffle is done, gently peel it away from the griddle with a fork.
6. These are best enjoyed right away, while they're still piping hot, with butter and maple syrup, jam, yogurt, cream, or fruit or berries. However, you can place them on a tray in a warm oven (set at 200 degrees fahrenheit) to keep them warm while you make the rest of the waffles.
Leftover waffles can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up one week.
Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 487Total Fat 13gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 8gCholesterol 99mgSodium 719mgCarbohydrates 67gFiber 8gSugar 6gProtein 30g
Nutrition information will differ depending on the brand of products used.