Classic Vegan Falafel (GF)

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Platter with mixed greens topped with our 10-ingredient Classic Vegan Falafel recipe

How many falafel recipes can one person have on their blog?

Five. The answer is five. Proof: 1 – 2 – 3 – 4.

Either I’ve lost my mind or I’m getting really good at making falafel. Fingers crossed it’s the latter.

Food processor with ingredients for making gluten-free vegan falafel for a plant-based meal

We’ve been exploring our new Portland neighborhood for about a month now, and we’re getting to know our favorite food spots (very important on our list of priorities).

One place I’m loving is Wolf and Bear, which serves up vegetarian and vegan Middle Eastern food with lots of gluten-free options. My go-to has been the gomasio salad with falafel. You can add two but I ask for three, because obviously.

Now that I’ve had this falafel a few times, I’ve studied its flavors and texture and was convinced it was time to up my falafel game. I think you know where this is going.

Food processor with freshly mixed gluten-free vegan falafel batter

Origins of Falafel

The origin of falafel is an ongoing and heated debate. Some would say it’s a quintessential Israeli food, while Palestinians claim its Arab roots, and still others claim it originated in Egypt, Lebanon, or Yemen. 

While we claim no expertise on the origins of falafel, we do know we absolutely love its crispy texture and rich flavor. Falafel is traditionally a fried ball or patty made from fava beans, chickpeas, or both. What’s not to love?

Those looking for a deeper dive into the much-debated history of falafel can find more information here and here.

The following is our inspired version made with a shortcut! For a more traditional version of falafel, check out this recipe from Tori Avey, or this recipe from The Kat Chef.

How to Make Falafel

This recipe requires just 10 ingredients and is expedited with the help of a quick-soak chickpea method I borrowed from The Kitchn.

The primary differences between this recipe and my previous attempts are that I start with dry chickpeas, and instead of baking, they’re pan-fried – two improvements I believe make all the difference.

Browning gluten-free vegan falafel in a cast-iron skillet for a plant-based meal

The ingredients are so simple, and the flavors are complex and wonderful.

Soaked chickpeas are blended with onion, garlic, parsley, cumin, cardamom, coriander, and sea salt. A little gluten-free oat flour keeps these gluten free while also helping them bind/form into a dough. After letting the mixture chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour, simply form into balls or discs and pan fry. Look at the crispy, golden perfection. Swoon! Find my selection of go-to sauces in the instructions.

We hope you love these falafel. If you try them, let us know what you think! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a picture #minimalistbaker on Instagram! We’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!

Delicious bites of gluten-free vegan falafel drizzled with tahini sauce

Classic Vegan Falafel (GF)

10-ingredient, classic falafels kept vegan and gluten-free and pan fried to perfection! A faster, easy way to make falafel the traditional way!
Author Minimalist Baker
Tray of salad topped with Classic Vegan Falafel and tahini sauce
4.74 from 98 votes
Prep Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 3 hours
Servings 24 (falafel)
Course Entree, Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Mediterranean-Inspired, Middle Eastern-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? Best when fresh


  • 1 1/2 cups dry chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup chopped white onion
  • 4-7 small cloves garlic
  • 2 Tbsp gluten-free oat flour (or gluten-free flour blend)
  • 1 – 1 1/2 tsp sea salt (plus more to taste)
  • 2-3 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 pinch ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Grape seed (or other high smoke point) oil for pan frying


