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Crispy Falafel Recipe (Bake / Instant Pot / Air Fryer / Aebleskiver)

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Crispy Falafel Recipe - Making Falafel from scratch is easier than you think and so much more healthier. Ultra crispy on the outside and perfectly moist and fluffy on the inside. Chickpeas, herbs and spices is all you need to bake them, air fry them or cook them in your aebleskiver pan.  This recipe is easy to follow and has step by step photos and a video recipe. Vegan. Gluten-Free. Make-ahead & freezer friendly.

Anvita

Anvita

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Falafel Recipe 3 ways

 

This Recipe's Index

What is Falafel?

Falafel are the Egyptian deep fried patties or balls made of soaked chickpeas or fava beans ground with fresh herbs and spices. The mixture is shaped into balls or patties and deep fried. Falafel has become a popular street food in may parts of the world simply because delicious. These golden brown patties or balls are super crisp from the outside while green, moist and fluffy form the inside. Typically enjoyed in a pita, gyro wrap or sandwiches with refreshing dressings and veggies, it's hard not to fall in love with them.

Why you will love this Falafel recipe?

  • Oh so delicious and crispy! Nothing beats the freshness of homemade falafel. 
  • Good for you as they are packed with plant based protein. So hearty and flavorful.
  • Super easy to make them from scratch.
  • So much healthier than the traditional deep fried or frozen falafel. 
  • Made with pantry staples, no fancy ingredients required.
  • Make-ahead and Freezer friendly.
  • Vegan, Gluten-Free, Plant-based.

Vegan Gluten-Free Falafel Ingredients

Here is just a quick glance of the ingredients required in the recipe. The measurements can be found in the recipe card below.

  • Chickpeas - It's very important to use dried soaked chickpeas when making Falafel. Please do not use canned or cooked chickpeas for this recipe or else you will not get the desired texture and crispiness. The patties or balls will start to disintegrate if the texture isn't right.
  • Herbs - I love this part, where the Falafel is packed with fresh green herbs like parsley, dill and cilantro. Not only do the give the Falafel it's authentic flavor but also the lovely green color inside and it's aroma. 
  • Spices - I always have cumin powder, coriander powder  and cayenne pepper handy and they absolutely enhance the flavors.
  • Onion and garlic - You can use whatever onion you have handy, red, yellow or white and some fresh garlic cloves.
  • Salt, baking powder & oil - Salt to taste. A little baking powder for the airy texture and a little fluff.  A little olive oil to coat the Falafel.
  • Sesame Seeds - Although sesame seeds are optional, you can sprinkle a few sesame seeds on the pattie or ball before cooking them. 

How to make Easy and Crispy Falafel from scratch?

It's easier than you thought and absolutely worth it!!! Here are three healthier ways to make your own Falafel at home without deep frying the Falafel. Bake, Air Fry or Aebleskiver

Here is a quick glance at the recipe, you can find the detailed recipe and measurements in the recipe card below.

1 : Soak the Chickpeas - This recipe calls for dry chickpeas which need to be soaked in water overnight. This helps the chickpeas to soften and swell overnight. Do not using canned or cooked chickpeas for this recipe or else you will not get the right texture or consistency. Drain the water after 24 hours.

 2 : Prepare the mixture - Pat dry all the ingredients with a kitchen towel making sure they are not wet. The chickpeas, herbs (parsley, dill, cilantro), spices (cumin powder, coriander powder, cayenne pepper) , onion and garlic and into a food processor and pulse in intervals until you get a coarse meal.

 3 : Refrigerate the mixture - This is an important step. Do not skip this.  Transfer the mixture into a bowl and cover it with a cling wrap. Chill the mixture in the refrigerator for atleast an hour or 3 hours. This will help hold the patties / balls better by allowing the excess starch to seep out.

 4 : Make patties or balls - Add salt and baking powder to the mixture and mix well. Scoop the mixture using a measuring spoon to form a even sized pattie (2 inches wide and ½ inch thick) or ball. If you are making a pattie do not flatten them do much. Coast the patties or ball with oil if you plan to cook them right away or you can even freeze the patties or balls at this time for later use. 

