I love falafel…and…hummus, pita, tabouli, pickled turnips, eggplant, pretty much all the plant-based flavors of the middle East are a winner for me. But, after trying several falafel recipes, I had yet to find one that satisfied my taste buds as much as this one. First of all, it’s made with dried chickpeas, I’ve never gotten a truly good falafel from my attempts using canned chickpeas, and secondly, I’ve vastly cut the fat content by using an air-fryer to cook them.
This recipe is awesome when deep-fried, but my conscience just can’t get around deep-fried food so when I saw the Simple Chef air fryer at a giant bargain on Amazon I had to go for it. And, was delighted with the results. While you don’t get quite the mouth feel of a deep-fried falafel, it was crunchy on the outside and tender on the inside. Delicious! And guilt free.
IF you don’t have an air fryer, you can certainly deep fry these, but I’m really happy I purchased this appliance, it’s going to get a ton of use in my kitchen. You can also try baking them at 400 degrees after brushing with oil, you’ll likely get the same results of outside crunch and inside tender and moist. You’ll likely need to bake them about 20 – 30 minutes, flip halfway through.
Falafel – (Via Air Fryer Method) Makes 21 falafel patties
- 8 oz Dried Chickpeas (Aprx. 1 cup), soaked in water overnight
- 1 Cup Minced Onion
- 2 TBSP Fresh Parsley
- 2 TBSP Fresh Cilantro
- 5 Cloves Garlic
- 1 Tsp Salt
- 1 Tsp Cumin
- 1/2 Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
- 1 Tsp Baking Powder
- 4 TBSP Flour (use Chickpea flour to make this gluten-free)
- Oil (for lightly brushing falafel, I used Avocado oil)
- Small Scoop (I used a 1 1 /2 Tablespoon cookie dough scoop)
The night before, (or morning of if you are planning them for dinner) soak your chickpeas in water. Use enough water to cover the peas with an additional two inches above for the chickpeas to expand. When you are ready to begin, drain the chickpeas and place them in a food processor. Process until they are crumbly. Add the rest of the ingredients except the baking powder and flour. Pulse until you get a well-mixed ground filling. You can test the readiness during the process by testing how well the filling retains shape when you form it into a patty. When the mixture sticks together, add the baking powder and flour and pulse until well combined.
Using the scoop, divide the filling into 21 portions and lightly press down with a spatula to make a patty approx 1/3 ” high. See pictures.
Lightly brush seven of the patties with oil and place them oil-side down in the air fryer. (This was the amount that fit well into my fryer without crowding). Lightly bruch the top of the patties with oil. Set the air fryer to 360 degrees and 20 minutes. You may want to flip them after 10 minutes depending on how well the air circulates in your fryer. Transfer to a plate and continue with the next two batches until all the patties are cooked. Stuff into pita bread with some humus, tabouli and garlic sauce or tahini sauce and enjoy!