  • Rinse (uncooked) chickpeas in a fine mesh strainer and add to a large pot. Cover with 2 inches water and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 1 minute. Then cover, remove from heat, and let set for 1 hour. Then drain and lightly rinse and dry thoroughly (method from the Kitchn).
  • In the meantime, add parsley, onion, and garlic to a food processor. Mix until well processed. Set aside.
  • Once the chickpeas are slightly cooled and dried, add to the food processor, along with gluten-free oat flour, salt, cumin, cardamom, coriander, and cayenne (optional). Mix to combine thoroughly, scraping down sides as needed. This may take up to 4-5 minutes to fully incorporate all of the spices and herbs. You’re looking for a near paste with only very small bits of chickpeas and herbs.
  • Sample a small bit and adjust spices/salt/herbs as needed. Then cover and set in the refrigerator for 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld and the texture to become more firm.
  • Once cooled, remove from refrigerator and scoop out 1 1/2 Tbsp amounts (using this scoop or a Tablespoon) and gently form into small discs using your hands. If the falafel isn’t sticking together the mixture may need to be blended more thoroughly, or dusted with a bit more oat flour if too wet.
  • Once your falafels are formed (~24 total // amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size), heat a large metal or cast-iron skillet over medium/medium-high heat. Once hot, add enough oil to create a thin layer on the bottom of the pan and wait 1-2 minutes for the oil to heat up. Then place only as many falafel as will fit comfortably in the pan and cook 2-3 minutes on each side. Once the bottom side is browned, flip gently as they can be fragile. Continue until all falafel are cooked. Adjust heat as needed if they’re browning too quickly, or aren’t cooking quickly enough.
  • These falafel are delicious on their own with hummus,garlic dill sauce or tahini sauce. I also love garnishing them with chili garlic sauce for heat. Serve over greens, in pita, or enjoy as is!
  • To freeze, pan fry falafel and let cool. Then add to a freezer safe container and freeze up to 1 month. Reheat in a 375 degree F (190 C) oven until warmed through.


*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with 1/3 cup (80 ml) grape seed oil for cooking 24 falafel.
*Recipe adapted from the talented Tori Avey.

Nutrition (1 of 24 servings)

Serving: 1 falafel Calories: 78 Carbohydrates: 8.7 g Protein: 2.7 g Fat: 4 g Saturated Fat: 0.5 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 150 mg Fiber: 2.4 g Sugar: 1.5 g
Our Classic Vegan Falafel recipe atop fresh lettuce leaves for a protein-packed lunch

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  1. Kaylyn says

    I just made these and they turned out awesome, but I should’ve paid attention to the prep time first. Hour to soak the beans and an hour sitting in the fridge- we weren’t eating dinner til after 9:30pm. My mistake tho! Keeping this one for sure!!

  2. ABI says

    Dana, I love all the food you publish and cook.
    Today I am going to try this falapel recipe, thanks a lot .
    Greetings from México

  3. Ali says

    Have you every used almond flour or coconut flour to bind instead of the oat flour? I am trying to stay as grain free as possible.


  4. Emmi says

    I just made these, thanks for the recipe! My first time making falafel!! Couldn’t find any cardamom (ground) in the shop so had to skip that, was slightly worried with the raw falafel as the garlic was extremely overbearing, thought I had messed something up. Cooked one to test the theory thinking I’d have to balance out the flavours with more chick pea but it tastes great! I did use more than 300g of chick peas however :) thank you for the recipe!

  5. Anete says

    Hi Dana!
    Thank you for creating this recipe and sharing it with us. Ii was my first time making falafels and they were so good! My family also loved them. Sister told me they tasted exactly like the ones she had in a café previously.

  6. An says

    Hi Dana!

    Is there a way to bake this to make them oil free? If so, how long should I bake on each side for and temperature?

    Please let me know. Thanks!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi An! We tried baking, and they didn’t have as much flavor and were a little harder for some reason. Sorry!

  7. colpab says

    This was the first time I’d made successful falafels! Thank you for the recipe and the tips…… they looked just like yours and didn’t fall apart in the pan. And delicious, did I mention they were delicious? Thank you so much! ?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Rinse (uncooked) chickpeas in a fine mesh strainer and add to a large pot. Cover with 2 inches water and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 1 minute. Then cover, remove from heat, and let set for 1 hour. Then drain and lightly rinse and dry thoroughly.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Brenda! We have only tried baking ones that had already been pan-fried and frozen. They weren’t as good as the fresh ones, but still good. I would still highly recommend pan-frying, but if you want to bake them, I’d suggest 15-20 minutes at 400-425 F. Spray them with a little cooking oil for crispness. Good luck!