 5 : Cook the Falafel - Pick one of the methods from below that is most convenient to you to cook the Falafel. You will have to work in batches unless you bake the entire batch at once.

Baked Falafel Recipe

  • preheat oven to 375 F.
  • line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • coat each Falafel with olive oil and place it on the baking sheet.
  • bake for about 15 minutes and carefully flip the side, baking the Falafels for another 15 mins., until golden brown from the outside.

Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid or Mealthy Crisp Lid Falafel Recipe 

  • preheat Air Fryer or Crisp Lid to 370-380 F.
  • place a trivet inside the inner pot of the pot. place the deep fryer basket on top of the trivet.
  • coat each Falafel with olive oil and arrange them on the deep fryer basket.
  • Air Fry the Falafel at 375 F for 6 minutes first, then carefully flip the side and Air Fry for another 6 minutes until golden brown.

Air Fryer Falafel Recipe

  • coat each Falafel with olive oil and arrange it in a single layer in the air fryer basket.
  • air fry at 370-380 F for about 7 minutes and then carefully flip the side, air frying the Falafels for another 7-8 mins., until golden brown from the outside.

Aebleskiver Falafel Recipe

  • pour ½ a teaspoon of oil into each cavity of the aebleskiver pan and wait for the oil to get hot.
  • place each falafel ball into the cavity and cook on slow to medium heat for about 5-7 minutes. then carefully flip the uncooked side towards the bottom of the pan, flipping the cooked side facing the top and cook the falafel again for another 5-7 minutes until golden brown.

Pro Tips to make Crispy Falafel

  • Most important used dried soaked chickpeas. Do not use canned or cooked chickpeas for this recipe.
  • Pat dry all ingredients before adding to the food processor as if the mixture is too wet the falafel has a tendency to fall apart. If the mixture is too wet then add a little flour to bind it
  • You want a coarse mixture not a paste so do not over pulse the mixture.
  • Refrigerate and allow the mixture to rest for at least 1 hour before shaping it.
  • Add baking powder to the mixture and mix well before shaping the mixture. This helps keep the Falafel airy and fluffy.

Why is my Falafel falling apart?

A few crumble here and there is normal. However if the Falafel starts disintegrating then, probably the mixture is too wet. Pat dry all ingredients before adding to the food processor. 

If the mixture is too wet you can add some bread crumbs or flour to absorb the moisture and bind the ball. For gluten-free options use a gluten free flour to soak the moisture if required. 

Can I Meal- Prep or Freeze these Falafels ?

Oh absolutely! They definitely come in handy when you need to whip up a quick meal on the table without too much cooking time.

You can make the Falafel patties or balls ahead of time and either refrigerate them to cook the next day or freeze them for upto three months. 

When making Falafel to feed a crowd, making the patties a day before always comes handy. 

Falafel Serving Ideas

They are so versatile that they can be served as an appetizer, or a part of a meal platter or simply pack them into your sandwich or pita pocket. You will never get bored of them.

  • Pita Pockets, Gyros, Sandwiches or Wraps
  • Make a salad bowl with onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and cheese with Falafel in it.
  • Simply dress them up with tahini, hummus or Tzatziki
vegan falafel recipe

Crispy Falafel Recipe (Bake / Instant Pot / Air Fryer / Aebleskiver)

Yield: 24 patties
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Crispy Falafel Recipe - Making Falafel from scratch is easier than you think and so much more healthier. Ultra crispy on the outside and perfectly moist and fluffy on the inside. Chickpeas, herbs and spices is all you need to bake them, air fry them or cook them in your aebleskiver pan.  This recipe is easy to follow and has step by step photos and a video recipe. Vegan. Gluten-Free. Make-ahead & freezer friendly.

