The BEST Vegan Waffles & Blueberry Sauce by @tj_waterfall
So TJ, before we get to the recipe, tell us a little bit about yourself…
My name’s TJ Waterfall and I’m a qualified nutritionist specialising in vegan and vegetarian nutrition. I have a Masters degree in nutrition from University College London and I’m a registered associate nutritionist with the Association for Nutrition. I’m an ethical vegan but also love how all the science and research shows that a whole foods plant based diet really is one of the healthiest ways to live – and it has helped so many of my clients reach their health and fitness goals. I’m also a fitness enthusiast and love learning and challenging myself! Some people have likened me to a vegan Joe Wicks but I like to think I’m a little more scientific and evidence-based in my approach!
Vegan Whole Wheat Waffles
with Blueberry Sauce Recipe
Waffles (6 Waffles)
- 1 cup of whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- Small pinch of sale
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1 cup of soy milk
- 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
Blueberry Sauce (6 Servings)
- 1 cup of frozen blueberries
- 2 tablespoons of maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon of water
- 1 teaspoon of cornstarch
1. Start by making the blueberry sauce. Tip the blueberries, maple syrup and lemon juice into a pan and then simmer over a low heat.
2. In a small cup, stir the water and cornstarch until smooth, then add to the blackberries.
3. Simmer on a low heat for 5-10 minutes until the sauce has thickened.
4. Now turn on the mini waffle maker so that has time to heat up as you prepare the batter.
5. Mix the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a bowl.
6. Add the soy milk, vegetable oil and vanilla extract, then mix until smooth.
7. Pour a small ladle of the batter mixture into the hot mini waffle maker and cook for around 6-7 minutes until golden and crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.
8. Once ready, remove the waffle and set aside on a wire rack while you cook the remaining waffles.
9. Serve with warm blueberry sauce, a portion of fresh fruit and a dollop of your favourite nut butter.
Nb. These waffles can be frozen once cooked and store for up to a month. Simple pop them straight from the freeze into the toaster for 2 minutes and serve with vegan ice cream for a quick evening treat.
Nutrition (per waffle with sauce):
Protein: 3.6g (women: 7.2% / men: 6.5%)
Iron: 1.0mg (women: 6.8% / men: 11.5%)
Calories: 163 (women: 8.2% / men: 6.5%)
Sugars: 10.4g (women: 11.6% / men: 8.7%)
Total fats: 5.4g (women: 7.7% / men: 5.7%)
Saturated fat: 0.6g (women: 3.0% / men: 2.0%)
Salt: 0.1g (women: 1.7% / men: 1.7%)
Fibre: 3.6g (women: 12.0% / men: 12.0%)
How did you start out in the food industry?
I worked in a few kitchens when I was younger so I’ve always had a good understanding of cooking skills, techniques, and how to use flavour combinations, textures, and presentation to create great food. And since then I’ve always continued to cook loads, especially when I cut out meat, eggs and dairy, because I began experimenting even more by making vegan versions of some of my favourite dishes and cuisines from around the world.
What’s your favourite go-to vegan meal and why?
There’s so many options because almost any cuisine from around the world can be made vegan – Indian curries, Chinese noodles, Italian pizzas, British pies, Mexican burritos… you get the idea! But I do often enjoy a stir-fry, because they’re so versatile and it’s easy to pack in loads of veggies while also making them really high in protein by throwing in things like chickpeas, beans, tofu, or tempeh. They’re great for using up almost any ingredients you have lying around and they’re so quick to make – perfect for a busy weekday evening.
You produce lots of very accessible fitness content alongside your vegan recipes. What plant-based protein are most effective post workout?
Any high-protein food is great after a workout – so any meal containing pulses (like chickpeas, beans or lentils), tofu, tempeh, hummus and nuts is great. It also helps to have some carbohydrates after training, because they help to drive nutrients (including amino acids) into your muscle cells to help with muscle repair and growth. And of course there are amazing vegan protein shakes and bars available now which can be really handy if you don’t have time to cook up a meal after your workout.
What’s the best thing about being vegan?
I’d say it’s being able to eat loads without putting on weight! I’m a real foodie and I love eating great meals based around whole plant foods (fruit, vegetables, whole grains, pulses, nuts, seeds, herbs and spices). Because these foods are packed full of fibre and a huge variety of important nutrients while being relatively low in calories, you can typically eat a much larger volume of food without putting on weight, while still getting plenty of protein for building strength and muscle.
There are so many food expose style documentaries out there now, are there any in particular that you would recommend?
There are three documentaries that people say capture three important aspects of the meat industry, that when watched change most people’s whole perspective on eating meat:
Earthlings – To help understand the real conditions that farmed animals live in, despite the image that the meat, egg and dairy industries try to portray.
Cowspiracy – Revealing the true devastating global and local impacts that the meat industries are having on the environment, and how going vegan is one of the easiest and most impactful changes you can make to reduce your footprint on our planet.
What The Health – This contains some robust science showing the health benefits of a whole foods plant based diet. In my opinion it’s a little sensationalised but still contains some good quality evidence.
What advice would you give to someone looking to adopt a plant-based diet?
It’s very straightforward really. It’s about finding a balance that’s not restrictive and allows you to enjoy your favourite foods, while still containing a wide variety of colourful, whole plant foods. Home cook as much as possible for the healthiest meals and take advantage of the vast catalogue of recipes and inspiration on the internet – keep trying new dishes to keep your cooking exciting and varied!
What’s your first food memory?
I spent my early childhood years on a small Channel Island so I always remember making sandwiches with my Grandparents there using fresh white bread – still warm from the bakery – to bring picnics to the beach where we’d spend the whole day swimming in the sea, climbing rocks, and playing games.
What’s your guilty food pleasure and why?
I think it has to be baked beans. I’ve always eaten lots of them since childhood and I know they’re not particularly sophisticated but I do find them comforting from time to time, and no cooked breakfast is complete without them!
Who would be your top three fantasy dinner party guests?
Anthony Joshua, as I love how humble he is despite having become one of the biggest sporting superstars in the world.
Sir David Attenborough, as he really is a true hero of mine. I really admire how he’s used his platform to bring important issues like global warming into the public eye to help drive positive change.
Then finally, Guy Raz. One of my favourite podcasts is How I Built This. I find it so inspiration to hear how people, often from very humble beginnings, have taken risks and overcome adversity to become successful.
What Instagram accounts should we be following for plant-based inspo?