Easy Homemade Falafel Recipe
Prep Time
30minutes + overnight soaking
Cook Time
15minutes
Prep Time
30minutes + overnight soaking
Cook Time
15minutes
Ingredients
  • 1/2pound dried chickpeas
  • 2ounces fresh cilantro, parsley, or mint (or a mix of all 3)~2 cups worth
  • 6 scallionswhite and light green parts only, sliced
  • 2cloves garlicminced
  • 1teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2teaspoon ground coriander seed
  • 2teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2-3cups vegetable oilfor frying
  • 1cup tomatoesdiced
  • 1cup cucumbersdiced
Lemon Tahini Garlic Sauce
  • 1head garlicbroken into individual unpeeled cloves
  • 2/3cup lemon juice~3-4 lemons
  • 3tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1cup tahini paste
  • cold wateras needed
  • kosher saltto taste
Instructions
  1. Rinse the chickpeas and place them in a bowl. Completely cover the chickpeas with cold water (add another 2 inches of water above the top of the chickpeas to make sure there’s enough water for the chickpeas to absorb). Cover and let stand overnight at room temperature. The next day, drain the water and dry the chickpeas with a salad spinner (or with a paper towel if you don’t have a salad spinner).
Lemon Tahini Garlic Sauce
  1. Make the lemon-tahini-garlic sauce.* Add the garlic cloves and lemon juice to a blender, and pulse until a puree is formed. Transfer the mixture to a fine-mesh strainer that’s set over a large bowl. Using a spatula or large spoon, press out as much liquid as you can from the mixture
  2. Add the nutritional yeast and tahini, and whisk to combine. The mix will thicken rapidly from the tahini paste. Add water a few tablespoons at a time and whisk until smooth. Keep adding water to thin out the paste, until the dressing forms smooth ribbons if you lift your whisk up from the bowl. Season with salt to taste.
Falafel
  1. Add the chickpeas, herbs, scallions, garlic, cumin, coriander seed, and kosher salt to a blender or food processor. Pulse until finely minced, and occasionally scrape down the sides of the blender to incorporate all ingredients. If you try to squeeze a spoonful of the mix together, it should stick together. If not, the ingredients are still too coarse and you should continue blending a little more.
  2. Transfer the chickpea mixture to a bowl, cover, and put it in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. This lets the starch from the chickpeas come out and help bind everything together. After the 15 minutes are up, take a heaping tablespoon of the mixture, and squeeze into a ball. You can gently roll it with your hands, but don’t apply much pressure or the ball won’t hold its form. Place the ball on a clean plate, and repeat with the remainder of the mixture.
  3. In a Dutch oven, add the vegetable oil (it should be ~3/4 inch deep) and heat until 375℉ (use an instant-read thermometer for this). Using a slotted spoon, carefully lower each falafel ball into the hot oil. Make sure to leave a little space in between each ball, and cook in batches if your Dutch oven can’t fit all of the falafel at once. Adjust the heat to maintain a consistent oil temperature between 350-375℉. Don’t move the falafel balls until they are mostly brown all over, with just a little green on top. Using a fork, flip the falafel over, to brown the other side. The falafel balls are done when they are golden-brown all over. This entire process should take ~4 minutes. Using the slotted spoon, transfer the falafel to a paper towel-lined plate.
  4. Serve immediately, with pita, the lemon tahini garlic sauce, and the chopped tomatoes & cucumbers. Garnish with parsley leaves if desired.
Recipe Notes

*Observant readers will notice that this is the same sauce that is featured in the delicata squash salad dressing. Wahoo — 1 tahini sauce recipe that can be reused in multiple recipes!