Ingredients

  • dried chickpeas or garbanzo beans, 2 cups
  • fresh parsley, 1 cup
  • onion, 1 cut into 4
  • fresh cilantro, stems removed ¼ cup
  • garlic cloves 6, peeled
  • fresh dill leaves, stems removed ¾ cup
  • salt to taste
  • cumin powder, 1 tbsp
  • baking powder, 1 tsp
  • coriander powder, 1 tbsp
  • cayenne powder, 1 tsp
  • sesame seeds, 2 tbsp (optional)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil

Instructions

  1. Soak dried chickpeas overnight. Do not use canned or cooked chickpeas. Read Pro Tips.
  2. Pat dry all the ingredients with a kitchen towel making sure they are not wet.
  3. Add the chickpeas, herbs (parsley, dill, cilantro), spices (cumin powder, coriander powder, cayenne pepper) , onion and garlic and into a food processor and pulse in intervals until you get a coarse meal.
  4. Refrigerate the mixture for atleats an hout to 3, by transferring the mixture into a bowl and covering it with a cling wrap. Read Pro Tips.
  5. Add salt and baking powder to the mixture and mix well.
  6. To make the patties or balls, scoop the mixture using a measuring spoon to form a even sized pattie (2 inches wide and ½ inch thick) or ball. Read Pro Tips.
  7. Coat the patties or ball with oil if you plan to cook them right away or you can even freeze the patties or balls at this time for later use. 
  8. To Cook the Falafel, Pick one of the methods from below that is most convenient for you to cook the Falafel. 

Baked Falafel Recipe

  1. preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. coat each Falafel with olive oil and place it on the baking sheet.
  4. bake for about 15 minutes and carefully flip the side, baking the Falafels for another 15 mins., until golden brown from the outside. 

Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid or Mealthy Crisp Lid Falafel Recipe

  1. preheat Air Fryer or Crisp Lid to 370-380 F.
  2. place a trivet inside the inner pot of the pot. place the deep fryer basket on top of the trivet.
  3. coat each Falafel with olive oil and arrange them on the deep fryer basket.
  4. Air Fry the Falafel at 375 F for 6 minutes first, then carefully flip the side and Air Fry for another 6 minutes until golden brown.

Air Fryer Falafel Recipe

  1. coat each Falafel with olive oil and arrange it in a single layer in the air fryer basket.
  2. air fry at 370-380 F for about 7 minutes and then carefully flip the side, air frying the Falafels for another 7-8 mins., until golden brown from the outside.

Aebleskiver Falafel Recipe

  1. pour ½ a teaspoon of oil into each cavity of the aebleskiver pan and wait for the oil to get hot.
  2. place each falafel ball into the cavity and cook on slow to medium heat for about 5-7 minutes.
  3. then carefully flip the uncooked side towards the bottom of the pan, flipping the cooked side facing the top and cook the falafel again for another 5-7 minutes until golden brown.

Notes

Pro Tips to make Crispy Falafel

  • Most important used dried soaked chickpeas. Do not use canned or cooked chickpeas for this recipe.
  • Pat dry all ingredients before adding to the food processor as if the mixture is too wet the falafel has a tendency to fall apart. If the mixture is too wet then add a little 
  • You want a coarse mixture not a paste so do not over pulse the mixture.
  • Refrigerate and allow the mixture to rest for atleast 1 hour before shaping it.
  • Add baking powder to the mixture and mix well before shaping the mixture. This helps keep the Falafel airy and fluffy.

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Erik

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Anvita, this is awesome! My parents are Danish and I’ve been eating/making aebleskiver since a child, but have never used the pans for anything else! I also love Indian foods and just tried your falafel recipe in my pan. Fantastic! So glad you included it as a way of cooking falafel! Thank you!!!

Dipti Bhandarkar

Saturday 27th of February 2021

The falafel mixture is dry and not binding. I kept it in the refrigerator for an hour as suggested. Please help

Soniya Saluja

Saturday 27th of February 2021

Hi Dipti,

Did you used canned chickpeas or cooked chickpeas? If so that can cause a binding issue.

Nair

Friday 15th of January 2021

Do we soak the chickpeas overnight (which is about 10 hours) or soak for 24 hours ?

TheBellyRulesTheMind

Saturday 16th of January 2021

Hi Nair,

Just 10 hours is good enough. Let us know how it goes. Do take a picture and send it our way. Thanks.

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Tuesday 18th of August 2020

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Julie

Wednesday 5th of August 2020

Thank you for this amazing recipe. Easy to follow, simple ingredients and the dried, no cook chickpeas...I've never seen falafels made this way. This recipe is definitely a keeper. I really appreciated you explaining the different cooking techniques too. Absolutely delicious.

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