Takeout Makeover: Baked Falafel


I LOVE falafel. It is one of those foods I only have once in a while from a food truck or a take out restaurant and I always think to myself “I should make this at home.” After Craig and I grabbed falafel last weekend he persuaded me to make a healthier version. Challenge accepted!


Falafel is actually an incredibly simple vegan recipe. Just combine chickpeas with parsley, onions and a whole bunch of spices and cook. Traditionally, falafel is deep fried, but I decided to bake them instead. I baked and then broiled for a few minutes to get a crisp exterior.


There are many fabulous ways to eat falafel. I made some tasty falafel pitas one night and then used the leftovers to make a wonderful falafel salad.

  1. Sandwich: In a whole wheat pita, add three falafel balls, 1 tbsp of hummus, sprouts and chopped tomatoes and cucumbers. Craig added some sriracha for spice too.
  2. Salad: Mix greens with tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, red onion, cilantro, sesame seeds and top with falafel balls and some sesame dressing.


The best part of this recipe is that each serving (3 balls) is ONLY 153 calories! This is such a quick recipe too – about 25-30 minutes and you have multiple servings to last you a few days.


5.0 from 1 reviews
Baked Falafel
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Takeout Makeover
Serves: 7
  • 1.5 cups of dry chickpeas, soaked or boiled (see note)
  • ¼ cups chickpea water
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • ½ cup fresh parsley, washed and chopped
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 1.5 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • olive oil cooking spray
  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and puree
  3. Spray a cookie sheet with olive oil spray
  4. Carefully shape mixture into golf ball sized balls
  5. Place on cookie sheet
  6. Bake for 15 minutes
  7. Turn on the broil and broil for 5 minutes to crisp
  8. Serve
To prepare chickpeas: You can either soak the chickpeas over night or do a "quick soak" on the stove by bringing chickpeas + 4 cups of water to a rolling boil. Turn heat off and let chickpeas soak in the covered pot for an hour.



Screen shot 2013-04-08 at 6.47.54 PM


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25 Responses to Takeout Makeover: Baked Falafel

  1. yummychunklet April 9, 2013 at 2:22 am #

    I love baked falafel. Looks tasty!

  2. CCU April 9, 2013 at 7:39 am #

    Falafel has never looked better my friend, love this 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  3. Kristin April 9, 2013 at 3:25 pm #

    Yum!! I am definitely going to try this soon. I also LOVE falafel, but dislike the fried aspect of it. Great idea, can’t wait to try this out!

  4. It’s the same here. Plus in Berlin falafels are everywhere and so delicious. But I should make a healthier version as well. I pin it, so I won’t forget.

  5. Ashley Bee (Quarter Life Crisis Cuisine) April 9, 2013 at 7:16 pm #

    I absolutely love falafel! Thanks for sharing a healthier version :)

  6. Nami | Just One Cookbook April 9, 2013 at 9:01 pm #

    I’m truly impressed that this is JUST 153 calories! I would eat this one meal per day and I can save so much calorie intake! :O The best part is that it looks so good!!

  7. Michelle @Amourbeurre April 10, 2013 at 3:14 am #

    Holy heymuffin this looks delicious. Thank goodness I have chickpeas in the house.

  8. Stephanie @ Legally Blinde April 10, 2013 at 3:30 am #

    Oooh, I really want a falafel pita right now! That looks so good! I love falafel but have never tried making it myself. Great idea to bake it! Can’t wait to try this out.

  9. Liz April 10, 2013 at 6:14 am #

    Thanks for your healthy version! So beautiful…don’t know whether I’d start with the salad or the pita…maybe both!!!

  10. Angie@Angie's Recipes April 10, 2013 at 8:12 am #

    Love this healthy version of falafel, Dara. The salad looks so seasonal and delicious.

  11. Heather C. April 10, 2013 at 12:29 pm #

    I have been looking for a baked version of this recipe, I can’t wait to try it. Couple questions – can I make a large batch of them and freeze them to bake later, and can I use canned (drained & rinsed) chickpeas?

    • Dara April 10, 2013 at 12:36 pm #

      Hi Heather. You can absolutely freeze this recipe. I would recommend freezing before the baking stage. Then defrost thoroughly and bake. In terms of canned chickepeas – I do not recommend it. In my falafel research I found that dried is best because it produces the texture necessary to hold the balls together. When I made my test batches, I made one with canned and the mixture was very mushy and hard to form into the balls. It did not have the same taste and texture as the dried beans.

  12. Bree {Skinny Mommy} April 10, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

    OH my gosh I am in love with this recipe. I could go for it for lunch RIGHT now!

  13. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies April 10, 2013 at 5:34 pm #

    Falafel is one of my favorite foods! I’ve never been able to get it right when I try to make it myself, so I’m going to have to use your recipe next time.

  14. Jenn April 12, 2013 at 9:11 pm #

    I love all the ways you served the falafel, I’ve really gotta try this!

  15. lisaiscooking April 13, 2013 at 12:27 am #

    I love the idea of baking falafel! And, the salad looks fantastic. I’m inspired to make falafel more often–and bake it!

  16. CCU April 13, 2013 at 12:30 am #

    This falafel recipe looks delicious 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  17. Kim Bee April 13, 2013 at 10:22 pm #

    Dude this is spectacular. What a great way to make falafel. I need to try this.

  18. mjskit April 16, 2013 at 2:28 am #

    Oh I love falafel but have never made them at home. I always order it when I eat Greek. Yours do look perfect and delicious! Can’t wait to give them a try!

  19. Lori Lynn April 16, 2013 at 6:32 pm #

    Looks fantastic. Just read david lebovitz’s post on falafel in Lebanon. I think I’ll get falafel for lunch.

  20. katie April 18, 2013 at 2:18 am #

    I was wondering, how did they hold up? I made some a couple of weeks ago (probably wouldn’t be able to find the recipe again, but they kept falling apart all over the place. I tried a light fry (not submerged, just oil in the pan to prevent sticky/make them crispy) and oven baked. Neither really worked. I also tried making them flatter so they would cook through. Any thoughts? Or if I make them again (and I like the baking idea) how did yours hold up? Thanks!!

    • Dara May 21, 2013 at 1:51 pm #

      Hi Katie, I’m sorry these didn’t work out for you. I made the recipe exactly how it’s printed and basically threw everything in the food processor, including the flour. Then I really carefully made the patties and baked them. Once cooked through they held up well. I will look at the recipe again to see if there is something that may help stabilize more.

  21. Uroosa Rajani July 11, 2013 at 5:47 am #

    Yummm..Baked Falafel sounds good. I will surely try this at home, Can’t wait 😛


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