What many of us grew up recognizing as a simple breakfast staple actually has deeper culinary roots and is quite a revered dish in other parts of the world, especially in countries like Belgium and France. The waffle is basically batter cooked between two plates, known as a waffle iron. It’s often the pattern, size, shape and dough recipe that set waffle varieties apart. In Belgium, there are over a dozen different types of waffles available — typically very different from what you find classified as “Belgian” waffles in the United States. And in places like the Netherlands, you can try a radically different waffle treat that has caramel sandwiched between two thin waffles, called a stroopwafel. Surprisingly, you can try many different waffle varieties without ever having to leave the city of Sacramento. So, whether you are on the hunt for a traditional Belgian-style waffle, an American breakfast waffle, chicken and waffles or even a Dutch stroopwafel, here are five spots where you can find the best waffles in Sacramento.
One of the coolest things to roll through Sacramento is the Volkswaffle food truck, serving up the very traditional — and lesser-known — Liege-style waffle from Belgium. Brussels-style waffles are typically more what you find in the States, but well-traveled waffle enthusiasts often agree that a Liege-style waffle is impossible to beat. Hailing from the city of Liege, it’s sweeter, more dense and often served as a handheld snack in parts of Europe. Don’t put syrup on these — the pearl sugar chunks make this treat divinely edible just plain, but you will also see them served with heaps of whipped cream, chocolate, strawberries and even bananas. Volkswaffle gets its dough straight from Belgium and has done an awesome job in bringing Sacramento residents a real taste of Liege. Check Volkswaffle’s Twitter and Facebook feeds for the truck’s daily locations.
1116 15th St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
Given the absence of a Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles in Northern California, many Sacramento residents agree the chicken and waffles at Cafeteria 15L are the next best thing to driving down to LA. Cafeteria 15L’s Chicken and Waffles entree is served with a fried chicken breast, tabasco-black pepper, country gravy, Belgian waffle, pecan butter and a side of maple syrup. If you aren’t a fan of chicken and waffles, the weekend brunch menu also includes malt waffles, chocolate banana waffles and even a breakfast waffle sandwich with scrambled eggs, bacon, Fontina cheese, waffle and breakfast potatoes.
1583 W. El Camino Ave.
Sacramento, CA 95833
If you are looking for a solid breakfast waffle, the chain of Country Waffles is a good place to start. Country Waffles uses its original Pennsylvania-style waffle recipe, which is available with a variety of toppings — peanut butter and banana, cinnamon apple, caramel pecan and banana, strawberry, blueberry or just plain.
1111 21st St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
The old adage that everything is better with bacon rings true here. Lucky Cafe took that saying to heart and offers a waffle with bacon cooked right into it. Lucky Cafe is conveniently located downtown and is consistently rated as one of the top breakfast spots in Sacramento. Lucky Cafe offers other waffles as well, and its homemade breakfast sausage and lengthy omelet menu are also worth checking out.
1821 Howe Ave.
Sacramento, CA 95825
You might be confused at the inclusion of Cost Plus on this list for best waffles in Sacramento; however, if you are curious about trying the Dutch stroopwafels, this is your best bet without having to order them online or drive into the Bay Area to one of the bigger Dutch markets. The name stroopwafel basically translates to syrup waffle or caramel waffle. These over-the-top sweet treats are a staple in the Netherlands, with large and mini versions available. Stroopwafels date back to the 18th century in the town of Gouda in the Netherlands. At one point there were nearly 20 factories dedicated to making these iconic treats. Unfortunately, only a fraction of these remain open today.
Erin De Santiago is a freelance travel and food/wine writer and photographer from Sacramento, California. She is a regional membership coordinator for the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA) and writes for a number of publications in addition to publishing her own blogs. She has traveled to over 40 countries on five continents in search of the best food and wine around the globe. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.