  8. Katja says

    Amazing! Honestly, you’ve just made my day. I’ve been a big falafel fan for years, but never managed to make one myself (it either fell appart, was tasteless or just wasn’t anything like falafel). But this…this I am pinning forever. It is tender and crunchy and perfect. Thank you :). Now I have no reason to go out for one anymore. I love simple recipes, this one is just what I was looking for!

  9. Karmel says

    Have you ever made the chickpea mixture and refrigerated overnight? I am hoping to make these for a dinner party but would like to have some of the prep done ahead of time. Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Karmel! We haven’t left them overnight but go for it! We’re all for saving time :D

  10. Kristina Filler says

    Made these and they were lovely!! Thank you for the great recipe. I’ve made a few others from your site – you’re very talented!

  11. Sabine from Also The Crumbs Please says

    Dana, I love this recipe! This is the best ever falafel recipe I’ve ever made! Great job! Keep up with your great recipes.

  12. Emily says

    I made these last night. Easily the best falafel I’ve ever made, and close to the best falafel I’ve ever had (which was in Paris—and I’ve lived in New York).

    For reference, I would also check out the Serious Eats article on making falafel this way. I kind of used both that recipe and this one and combined them. I often do that to customize recipes to my preferences.

    For instance, I used a lot more parsley (you could also use cilantro or mint or a combination thereof, but I only had parsley). About two cups loosely packed. Falafel should be green on the inside.

    Also, I did not use any flour as a binder. The Serious Eats article talks about this. You have to be more delicate with forming the balls, but as long as your oil is hot enough, they will not fall apart when they go in.

    How do you know if your oil is hot enough without a thermometer? I used the method of placing two popcorn kernels in the oil as it heated, and once they pop it’s ready. Thanks, Cook’s Illustrated.

    I normally hate frying things—just too much oil/mess—but I shallow fried these and they turned out great. Next time I might try baking half the batch just to see the difference, though. I would bake them on a preheated cast iron pan at a high heat.

    Thanks so much for this recipe! It makes exponentially better falafel than using canned chickpeas, and the “work” of leaving them to soak (I just soaked them overnight) is minimal.

  13. Angie says

    This is delicious! I’ve had a lot of restaurant falafel and this is so good. Plus I don’t feel too guilty eating it. Thank you!!

  14. Carrie Herz says

    My two teenage girls and I made these last night and they were delicious. We served them in whole wheat pita pockets with shredded lettuce and tsaziki sauce. My only regret is that I didn’t make my own yogurt and cucumber based sauce. The next day they were great after one minute in the microwave. I feel inspired now to make some healthy veggie burgers now that I see how easy it is to make the dough is a food processor.

  15. Theresa says

    Can you freeze these before pan frying? sadly my husband doesn’t share in this kind of wonderful food so it would be nice to have some in the freezer I can make up the following week.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      I would recommend pan-frying the falafel, cooling them, and then freezing them in a freezer safe container for up to 1 month. Reheat in a 375 degree F (190 C) oven until warmed through.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi LeeAnn! I tried baking, and they didn’t have as much flavor and were a little harder for some reason.

  16. Kelsey says

    Wow! I made this yesterday for company and it was a huge hit! The batter was the perfect consistency and didn’t need any adjustments. Super fast to prep once the beans were soaked, and I baked the falafel balls at 350° for 25 minutes. BEST falafel recipe I have ever tried and I will definitely be making this again!

  17. Kati Hill says

    I topped these on a kale salad for lunch and it was restaurant worthy. I will definitely be making these again and again! :-)

  18. Kiki says


    I have two questions.

    1. Can you freeze the falafel before you pan fry them and defrost and pan fry when needed?

    2. Can you use regular all purpose or whole wheat flour as a substitute?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi! To freeze, pan-fry falafel, let cool, then add to a freezer safe container and freeze up to 1 month. Reheat in a 375 degree F (190 C) oven until warmed through. And yep, all-purpose flour or whole wheat will work just fine! Good luck!

