I am promising you a real treat. A treat that will make you dust off that waffle iron and find a permanent place for that thing on your counter. Move over blender. I had seen quite a few versions of these magical hash brown-waffle amalgamations on Pinterest and after the gazillionth pin, I finally felt compelled to try my hand at my own version. And experiment I did. I made a sweet one with maple syrup and cinnamon. I tried adding eggs for a little extra bulk. I mixed Yukon golds with sweet potatoes and experimented with mixing in nut butters and different cheeses- not in the same waffle, mind you.
While all of those different versions were quite tasty, this smoked paprika and sweet potato one happened to be my very favorite. It is sweet, savory, and VERY addicting. With all of my potato waffle experimenting you think I would have been potatoed out. In reality, I found that these waffles could be frozen, and once reheated in the microwave, they made the tastiest, most satisfying snack. Depending on the flavor combo, I spread them with nut butter, melted on some grated cheese, or like I did here with the smoky sweet potato one, spread them with a layer of thick Greek yogurt. Sweet and savory plus cool and creamy equals win. Add a fried egg on top...mic drop.
One obvious tip that I should have heeded is to grease your waffle iron well. Like really well. Do not spend your day scraping out a waffle iron with a toothpick like yours truly. I used coconut oil for the greasing because I happen to like the slight coconutty flavor, but olive oil works perfectly well. Get it in all of the nooks and crannies. These waffles have little fat in them compared to most breakfast waffles, so this step is essential.
These hash brown waffles are lovely for so many reasons. They are faster than baking a sweet potato, they are neater and cleaner than making hash browns in the skillet, and they are more nutritious than any waffle I have yet to come across.
Smoky Sweet Potato Hash Brown Waffles
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and grated (about 3 - 3 1/2 cups grated), I used a mix of Japanese sweet potatoes and the jewel variety, but any should do
1 small yellow onion, skin removed and grated
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (I used chipotle chili powder for more depth)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon olive oil or coconut oil, plus more for greasing waffle iron
sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, for serving
fresh cilantro and chives, chopped, for serving
Preheat waffle iron on medium-high and grease very, very, very well. Mix sweet potatoes through 1 tablespoon in a bowl until thoroughly combined. Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes to allow mixture to thicken a bit. Spread 1/3 of mixture in waffle iron (these will be slightly smaller waffles). Close, give a short but firm press, and cook until done, about 5 minutes depending on waffle iron. If you peek too early, you'll have a mess on your hands. Remove from waffle iron, and repeat with remaining batter for second and third waffles. Re-grease waffle iron between each waffle. Garnish with yogurt and/or fresh cilantro and chives and enjoy. Makes 3 smaller waffles.
I love this recipe, but its success depends on greasing the waffle iron enough. Don't be shy. Otherwise, you end up with a mess on your hands. Believe me, I've been there. Also, don't overfill the waffle iron or the center won't have a chance to cook! I've made this recipe probably ten times. There was that one batch out of ten that didn't quite work and I think it was because of extra moisture in the potatoes and my impatience. I opened the waffle iron too soon. Be patient!
*Waffles can be made ahead, cooled to room temperature, and frozen for up to one month. Place between sheets of parchment or waxed paper for easy retrieval. Reheat in microwave or toaster oven.