Baked Falafel

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Somehow, I managed not to try falafel until one of the first times I went to visit Chris in NYC—I was 22. How is that possible? Since then, I’ve been making up for lost time. Falafel with salad is something I could easily eat multiple times a week. Unfortunately, most falafel served in restaurants or from street carts is fried, which is fine once in a while but not ideal everyday fare. Plus, takeout gets expensive.

Gazala Place in Hells Kitchen makes great falafel!

I’ve been wanting to try  making baked falafel at home for ages but Chris has always talked me out of it, arguing in favor of authenticity over an at-home approximation. For a long time, I let it go, but the other day, I was in a mood, like, “Dude, I’ve got these chickpeas and this parsley and all these spices—screw authentic.” All signs were pointing to a falafel experiment.

I stuck with a really simple version that more evokes the essence than nails down anyone’s Lebanese grandmother’s secret recipe, but for a first attempt, I have to admit I was pretty happy with the results. I’m looking forward to tweaking it.


  • 1 15-oz can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • ~1/2 c parsley, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 400. Pulse all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth but not totally pureed. 
  2. Form mix into little balls (I ended up with 18) and place on a lightly oiled or sprayed baking sheet.
  3. Bake 15 minutes then flip over and bake another 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Served with salad, a (slightly failed) attempt at cabbage and corn salad and (unpictured) hummus, these were really great. In the future, I might add more coriander and some cilantro. I might also add something a little crunchy—I know this is unconventional, but I’m curious to see how ground flax might taste in these. We will see. Enjoy!

9 thoughts on “Baked Falafel

    mealsformiles said:
    May 26, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    oh! those look delicious. I’m loving mediterranean foods lately but kind of shy away from making my own stuff. I love that you baked these too and they were still good without frying!

      Jess responded:
      May 27, 2011 at 1:34 pm

      I could probably eat Mediterranean foods every day and not get sick of them! I go through phases where I’ll get into a groove of making my own hummus every week but have been way too busy recently. One good thing about NYC, though, is that you can find really good quality stuff so easily!

    Jess@Healthy Exposures said:
    May 27, 2011 at 11:38 am

    i admit – I’ve never had authentic falafel, served in a restaurant. truth be told, i don’t even know where i could find falafel around here…but these look great! anything with chickpeas and those spices/herbs and i’m sold.

    Jenn L @ Peas &Crayons said:
    May 27, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    If you add the ground flax you wont even know it’s there =) I add it all the time to mine 😉

      Jess responded:
      May 27, 2011 at 1:30 pm

      Thanks for the tip!

    Six Things for Sunday | Keeping It Real Food said:
    February 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm

    […] things you find yourself craving. For whatever reason, a warm bowl of spinach, roasted veggies, and homemade falafel sounded like the perfect lunch on Saturday—topped with hummus and goat cheese, of course. On the […]

    Dar 525 | Keeping It Real Food said:
    December 9, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    […] lamb and chicken kebabs and the shakshuka. It also reminded me that it’s been way too long since I’ve made falafel at home, so maybe I should get on […]

    […] example that nags at me every time I throw it in my shopping basket is hummus. And remember that time I made my own falafel basically just to piss off show my then-boyfriend that he didn’t own […]

    […] eat falafel, I enjoy it in one of NYC’s many wonderful restaurants (but preferably this one). I’ve even attempted making my own at home. However, there are still a bunch of no-brainer foods that I mean to try my hand at—I […]

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