  19. Anna says

    Another night’s dinner for the win. I read the “I made this” comments and made some adjustments as necessary being that I don’t have a food processor. One thing I would add is that my chickpeas were a little crunchy (I used the method above). I chose to bring them to a boil for a minute again, then let them soak for 10 more minutes. It seemed to do the trick. Chopping the parsley, onion, and garlic very fine instead of using a food processor seemed to do the trick just fine. I split the mixture into 2 batches when putting it in the blender. I unfortunately only had EVOO to fry them with, and they soaked up all the oil. I would suggest lightly spraying or only a little EVOO to cook them with.

    The flavor was great, although if you’ve had Middle Eastern falafels before, it wasn’t quite the same. I was still super happy with the result! I served mine over a bed of butter lettuce, squeezed it with lemon, and sprinkled za’tar over the top.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi! Hmm you could try lentils or kidney beans? I have not tried it though, but if you give it a try, let me know how it goes!

    • Nicole says

      Egyptians use only soaked fava beans. I also have a hard time digesting chickpeas unless they’ve been cooked for a long time (like in chili), so this is how I always make my falafel. You do have to slip the beans out of their skins before processing them, which is tedious, but you can look at it as a little meditation break. ;-)

  20. Barb says

    This is now my new go-to falafel recipe. Couldn’t have been easier and they were oh-so-good! I left the mixture in the fridge for 4+ hours so I was a little worried they’d fall apart when cooked but they held together wonderfully and didn’t even dry out or crumble during reheating as leftovers the next 3 days. I do think using dry beans vs. canned made a big difference. I’ve never had any falafel or even chickpea burgers have this great texture and hold together this well. Thanks, Dana!

  21. Kate Ligon says

    Hi – I really enjoy all of your recipes. I have a question about the Falafel though and I was wondering if you could help. Forming the balls was really easy, but when I flipped them, they couldn’t hold the shape. I’m really not sure what I did wrong. Do you have any suggestions?


  22. Megan Crow says

    Hello, I really enjoy the recipes on your blog. I went plant based 16 months ago, and am happy with the food and down 38 pounds. :) I do have to adapt some recipes since I live in Costa Rica and some specific food items are not available or very difficult to find. Usually, I purchase fresh chickpeas (no need to soak, just cook or refrigerate until using) at my local farmer’s market. Any recommendations on how to use them for this recipe?

  23. Emily says

    Perfect to make a big batch and eat for lunches! My only comment is that I followed the instructions exactly and ended up with much less than 24 falafel – about 15 I believe. Either way, they still tasted delicious and deserve a 5 star! I got several compliments on how flavorful they were.

  24. Christina says

    I don’t know how I would survive without this amazing blog and your cookbook – You make vegan so easy. This is hands down the best falafel I have ever made – or eaten!

  25. M.A says

    Thank you so much for all the delicious, healthy and lovely recipes on your website.

    I give this website a 5 stars. It made me enjoy baking reading your stories and instructions with helpful pictures. Your pictures make a huge difference also in that it lets us know how the recipe should be progressing.

    I’ll be trying this falafel recipe.

    Thanks once again :D

  26. Francesca says

    These are awesome! Found that when frying the first batch too much oil was used and it broke the falafels, using a little less oil ensured the rest turned out just fine! This is definitely going to become my go-to falafel recipe. LOVE!!

  27. Michele says

    Just felt compelled to share… I BAKED these and put them in a warm pita with tomatoes, cucmbers, arugula and tahini sauce and they were sooo good!!

  28. Val says

    I just made these falafel today and was disappointed with the texture of them. Mine turned out really rubbery. I just got a Vitamix to replace my food processor that recently died. I used it and the mixture turned out to be more like a paste instead of the crumbly mixture I got when I’ve made your Easy Vegan Falafel recipe using my old food processor. Do you think over processing could have made them rubbery? Or could it be they way they were fried? Any suggestions would be appreciated, as we generally love the way your recipes turn out for us. Thanks!

  29. Jenny says

    Yesss and yihaa. My first not-falling-apart-falafel.
    For the lack of gf-flour I used gram flour instead, which worked fine. I really liked the taste and the structure, but I ‘m gonna cook/soak the chickies a little longer next time – they seemed a bit too raw and crunchy, also had a hard time processing them.
    But all in all: falafellove *.*

  30. Stephanie says

    This was the first time I’ve ever made falafel at home and haven’t been bitterly disappointed. The texture was wonderful! And your mention of Wolf and Bear’s inspired me to make zhug for the first time, too. Also awesome! Thank so much posting this recipe! Yum!

