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Sourdough Waffles with whole grain

Once you make these Sourdough Waffles with whole grain, you’ll never go back to baking powder waffles again. Looking for a weekend breakfast or brunch recipe? Not anymore.

whole grain sourdough waffles

Nothing is better for breakfast than hot and fresh waffles dripping with real maple syrup and maybe a pat of melting butter.

But waffles must be eaten the minute they come off the waffle iron for maximum crunch. So I almost never order them out because they almost always disappoint.

But why would you want to go out for breakfast when you can make these lovelies in the comfort of your own kitchen? They’re crisp and light yet substantial.

Even though I’m a baker by profession, I’m definitely not a morning person. If you’re like me and prefer the least amount of work first thing in the morning, you’ll love this recipe.

Make the sponge the night before, then it takes about a minute to finish mixing the batter in the morning.

sourdough waffle batter

The sponge will become active and rise overnight.

whole grain sourdough waffles

The sourdough starter makes waffles with an open crumb and great chewy texture.

If you don’t have one, check out my post to learn How to Make a Sourdough Starter. Then check out my system to Feed and Maintain Sourdough Starter.

Why Sourdough Waffles are better than regular waffles:

  • Make your sponge the night before with the unfed starter and the sponge will be active and ready to mix by the time you wake up hungry for breakfast.
  • The sourdough starter and whole grains give the waffles a great bread-like chew.
  • A little baking soda is added to react with the buttermilk in the batter.
  • The baking soda gives the waffles a last minute lift for lightness. 
  • For maximum lift use the batter as soon as the baking soda is mixed in because the reaction happens upon mixing, not in the heat of the waffle iron.
  • Serve them hot off the iron or hold them in a 200°F oven if you prefer to serve them all at once. 
  • The waffles freeze beautifully so extras can be placed in a freezer bag for another day. Just pop them in the toaster whenever the mood strikes.

whole grain sourdough waffles

whole grain sourdough wafflesServe these Whole Grain Sourdough Waffles with real maple syrup. I’m a fan of Grade B Maple Syrup‘s strong flavor (it’s sometimes called Grade A extra dark).

For another sourdough breakfast treat, try these Sourdough Pancakes.

I know you hate to throw away that sourdough discard. Check out these recipes that use sourdough discard.

Since you’ve got your starter fed, check out the entire list of My Best Sourdough Recipes. Have fun!

If you love this recipe, I’d appreciate a 5-star review!

Sourdough Whole Grain Waffles

Sourdough Whole Grain Waffles

Yield: 12
Prep Time: 12 hours
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 12 hours 20 minutes

Start making Whole Grain Sourdough Waffles the night before and have hot fresh waffles for breakfast.


Overnight Sponge

  • 1 cup (8 oz, 224g) unfed sourdough starter (100% hydration)
  • 1 cup ( 5 oz, 140g) unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 cup (2.5 oz, 70g) whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup (2.5 oz, 70g) rye flour
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz, 56g) sugar
  • 2 cups (16 oz, 480 ml) buttermilk


  • Sponge
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 6 tablespoons (3 oz, 84g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the starter, all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, rye flour, sugar, and buttermilk. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature overnight.

In the morning:

  1. Preheat the waffle iron. Preheat the oven if you want to hold the waffles before serving.
  2. Melt the butter in a small microwave safe measuring cup or bowl. Whisk the eggs into the slightly warm butter. Add the butter mixture to the sponge. Sprinkle the salt and baking soda over the batter.
  3. Mix until the baking soda and salt are completely dispersed in the batter. Once the baking soda is added you should use the batter immediately.
  4. Make the waffles according to the waffle iron manufacturer's instructions. Serve waffles immediately or hold in a 200°F warm oven till ready to serve.


The starter should be "un-fed" when you mix the sponge. If you keep your starter in the refrigerator just take it out and mix the sponge. If you keep it out at all times, use the starter before the normal feeding.

For a white waffle batter you can use 2 cups of all purpose flour in place of the 3 mixed flours. Or you can use 1 cup of the white and a cup of either the rye or whole wheat flour.

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Saturday 27th of June 2020

I thoroughly love these waffles! I’ve made them with the different grains. As well as with just all purpose flour. Tonight I’m making them with just a mix of AP flour & whole wheat flour. Anyway, I got to wondering if I could replace the rye flour with cornmeal or semolina?

Eileen Gray

Saturday 27th of June 2020

Yup, cornmeal or semolina would add a nice crunch.


Thursday 14th of May 2020

Hello Eileen, Do you think I could substitute kefir for the buttermilk? I make my own kefir so it would save me going out to purchase buttermilk. Look forward to making these..

Eileen Gray

Friday 15th of May 2020

Is kefir the thickness of buttermilk? I'm sure any soured dairy would work. You may just have to adjust for the difference in the liquid if it's thicker, like yogurt.


Tuesday 12th of May 2020

If I don't have (or don't like) whole wheat or rye flour, can I just use 280g of all-purpose?

Eileen Gray

Tuesday 12th of May 2020



Monday 4th of May 2020

I make in in the morning, so how many hours do you think I should leave it out the sponge on a room temperature.? Thank you

Eileen Gray

Monday 4th of May 2020

Since the recipe starts with unfed starter you'll need about 4-5 hours (the exact time is dependent on the activity of your starter) to finish mixing the batter.


Tuesday 21st of April 2020

Thank you for saving me and my family from drowning in sourdough starter!! Honestly, I hate throwing away the "discard" and was starting to run out of space in the fridge, as well as to get on everyone's nerves with my obsession to save every little scrap of this magic substance... :D These waffles tasted great and were a huge success! I will definitely be trying out some of your other discard recipes! Thank you again!

Eileen Gray

Tuesday 21st of April 2020

That's great, Sara. The best part is that they freeze really well. Pop them in the toaster and you have waffles in no time. If you're a chocoholic I highly recommend the Sourdough Brownies!