I have never really been a tater tot person. Tater tots were always too potatoey or too mushy. I always preferred french fries… that is until we spent a week in Big Sur and ate the most amazing and delicious tater tots on the planet at Maiden Publick House. They were crispy and crunch on the outside and hash brown like on the inside. Natalie ordered them and I ate almost half of her order and then got my own the next day.
Since then, I’ve tried tater tots (also called crispy potato bites) at a few upscale, non-chain restaurants, and I’m not yet a convert, but I have been quite impressed at not only the crispiness of the outside, but all the flavors added with toppings.
Recently, I combined my newfound appreciation for tater tots and my experiments with cooking hash browns in the waffle iron to cook tater tots in the waffle iron.
Now, understand, I’m not talking about making Waffled Tater Tots — cooking tater tots in the oven then making them into a waffle. I’m talking about making Tater Tot Waffles — taking the tater tots out of the bag and putting them directly into the waffle iron to cook.
Making Tater Tot Waffles
Out of every creative waffle recipe we have tried and tested, this was by far the easiest waffle to make ever. While we topped our Tater Tot Waffles with sour cream and diced green onions, you really only need one ingredient: tater tots.
The trick is putting the bag of tater tots in the refrigerator and not the freezer when you get home from the grocery store. Frozen tater tots don’t work at all.
After the tater tots have been in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours and your waffle iron is preheated on medium heat, all you have to do is arrange the tater tots over the top of the waffle wells as tightly as you can and close the lid to cook them.
QUICK TIP: The more gaps there are between the tater tots, the more likely it is that your waffle is going to break apart when you try to remove it from your waffle iron — and then you just have tater tots that were cooked in a waffle iron. Still good, but not a waffle.
I let the first Tater Tot Waffle cook in the waffle iron for about 5-7 minutes to get them nice and crispy and to get them to really stick together, and when removing the waffle from the waffle iron, only a couple tater tots fell off. When making the second Tater Tot Waffle, I added a few tater tots on top of any gaps in the single layer of tater tots. It was a little bit harder to close the waffle iron lid, but the extra tots helped that waffle stick together much better.
When the Tater Tot Waffles were done cooking, we topped them with dairy-free sour cream and some diced green onions and pretty much devoured them. I’m glad that no one else was at our house at the time to see us plow through these waffles like giant pigs. I think we even moaned and groaned a bit at the deliciousness we were experiencing. They were SO GOOD. I mean, SO SO GOOD.
QUICK TIP: Don’t just buy plain tater tots, look for seasoned tater tots!
All I could think of was making them again and again with different toppings. These Tater Tot Waffles would be awesome for breakfast, topped with eggs and bacon. They could be topped with barbecue sauce or ketchup or even ranch dressing. They could be a base for anything if you have an imagination.
Waffled Tater Tots
Skip the hash browns and go for the tater tots to make these easy, delicious waffles that are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.
- 1 bag tater tots
- Sour cream
- Green onions
- The night before, or a few hours in advance, put the bag of frozen tater tots in the refrigerator.
- Preheat waffle iron on low/medium heat. Spray generously with olive oil cooking spray and arrange tater tots on the waffle iron, packing them as tightly as you can. Close waffle iron and cook for approximately 5 minutes, or until the tater tots turn a golden brown.
- Remove tater tot waffles from the waffle iron, top with sour cream and green onions, and serve immediately.
1 Bag of Tater Tots made three waffles.
Tater tot waffles are the perfect replacement for hash browns and they cook much faster. Top with ketchup, barbecue sauce, or eggs and bacon — they are the perfect base for all sorts of toppings!