Ever since Dominique Ansel debuted the cronut in 2013, a whole slew of other croissant-based spin-offs have hit the market, from cruffins (croissant-muffins) to crotillas (croissant-tortillas). Running parallel to that craze is people’s ongoing obsession with sticking practically any food —grilled cheese, pizza, polenta, cinnamon rolls, omelets, you name it—into their waffle maker and marveling at the results.
So it was really only a matter of time before the trends themselves crossed paths; i.e., until someone slapped croissant dough on their waffle iron and christened it a croffle. As Eater reports, this culinary innovation first appeared back in 2015 via Food & Wine, and further gained traction when pastry chef Louise Lennox unveiled her version two years later. From there, it traveled to South Korea, where it’s recently become a facet of Seoul’s street food and café scene.
In other words, the croffle has been quietly climbing the food fad ladder for some years—and it’s finally gotten its big break in New York City, thanks in large part to Croffle House, a new bakery in Queens. The bakery is the brainchild of William Ham and pastry chef Kooksu Kim, who first tried his hand at croffle-making during a 2019 trip to Seoul. While Food & Wine’s croffle recipe entailed putting premade puff pastry in a waffle iron, you can probably assume that Kim’s has both more steps and an end result worth waiting in line for. Toppings range from fruit like strawberries and blueberries to Korean-inspired offerings like Ang butter (red bean paste and butter) and goguma (sweet potato) mousse.
The croffle has crept onto café and bakery menus elsewhere, too, suggesting its potential as more than just a flash in the pan. Whether it’ll ever unseat the cronut as the reigning pastry hybrid remains to be seen.