Brussels Belgium Peeing and Waffles

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Brussels Belgium is known for many things. It is the capital of Belgium and the de facto capital of the European Union for starters. But two of its best-known and beloved hallmarks are much more earthy. A little statue of a peeing boy – yes, we did say peeing – and the most delicious waffles you’ve ever had in your life. For Food Travelists, this makes the world-class city of Brussels a destination worthy of experiencing.

Food Travelist Brussels Belgium World Class City
Brussels Is A World Class City

Let’s start with the peeing boy. He is a small statue, much smaller than his world renown would suggest. Officially called Manneken-Pis (which literally means Little Man Pee in a Dutch dialect), this statue which is only about 2 feet (61 cm) tall, is a bronze fountain of a naked little boy peeing in the fountain’s pool. Yep, it really is. And you can’t believe the number of people who flock to see it.

Food Travelist Brussels Belgium Manneken-Pis Tiny But Mighty
Manneken-Pis Tiny But Mighty

Beyond the oddity of this little fountain is the fact that Mannekin Pis is a Brussels hobby. The people of Brussels love to dress him up. So much so in fact that there are more than 800 costumes for him at the City Museum.

Food Travelist Manneken-Pis Costume
Manneken-Pis In One of His 800 Costumes

The unofficial mascot has been recreated in just about every form, fashion, and manner you can imagine. He’s even been reproduced in candy and chocolate!

Food Travelist Brussels Belgium Colorful Manneken-Pis Candy
Colorful Manneken-Pis Candy
Food Travelist Manneken-Pis In Chocolate
Manneken-Pis In Chocolate

Speaking of tasty treats, let’s move on to the next thing Brussels is known for, waffles. We’re not talking just any waffles. These are Liège waffles, named after the city in which they were conceived.  Made with a thick, yeast-risen batter and a special sugar called pearl sugar that is added to the batter just before cooking the waffle, these thick chewy snacks are actually eaten throughout the day rather than at breakfast. The special pearl sugar consists of tiny little polished sugar balls that melt when the batter is baking on the iron and give the waffle its distinctive caramelized crustiness, similar to a crème brûlée. They are delicious when fresh off the specialized waffle iron that creates them served plain or with butter.

Food Travelist Brussels Belgium Liege Waffle Stacks
Fresh Liege Waffle Stacks

But they are seen most often with a dizzying array of choice toppings including fruit, chocolate, whipped cream, and more. You can choose what you want and build your own unforgettable treat.

Food Travelist Brussels Belgium Waffle Combos
Build Your Own Belgian Waffle Combo

So are you surprised by what you’ll find in Brussels? These are just two of the many delights of this world-class city. We just wanted to
“wet your appetite” (boo, hiss, pun intended) to get a taste of Brussels Belgium, and all it has to offer.

THE QUICK BITE:  Brussels Belgium has much to offer to visitors including the statue of a little boy peeing over which the residents are obsessed and insanely good waffles over which Food Travelists can obsess.

Co-founder of Food Travelist. I love to cook for family and friends. Share your best recipes with me.


  1. Oh, LIege waffles. My idea of heaven on a plate… or on a napkin, as the case may be. I would weigh 100 lb more if I stayed in Brussels more than a week!

    • No kidding! We’ve tried making them at home thankfully they were not nearly as good. That would have been a disaster 😉

  2. That is awesome that the city dresses up the peeing statue! I’ve seen many pictures of the statue, but I’m still completely puzzled over why it attracts so much attention. Is there a story behind it that makes everyone love it!? Also, it is SO tiny, which I didn’t realize before reading this post–it’s kind of like the Mona Lisa in that I was expecting it to be huge!

  3. I love Liège waffles!! They are the best, and now I’m craving one, LOL! We were surprised how small Manneken-Pis is–it’s so funny to see how many people go to see such a small statue, isn’t? I was bummed we didn’t get to see an outfit though! Thanks for bringing back some fun memories!

  4. betsywuebker Reply

    Hahaha! I loved the URL of this post so much I couldn’t NOT click on it. I didn’t realize little pee boy was such a celebrity. Can’t wait to get there and see for ourselves. 🙂

    • LOL! Thanks Betsy, thought it might garner a little attention. Thanks for stopping by.

  5. Haha, that little statue is adorable! I have no idea such a thing existed. I love how it’s become such a symbol of Belgium culture. I am so hungry for waffles now – they look such delicious, especially the ones drizzled with chocolate!

  6. staceyjeaninion Reply

    Build you own Belgium waffles. You have got to be kidding. They look wonderful. I really enjoyed the pictures and the story.

  7. Oh I miss Brussels! I use to live close by in France so I would go at least once a month and it’s just a fantastic town! If I had to live somewhere in Europe it would be in Brussels.
    Have you seen the Manneken Pies sister?

    • No!!! However did we miss that. I guess we’ll have to make another trip. Thanks for stopping by.

    • No! Guess we’ll just need another trip to Brussels. We also loved Bruges as well such a lovely part of the world.

  8. Enjoyed reading your post on Brussels. We were there earlier this year. I was very surprised to see the popularity of the Manneken-Pis. There were so many people in the street waiting to get a glimpse, that it was actually blocking the street, crazy! Unfortunately, he wasn’t wearing one of his outfits when we were there to visit. You can’t beat the waffles, I probably had one too many while there!

  9. I actually didn’t realize the little peeing boy was so small! Haha! I guess I just pictured him being a bigger statue.

    • Seriously! I laughed the first time I saw it. So many people standing around it reminded me of the Mona Lisa at the Louvre.

  10. I love chocolate and waffles but I never really get to like Brussels…I don’t even know why. Maybe I should visit it again…

    • I have to admit that the smaller European cities are much more quaint and welcoming. Try it again and adventure around I think you’ll find a lovely city in Brussels.

  11. Brussels is indeed a great place for all things chocolate! Glad to have found your site. (Thx for finding me on Twitter!) will have more of a look around as soon as time permits.

  12. Did someone say French fries? I’ve got to put Belgium on my “go to” list!

  13. Everyone eats well in Belgium. Try the French fries that you buy from a street vendor, served with aioli, yum. Also,check out the restaurant La Truffe Noir. The price tag is steep, but the food is wonderful.

  14. diana Reply

    Hahaha! Lucky for you there is a great waffle vendor right near the little man statue. The waffles in our photos are from there. How about this? Post a photo of you and your waffle next to the Manneken-Pis fountain on the site and we’ll send you a Food Travelist t-shirt! We’ll look forward to hearing what else you discover in Brussels!

  15. I’m going to Brussels for the first time in April so loved this post. I’ve heard all about the peeing little man but I’m not sure I’d want to eat him in chocolate form. That’s just slightly weird! I’m so looking forward to the waffles though!

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