How to make homemade falafel step by step 

We tell you how to make delicious chickpea falafel easily with our recipe. Find out more about this vegetarian recipe in our article.

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You are bound to have heard of falafel, a recipe imported from the Middle East which has become increasingly popular among vegans, vegetarians and even coeliacs. But what is falafel? Falafel is a ground mix of chickpeas, onion, garlic, herbs and spices. The mixture you get from these ingredients is shaped into small balls, fried and served with a yoghurt sauce. They can also be placed inside pitta bread.

Falafel is a nutritious, healthy and tasty dish, very easy to make and fantastic if you’re looking for a different way to eat pulses. The only mystery it presents is that you have to soak the chickpeas for 24 hours before making the recipe (you can’t use cooked chickpeas or the typical chickpeas in a jar or tin). Once soaked, you just need to strain them, dry them thoroughly and mix them with the rest of the ingredients. 

Like hummus, tahini or tabbouleh, falafel is ideal for using up chickpeas from your store cupboard and making a homemade snack. Moreover, it is so versatile that you can eat falafel by itself, as a snack, but also as a starter, tapas... Let’s look at  how to make falafel.

Homemade falafel ingredients

The ingredients for falafel are as follows. Take note!

  • 300 g chickpeas (soaked for 24 hours beforehand)
  • 120 g onion (peeled)
  • 1 clove garlic (peeled)
  • 100 g chickpea flour
  • 5 g baking powder
  • 10 g of ground cumin
  • 1 handful fresh coriander
  • 1 handful fresh parsley
  • sunflower oil for frying
  • salt
  • ground black pepper

Chickpea falafel recipe

Firstly, it’s worth repeating, you need to soak the chickpeas for 24 hours beforehand, since this is the key for the falafel recipe to be a success. After that time, and once you have strained and dried them (it's important to remove all the water), place them in a food processor jug or a powerful blender, with the garlic clove, onion, coriander, parsley and ground cumin and grind everything. 

Add the chickpea flour (set a few tablespoons aside) and the baking powder and season with salt and pepper. Grind everything until you obtain a homogeneous mixture and leave it to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes. 

Make small balls the size of a walnut with the mixture and coat with the chickpea flour you set aside earlier. Heat plenty of oil in the frying pan and fry on a medium-high heat. Turn them over so they brown evenly on all sides. Once fried, place them on a dish with a piece of kitchen paper to absorb the excess fat for a few minutes before serving. 

What can we serve with falafel?

If you are wondering what you can serve with falafel, a fantastic accompaniment is tzatziki style yoghurt sauce, and green salad. It can be served in a pitta bread, like a sandwich, or with something like a Greek salad for example. You can also make falafel burgers with vegetables and yoghurt sauce, falafel with pitta bread and hummus or a falafel burrito with chili peppers and sour cream.