The Surprising History of How Waffles Were Invented

Brown Mug With White Cream beside Brown Waffles
Photo by Nataliya Vaitkevich via Pexels

Who first thought to pour batter into a hot iron and create these delightful treats? The history of waffles is in fact a fascinating journey that spans centuries and continents. So, let’s dive in and uncover the story of how waffles were invented.

The origins of waffles can be traced back to ancient Greece. The Greeks cooked flat cakes called “obelios” between two metal plates over an open fire, creating a cake that was crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. These early precursors to waffles were often topped with cheese and herbs.

Fast forward to medieval Europe, and cooks began using patterned irons to create decorative cakes called “oublies.” These treats were often thin and wafer-like, rather than the thick, fluffy waffles we enjoy today.

The waffle as we know it today began to take shape in the 13th century when cooks in Belgium began using leavening agents like yeast to make their batter rise. This resulted in a lighter, airier waffle that was more akin to what we enjoy today. Belgian waffles, with their deep pockets and crisp texture, became a symbol of Belgian cuisine. They were often served as a special treat during religious festivals and celebrations.