Electric Waffle bakers, Sandwich grills or “presses” as they were also known were very well accepted by consumers when they were introduced in the 1920s and “Combination” appliances that with removable, interchangeable plates, could perform as a waffle iron, sandwich grill or as a griddle when the top was fully open and flat, were very popular from the time they appeared in the mid-to-late 1930s.
Manufacturers competed to produce appliances that were both beautiful and functional. Some of those produced in the 1930s could be considered works of art. It was the height of the Art Deco style movement that continued well into the 1940s. Many of these appliances exhibit the “streamline” forms that reflected industrial design of everything from ships to locomotives. The 1939-40 World’s Fair represented the culmination of this period of design innovation that had begun almost twenty years earlier in the 1920s.
An excellent book about collecting these appliances is Antique Electric Waffle Irons 1900-1960 available from Amazon.
Westinghouse Waffle Iron – 1930s
This Westinghouse waffle iron was made in the 1930s.
Westinghouse Waffle Iron – 1940s
Here’s an interesting vintage appliance.
The Westinghouse “Flying Saucer” waffle iron.
Westinghouse didn’t call it the flying saucer but when it became a “collectible” it got that nickname. It’s actually pretty obvious.
This was patented in 1939 by Joseph Harms and went into production in 1940 – continued in 1941. Westinghouse suspended manufacturing in 1942. They resumed production of this model in 1946/49, however a newer and larger square model was introduced in late 1947 and this round model discontinued. It has been popular with collectors (and people who wanted a sturdy, well-built waffle iron) since the 1960s.
This one is in its original box.
General Electric Sandwich Grill
This GE sandwich grill/griddle, Catalog No. 139G38 was sold in the 1930s. It had spouts at the back corners of both the top and bottom plates to allow for grease to be drained from the plates.
This is a Manning-Bowman waffle iron with the rounded oblong plates. It was obviously heavily used as the plates have developed a considerable “patina” similar to that seen on well-used cast iron skillets.
It has a smaller footprint than the Twin-O-Matic double waffle irons.
The same plate type was seen on the Combination Waffle/Sandwich Grill # 423 that was made in the early 1940s.
Fostoria Sandwich Grill & Waffle Baker
Standard Sandwich Grill & Waffle Baker
This Canadian made grill and waffler is quite heavy and very well made. Even the cord is made in Canada.
Knapp-Monarch Waffle Baker
Universal Sandwich Grill, Waffle Baker and Griddle
Manning-Bowman Sandwich Grill & Waffle Iron
SuperLectric Waffle Iron & Sandwich Grill with separate plates.
Manufactured by the Superior Electric Products Corp. Cape Giradeau, Mo.
“No 116A Automatic Combination Sandwich Toaster and Waffle Iron”
This is a very well made appliance. Heavy and with some interesting design elements that wouldn’t appear on similar appliances for decades.
The griddle plates have what looks like a small pouring lip at the center back of each plate that allows grease to drain into a small “grease cup” that hangs on the back of the bottom center back of the appliance.
The interior coils are arranged to allow even distribution of heat across the plates.
It has a metal “leg” that is hidden behind the front handle on the upper plate until the plate is laid flat to allow use as a griddle. The instructions are quite specific on how to use the appliance for “frying.”
SuperLectric Grill~Waffler, Green, with Non-Stick plates.
This appliance was made nearly 40 years after the previous one.
Reliance Waffle Iron & Sandwich Grill
This Reliance appliance is Canadian! It was manufactured by the J. K. MacLeod & Co. Ltd. of Toronto, Canada.
This is the Model 160, 1320 watts.
It is extremely heavy. The heaviest of any waffle iron I own. You can see from the photos that it saw a lot of use as a sandwich grill. It also exhibits some “streamline” design elements.
As with several of the others, it could be opened completely so the grill plates could be used as twin griddles. (Cuisinart did not originate the idea of the “Griddler” but were sixty-some years late to the party!)
GE small Non-Stick Waffle Iron & Sandwich Grill with Reversible Plates
General Electric “Family-Size” Waffle Iron/Sandwich Grill/Griddle No. 16G46T
This GE “non-stick” waffle iron is a big one. Very heavy and the chrome is in very good condition. The top has a starburst incised design that appeared on a few of GE’s appliances in the late ’60s and early ’70s.
It has reversible plates that allows its use as a sandwich grill as well as a waffle iron or with the top opened completely both top and bottom become a flat griddle. Note the handle is designed so it will support the top when in the flat position.
Here it is with its sister, the GE No. 26G46T
These two GE combination Waffle Iron/Sandwich Grill and Griddles look exactly alike. They have slightly different ID numbers. The one on the left is # 26G46T, with the sandwich grill open. The one on the right has the waffle grill open and is # 16G46T. Both the waffle side and the sandwich grill side have the Teflon coating.
The one on the left, # 26G46T has the Teflon coating only on the grill/griddle side.
I can’ figure out why this one, with a later model number, did not have the Teflon coating. It just doesn’t make sense to me.
General Electric Waffle Baker/Grill and Griddle G 48 T
This is GE’s last branded Waffle Baker/Grill and Griddle before its small appliance division was sold to Black & Decker in 1984. This same appliances is now sold under the B&D brand and is widely available as here on Amazon.com. The B&D appliance is now made in China and weighs less than this one.
Munsey Waffle Iron, Sandwich Grill and Griddle
This small waffle iron/grill and griddle was made by Munsey Products in Little Rock, Arkansas. There were not many manufacturing companies in the southern U.S., so these are somewhat hard to find. It was made in the late ’60s or early ’70s.
It is quite small compared to the combination waffle irons made by GE, Sunbeam, Toastmaster, Son-Chief, Dominion and Westinghouse.
Here I show it with the griddle plate on top and the reversed side on the bottom showing the waffle grid.
Opens flat to use as a griddle.