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January 11, 2021

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel is a healthier version of traditional falafel. A delicious mix of chickpeas, herbs, and spices, you'll love these healthy falafels!

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Is anyone else absolutely obsessed with falafel? I LOVE falafel and I feel no shame about ordering it whenever I find myself at a Mediterranean restaurant.

There's something about fried chickpeas that is just incredible! And yes, I will eat fried food as a treat, but I don't want to make it a part of my regular routine. Hence, this tasty falafel recipe was born. It's just as delicious as traditional fried falafel, but it's baked instead. So much better for you!

Let's dive in!

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Recipe Features

  • Dietary needs — this recipe is dairy-free, plant-based, oil-free, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free
  • Perfect main dish or appetizer— falafel makes a great main dish, serve alongside some grilled veggies or on a salad; you can also eat a few balls as a fun appetizer
  • Twist on a classic — the falafel is baked instead of fried, but still features all the ingredients found in traditional falafel

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

The secret to good falafel

I'm going to tell you a secret: the reason your falafel has never worked before is that you used canned chickpeas.

For the best falafel use dry chickpeas!!

Do not use canned chickpeas for this recipe. Canned chickpeas are too soft and will create a mushy mess that won't form into balls. Instead, buy a bag of dry chickpeas (it's cheaper, too).

When you use dry chickpeas you get a more crunchy bean that holds up much better in the falafel. It also has a fresh taste that you simply won't get with canned beans.

If you've never worked with dry chickpeas, don't worry! Literally all you have to do is soak them overnight. There is nothing complicated or tricky about working with dry chickpeas. You've got this!

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Ingredients

  • Dry Chickpeas: see above. Dry chickpeas are a must for this recipe.
  • Baking Soda: We'll soak the chickpeas in water with a bit of baking soda.
  • Herbs: Parsley, cilantro, freeze dried dill. These are the classic herbs found in falafel. I used freeze dried dill, because that's what I had on hand, but you can use fresh dill - you may need another tablespoon or two of oat flour.
  • Red Onion: For that umami tang.
  • Garlic: Also for that umami tang.
  • Spices: Kosher Salt, pepper, cumin coriander, cayenne. Besides the dried chickpeas, these spices are what makes the falafel super flavorful. A pinch of cayenne adds that extra edge to the flavor profile. If you absolutely hate spice, you can leave it out.
  • Baking Powder: To aid in the baking process.
  • Sesame Seeds: For a bit of texture.
  • Oat Flour: The mixture will be quite wet when it's first mixed - we'll use oat flour to thicken up the falafel mixture so it can be easily rolled into balls. You can adjust the exact quantity of oat flour you used based on how wet your mixture is.

How to make Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Step 1. The day before you want to make falafel, soak the chickpeas and baking soda in lukewarm water. The beans will expand as they soak, so make sure to cover them in several inches of water.

Step 2. Add the chickpeas, parsley, cilantro, dill, onions, garlic, and spices to a food processor. Blend until mostly smooth. Don't over mix.

Step 3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate for an hour or so.

Step 4. Preheat the oven to 400. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Step 5. Remove the falafel mixture from the fridge. Stir in the sesame seeds, baking powder, and oat flour.

Step 6. Use a tablespoon measure to scoop 2-tablespoon sized balls. Roll into spheres or flatten into patties. If the mixture will not form balls easily, add a couple more tablespoons of oat flour. Continue to add oat flour until you can easily form balls.

Step 7. Bake for 15-20 minutes. If you made patties, flip the patties halfway through.

Step 8. Serve with pita and tahini. Enjoy!

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Preparation and Storage

Preparation: You'll need to soak the chickpeas ahead of time for this recipe. Make sure you get them ready 24 hours before you'd like to have your falafel.

Storage: Store these Oil-Free Authentic Falafel in the fridge. If you wish to reheat them, place them in the oven at 350 until they are warmed. Avoid the microwave - this will create soggy falafel.

Recipe Prayer

Thank you God for giving us food to enjoy. We are so grateful that you provide for us. Amen.

Related Recipes

Love falafel? I know you'll love some of my other oil-free chickpea recipes:

Tried this recipe?

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Oil-Free Authentic Falafel

Oil-Free Authentic Falafel is a healthier version of traditional falafel. A delicious mix of chickpeas, herbs, and spices, you'll love these healthy falafels!

Author:

Elizabeth

Serves:

22

Prep:

20

min

cook:

20

min

total:

40

min

Ingredients

  • 1 Pound Dry Chickpeas
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 Cup Fresh Parsley
  • 1 Cup Fresh Cilantro
  • 2 Tablespoons Freeze Dried Dill
  • 1 Small Red Onion, quartered
  • 8 Cloves Garlic
  • 1-2 Tablespoons Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon Cumin
  • 1 Tablespoon Coriander
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cayenne
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 2 Tablespoons Sesame Seeds
  • 1/2 Cup Oat Flour

Instructions

  1. The day before you want to make falafel, soak the chickpeas and baking soda in lukewarm water. The beans will expand as they soak, so make sure to cover them in several inches of water.
  2. Add the chickpeas, parsley, cilantro, dill, onions, garlic, and spices to a food processor. Blend until mostly smooth. Don't over mix.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate for an hour or so.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  5. Remove the falafel mixture from the fridge. Stir in the sesame seeds, baking powder, and oat flour.
  6. Use a tablespoon measure to scoop 2-tablespoon sized balls. Roll into spheres or flatten into patties.
  7. Bake for 15-20 minutes. If you made patties, flip the patties halfway through.
  8. Serve with pita and tahini. Enjoy!

