Buttery, crisp and tender with just a hint of cardamom and vanilla, these Scandinavian waffles are sure to become a family breakfast favorite!
Why This Recipe Works
- Buttermilk gives these waffles a tender texture and a subtly tangy flavor;
- melted butter adds richness and creates a perfectly crisp exterior; and
- the combination of vanilla and cardamom gave them that quintessential Scandinavian touch.
Beatrice Ojakangas, author of the Great Scandinavian Baking Book, says that there are many different Nordic waffle recipes, "one for every Scandinavian cook." The ingredients might differ slightly from recipe to recipe, but they are always very straightforward staples you are likely to already have on hand:
- All Purpose Flour
- Baking Powder and Baking Soda
This recipe requires a waffle maker. Scandinavian waffles are traditionally heart shaped, so a heart shaped waffle maker is an authentically Nordic choice here. But any waffle maker will work just fine with this simple batter.
How To Make This Recipe
- Whisk the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Whisk the wet ingredients together in a separate large bowl. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and fold to combine, being careful to not to over mix.
- Make your waffles according the manufacturer's instructions on your waffle iron!
SO simple and easy!
I've got a few tips and tricks for ensuring that your Nordic Buttermilk Waffles are the best they can be every time:
- Don't over mix the batter. You want to gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients with a rubber spatula until they JUST come together. A few streaks of visible flour here and there is even okay.
- Get to know your waffle iron. Mine works best with a heaping ⅓ cup of batter, and I cook it on the highest setting because I like my waffles to be nicely browned. Your waffle maker might be different! Take time to read the instructions and play around with the settings until you are happy with the results.
- For best results, enjoy immediately! Hot waffles are best enjoyed right from the iron, in my opinion. If you want to keep them all warm so you can eat at the same time, Keep them in a 200 degree oven, preferably on a wire rack set inside of a baking sheet, until you are ready to eat.
Slathered in butter and drizzled with maple syrup, waffles are an American Sunday morning mainstay. But they do waffles their own way in Scandinavia. A few distinct differences:
-They are charmingly heart-shaped.
-The batter is often made with cream or sour cream and sometimes does not contain eggs which results in a less substantial, light and crispy waffle.
-The batter usually contains cardamom.
-Whipped cream and fresh berries or jam are the toppings of choice rather than butter and maple syrup.
Waffles are enjoyed all throughout the year, but they are particularly popular in Sweden on March 25th, Våffeldagen (Waffle Day).
Waffle Day came into being because in Swedish the Christian feast day, Vårfrudagen (Our Lady Day), when pronounced sounds like Våffeldagen (Waffle Day). Our Lady Day is also known as Annunciation Day and is recognized in the Christian faith as the day when the angel Gabriel told the Virgin Mary that she would give birth to Jesus. So Vårfrudagen is celebrated in Sweden by eating waffles.
These waffles freeze really well. Allow them to cool completely and then wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and slip them into a freezer bag. They will keep well in the freezer for a couple of months. When you are ready to enjoy a waffle, simply unwrap the plastic, break the waffle in half and toss it in the toaster. Homemade toaster waffles! But do keep a close eye on them while they toast. They can get overly dark really quickly.
I LOVE these waffles with Whipped Vanilla Skyr Cream and fresh berries. It's tangy and creamy topping made with Icelandic yogurt known as skyr (or substitute Greek yogurt if you like) that is the perfect compliment to waffles and fresh berries. You might also consider a homemade seasonal compote such as Blueberry Cardamom, Roasted Strawberry Rhubarb, Roasted Peach Ginger or Caramelized Apple. SO DELICIOUS!!! Or choose the American route and go with butter and pure maple syrup. You really can't go wrong!
Looking for more festive Scandinavian-inspired breakfast ideas? I've got several delicious options here on the blog:
Nordic Buttermilk Waffles (Hjertevafler)
For the Waffles:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon fine salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- To Serve:
- Fresh berries sliced peaches, jam or fruit compote
- Whipped Cream or Whipped Vanilla Skyr Cream
Special Equipment Needed:
- Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cardamom together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Whisk buttermilk, butter, egg and vanilla together in a large bowl until fully combined. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir gently with rubber spatula until the mixture just comes together (It will not be entirely smooth).
- Heat waffle iron according to manufacturer’s instructions. Cook waffles one at a time until golden brown and crisp. Serve immediately or transfer to a 200 degree oven to keep warm. Serve waffles with fresh berries, sliced peaches, jam, fruit compote, Whipped Vanilla Skyr Cream and/or other toppings of your choice.
If you loved this recipe, give it a star review! Also, snap a picture of your Nordic Buttermilk Waffles and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #truenorthkitchen and tagging me @true_north_kitchen.