Falafel recipe with chickpeas

One of my favorite middle-eastern dishes is the falafel.  Falafel is a ball or patty made from ground chickpeas (garbonzo beans) and usually served in a pita.  They are usually deep-fried, but this recipe version can also be baked or cooked on a George Foreman-type grill.  They are a filling and flavorful meat-replacer.   –  Jessica


1 med-large onion, chopped

1/2 cup fresh parsley

1 tsp minced garlic

1 can chickpeas (garbonzo beans), or 1 1/2 cups cooked ones

2 tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

1 tsp salt

1/8 tsp black pepper

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp baking powder

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 egg

1 cup dry whole wheat bread crumbs (more or less)


  1.   CHOP & MIX:  In a food processor, mince the onion, parsley, and garlic very small.  (You can also do this by hand, it will just take longer.)  Add the chickpeas and pulse until they are chopped small, but still have some texture.  We don’t want a mushy mess.
  2.   STIR:  In a medium sized bowl, combine the cumin, coriander, salt, black and cayenne peppers, lemon juice, baking powder, olive oil, and egg.  Stir just until evenly mixed.  Stir in the chickpea onion mixture.
  3. THICKEN AND FORM PATTIES:  Slowly stir in the bread crumbs just until the mixture holds together well and you are able to form patties that are not too sticky and do not crumble apart when you try to flip them with a spatula.  Form the mixture into balls and then flatten into patties.  I like to make mine about 3 inches wide and 3/4 inch thick.
  4. COOK:  I like to cook my falafel on a George-Foreman type grill because it is so easy.  Simply spray both sides of the falafel with a spray cooking oil and place then on the pre-heated grill.  Cook until browned on both sides and cooked through.  If baking in the oven instead, spray both sides of the falafel with spray cooking oil, bake them at 425 F for 20 minutes, then flip them and bake for another 5-10 minutes.

Serve in warm whole wheat pitas with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, red onion and cucumber yogurt sauce (see dancing carrots recipe for cucumber yogurt sauce).

6 Responses to Falafel

  1. Jim says:

    Just tried your recipe and it worked out great! Well, actually, I played around with the ingredients a little (used chickpea flour, added some quinoa, used taco seasoning instead of the spices), but mostly I followed your lead. No oven, no stove, no food processor, hardly any mess…just quick, easy, tasty falafel. Thanks! I’ll be trying this again and again this summer.

  2. Nidhi says:

    Hi, thanks for the recipe. I tried cooking the patties in the george foreman and the results were not satisfactory. They just got slight brown spots,were crumbly and did not taste nice. i ended up pan frying the cooked patties.

    I was wondering how long you pre-heat your george foreman and how long do you cook the falafel patties.

    • admin says:

      Hmmm…I haven’t had that problem. Were they crumbly before you tried cooking them? If so, you can add some liquid (or add less bread crumbs) before making the mixture into patties. It takes a little practice getting the right consistency. I preheated the George Foreman just until the light went off, signaling it was preheated. I have a large family style type grill. I’m not sure if they all heat the same way. I don’t have a specific time that I cook them because it depends on how thick the patties are and how moist or dry they are. It could be different every time. I would suggest making cooking them with the lid down for maybe just a minute, then lifting the lid and checking for doneness. If it isn’t quite done, you can flip the patties and cook them the rest of the time with the lid up, flipping occasionally so that you can see when they are starting to brown and can check for a cooked inside again. I am sorry you didn’t have success the first time. I hope this helps!

      • Nidhi says:

        Hi and thanks for your response. The patties were not crumbly before I placed them in the George Foreman. I cooked for more than 5 minutes on each side but they just had a few brown spots( cooking spots).

        Will try again and let you know.


  3. Elaine says:

    I am vegan, what can I use instead of egg or flaxseed. Thanks

    • admin says:

      I’ve never tried them without eggs. I would say your best bet is to try an egg replacer like Ener-G. Good luck! Please let us know how it turns out.

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