  31. Wendy says

    Really good. My boyfriend says it derserves more than five stars. I added a little cilantro and toasted sesame seeds to the mixture. Thanks for another great recipe.

  32. Allison says


    These tasted great but mine we’re mushy in the center. I sub’d whole wheat flour for the oat flour and added egg replacer and used canned chick peas. Do the chick peas from scratch make the difference from firm to mushy?


    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      They do! We actually don’t even cook the chickpeas all the way through. Instead, we use a quick-soak method and then add them to the mix after drying them thoroughly, give it a try next time and I think that will help with the mushy center!

  33. Dana Luckey says

    Dear Dana,
    I’ve been meaning to write and say a huge thank you for your food blog and all of your wonderful recipes. I made your hazelnut cake this weekend and am making your falafel tonight. You do a phenomenal job!
    another Dana! :)

  34. Tyra Robinson says

    I just made falafels from this recipe for the second time. They were absolutely delicious. Thanks to this recipe, I no longer have to drive 20 minutes for my falafel fix. The first time, I fried them according to the directions. This time, I fried them in the airfryer. The falafels were just a smidge drier than the pan fried but not enough to make a real difference. A little extra sauce makes up for the slightly drier falafel. Thanks for a great recipe.

    • Jim says


      Thanks to your tip, I did it on the airfryer too. It was just like you said.
      My wife thought it was a little too dry, but I think the “healthiest” part compensates.

  35. Murielle says

    You did it again Dana! I made these falafels tonight for dinner after eyeing the recipe for over a week! I followed the recipe exactly and had the falafels with the tahini sauce in the recipe (to which I added a bit of lemon, fresh garlic and pepper). These were so delicious, moist, crunchy on the outside, earthy and oh so delicious! I will be making them again very soon I think.


  36. Leyla says

    I made the falafels exactly according to your recipe and the taste was reaaally great!
    But the problem was that they did not stick together well when I tried to fry them. Many falafels just fell apart so that frying them was impossible!
    Any tips on how I can do it better ?

  37. Melanie says

    I’ve heard good things about the soaked chickpea method. The falafel is supposed to have a better texture this way so I’d like to give it a try. My question is: do you think the soaked chickpea method would work in your Better Than Restaurant Falafel? Just substituting the typical 1 1/4 cups worth that come in a can with equal amounts of soaked chickpeas? Please let me know what you think.

  38. Ashley V says

    The taste of this was great! However, I really struggled to get that pretty, brown “crust” on the whole falafel. Mine also fell apart, but maybe there’s just some technique I’m missing since it was my first time making falafels. I’ll definitely try again!

  39. Deanne says

    I made these tonight. 3 out of 4 kids+ husband loved them (the 2 yo wasn’t doing it!) I have just recently discovered your site & haven’t had a bad recipe yet-the chocolate beet cupcakes were the best! Thanks for all the great recipes!

  40. Kristine-Bites of Flavor says

    I just LOVE falafel but have never made it at home. Your recipe looks easy to make and sounds delicious! Thank you for sharing!!

  41. PKR says


    Would I be able to make this in a blender?
    Unfortunately I don’t have a food processor… would the texture still come out the same?
    I’m often afraid to make some of your recipes that require a food processor because I’m worried the texture wouldn’t be the same in a blender and it would ruin it!

    Please let me know :) Thanks! I’m so excited about this! HEALTHY FALAFELS!!!!

  42. Shayna says

    Another win! Awesome! I did add some lemon juice (and a spoonful of nutritional yeast) to my tahini sauce (cause I like it best that way). The flafels came out awesome. I hesitated but added an extra tablespoon or so of water to the dough at the very end and I don’t think it hurt. It helped the insides steam up nicely – I prefer my falafel slightly less crumbly – while the outside got golden.

