This just in from F&W's Justin Chapple: your waffle iron is the perfect tool for lightning fast desserts.

Hannah Walhout
September 18, 2017

If there's one thing we've learned from Food & Wine’s resident Mad Genius Justin Chapple, it’s that the waffle iron is a vastly underappreciated dinner appliance. Use it to make waffle iron hashbrowns or kimchi potato cakes. Use it to make the easiest-ever omelet. Use it to recycle of all those Thanksgiving leftovers. Use it for all manner of savory, waffle-shaped weeknight dinners. You’ll start seeing your waffle iron in a whole new light.

But this week, we’re getting back to basics with a mad genius tip—this one firmly on the sweet side. “Have you ever had an intense brownie craving,” asks our Deputy Test Kitchen Editor, “only to realize it takes 45 minutes to bake them?” The waffle iron, yet again, saves the day. With this tool, Justin says you can satisfy your sweet tooth in a fraction of the time.

Simply whip up your favorite brownie mix—store-bought works great, but for the homemade route check out our recipe collection—and spoon it onto a preheated waffle iron, spreading the batter to the edges and proceeding as with a typical waffle. “In about five minutes,” says Justin, “you’re going to have a warm brownie.” The nooks and crannies of the waffle shape will satisfy those lovers of crispy brownie edge pieces, and also provide excellent terrain for toppings.

For Justin, these chewy chocolatey waffles are “the foundation for the most incredible ice cream sundae.” His toppings of choice? Vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce, whipped cream, sprinkles, and a cherry on top. The possibilities are endless, from whipped cream and piles of fruit to a large-format banana split for the whole table—check out our ice cream sundae recipe guide for inspiration. And if you’re just getting started on the waffle bandwagon, take a look at our waffle iron picks.

For more of Justin’s easy kitchen hacks, check out the rest of Food & Wine’s Mad Genius Tips.