There are so many ways to eat Falafel, I know, but here I will give you all the tips and tricks for a perfect Falafel in an easy authentic way, step-by-step, using only 7 ingredients that anyone has at home.Jump to Recipe Jump to Video Print Recipe
I grew up in Israel, and falafel is a common street food you can find anywhere. I remember coming back from school and stopping by the famous Moshe falafel place at the corner, small but you could see the long q all people craving to get from there the best Falafel in pita ever!
Sharing with you here, My mom’s secret recipe for the Best Authentic Falafel, made with chickpeas, fresh herb, and the right spices! And, I’m sharing my complete step-by-step tutorial and important tips for baking or frying falafel. Be sure also to watch the video to see how I make it!
What’s your favorite way to enjoy falafel? I love them in warm pita sandwiches with tahini sauce or hummus, along with my lazy red pickled onions salad.
Of course, one falafel ball is not like another – each falafel has its own secret recipe, with such exotic toppings and patties in different sizes, shapes, and shades.
You too, by the way, can have your secret recipe – after you do it a few times, making the falafel will become a trivial matter, and you can improve and improvise.
What is Falafel?
Falafel is a popular Middle Eastern “fast food” made of a mixture of chickpeas, fresh herbs, and spices formed into small patties or balls.
Is Falafel vegan?
Absolute yes! Some say that falafel originated in Egypt as Coptic Christians looked for a hearty replacement for meat during long seasons of fasting or lent.
Is Falafel Gluten free?
Traditional falafel is mostly chickpeas, so it would be gluten–free. Some recipes add flour to help with structure, so you’d have to make sure the flour used is gluten–free.
What are the ingredients in falafel ?
Falafel balls are vegan, and it is made with simple 7 ingredients, everyday ingredients, and you won’t believe how easy it is. Great ingredients are key to great falafel, so be sure to purchase high-quality spices like cumin for your falafel mixture.
Unlike making hummus, a relatively lengthy task requiring a degree of skill, making falafel is both easy and quick, and it came out great. At least as tasty as falafel. Not to mention that when you make the falafel at home, you can also choose and/or make your own pita, salads, and toppings.
- dry chickpeas : (that have been soaked in water for 24 hours) are an important ingredient that will give your falafel the right consistency and taste. ( Tip: I usually add about 1/2 tsp of baking soda to the soaking water to help soften the dry chickpeas.)
- fresh parsley
- high-quality ground cumin what gives falafel it’s bold, authentic taste.
- Red onion : typically use red onions, but white or yellow onions would work.
- Garlic cloves : for best flavor, use fresh garlic cloves.
- salt: to taste.
- baking soda
What I love about falafel
– Don’t use canned chickpeas (very important!) If you’re after the best texture and flavor, you need to start with dry chickpeas. Pay attention when you make falafel. It would be best if you used dry chickpeas and not canned. I’ve seen so many falafel recipes use canned chickpeas, which is not authentic and will cause the falafel patties to disintegrate in the hot cooking oil.
– Rich flavor using herbs. Falafel patties are packed with plant-power and protein from the chickpeas that will leave you feeling full and satisfied. The authentic recipe has cumin (must add).
– Perfect to make ahead and freezer friendly. I love that this recipe can be prepped ahead of time, and you can freeze uncooked falafel patties for later use whenever you want ready there for you to use. Just defrost for 30 minutes out of the freezer and heat the oil or preheat the oven and your meal is ready with zero effort.
How to Make Falafel: Step-by-Step
- Soak chickpeas for 24 hours. I add the night before I want to make the falafel, the dry chickpeas in a deep big bowl and cover them in plenty of water, to make then soften my tip is to add baking soda. The chickpeas will at least double in size as they soak. Drain very well the day after.
- Make mixture. Add chickpeas, fresh herbs (parsley, garlic, onion, sesame, salt, and cumin to a food processor and pulse a little bit at a time until the mixture is finely ground. You’ll know it’s ready when the texture is more like a coarse meal.
