Protein Rich Crunchy Falafel served with Mint Yogurt dip. Healthy, naturally Gluten-free and Vegan Falafels served as snack or as a filling and light meal with sandwiches and pita wraps.
These deep fried chickpeas balls with herbs are of Middle Eastern origin and is now popular world wide as a street food. It is served as snack with dips or in pita wraps with salad or pickled vegetables. You can also make a more health friendly baked version with less oil.
Falafels are deep-fried balls made with fava beans/chickpeas(more popular) . It is an ancient food that has its origin in Egypt. Now it is widely known as Middle Eastern food. These chickpea balls or patties are traditionally served in Pita bread/pockets or can be eaten as a snack or appetizer with salads, hummus or yogurt dips. These are served as part of Mezze platter with bread, dips, vegetables(grilled or raw) and olives.
Falafel are a great choice for lunch boxes (both for kids and grown ups) and can be served with salad bowls. These are great choice to serve as Appetizer/Starter or hors devours, at your parties and get togethers.
Ingredients to make Falafel
Chickpeas- Raw Soaked Chickpeas are used to make crispy falafels. Soak chickpeas overnight or for at least 4-5 hrs. Do not use boiled/canned chickpeas as it gives very soft and mushy texture to falafels.
Herbs- Onion, garlic, cilantro/fresh coriander/ parsley, green chillies(optional).
For binding falafels- Authentic/traditional falafel recipes do not suggest adding chickpea flour. This is optional. Chickpea flour is commonly used for binding if your mixture is a bit wet. You can add breadcrumbs also then this won't be a gluten-free recipe. Gluten-free breadcrumbs for gluten-free recipe.
Spices- Cumin seeds/powder, Salt, Olive oil. Add oil in the falafel mixture, it keeps the patties moist.
Baking Powder- Many recipes suggest to add baking powder to get soft falafels especially when frying. But I skip it. You can add 1/4 tsp, incase you want to add.
How to make Falafel
- Soak chickpeas for about 7-8 hrs.
- When ready to make, drain water completely.
- Transfer all the ingredients in a food processor and grind to a coarse mixture. The mixture should not be creamy or pasty.
- Then make small lemon sized balls. Chill for about 10-15 mins.
- Heat oil in a pan or kadhai/deep fryer and fry the balls at medium heat.
Check here how to make Air Fryer/Baked Falafels (with Beetroot).
To bake falafel you can shape falafels like small patties/cutlets (for even baking), preheat the oven at 350F or 200C. Arrange on baking tray. Lightly oil /spray oil the tray before arranging the patties.
Bake for about 25-30 min. at 350F or 200C, flipping midway(after 15 mins.) for even baking.
Add to Mezze Platters, Salad Bowls or serve as appetizer/hors d'oeuvre at your get togethers and parties.
Make sandwiches or mini sliders or pita sandwiches.
Frequently asked questions
When refrigerated properly falafel stays good to consume till 4-5 days.
You can freeze these chickpeas balls for about a month. You can also freeze or refrigerate uncooked falafels for a couple of days. Fry in hot oil so that it doesn't disintegrate.
Made with chickpeas and herbs falafel are healthy. Once in a while fried falafels are good as party starters. Serve it with healthy dips like Hummus, Labneh, Tzatziki. You can also bake and now with convenience of air fryers, you can make falafels with minimum oil.
If you want to avoid deep frying and don't want to bake, then shallow frying is also a good option. To shallow fry, take some oil in a pan, and fry falafels
More Recipes with Chickpeas from the blog
Instant Pot Chole Masala, Chole/Chana Masala(Stove-top Pressure Cooker Recipe), Dhaniya Chole(Chickpeas cooked in Cilantro based gravy), Pindi Chole(traditional rustic no onion garlic chickpea curry from the Indian cuisine), Hummus, Sweet and Spicy, Carrot Hummus, Falafels, Chickpea and Sweet Potato patties, Vegan Chickpea Salad,, Baked Chickpeas, Chickpea Sundal(South Indian style chickpeas with coconut)
Rajma and Spinach Cutlets, Chana Dal and Yam Kebabs, Aloo Poha cutlets, Hara Bhara Kebab, Raw Banana Cutlets, Raw Papaya Kebabs, Aloo Makhana aur Kaju cutlets, Cheesy Semolina Bites, Air Fryer Stuffed Mushrooms, Tandoori Gobhi/Cauliflower Tikka and many more.
How to make Falafel
- Food Processor/Grinder
- Mixing Bowl
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- 1 Cup Chickpeas(soaked) or Garbanzo beans
- 1 Medium Onion
- 2-3 Garlic Cloves
- Coriander/Cilantro handful
- Parsley handful
- 1-2 Green Chilli
- 2 tbsp Chickpea flour for binding or as required
- Juice of half Lemon
- Salt as per taste
- Oil for Frying
For Yogurt Mint Dip
- ½ cup Thick Yoghurt or Greek Yogurt
- 7-10 Mint leaves
- ½ tsp Roasted Jeera Powder
- ¼ tsp Black Pepper Powder freshly ground
- ¼ tsp Sugar
- Black Salt/Himalayan Pink Salt as per taste
- Soak chickpeas overnight or at least for 7-8 hrs.1 Cup Chickpeas(soaked)
- After the soaking time, drain water completely from chickpeas.
- The weight of the chickpeas will increase due to water absorption. It will be double the amount of dried chickpeas.
- Take chickpeas, chopped onions, cilantro/coriander, parsley, garlic, green chilli, coriander powder,lemon juice, salt in a blender and grind everything coarsely. Don't grind it to a smooth paste, also it should not have big chunks.1 Medium Onion, 2-3 Garlic Cloves, Ginger(small), Coriander/Cilantro, Parsley, 1-2 Green Chilli, Juice of half Lemon, Salt
- Take out the mixture in a bowl, add the chickpea flour and mix.2 tbsp Chickpea flour for binding
- Cover the bowl with a cling wrap and keep the mixture in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. This step is optional, you can shape the falafel balls/patties immediately and fry. Refrigeration helps to firm up the mixture and fully absorb the flavors. Or, refrigerate after making balls.
- Shape into balls/patties. If you feel the mixture is too creamy or pasty add some more chickpea flour to it and refrigerate after shaping the patties.
- Heat oil in a kadhai/pan/deep frier and deep fry on medium heat till light golden brown in color.Oil for Frying
- Deep fry or shallow fry falafel balls/patties.
To make Yogurt Mint Dip
- Add minced garlic, sugar, torn mint leaves½ cup Thick Yoghurt, 7-10 Mint leaves
- Add rest of the spices and mix nicely and refrigerate till serving time.½ tsp Roasted Jeera Powder, ¼ tsp Sugar, Black Salt/Himalayan Pink Salt, ¼ tsp Black Pepper Powder
If you haven't tried making falafels at home, make these now and treat yourself. They may seem to a difficult task but in fact are really very easy to prepare. Prepare in large batches for your parties and get-togethers.
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