Love falafel? Want to have them at home any time you want? Here you go.
Falafel made at home legit taste better. They also happen to be gluten free and healthier. Unfortunately the majority, if not all, falafel found at restaurants and street vendors is fried and contain wheat flour. In fact, it's pretty common for falafel balls to be rolled in flour to make them extra crispy when they're fried and that's in addition to the flour in the mix.
There's no need to sign up for all the extra, empty calories or to buy a packet of falafel mix. Falafel are easy to make at home and as long as you have garbanzo beans in your pantry, something you can typically make anytime.
Homemade falafel are simple, easy, delicious and MAJOR nutritious. We're talking loads of protein, fiber, magnesium, iron, B vitamins and more! Paired with minty, cucumber yogurt sauce and crisp salad greens and you've got a perfect summer recipe that keeps your beach bod* in top shape.
*Beach bod is a slang term for beach body, which is the body you show up to the beach in and not what the media tells you it should be. You do you and love every minute of it.
Cucumber Yogurt Sauce
And now to learn how to make cucumber yogurt sauce! It's so easy you'll wonder why you've only been enjoying it when you go to Mediterranean restaurants. This minty, cucumber sauce goes by the name of Tzatziki or Maastokhiar. Whatever you call it, it's delicious.
2 Cups Plain Greek Yogurt, Organic
1 Organic Cucumber, Peeled & Chopped -
½ Cup Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped OR 2 TBS Dried Parsley
¼ Cup Fresh Mint, Finely Chopped OR 1 TBS Dried Mint
1 Small Onion, Finely Chopped
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
* Sprinkle with paprika for looks – optional.
Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl, cover and chill for at least 1 hour. Great time to start making the falafel salad!
This sauce tastes the best if you refrigerate it overnight. Gives it a much better flavor profile that is on a whole other level.
Now to make the falafel. And yes, both the singular and plural form of the word is falafel, however if you want to say falafels that works. I prefer to call them falafel balls myself. Because it's funny.
The biggest insider tip I can give you in making this is to pop the husks off the garbanzo beans and then rinse them until the bubbles are gone. Not only does this remove the gas causing agents in the beans, but it makes for better texture falafel balls.
2-3 Cups Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas), Rinsed & Drained
1 Medium Onion, Finely Chopped – Red for color or yellow for flavor
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
¼ Cup Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped OR 1 TBS Dried Parsley
2 tsp Ground Cumin
1½ tsp Ground Coriander Seed
½ tsp Chili Powder
½ tsp Paprika
¼ tsp Ground Black Pepper
2 TBS Gluten Free Flour. Chickpea flour is a great choice for this recipe.
Grape Seed Oil or Healthy Oil of Your Choice
Preheat oven to 375°F. This recipe can also be made on the grill if that suits you. Key is a preheated grill and foil underneath to prevent them from falling into the flames. You can also saute falafel in a pan using the same key of hot pan and oil, but then cook them low and slow over a medium-low heat. Note that falafel will absorb A LOT of oil if sauteed.
Blend ingredients in food processor or blender to create “dough.” Try not to over blend as this will make the dough sticky and hard to shape. Don’t fret if you do because they will still taste delicious in blob shape.
Lightly coat baking sheet with grape seed oil or healthy oil of your choice. Grape seed oil is recommended for this recipe exclusively based on it’s high smoke point, meaning it won’t burn or burst into flames in your oven.
Place falafel balls on to baking sheet and place in over for 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and flip and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
While falafel bake in the oven or roast in the grill, chop up your salad. For the above picture I used all organic romaine lettuce, parsley (I had plenty leftover), tomatoes and a generous squeeze of lemon juice.
Once falafel are done baking/roasting, allow to cool while you plate up the salads. Add cooled falafel to salad, add a generous dollop of tzatziki and enjoy!
This recipe is rich in fiber, vitamin A, many B vitamins, vitamin C and more. Because seeds, nuts and beans are a rich source of magnesium, the garbanzo beans (chickpeas) are going to bring both an incredible amount of magnesium in addition to protein to this dish.
Don’t be afraid of eating beans because of the gas. Whether you soak them or purchase them canned, drain all the liquid and rinse them in a strainer until all the bubbles are gone. Those bubbles would have been in your gastrointestinal tract and caused gas. Also regularly consuming probiotics will help you digest beans better and that’s in addition to all their other health properties!
If you follow a dairy free diet, know that there are several non-dairy alternatives out there for the yogurt portion, but make sure to read the label for sugar content and carrageenan. You don’t want either.
This recipe was featured in THE London Clinic of Nutrition's website!
Click HERE to get health, nutrition & wellness information you can actually use in real life.
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