Crispy Pumpkin Waffles with Pumpkin Syrup

Every year when fall rolls around, I get excited about all things pumpkin. Pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins and pumpkin pie (my favorite is from Costco…what’s yours?). Even though I love the flavor of pumpkin in baking, I do have one teeny, tiny complaint about this seasonal ingredient. It softens everything up (which can be good in some recipes, but not when you want something crispy). Is it too much to ask for a crispy pumpkin cookie? Or a crispy pumpkin scone? How about a crispy pumpkin waffle? Every year I get excited about making my kids pumpkin waffles for breakfast and time and time again…disappointed in the texture. Well, guess what? This year, the search is over! Ten crispy pumpkin waffles coming right up! These waffles have nice and crispy edges with a soft, light, pumpkin flavor and texture on the inside. Top it with some hot pumpkin syrup and you have yourself a little piece of fall on a plate.

A Little Less Pumpkin Puree Keeps These Pumpkin Waffles Crispy

One of the awesome properties of pumpkin is the amount of moisture it brings to baked goods. This is perfect for these one bowl pumpkin spice muffins where you want a light, fluffy, perfectly moist muffin. Unfortunately this doesn’t bode as well when you are going for a crispy texture. I decreased the amount of pumpkin usually called for in a waffle recipe to half a cup. This still gives the pumpkin flavor but lends to a soft interior while still getting some crispy edges on a waffle. 

Key Ingredient: Cornstarch

Cornstarch is one of those ingredients that seems unassuming but can give you the biggest bang for your buck texture wise. I highlight the importance of cornstarch in these crispy sourdough discard waffles, too. Cornstarch is the key in making these waffles super crispy. The combination of baking these in a waffle iron activates the cornstarch to help give you that really crispy texture as soon as your waffle iron beeps done. Cornstarch also has an added benefit of softening up the waffles so you get both: super soft pumpkiny middle and crispy on the outside.

Drizzled with Pumpkin Syrup

One of my favorite tricks to making a flavored syrup is so simple. Use syrup you already have in your pantry. We use pure maple syrup and have recently started using sugar free as well thanks to having a child with type 1 diabetes–all that to say this trick works great for any kind of syrup you have on hand. Pour about half a cup in a little in a microwave-safe jar. Add in whatever flavor sounds good to you. For blueberry syrup, add a handful of crushed blueberries. For pumpkin syrup, add a tablespoon of pumpkin (and a little sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice). Heat it in the microwave for 10-20 seconds, mix it up and you have a delicious flavored syrup. 

Freeze a Batch

My kids are always excited when waffles are on the menu for breakfast. I will often double this recipe because they freeze well. I stick leftovers in a gallon-sized ziplock and freeze them for a month or two, though they never last that long. To thaw, pull them out a few hours before you need them or (more likely) just give them a quick defrost or re-heat in the microwave (they won’t be crispy) or toaster (this helps them crisp back up) and you have a quick and delicious breakfast on hand. 

One Last “Crispy” Waffle Tip

One of the most important aspects on getting a crispy waffle is cooking the waffle to the recommended time on your waffle iron. We have some inexpensive waffle irons that produce yummy waffles. I don’t think the brand of your waffle iron is a key factor in crispy waffles. Just make sure you cook them until the light goes off and eat them hot for the most crispy edges and soft middle. Waffles that are left to sit out will lose some of their crispiness. You can always re-heat them in the toaster to help bring back the crisp if you aren’t able to eat them right away. Enjoy!

Crispy Pumpkin Waffles with Pumpkin Syrup

A crisp, pumpkin-flavored exterior with a soft, light inside make these the perfect waffles to eat this fall. Top it with some hot pumpkin syrup and you have yourself a little piece of fall on a plate.
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 10 waffles


Crispy Pumpkin Waffles

  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice see recipe notes for substitution
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup pumpkin puree canned pumpkin works best (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • cup vegetable oil coconut oil works here too
  • 2 eggs
  • cup buttermilk see recipe notes for substitution
  • 1 cup milk

Pumpkin Syrup

  • ½ cup maple syrup any favorite kind of syrup will work
  • 1 Tablespoon pumpkin puree
  • ¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice


  • Plug in waffle iron to preheat.
  • Using a whisk, mix together the flour and cornstarch in a bowl. Add brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk together.
  • To a different bowl (or the same bowl if you don’t like to dirty two bowls like me), add the wet ingredients. Add the pumpkin puree, melted butter, vegetable oil, eggs, buttermilk, milk and vanilla extract.
  • Whisk together until fully combined. If batter is too thick, add a Tablespoon more milk at a time until desired consistency is reached. This batter will be a little bit on the thicker side.
  • Using a measuring cup or ladle, pour about ⅓ – ½ cup of waffle batter onto hot waffle iron. Bake according to the directions on your waffle iron. Ours usually take 2-3 minutes per waffle.
  • While waffles bake, mix up pumpkin syrup. To a small jar add ½ cup syrup, 1 Tablespoon pumpkin puree and a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice. Heat for 10-20 seconds and mix together with a fork or spoon until smooth.
  • Serve waffles hot, drizzled with pumpkin syrup.


Buttermilk Substitution: I prefer using buttermilk, but when I don’t have it on hand I will often substitute equal parts greek yogurt/milk or sour cream/milk. Mix it together before adding to a recipe. 
Pumpkin Pie Spice Substitution: If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice, try substituting: 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg and 1/4 teaspoon cloves.
Keyword pumpkin, pumpkin waffles
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  1. Beautiful waffles! I especially loved reading about making different flavors of syrup…perfect!! 🎃🧇😋