Round up the kids and tell them to bring their appetites. Hit one of these NJ spots in honor of International Waffle Day on March 25. There are savory picks, sweet treats and everything in between.
Brownstone Pancake Factory
860 River Rd., Edgewater
717 E. Palisade Ave., Englewood Cliffs
This Bergen county staple is a breakfast lover’s dream, and even has Guy Fieri’s seal of approval a la Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. Even though pancakes are their claim to fame, their waffles are nothing to sneer at. Go for the blueberries and cream, made with an addictively delicious blueberry compote made in house; the Praline, which is baked with pecans then topped with caramel and whip, or the Fruity Pebbles, loaded with the namesake cereal then topped with vanilla ice cream, whip and vanilla and raspberry sauces.
Country Pancake House and Restaurant
140 East Ridgewood Ave., Ridgewood
This local fave is famous for its gigantic oven baked pancakes that come with everything from cranberries to shrimp. While there are 112 types of pancakes on the menu, the waffle selection isn’t too shabby either with a whopping 50+ options. Keep it sweet with white chocolate chip waffles topped with strawberries and cherries; autumnal with the sweet potato number served with a side of sour cream; indulgent with the Waffle Matinee served a la mode, or straight-up savory with bacon and cheddar cheese in the batter.
The Pop Shop
729 Haddon Ave., Collingswood, 856-869-0111
1 S. Main St., Medford, 609-975-6888
This cafe and creamery is inspired by ’50s-style soda fountain shops. Pop a coin in the jukebox, take in the retro decor and chow down on something sweet, like the bananas foster waffle with walnuts and caramel, or savory, like the Bank grilled cheese (called the Belmont at the Collingswood location) made with cheddar, chicken fingers and honey mustard sandwiched on Belgian waffles.
494 Broad St., Newark
Known for vintage arcade games and an epic craft beer menu, this bar has a super versatile menu. Among the highlights: The chicken and waffle grilled cheese, packed with crispy fried chicken, maple bacon butter and Sriracha maple syrup.
Bruno’s Chicken & Waffles
907 South Orange Ave., East Orange
This place has way more than just chicken and waffles. You can get yours fresh off the griddle with salmon cakes, grilled chicken, eggs or ice cream. Pair it with other Southern-inspired treats like grits, fried whiting (that’s a fish!), fried chicken wings, biscuits, peach cobbler or BBQ ribs.
Doc’s Waffle House
506 South Orange Ave., Newark
Doc’s doesn’t only serve up delectable soul food, but also hosts occasional community-inspiring events and weekend buffets. While the salmon cakes and grits are not to be missed, it’s International Waffle Day, meaning the chicken (or fried fish) and waffles are the go-tos. Give the waffle iron a break when you get to dessert and hook the kids up with some stick-to-your-ribs banana pudding.
Grid Iron Waffle Shop
12 South Orange Ave., South Orange
If you couldn’t tell by the name, this place’s specialty is waffles, specifically authentic Belgian-style ones, making it the perfect pit stop for International Waffle Day. Stick with the light and fluffy Brussels style with toppings of your choice, or try the real-deal Liège, made with pearl sugar that gives it a famous unique sweetness. If you’re going the savory route, stuff a brioche waffle with scrambled eggs, cheese, bacon or other breakfast delights, or embrace your Jersey Italian with the stromboli waffle, made with pizza dough, stuffed with mutz and parmesan and served with a side of marinara.
123 Plaza Center, Secaucus
This place keeps it simple yet delicious with waffle combos like banana Nutella and caramel apple. Daring eaters will be intrigued by the peanut butter and jelly crunch number, topped with warm peanut butter, raspberry sauce and crushed peanuts, and the strawberry cheesecake, loaded with cheesecake cubes, fresh berries and homemade whip. If you go for lunch, don’t miss out on the adorable wedge sandwiches made from two fresh waffle quarters.
Shut Up and Eat
804 Main St., Toms River
If you thought your kids were indecisive when they couldn’t choose between a burger and hot dog, wait until they get a load of this waffle menu. This spot boasts 80+ waffle choices split into morning and afternoon sections, including flavors like like peanut butter Oreo, pastrami and swiss, pumpkin almond and the Flyin’ Hawaiian, made with bacon, ham, pineapple and apples. The little ones will also go gaga for the waffle sliders.
4 Brothers Breakfasts
41 Mountain Blvd., Ste. E1, Warren
This farm-to-table menu is complete with Jersey produce and Southern classics like fried catfish, cornbread, biscuits and shrimp and grits. But the six chicken and waffle combos are what make this spot a standout. Go for the Stirling Road Classic, an original waffle topped with a crispy breast and leg, or toss it up with the Mt. Bethel carrot cake waffle, the Mountain Blvd. sweet potato waffle or the Washington Rock red velvet.
4 ChiCks CaFe
9 Moran St., Newton
This spot is all about chicken and waffles. Go for a waffle turkey burger, mini waffles with cheddar and chives or classic chicken and waffles. You may want to wear your stretchy pants for the fried chicken sandwiches made with green tomato and cheddar cheese waffles. If the kids’ eyes are bigger than their stomachs, no worries: There’s a kid version of the real thing with chicken fingers and waffle sticks.
12 NJ locations
The kids’ menu here is no joke, complete with items like volcano french toast chock-full of strawberries and whipped cream and creamy white cheddar mac and cheese. It’s strong on the waffle front, too, thanks to the S’mores number with chocolate chips, marshmallows, crushed graham crackers and chocolate syrup. For the grown-ups, go healthy-ish with the Tropical Crunch, loaded with bananas, strawberries, mango and granola with a side of strawberry reduction, or go for the cheat meal-worthy salted caramel, which comes with bacon, vanilla mascarpone, brown sugar walnut crumble, caramel and sea salt.
Want to whip some up on your own for International Waffle Day? Scour the WaffleWaffle online store for Belgian-style liege waffles you can serve up at home.