Falafels are the most common vegan food on the planet. Who hasn’t enjoyed them at least once? I don’t often make them at home because Montreal has countless fantastic establishments serving fresh delicious falafels. My favourite spots include Nilufar, Panthere Vert, Sumac and Falafel St Jacques and 57 Vegan, just to name a few. I also don’t make them often because deep frying at home is a pain. That’s why I love this baked alternative. It’s healthier and much easier to prepare. I won’t lie, it doesn’t have the crisp of a deep-fried falafel, but it’s just as flavorful. I like to make a batch and keep them in the fridge to serve up in a salad, a Mediterranean plate or wrap. It’s an excellent way to eat healthy food at home.
It’s important to note that traditionally falafels are made with dry chickpeas rather than canned or cooked chickpeas. I’m sure you could use canned chickpeas in a pinch, but you might need to compensate with extra chickpea flour to control the moisture. For that reason, I highly recommend grabbing some dry chickpeas. They are far more zero waste friendly, and you can even get them packaging-free at your local bulk store.
If you forgot to soak your chickpeas overnight, I also provide instructions for a quick soak method that takes about one hour.
Note: You’ll need a food processor for this recipe.
Easy oven-baked falafels (Vegan/GF)
- Food processor
- 2 cups dry chickpeas soaked overnight at room temperature or quick soaked, see notes on soaking methods
- 1 small onion roughly chopped
- 1 cup fresh herbs parsley, cilantro, dill
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp roasted sesame
- 1-2 green chillies
- 1 1/2 tbsp flour or chickpea flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Add all ingredients into a food processor and process for several minutes until the mixture is a fine grain. Add the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375°f and grease two baking pans with one to two tablespoons of oil each. You can omit the oil by using a silicone baking sheet, but it will lose a little crunch. I recommend cast-iron skillets as baking pans because they will retain heat and give a crispier finish. If you don't have cast iron, cookie sheets are an good alternative.
- Form the mixture into about 20 round balls. I like to use an ice cream scoop to get an even shape. Place them on your baking pan and bake for about 15 to 25 minutes on one side. Check your falafels to see if they are ready to be flipped. They should be browned on the bottom side. If the bottom sticks to the pan, it might need a few more minutes to harden more before you flip them. Use a spoon or thin spatula to flip them in a swift motion. Once flipped to the opposite side, bake for another 10 to 20 minutes until they are browned on both sides.