Savory Herb and Cheese Waffles with Creamy Chive Sauce

Savory Herb and Cheese Waffles with Creamy Chive Sauce
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About This Recipe

In the heart of California's wine country, where the valleys of Napa and Sonoma stretch out and intertwine like the vines themselves, the rich tradition of food and wine pairing is as old as the first grapevines planted in this fertile soil. Here, in the midst of rolling hills and sun-kissed vineyards, lies a culinary secret that promises a delightful departure from the usual breakfast fare. Allow me to introduce you to the Savory Herb and Cheese Waffles with Creamy Chive Sauce – a waffles recipe that pays homage to the flavors and ingredients of Northern California.

The inception of this dish takes us on a little journey. On a breezy morning stroll through Napa's local farmers market, I was inspired by the fresh herbs that Napa is famed for. Rosemary, thyme, and parsley, each brimming with aroma, became the soulful stars of these waffles. Combined with the sharpness of cheddar cheese, sourced from the dairy farms dotting the countryside, these waffles burst with a savory richness. But what elevates the dish to the next level is the creamy chive sauce – a nod to Napa's affinity for creamy textures and nuanced flavors.

But here in the wine country, no dish is truly complete without the perfect wine to complement it. To enhance this waffles recipe's savory profile, a wine with crisp acidity and balanced notes is crucial. This brings us to our first pairing: Chardonnay. This white wine, celebrated for its buttery undertones and subtle citrus hints, offers a delightful dance with the creamy cheese and chive sauce. And for a taste that truly represents the region, one must look to Napa's own Cakebread Cellars and Sonoma's Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards. Both these vineyards craft Chardonnays that possess the elegance and freshness to complement the depth of our savory waffles.

Yet, for those who wish to venture a tad off the beaten path, a glass of Grüner Veltliner is an enticing choice. Known for its tangy green apple and peppery notes, this wine adds zest and life to each bite. While not native to California, Napa's Stony Hill Vineyard and Sonoma's age-old Gundlach Bundschu Winery have masterfully cultivated this Austrian varietal, ensuring that every sip is both refreshing and reminiscent of the valleys it's grown in.

For visitors to Napa and Sonoma, experiencing this dish is akin to savoring the spirit of wine country on a plate. Whether you're enjoying it as a hearty breakfast before a day of wine tasting or as a unique brunch offering amidst the vineyards, it promises to be unforgettable. And as you raise a glass of the region's finest Chardonnay or take a sip of the vibrant Grüner Veltliner, remember that this isn't just a meal. It's a celebration of the flavors, history, and passion that make Napa and Sonoma the revered wine destinations they are today.

So, if you find yourself wandering the picturesque streets of wine country, let your senses guide you. Dive into the local eateries, explore the vineyards, and discover the stories behind every bottle and plate. And should you stumble upon a waffles recipe that takes you on a journey through flavors and time, know that it's the heart of Napa and Sonoma you're tasting – one savory, wine-paired bite at a time.

Hero Ingredient Spotlight: Chives

The Charming Chive: More Than Just A Garnish

In the realm of culinary herbs, chives often take a back seat, relegated to a mere garnish. However, in our Savory Herb and Cheese Waffles with Creamy Chive Sauce, chives come front and center, adding a burst of flavor, a pop of vibrant color, and a delightful, delicate crunch.

Chives belong to the same family as onions, leeks, and garlic, known as the Allium family. Their subtle onion-like flavor and eye-catching green hue make them an ideal ingredient to enhance both the taste and aesthetic of dishes. Rich in vitamins and minerals, including vitamin K and vitamin C, chives not only bring flavor but also nutritional benefits to the plate.

In the Napa Valley, where herbs are celebrated for their ability to elevate a dish, chives are a must-have in every chef's garden. They are perennial plants, which means they grow back year after year, offering a constant supply of their slender, tubular leaves. In spring, chives even produce beautiful, edible lavender flowers that can be used in salads or as garnishes.

Whether sprinkled over salads, stirred into sauces, or folded into batters like in our waffle recipe, chives are the unsung heroes of the herb world, deserving of their moment in the culinary spotlight.

How To Properly Mix Waffle Batter

  1. Start with room temperature ingredients. This ensures even mixing and better consistency.
  2. Always whisk the dry ingredients first. This distributes the baking powder and soda evenly throughout the flour.
  3. Combine wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Mixing them separately ensures that they are well integrated before being added to the dry ingredients.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently fold the ingredients together. The key is to mix until just combined to avoid overmixing, which can lead to dense waffles.
  5. Fold in any add-ins, like cheese and herbs, last. This ensures they are evenly distributed without overworking the batter.

FAQs About Savory Herb and Cheese Waffles

  1. Can I use a different cheese other than sharp cheddar? Absolutely! Feel free to experiment with cheeses like Gouda, Pepper Jack, or even Feta. However, choose a cheese that melts well for the best texture.
  2. I don’t have buttermilk. What can I use as a substitute? You can make a homemade buttermilk substitute by adding 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to 1 cup of milk. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, and it's ready to use!
  3. How do I store leftover waffles? Cool the waffles completely, then store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can also freeze them for longer shelf life.
  4. I have a nut allergy. Is this recipe safe? This waffle recipe does not contain nuts. However, always ensure the other products you use, like buttermilk or baking powder, are processed in a nut-free facility if you have severe allergies.
  5. Can I use dried herbs instead of fresh? Yes, you can use dried herbs, but they have a more concentrated flavor. Typically, you'll want to use 1/3 the amount of dried herbs as fresh.

Tips for Success

  1. Preheat Your Waffle Iron: A fully preheated waffle iron ensures even cooking and a crispy exterior.
  2. Don't Overmix the Batter: Overmixing can develop the gluten in the flour, resulting in tough waffles. Mix until just combined for a fluffy texture.
  3. Use Fresh Herbs: While dried herbs can work, fresh herbs provide a burst of flavor and aroma that elevates the dish. When using fresh herbs, finely chop them to release their oils and flavors.

Recipe Overview

Savory Herb and Cheese Waffles with Creamy Chive Sauce
Lily Anderson
6 servings
Calories Per Serving:
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:

Ingredients List


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup freshly chopped herbs (rosemary, thyme, and parsley work well)
  • 1/4 cup freshly chopped chives, for the batter
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped chives, for the sauce
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Step-by-Step Directions

  1. Start by preheating your waffle iron.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the buttermilk, melted butter, and eggs until well combined.
  4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and stir gently.
  5. Fold in the cheddar cheese, herbs, and 1/4 cup chives until just combined. Avoid overmixing.
  6. Spoon batter into the preheated waffle iron and cook according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  7. While the waffles are cooking, prepare the creamy chive sauce. In a medium bowl, mix together sour cream, mayonnaise, lemon juice, the remaining chives, salt, and pepper. Stir well until smooth.
  8. Serve the savory waffles hot with a dollop of creamy chive sauce on top.

Share Your Results

Was it everything you dreamed it could be? Let me know how it turned out for you and share a picture on social media with the hashtag #LilyCooksNapa

Hello and welcome to Napa Home Chef! We're thrilled you're joining us to explore the vibrant world of wine country cooking. Our team has crafted bold, creative recipes inspired by Napa Valley's lush landscapes, bountiful harvests, and world-renowned wines. We hope you enjoy the journey with us!

Get ready to experience the rich flavors and unique culinary delights that embody the essence of wine country living. Happy cooking!

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