What's The Real Difference Between Belgian Waffles And Regular Waffles?

Waffles are a super popular breakfast fare — and for good reason! They're warm, fluffy, and can be enhanced in a ton of ways: from flavorful syrups and sauces, creamy butters, seasonal fruits, interesting spices, and so many more toppings. Waffles can even be paired with fried chicken for meal that combines both sweet and savory.

As one would expect, waffles have a rich and delicious history. According to Mental Floss, the iconic breakfast food is believed to have originated in Ancient Greece. Known as obelios, they started their legacy as roasted, flat cakes cooked between two metal plates attached to a long wooden handle. The recipe eventually made its way further into Europe via the Catholic Church, where it was revised to incorporate ingredients such as cinnamon, cream, butter, and honey to create a sweeter, thicker dough. Then, in the 15th century, Dutch bakers began using the iconic rectangular-shaped irons. Chowhound explains that Belgian waffles were introduced to the world at the Brussels World Fair Expo in 1958. Just a few years later, in 1962, they made their way to North America specifically through the Century 21 Exposition in Seattle, Washington.

But that's just one variety of waffle — and as consumers know, not all waffles are created equal! While there are many types of waffles, all of which are delicious and loved by breakfast eaters everywhere, two of the most well-known kinds are Belgian and American-style.

It all comes down to shape and texture

The major distinctions between the two have to do with the waffles' shape and texture. According to The Seattle Times, Belgian waffles — also sometimes known as Liege waffles (via Mental Floss) — have deeper square "pockets" formed by the griddle iron. They also have an airier, crispier texture, mainly due to their base including yeast or beaten egg whites. Belgian waffles are traditionally served topped with pearl sugar.

American-style waffles, on the other hand, are thinner and have smaller pockets. Some people like to drench their American-style waffles in syrup, which can result in a mushy, unpleasant heap. To prevent your waffles from getting soggy, it's important to get the recipe just right! American-style waffles are also often found in the frozen aisle of grocery stores, like well-known brand Eggo. These are easy to pop in the toaster or microwave and munch on the go.

No matter which type of waffle you prefer, you're sure to be indulging in a delicious meal that will fill your belly and your heart. Pass the syrup (or pearled sugar), please!