Homemade baked falafel that are perfectly crispy on the outside and soft on the inside – all without deep frying. The secret? Dried chickpeas. Canned chickpeas give you a softer falafel, whereas dried chickpeas give you that crisp outside and soft inside you want in a falafel. Add a little brush of olive oil before baking and you get the perfect crispy baked falafel. The dried chickpeas need to be soaked overnight, but they don’t get cooked before being blended and baked. This means you need to do a little prep work by soaking your chickpeas overnight. Once your chickpeas are soaked, it’s just a matter of blending, shaping and baking.
You can serve these baked falafel as a starter with some tahina or hummus to dip them into, in a falafel bowl, or my personal favourite way – inside a warm pita with an Israeli salad and tahina. For my Israeli salad, I simply chop up cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, carrots, some fresh parsley and season with lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. The tahina is simply tahini with some lemon juice, water, salt, and garlic powder added. I never measure, just add in ingredients slowly, taste and adjust until I get my desired thickness and taste.
The Best Baked Falafel
- food processor
- 250 grams dried chickpeas
- 1 cup fresh parsley
- 1 cup fresh mint
- 1 medium red onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 tablespoon chickpea flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- warm pitas
- Israeli Salad
- Add dried chickpeas to a bowl and cover with water. Make sure the water is a few centimeters higher than the chickpeas as they’ll triple in size. Cover and soak overnight.
- The next day, rinse the dried chickpeas and add them to a food processer along with the onion, garlic, fresh herbs, and spices. Blend until you get a mixture that resembles coarse sand. Transfer mixture to a clean bowl and add in chickpea flour and baking soda. Mix to combine. Cover and let the mixture rest for one hour in the fridge.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C and spray a baking sheet with a non-stick spray.
- When the mixture has rested for an hour, remove from the fridge and shape it into 1 tablespoon sized balls. I used a tablespoon sized cookie scoop to shape them into balls. The mixture is delicate, so if it’s too wet add a little more chickpea flour. If it’s too dry add a little water. Place the falafel balls on the prepared sheet.
- Brush the falafel balls with some olive oil and then bake for 20-25 minutes, until they’re golden brown.
- Serve with pita, a simple chopped salad and tahina.
Zissy is the co-founder of Nutreats. She likes to make things, do things and wear things.