- & Refrigerate (important.) Transfer the falafel mixture to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. The chilled mixture will hold together better, making it easier to form the falafel patties.
- Form patties or balls. Once the falafel mixture has been plenty chilled, stir in baking powder, then scoop golf ball-sized balls and form into balls or patties (if you go the patties route, do not flatten them too much, you want them to be still nice and fluffy when they’re cooked.)It is important to flatten them so they could be cooked from the inside. If you fry or bake them like a ball, they will be cooked only from the outside.
- Fry. Frying is the traditional way to cook falafel, and to be honest; the taste is more authentic and best flavour and result. Heat the oil ( I use corn oil) on medium-high until it bubbles softly (your oil should be hot enough around 375°F, but not too hot that it causes the falafel to fall apart.)
Carefully drop the falafel in the oil, using a slotted spoon, and fry for 3-5 minutes until medium brown on the outside. Avoid over-crowding the falafel; fry them in batches if necessary.
Tip: it’s always a good idea to fry one falafel first to make sure the oil temperature does not need to be adjusted.
For baked falafel:
Preheat your oven to 350° F and lightly oil a baking sheet. Give each patty a quick brush of extra virgin olive oil before baking; bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, turning the falafel patties over halfway through baking.
When is the best time to serve falafel?
Actually, the answer is anytime! You can serve falafel for breakfast, lunch, or dinner!
Make ahead and storing
To make ahead: Prepared falafel mixture will keep in the fridge for 1-2 days ahead of time. Form it into patties when ready to fry.
To freeze: Place uncooked falafel patties on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze for 1 hour. Once hardened, transfer the patties into a freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month. Falafel can be cooked from frozen by frying or baking.
7 ingredient Easy Authentic Falafel Recipe: Step-by-Step
- food processor
- large non-stick skillet
- 500 g chickpeas dry
- ⅓ bunch of parsley fresh
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 unit onion red
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp sesame toasted
- ¼ cup water chilled
- salt to taste
- ½ tsp baking soda
To make the Tahini
To make the hummus
To make the pickled onion salad
- (One day in advance) Place the dried chickpeas and baking soda in a large bowl filled with water to cover the chickpeas by at least 2 inches. Soak overnight for 18 hours (longer if the chickpeas are still too hard). When ready, drain the chickpeas completely and pat them dry.
- Add the chickpeas, onions, garlic, parsely, sesame cumin, salt to the large bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade. Run the food processor 40 seconds at a time until all is well combined forming a the falafel mixture.Add gradually the water to help combining together the mixture.
- Transfer the falafel mixture to a container and cover tightly. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or (up to one whole night) until ready to cook.
- Just before frying, add the baking powder and extra sesame seeds to the falafel mixture and stir with a spoon.
- Scoop tablespoonfuls of the falafel mixture and form into patties (1/2 inch in thickness each). It helps to have wet hands as you form the patties.
- Fill a medium saucepan 3 inches up with oil. Heat the oil on medium-high until it bubbles softly. Carefully drop the falafel patties in the oil, let them fry for about 3 to 5 minutes or so until crispy and medium brown on the outside. Avoid crowding the falafel in the saucepan, fry them in batches if necessary.
- Place the fried falafel patties in a colander or plate lined with paper towels to drain.
- Serve falafel hot next to other small plates; or assemble the falafel patties in pita bread with tahini or hummus, ttomato and cucumbers,pickled red onions and Enjoy!
- caloric information does not include the calories added from frying.
- Cook’s Tip: You need to start with dry chickpeas, do not use canned chickpeas here. You will need to begin soaking the chickpeas overnight, allow up to 24 hours.
- Falafel Recipe variations: Variations of this recipe may call for flour. If you prefer, you can add 1 to 1 1/2 tbsp of flour to the falafel mix . I did not use , and the falafel mixture stayed well together.