    Boyfriend’s first words after tasting the first one were “Mmmm…MMMMMMMMM!…..these are delicious!…mmmmm[insert more yummy noises]”

    What I love most about your recipes: I don’t worry about having a “bad dinner night” from a recipe fail. Your measurments and taste buds are consistently spot on!

  43. Andrea says

    This is the first time I made falafel at home and your recipe made it so easy that I will definitely do it again. And it’s sooooo delicious. I cheated and tasted one while the rest was still cooking and I have to admit, it was very difficult not to eat the whole batch at once right there at the stove. Fortunately my toddler son gave me his sad puppy look – meaning: mommy, and what about me? – so I took all the strength in me and delivered the rest to the family table.

    Thanks for this awesome recipe, your blog is my number one choice when I look for something healthy and quick and I’ve never been unsatisfied.

  44. RunningPathES says

    These were spectacular. I made them exactly as directed. They tasted like good restaurant falafel. My kids loved them. Served with a tahini sauce, hummus, and Israeli salad in pitas. I will absolute make these again, and I have no reason to try another falafel recipe!

  45. Susie says

    Love these! First time I’ve used the dry chickpeas…. I’ve always heard they were better for falafels, but thought it was too time consuming… So happy to be wrong! Thank you so much for ask the great recipes!

  46. Stephanie says

    SO GOOD! I made these last night as directed, and have made a veggie-burger sized one for myself tonight. You mention that you didn’t like the texture after frying/freezing/baking. Do you think it would work to freeze the “dough” raw and fry from frozen?

    • Stephanie says

      I just want to add: I discovered you accidentally by a link, and I am SO glad I did! The Pulled Pork was great! The Falafel was wonderful! Now I’m browsing your site and trying to decide which sweets to have!
      I’m wheat-free and vegetarian, leaning more and more plant-based. You make it easy!

  47. Hannah says

    Hi Dana, I was wondering if you could bake these instead of frying – I’m not too big on oil :)

    Thanks, they look delicious!!

  48. Mia says


    I love your recipes, and everything I tried turned out great.
    I make falafel quite often, but I don’t boil the chickpeas, I just soak them in water for 24 hours, and then add them in the blender. The traditional way is only soaking. I tried both methods and I like the traditional one. The texture is crunchier and the taste is better ( in my opinion)
    Just thought you’d like to try it this way also.

  49. Zombidle says

    Falafels are one of my favorite dishes because they are really tasty and you can change what you use to cook them and change the sauce.

  50. Emma says

    I am really trying to incorporate more vega recipes into my diet and falafel is something which I haven’t yet tried but will have to now give them a go with this recipe.

  51. Krystal says

    This recipe is in progress right now … and the first time I’ve left my home right-this-minute to buy an ingredient (how was I out of dried chickpeas!?!??) to make a recipe. Thank goodness I moved to Seattle and live across the street from a grocery store. It was fate. ;)

  52. Paulanne says

    Dana, your tahini date bomb post mentioned Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Snowballs, but I wasn’t able to access the recipe, even though I am a subscriber. Perhaps because I am not on Instagram? I just subscribed recently, so was not around for the March post. Is it possible to get this recipe? It pushes multiple buttons:-) Thank you!

  53. A cook from Vancouver, BC says

    I made these falafel yesterday, followed the recipe exactly. I tried the quick soak method for the chickpeas too. I really like the seasoning and flavour of the falafel, but unfortunately found the texture to be very crumbly, and falling apart when I tried to flip in the pan. They formed into balls easily enough, and were not dry before cooking. After being cooked, the falafels were rather like hockey pucks. Any suggestions? I used the oat flour to bind them as the recipe suggested.

    • CM says

      Every time I’ve made a falafel that came out dry, it was because I was tempted to add some kind of binder. I’ve come to the conclusion that my Lebanese and Israeli friends have always insisted upon–that real falafel is only ground, soaked chickpeas, NO FLOUR NECESSARY! Some individuals include a bit of baking powder for lightness, but really, if you make the above recipe and exclude the flour, your falafel should still hold together.

