Easy Falafel recipe that tastes best! These Middle eastern crispy vegan falafel with hummus are a perfect party starters. Here's how you can make falafel, I have shared here both, fried and baked falafel recipe.
Falafel are crispy Mediterranean, Middle Eastern fritters and famous Arabic street food. You can make falafel with chickpeas (Chana) or fava beans. Fresh herbs, onions, and dried spices are added for seasoning and flavour.
Having tried it at various places upscale, as well as streets in Dubai on various occasions, I feel I can make pretty decent homemade falafel. On my recent Dubai trip, I tasted these along with other Arabic delicacies, so I thought to share couple of dishes that I tried there.
There are many types of falafel recipes I am sharing a simple and most popular chickpeas falafel recipe. It is easy and even beginners can make delicious chickpeas falafel with this recipe.
These Falafel Are
- Arabic/middle eastern street food.
- Vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian snack.
- You can make baked falafel or authentic falafel which are deep fried.
- You can meal prep them in advance and are freezer friendly.
- Serve them with hummus or pita bread both are perfect meal for vegetarians and vegans.
Chickpeas: Use dried chickpeas which are soaked for 6 hours. A couple of tablespoons chickpeas flour/besan. Do not use canned chickpeas.
Herbs & Seasonings: Salt, Coriander powder, Paprika, Cumin, Red chilli, Parsley, Jalapeno, Coriander
Fresh: Onion, you can use either white onions, yellow onions or red onions. Garlic chopped (optional).
Fresh Herbs: You can add fresh Parsley, mint leaves, cilantro, carrot tops or wild dill to make falafel mixture.
Flour: Use gram flour or chickpeas flour for binding the mixture. All purpose flour tastes slightly pasty and raw. I suggest to avoid that.
Baking powder: It helps in making fluffy falafels. Especially when you are making baked falafel using a big pinch makes them fluffy and soft inside.
Oil: Use any high smoking point vegetable oil. I prefer to use rice bran oil or peanut oil for frying.
Chickpeas Falafel Recipe
Making Falafel Mixture
- Soak dried chickpeas overnight. In case you forget to plan much ahead at-least minimum soaking of 4-5 hours in hot water works great too. (photo 1)
- In a Food processor, blitz drained soaked chickpeas with herbs, spices, chickpeas flour. (photo 2)
- The texture of the mixture after grinding should be coarse like this. (photo 3)
- Shape them into balls or patties if you like that. (photo 4)
Cooking Falafels - 3 Methods
Heat oil in a wok and heat vegetable oil till smoking point. Deep fry in hot oil for the best results. (photo 5) This is traditional method of cooking best falafel that are crispy outside and soft inside. (photo 6).
You can also make pan fried falafel at home. For pan frying falafels instead of shaping into balls shape falafel into patty shape.
You can bake falafels. For baking shape them into flat patties and place them in a single layer onto a baking sheet. Bake falafels at 180C/375F in a preheated oven for 15-20 minutes.
To make Air fryer falafels. Preheat the air fryer at 180C and place falafel in a single layer in air fryer basket. After brushing patties with oil Air fry them for 180C for 12 minutes. In between flip them once.
Falafel Recipe Video
How to make Baked Falafel Recipe
In case you avoid deep-frying you can make baked falafels. When I am making baked falafel, I shape them like patties.
- For making baked falafels, coarsely grind chickpeas with coriander, parsley, Jalapeno or green chilli and spices. Then shape the mixture in the shape of patties.
- For baking, patty shape works better than balls because this way more surface area is exposed to hot air in oven. That helps to make them crispier.
Baking Falafel Patties
- After shaping spray some oil on a baking sheet and place falafel patties on it. Bake them for 10-12 minutes in 375F in a preheated oven.
- Flip from both sides until they are golden brown. But I still insist deep fried ones are "The Best"
- If you want to take a middle path I suggest for making you can shallow fry them. But for shallow frying you need to flatten out the balls just like patties and that uses lesser amount of oil.
- In case you decide to deep fry, with my 5 Tips and techniques for deep frying you can help you to deep fry in right way.
