Gaufre de Liege or de Bruxelles?

There is the chocolate. There is the beer. There is the cheese. There are the ‘frites’ (and no, not the French fries). And then there is the Gaufre. Or waffle, as it is internationally known.The most famous of them all is of course the Gaufre de Liége. Legend has it that the Gaufre was invented in the 18th century by the cuisinier of the Prince of Liege. The Prince asked for a sugary pastry, to which his cook mixed sugar and dough and started cooking. The aroma of burned sugar, and vanilla delighted the Prince so much, that the Gaufre became an integral part of the regional cuisine of Liege. The Gaufre de Liege is usually small and very sweet, with a burned sugar coating.

With time the Gaufre travelled through the kingdom of Belgium, and the Gaufre de Bruxelles was born as well. The Brussels waffle is thicker, lighter and crispier, with larger partitions. You can find them all over Brussels and they are usually served with fruits or whipped cream, chocolate sauce or ice cream.

A delight for tourists and locals alike, the Gaufre is now as high ranking as the Belgian chocolate or Belgian beer. Ideally eaten with a Belgian chocolate coating, and washed down with a Belgian beer perhaps? The recipes are endless for the ‘traditional Gaufre de Liege’. One item, which guarantees success, is the gaufre-iron. However as many non-Belgian households do not have them, a baking tin or sheet will do as well.

Then again when going to Liege you are assured that those are the only real, traditionally (and secretly) baked Gaufres. Who knows the real truth but the cook at the court of the Prince of Liege?

250gr butter
250gr sugar
4 eggs
250gr flour
30gr vanilla sugar
1tbsp oil

Warm the butter till almost melted. Mix the sugar in and whisk the eggs, one by one, into the mass. Mix and stir vigorously the flour, vanilla sugar and then add the oil. Continue until you have a smooth dough. Heat the waffle iron and grease it, then pour the dough unto the iron and bake the waffles till golden brown.

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  • Nico

    I have experienced that people over here in the US don’t even know what a Gaufre (or waffle) of Liege is. Belgian Waffles though, is widely known, and Americans mean Gauffre de Bruxelles when they say Belgian Waffle.

    I personally think the Gauffres de Liege are way better (or Luikse wafels as I call them :))

  • Gracianne

    Uhm, love them. I prefer the Brussels version, with strawberries and cream. Thanks for the recipe.

  • chili&vanilia

    Of course love them. Need to stay away from them. Can’t. Never made my own, should give it a try. Or maybe rather not,uhm.

  • Andreea

    nico, i am surprised about the US. all i hear from US tourists is they want to try the belgain waffles 🙂 – agree on the luikse waffle

    gracianne, glad you liked it. personally i tend to go for the liege ones.

    zsofi, fully understand the torment you are going through 🙂 – it’s pure guilt after having one!

  • Nico

    Andrea, you are right, everybody knows about Belgian waffles (even more than chocolate, which I think is odd). But when they say Belgian waffle, they mean gauffre de Bruxelles and not the gauffre de Liege.

  • Alison

    why choose? Eat both! 🙂

  • Mark

    This is so unfair, I am trying to stick to a diet…dam it!

  • marco

    Gaufres from Liege are made from a leaven wet sticky dough with a pearl like sugar that crystallizes when cooked at least thats what I remember when I was in Liege . Does anyone have such a recipe?

  • Mush

    True why choose but for me the Liege wins hands down every time. You can eat it as is cool with your hands or warm watch out for those pearls of sugar htey tend to stay hot longer than the waffle but oh heavenly but if you choose you can add a topping but all in all teh choice is yours and the best part is tasting them all and makin up your mind now if only ,my metabolism moved as fast as i wanted it to life would be sublime and I would never have to stop at just one

  • Bruce

    I would like a gaufre iron that can be used camping. Can anyone help me find one? The ones from Rome and Texport have small holes. I would really like holes like the irons used on the streets in Belgium.

    • charles-marie nicolai

      hello bruce, i have here in the us an autentic belgian waffler iron made in belgium.Is electric 110 volt transform for the us.i am in los angeles my cell phon is 415 6905836 my iron can make 4 waffle at one, have the big hole and can make the big bruxelles waffles or the liege waffles, call me charles-marie.

      • judy

        I read your comment. Wondering have you used your iron? what were the results?

  • Terry

    Huuummm ! Waffle of Liege … I know that very well, very soon available in the USA streets

  • Petzouillexa (Brussels, Belgique)

    I come from Brussels, always lived here and I can tell you GAUFFRES DE LIEGE are the best in the world….

    Gauffres de Bruxelles are too light and tasteless, that’s why they add chocolate, strawberries etc etc… Have a hot gauffre de Liege, you don’t need anything else. Hot is even better and if you can have them freshly baked…woaw. To find the best ones (if you can’t go to Liege), try to buy them on little markets in shops where they bake it… (I had one after lunch by the way…) slurp.

  • Gaufre de Liége it’s a bit heavy for me 🙂 A bit like dense pancake and you can find it even in Delhaize or GB all nicely packed. I preferred Gaufre de Bruxelles because lighter and crunchy. I like to eat sometimes without anything on top and I like it hot fresh from the waffle iron. I even spread Lotus seed paste and Coconut Milk Custard (Kaya) before 🙂 Yet I still love thinly coated Confectioner’s Sugar on top served with quality coffee from Corica or made my own hot Teh Tarik. Simple and heavenly…ummppphhhhh!

  • John

    I lived in Belgium for a year when I was a kid from Michigan and discovered gauffres (and other gastronomical delights) on the streets of Bruxelles. What a delightfully compassionate way to break the news.. that most of the food I had expreienced in the states up to this point had been tasteless rubbish! Thank you merci dankuvel
    To this day I am annoyed when I see Belgian waffle or “Belgium waffle” on a menu, knowing that this will probably just be a big, stupid breakfast waffle. Not even close.

  • I agree for me the Liege waffles are the best!
    I am a Liegeois raised and born in Liege centre ville.
    The gaufre de Liege are in my blood, we eat them anytime of the day .
    There are many recipes available out there, the harder is to find the right pearl sugar the one made in Belgium.
    I’ve find this online store that sell it