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Pumpkin Waffles with Cajeta Caramel

Pumpkin Waffles with Cajeta Caramel


These are the ultimate fall waffles. They are perfectly spiced with cajeta caramel sauce, pepitas and whipped cream. Enough said, right?

Pumpkin Waffles with Cajeta Caramel

Cajeta sauce or goat’s milk caramel is basically the legit version of dulce de leche, which is popular in Mexico. It’s flavored with a cinnamon stick and vanilla bean, and I also throw in a splash of bourbon into my sauce.

The salty, toasted pumpkin seeds are not only in keeping with the pumpkin theme, but they add a great bite against the sweet caramel sauce. A little fluffy, vanilla bean whipped cream doesn’t hurt the situation either.

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Pumpkin Waffles with Cajeta Caramel

Sabrina Russo
Course Breakfast
Servings 5


  • 1 quart goat milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 vanilla bean split, seeds scraped out (or 2 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract)
  • ½ heaping tsp kosher salt or ½ tsp of fine salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda dissolved in ½ tsp water
  • 1 T bourbon
  • 1 C all-purpose flour
  • 3 T light brown sugar packed
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground ginger
  • Dash ground cloves
  • Dash ground allspice
  • 6 T pumpkin puree
  • 1 C milk
  • 1 egg beaten
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract or seeds from half of a vanilla bean pod
  • ¼ C unsalted butter melted plus additional for greasing waffle iron
  • ¼ C toasted salted pepitas
  • Whipped cream


  • For cajeta sauce, combine milk, sugar, cinnamon stick, vanilla beans and pod in a large, heavy-bottom sauce pan or dutch oven. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir in dissolved baking soda. Be cautious as baking soda causes the mixture to rise and bubble. When bubbles subside, return to heat.
  • Simmer mixture over medium-low to medium heat, stirring at least every 10-15 minutes to ensure caramel does not burn. You don’t want the mixture to be boiling; however, it should be at a rapid simmer (otherwise this process may take seemingly forever). Continue to cook for about 1-1 ½ hours or until mixture takes on a deep caramel color and is a syrupy consistency. After about 45 minutes, I tasted the sauce and removed the cinnamon stick as it was cinnamon-flavored enough for me at this point. Stir in the bourbon during the last few minutes of cooking. Before serving, also discard the vanilla bean pods. If using vanilla extract, stir in with the bourbon.
  • While cajeta sauce cooks, prepare waffle batter. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and spices in a large bowl. Combine pumpkin, milk, egg, and vanilla in another bowl. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients, stirring just to combine. Stir in melted butter. Do not over-mix. Allow batter to rest for 15 minutes or up to an hour at room temperature.
  • Meanwhile, heat waffle iron. Grease iron, ladle in batter and cook according to manufacturer’s directions. For my iron, I scoop about ½ cup of batter per waffle. Repeat process with remaining batter. Reheat cajeta sauce for several seconds in the microwave if prepared ahead of time. Serve waffles with cajeta sauce, pepitas and whipped cream. Enjoy.

Pumpkin Waffles with Cajeta Caramel

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