Recipe Notes: My Tried & Tested Tips
- Falafel is easy to make. The only thing to keep in mind is to soak the chickpeas overnight and then grind them coarsely.
- When you are shaping them into patties or balls, always apply some oil in your palms.
- You can choose to make falafel in Air fryer or bake them in oven, deep fry or pan fry as per your preference.
These are a few frequently asked questions when I posted the video on Instagram and Facebook. So I added in my answers here in case it helps any of you. Here are my tried and tested tips to Make The Best Falafel.
Can I make the falafel mixture ahead?
Yes! you can make the mixture ahead and keep it in fridge inside an air tight container.
How long can you store fried falafel?
Falafel taste best when fried fresh. So I advice store the batter/dough first and only deep fry when you are ready to eat. And if you have leftovers, you can pop them in microwave for a minute.
However for the best result pop them in regular oven and warm them for 5-6 minutes. That's hands down the best method of reheating falafels. Hot oven re-crisp the outer surface and inside it is still moist.
Can I freeze Falafels?
You can sure freeze them. What I do most of the times is make a double batch and freeze half of it uncooked. Because falafels are one food that tastes amazing when it comes fresh out of fryer. These are the best ones with crispy outside and moist and soft inside.
Best Chickpeas for Making Falafels?
Undisputed answer is always use soaked dried chickpeas. Canned chickpeas are a strict no no for making best ones. So soaked dried chickpeas that are not cooked must be used for making Falafels. Canned chickpeas don't work at all.
How to Serve Falafel
You can make a simple salad with veggies like tomatoes, cucumbers and falafel. As a part of Middle Eastern Mezze platter or serve them as classic falafel and hummus combination.
- It is one of the healthy convenience meals ever. Stuff these vegan falafel and hummus in pita bread, it makes a delicious and easy sandwich. Serve them as falafel sandwich, falafel pita wraps, or drizzle some tahini sauce.
- Toss them with greens and your favorite veggies and drizzle with some tahini to make falafel salad.
- For making amazing wrap, fold it in a tortilla, add some fresh tomatoes, cucumber and grated cheese on top. This way you can eat it like a roll or a wrap.
More Such Recipes
Authentic Falafel Recipe
- Wok or Deep pan
- Food processor
- 1 cup Chickpeas dried
- 1 cup parsley chopped
- 1 jalapeno chopped
- ½ cup coriander leaves cilantro
- Salt to taste
- 1 teaspoon Coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon Paprika
- 1 teaspoon Cumin
- 2 tablespoon Chickpeas flour/besan
- ½ teaspoon red chilli
- ¼ cup Onion chopped optional
- Oil for deep frying
- 2 Garlic pods
- Soak dried Chickpeas for 4-5 hrs minimum. Overnight soaking is best.
- Drain out the water.
- In a food processor blend chickpeas, chopped parsley, coriander leaves, salt, cumin, coriander powder, chickpeas flour, paprika, red chilli and make thick coarse paste.
- I prefer not to add any extra liquid, but if you really need add 1 or 2 tablespoon of water.
- You can make this mixture in advance and refrigerate till you need to use it or immediately fry falafel.
- Heat oil in deep pan till it reaches to smoke point or if you are using deep fryer let it reach 350°F . With the help of two spoons shape falafels or make small balls and drop these balls in hot oil.
- Cook for 3-4 minutes and with slotted spoon, removes from oil on kitchen napkin to remove excess oil.
- Serve with Hummus or Tahini Sauce.
- Always soak the chickpeas properly 4-5 hours or overnight before grinding them in a mixer.
- Use dried and soaked chickpeas and never Canned chickpeas.
- Best Method is to deep fry the falafels.
- You can make them ahead and freeze them uncooked.
- If You want to store cooked falafels you can store them in fridge for 5-6 days.
- To reheat falafel, best method is combination heating. First pop them in microwave for a minute and then pop them in regular oven for 4-5 minutes to recrisp the surface.
- If mixture is too wet add chickpeas flour and never the regular white flour.
- Baking soda helps them to soften from inside but also deep fried food absorbs more oil so it's upto you to use that or not. I avoid.