Overnight Yeasted Whole Wheat Waffles


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overnight yeasted whole wheat waffles

Overnight Yeasted Whole Wheat Waffles are made with 100% whole wheat flour. They are mixed in a single bowl and refrigerated overnight so they can be cooked whenever you’re ready in the morning. The yeast in the batter makes these super light and fluffy. They are naturally egg-free.

We’re headed into the long weekend, and I’ve got baking, grilling, and cozy family breakfasts on the brain. Hopefully you have something relaxing planned, although I expect that this Memorial Day weekend will look different for most of us than it has in years past.

pouring syrup on whole wheat waffles topped with raspberries

I stumbled on the idea of yeasted waffles out of semi-necessity. There are weekend mornings at our house that feel long, and leisurely. And then there are weekend mornings when all three kids wake up half-starved in that kid-specific I-must-eat-immediately sort of way. And though we’ve always got cereal ready to pour, I’m partial to a warm Saturday or Sunday morning breakfast.

For nearly a decade we’ve made these Whole Wheat Waffles or these Whole Wheat Pancakes (which are really the same recipe with different cooking methods). The 100% whole wheat flour has so much more flavor than white flour and it’s a bonus that it’s a bit more nutritious too.

But these yeasted waffles! Making waffles that rise with yeast (instead of baking soda or baking powder) has three big benefits:

  1. The batter can be mixed ahead and refrigerated overnight
  2. The texture is super crisp on the outside and tender on the inside
  3. The flavor has a subtle, rich tanginess from resting (much like the tang in sourdough bread)

overnight yeasted whole wheat waffles in a waffle maker

The result is waffles that taste like something special. Crisp yet tender, light but rich in flavor, great with fresh berries or a drizzle of maple syrup.

Here’s how to make them.

Ingredients for Yeasted Waffles

  • Whole Wheat Flour – These are made with 100% whole wheat flour. No all-purpose flour needed.
  • Milk – Any type will work. Non-dairy milk works just fine here.
  • Butter – Use unsalted butter or, if using salted butter, omit the extra salt in the recipe.
  • Sugar – You’ll need sugar to activate the yeast. A little bit of extra sugar helped to balance the nutty / slightly savory flavor of the whole wheat flour. This makes a waffle that is sweet enough you can eat it just with a spread of butter and skip the syrup if you’d like (though why would you?).
  • Fast-Acting or “Instant” Yeast – Yeasted Whole Wheat Waffles rely on Fast-Acting or Instant Yeast to give them a fast, super high rise, making the batter light and fluffy. Be sure to use yeast that is labeled as Fast Acting, Instant, Quick-Rise, Bread Machine, or RapidRise. Do not use “Active Dry Yeast” for this recipe (it needs to be dissolved in water before using).
  • Baking Soda – A bit of baking soda in the batter helps the crust of these waffles to get golden and lightly crisp.

pouring milk into waffle batter in a white bowl

stirring waffle batter in a white bowl

How to Make Overnight Yeasted Whole Wheat Waffles

These are so easy!

  1. Heat Milk – You’ll need warm milk in order to activate the instant yeast. Heat it in the microwave or on the stove until it is warm (but not hot).
  2. Mix batter – Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. (Important – you need to use a VERY large bowl here. The batter can expand up to 3x its original volume. See below.)
  3. Let rise – Leave batter at room temperature for 2 hours or transfer it to the refrigerator and let it rise for up to 12 hours. 
  4. Cook – Cook the waffles according to directions for your waffle maker. This makes 4-6 waffles, depending on the size of your waffle maker. 
  5. Enjoy!

adding waffle batter to a waffle maker

How High Yeasted Waffles Rise

You won’t believe how light and fluffy this batter gets thanks to the instant / fast-acting yeast! 

Here is the batter right after being mixed.

waffle batter in a clear bowl before rising

And here is the batter after 12 hours in the refrigerator. 

waffle batter almost overflowing a clear bowl after rising

Be sure to use a very large bowl!

How to Freeze Waffles

Cooked waffles are one of my favorite things to have in the freezer.