      The key is to press the patties between your hands firmly, but not TOO firmly–you don’t want the dough to be too compact, making them dry and hockey-puck-ish, but they obviously have to hold together (refrigerating or even freezing for a short time can help the moisture absorb a bit and facilitates forming the patties in my experience). You have to have a light hand if you’re pan-frying them, because the true danger of crumbling comes in the flip. As long as you’re gentle (I use two small spatulas to gently flip them), it will work fine, but you can also avoid the problems by deep-frying (you don’t need that much oil if you use a small-volume pot) or by baking in the oven (high temperature for short time or under the broiler–you want a short burst of really hot air to make the water inside burst into steam and make them fluffy).

      Sorry to hijack the thread–obviously, everyone has their own method. If you decide that you’d prefer to bake falafel, I would actually suggest using a different recipe with already cooked chickpeas–the uncooked chickpea method, while authentic, does not yield very moist falafel when they’re baked, in my experience. But falafel are wonderful, even when flawed, after all, so experimenting is never a bad thing!

  54. Lee Ann says

    I only have a mini food processor so I’m going to try this in my Vitamix. I have a recipe for hummus in the Vitamix so this should work as well, yes? I’ll let you know how it goes.

      • Peggy says

        Thank you for the Vitamix tip!!! I was starting to think I was going to burn the motor out on my mini food processor. Duh! Why didn’t i think of the Vitamix in the first place!

        • Lee Ann says

          I put it on variable speed four and dropped in the onion, garlic, and parsley. Then shut it off and added the chickpeas and everything else, and turned it back on to variable 4 and used the tamper to keep it all going. I’ve used my Vitamix for so many things today; almond milk, carrot ginger turmeric smoothie, potato pancakes, cashew sour cream, applesauce, carrot juice. Yesterday I made the super powered orange juice and carrot apple muffins. Feeling good, feeling strong!

  55. Monica says

    This looks so good, I am soaking the garbanzo beans right now. One question though, you don’t actually cook the beans? Only boil one minute and leave 1 hour?
    Also making your hummus so it sure will be a middle eastern feast tonight. Thanks for all the great recipes.

  56. Stephanie says

    These are, without a doubt, the best falafel I’ve made. I’ll never make a dry, or soggy falafel again! Thank you!

  57. Sara says

    This recipe was AWESOME! This was my first falafel experience, it was yummy and super easy to make! I can’t wait to try more of your recipes!

  58. Isabella says

    Hi! Love your recipes! I can’t have garlic— should I just leave it out or replace with something else? Thanks Dana!!!

  59. Lynsey says

    You can NEVER have too many falafel recipes. Can’t wait to try these out. Me and the boyf are falafel SNOBS so looking forward to trying! L x

  60. Amy Katz from Veggies Save The Day says

    This looks so delicious! I love falafel, and I’m so happy to see your vegan and gluten-free recipe.

  61. Elle says

    Thanks for the recipe!
    I used to live in the middle east so am used to excellent Falafel practically at every second corner.

    Now I’m in Europe and still haven’t found any good Falafel here. Maybe I should try making some myself (we do make our own humus of course) but I have an aversion to frying anything but eggs or pancakes (hate the smell of frying oil).

    Two comments: “real” Falafel should not have any kind of flour in it. It is considered a “cheap filler” and is looked at by Falafel connoisseurs with contempt – I know this is not the case here, but a point you might want to consider.

    Second – I didn’t see any freshly squeezed lemon juice in your Tahini recipe – really an essential ingredient, in my opinion.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I don’t find fresh lemon juice necessary in tahini sauce, personally. I love how flavor of the falafel are offset with the subtleness of the tahini sauce. But thanks for the tip!

  62. gmail correo electronico says

    hi Dana, how am I supposed to keep up with them all?! I just made the Falafel for the first time last night. It was wonderful and I loved how easy that recipe was (and that I got to use up the swiss chard in my garden)!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I only tried baking ones that had already been pan-fried and frozen. They weren’t as good as the fresh ones, but still good. I would still highly recommend pan-frying, but if you want to bake them, I’d suggest 15-20 minutes at 400-425 F. Spray them with a little cooking oil for crispness. Good luck!

