We tried the $10 kitchen gadget that makes waffles, hash browns and more

Say hello to your new best friend.
/ Source: TODAY
By Lyn Mettler

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To say my kids enjoy waffles is an understatement. My teenage son can easily down four in one sitting, and my middle school-age son loves them too.

I've always made Eggo frozen waffles, but when I came across this super cute (and popular) Dash Mini Maker, I was in!

The extremely versatile waffle maker

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It's listed as the bestselling waffle iron on Amazon and boasts a 4.5-star rating from over 3,200 reviews.

Among its many functions, it's designed to make individual waffles. We've been using it for a few weeks and it's been a fun addition to our breakfast routine!

I can either make the waffles ahead of time and pop them in the toaster when we're ready to eat them or make them hot and fresh for breakfast.

It's easy to set up

There's nothing to put together when it arrives brand new. Simply take off the plastic, wash it with some dish soap and then plug it in when you're ready to use it.

The device immediately starts to heat up when plugged in, and an indicator light will shut off when it's reached the full cooking temperature.

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Lyn Mettler

The company recommends spraying the waffle maker with cooking spray before use and using a non-metal utensil to remove food from the appliance so it doesn't damage the nonstick surface.

It's easy to use and comes with easy-to-follow recipes

To cook a waffle, you don't need to have waffle mix (though you can opt for that if you like). The Mini Maker comes with a book of recipes that includes one for making your own waffle batter with basic ingredients like flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, egg, milk and butter.

Our waffles turned out great with a slightly brown crisp on the outside (we like our waffles crispy!).

Lyn Mettler

Each item takes about four to six minutes to cook. Just be sure to unplug the device when finished, so it can cool.

The option to make my own waffles means I can not only save money (I spend way too much on frozen waffles every week!), but I can also mix things up a bit and add protein powder when my boys are going to be active, or make a sweet dessert by adding cinnamon and drizzling it all with a bit icing. The included book offers recipes for special treats like these!

The size is very efficient

The Dash Mini Maker is small enough that it easily fits on the counter and then can be moved to a cabinet or drawer when not in use without taking up much room.

Lyn Mettler

It comes in a variety of colors from a more neutral silver to orange, pink, aqua and beyond.

It makes more than just waffles

What I love most about this product is that it can make so many more foods that I never would have imagined.

For example, you can add 3 tablespoons of mashed potatoes to make a "mashed potato bite" or cookie dough to make a cookie waffle.

You can also create an "apple pie waffle" by using two circles of pie crust with applesauce, cinnamon and nutmeg in the middle or use biscuit dough with squares of milk chocolate and marshmallows in the middle for a "smores biscuit."

It's basically the versatile kitchen gadget you didn't know you needed.

For more kitchen gadgets, check out:

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