To freeze waffles, place the cooked waffles flat (or slightly overlapping) on a large sheet pan. (Note: I usually tear them into quarters before freezing so that we can just reheat a couple pieces at a time.) Freeze until solid, about 2 hours. Transfer frozen waffles to a freezer-safe bag. Freeze for up to 6 months.

To reheat, toast frozen waffles in a toaster bake in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes. 

More Family-Favorite Breakfast Recipes

  • Whole Wheat Blueberry Pancakes – Whole wheat blueberry pancakes are light, fluffy and made in just one bowl.  Packed with fresh or frozen blueberries it’s a healthy, delicious breakfast you can feel good about.
  • Make-Ahead Breakfast Burritos – These easy make-ahead breakfast burritos are filled with scrambled eggs, bell peppers, ham, and cheese. Easy to freeze, and even easier to bake straight from the freezer, these make a great breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Top them with guacamole, sour cream, or salsa!
  • Mason Jar Overnight Oats {Meal Prep} – Make a week’s worth of overnight oats in just a few minutes with this easy Mason Jar meal prep.

Favorite Tools

  • Waffle Iron – This is the exact model I’ve had and used for years and the price tag gives me all the heart eyes. It says it makes Belgian waffles, but they’re not quite as thick as most Belgian waffles I’ve had. I’ve found that an inexpensive model of waffle iron can make some pretty awesome waffles. No need to spend a ton of $$.

overnight yeasted whole wheat waffles on a white plate, topped with syrup and raspberries

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whole wheat waffles on a white plate
4.59 from 29 votes

Overnight Yeasted Whole Wheat Waffles

Crisp on the outside, tender and fluffy on the inside, Overnight Yeasted Whole Wheat Waffles are made with 100% whole wheat flour. The batter is mixed in a single bowl and refrigerated overnight so they can be cooked whenever you’re ready in the morning. You won’t believe how light and fluffy this batter gets thanks to the addition of instant yeast!
This recipe makes 4-6 waffles, depending on the size and type of waffle iron used. (To increase, click on the number next to “servings” to scale the recipe.)
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Rise Time: 8 hours
Total: 8 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 4


  • waffle iron


  • 2 cups Milk, any type
  • 6 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup (50g) Sugar, granulated
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 2 1/4 cups (270g) Whole Wheat Flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp Instant / Fast Acting Yeast
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • Butter, syrup, and / or berries (for serving)


  • Heat milk on the stovetop or in the microwave until it is warm (but not hot) to the touch.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine melted butter, milk, sugar, and salt. (Note: Important - use a very large mixing bowl as the batter will expand up to 3x its original volume as it rises.)
  • Add flour, yeast, and baking soda all at once and stir until smooth.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a lid.
  • Leave batter to rise on the counter for 2 hours or transfer to the refrigerator for up to 12 hours.
  • When you’re ready to make the waffles, heat a waffle iron according to manufacturer's instructions.
  • Spray the waffle iron with nonstick cooking spray or lightly grease with melted butter.
  • Spoon the waffle batter into the iron, being careful not to deflate it too much (you don't want to lose all of the bubbles in the batter that will give the waffles their light texture).
  • Cook waffles until golden brown on both sides.
  • Serve immediately with butter, syrup, and / or fresh berries.


Yeast - 2 1/4 tsp of Fast Acting or “Instant Yeast is one 1/4 oz packet of yeast (often sold in 3-packet sets). Be sure to get yeast labeled as Fast Acting, Instant, Quick-Rise, Bread Machine, or RapidRise - any of these will work. Do NOT use “Active Dry Yeast” for this recipe; it needs to be dissolved in water before using. 
It is really important to use a large bowl for this batter as it will rise very high. If in doubt, put the bowl on a large baking sheet so that the pan will catch any overflow if it rises out of the bowl. (I speak from experience, having to clean up my refrigerator at least once while testing this recipe.)


Calories: 251kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 58mg | Sodium: 361mg | Potassium: 226mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 730IU | Calcium: 143mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $4.00
Calories: 251
Keyword: Instant yeast recipes, overnight waffles
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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at InquiringChef.com. She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

4.59 from 29 votes (29 ratings without comment)

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    1. Oh no – you don’t need any eggs in this recipe. The batter sits out at room temperature overnight and rises during that time, so the lift comes from the yeast. No eggs needed.