  63. Chelsey Crafts says

    I’ve heard Portland is unreeal for vegan eats! Enjoy getting to know your new neighborhood more :)

  64. Kayla says

    These look absolutely delicious! I have always loved all your falafel recipes, so this is definitely a must-try!!!

  65. Michelle says

    You won’t believe this, but I had just put the ingredients from one of your previous falafal recipes on my grocery list today. I’m going to try this one instead. I’ll let you know how they turn out. I’m envious of your Portland neighborhood and restaurants. :)

  66. Colleen says

    Ohhh Dana, how am I supposed to keep up with them all?! I just made the “Better Than Restaurant Falafel” for the first time last night. It was wonderful and I loved how easy that recipe was (and that I got to use up the swiss chard in my garden)!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Those are good, too! These are just closer to “traditional.” Hope you give these a try, too!

  67. Sara says

    I recommend Cedo’s on MLK for another good falafel place (aside from Wolf & Bear’s). I recently found it and I think it may be the best I’ve had!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for the suggestion, Jan. But we won’t be adding Weight Watchers points at this time.

  68. Heather says

    I love homemade falafel my go to recipe calls for fresh cilantro as well, and I live the addition of it. Thanks for the great recipes, I already have my pita bread ready for our falafel meal tonight but I need to find somewhere that sells the New Sabra lemon flavor hummus because that is our new favorite :)

    • Heather says

      I forgot to mention as a busy mama of three rolling out and baking/frying individual falafel is sometimes too much work. I often spread my dough on a piece of parchment and cut into squares then brush with olive oil, separate a little bit and bake them, it makes the falafel making game so much more manageable and you still get the same great taste. I also Ada pinch of cayenne from but if heat.

  69. Pure Ella says

    These look amazing!! I too have a falafel weakness and have a few on my blog :)
    Including a 10 Minute version! Gotta love ’em ;)
    I need to try your recipe(s) Asap!!

  70. Masha | Cardio with Carrots says

    So in love! We just had Mediterranean catering from a express joint so I am swimming in falafel but I will definitely need to try this homemade recipe out to compare. Homemade is always better. Plus I am interested in trying this chickpea cooking method out. Thanks

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I only tried baking ones that had already been pan-fried and frozen. They weren’t as good as the fresh ones, but still good. I would still highly recommend pan-frying, but if you want to bake them, I’d suggest 15-20 minutes at 400-425 F. Spray them with a little cooking oil for crispness. Good luck!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      well, you don’t want them COOKED you only want them SOAKED. Otherwise they’ll be too soft. So I’d recommend measuring out dry beans as suggested and either using the quick soak method listed above, or soaking them overnight!

  71. Julia @ Sprinkles & Saturdays says

    Oh my gosh. Yum! These look so good. Falafel is one of my favorite things to order at restaurants but have only made it at home a couple of times since it’s a lot of work. This recipe makes it look easy though! Think I’ll give it another go.

  72. dixya @food, pleasure, and health says

    you can never have too many falafel..i made a batch last week and enjoyed them with pizza (crumbled as topping) and with salad. i cant wait to try this pan fried version. looks so soft!

  73. Victoria says

    Ooooo I also live in Portland but haven’t tried that spot yet — it’s on my ever-growing list though. Have you tried the Mediterranean food cart (blanking on the name) on 12th and Hawthorne? Love that spot. But now that I think about it, that’s the only Med. food I’ve had here in the city? Not sure. Anyways, Portland is kind of a small city so I hope to bump into you sometime and I’ll be sure to say hello! I love this food blog and the two of you, so thank you for what you do! xoxooo Victoria

      • Toa Tafuna says

        This sounds amazing! Is it ok if I use canned chickpeas? I have so many I need to use up lol. Thanks in advance!

          • Flavia says

            Is there a specific reason or any expected difference in outcome if the canned one is used? Thanks!

          • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

            Hi Flavia! We recommend dried as you don’t want them cooked you only want them soaked, otherwise they’ll be too soft. So I’d recommend measuring out dry beans as suggested and either using the quick soak method listed above, or soaking them overnight! Hope this helps!