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April 28, 2022
Jean Mastin
Elizabeth: Thank you so much for making my meal times wonderful again. I am 86 yrs plus, and was finding eating dull and dreary. Now it is " scrum delicious time to eat". . Blessings de Jean
Hi Jean - Thanks so much for your kind words. I'm so glad you are enjoying my recipes. Please let me know if you ever have recipe requests or if there's anything else I can do to keep your meals delicious!
April 9, 2022
Katie
Can you leave nutritional info for your recipes? Serving size/calories would be so helpful! Trying mushroom lentil stew tonight! and looking forward to crispy chickpea stuffed sweet potatoes very soon. Thanks for creating healthy, attractive recipes!
Hi Katie - so excited to hear that you are trying some of my recipes! I'd love to hear how they go. I haven't posted nutritional information for my recipes because I know it can be difficult for some people with disordered eating to see nutrition facts. I've gotten a lot of requests to add them recently, so I'm working on a solution that can provide information for those who want it but not be triggering for others. In the meantime, if you're curious about the nutrient info about a particular recipe, I recommend using Cronometer. It's a website/app to track and understand nutrient info and I think it does a great job of emphasizing all the nutrients (not just macros). I hope this helps! Please let me know if I can help in any other way.
April 9, 2022
Vickey
U mentioned date sugar on this recipe but it’s not in the instructions. I know u add it but just in case u wanna add to instructions. Love ur recipes! Thank u. I’m thinking of going to vegan a little nervous tho lol
Hi Vickey - thanks so much for catching that! I am updating the post now. So happy to hear you enjoy my recipes. And exciting that you are thinking about going vegan!! If there's anything that I can do to help, please let me know.
March 28, 2022
Sr Maureen Egan
I'd love to try this soup. What are the nutritional values, like how much fat does it contain, carbs, etc.
Hi Sr Maureen - I usually don't post macronutrient information because I know each person has their own goals and I don't want to encourage or discourage anyone's specific goals. But I often use Cronometer as a tool to understand the nutritional profile of my recipes. I plugged the ingredient information for this recipe into Cronometer and got the following nutrient information per serving: 521 calories, 44g fat, 23g carbs, 16g protein. I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions and if you try the recipe!
March 26, 2022
Margareta Ahle
This curry is absolutely delicious.
Thank you so much! It's one of my favorites :)
March 23, 2022
Martha maloney
Thank you I have been doing the fruit and oatmeal, etc for years and I love it. I will try the pears. I refrigerate my left over oatmeal and with a touch of milk or fruit juice liquid it’s fine the next day. Just a warning about tofu; it interferes with some medicines especially Thyroid medicine. Thank you for the short prayers, there are lovely.
Hi Martha - thank you so much for your kind words. I'm glad you like the prayers! As someone who doesn't take any medications I have no issues with eating tofu and encouraging others to eat it too (it's a great source of protein!). That said, you should always consult with your doctor about possible interactions with medications. I have plenty of recipes without tofu, so hopefully you can find things that work for you!
March 3, 2022
Susan Cunningham
I made this for Ash Wednesday and it was delicious. It was also simple and not much work time once the mushrooms and onions were cut.
Hi Susan - I'm so glad you liked it!
March 1, 2022
Jade
When you say shape into a rectangular loaf, what dimensions? 1/2 thick by 8 inches long or?
My loaf was about 7" long and 4" wide with about 1" of height. Then I sliced it 1/2" thick along the long end to get 12ish biscotti. I will clarify this in the post! Let me know if this makes sense and if you have any other questions.
January 16, 2022
Tracy Henry
Made this tonight. Absolutely delicious Elizabeth. You got this one just right!
Oh yay! I'm so glad you enjoyed it :)
January 16, 2022
L Collins
Hi Could you please confirm two things:1. The amount of salt. Seems like too much. 2. The directions say there is lemon juice in the dressing but it’s not listed under ingredients. ThanksL.
Hi there! Confirming that the two teaspoons of salt in the dressing is correct. I didn't salt the cauliflower when roasting it or the salad after it was done, so this amount of salt was perfect. If you're concerned about it you can decrease the amount of salt in the dressing and then add more at the end if you need it. As for the lemon juice, SO sorry about that! It was a typo in my directions and I've removed it now. Hope this helps :)
December 20, 2021
Martha
This looks lovely! Do you have a recipe for the red pepper hummus also? Thank you!
Hi Martha! I don't have a recipe for red pepper hummus on my site. I suggest taking a traditional hummus recipe and blending in roasted red pepper.
November 22, 2021
Amanda J Lehmann
I tried these and they were delicious! A bit dense but flavorful and the "buckeye" blend of peanut and chocolate was on point! Recommend!
Yay! I'm so glad you liked them! -- Elizabeth
December 6, 2021
Grace
Hi, these look amazing. I was wondering, could I used powdered peanut butter in place of creamy for the recipe? thanks
Hi Grace! There is already some powdered peanut butter in this recipe, so adding more might make the texture more gluey. Also, the real peanut butter adds some fat, which helps create flavor. That said, if you want to use powdered peanut butter, I would suggest mixing it with a high-fat liquid like coconut cream and then measuring out 2/3 cup. Hope this helps! Let me know how it goes :) -- Elizabeth
November 15, 2021
Becky
You mention using vegetable broth in your introduction but it isn’t included in the recipe
Hi Becky - thanks for pointing this out. I have removed mention of vegetable broth from this post. You do not need any vegetable broth. The mushrooms will release natural liquid which will prevent any sticking. -- Elizabeth
September 23, 2021
Tracy Henry
Hi Elizabeth, LOVE you recipes. Please keep them coming. :)I was wondering, can you share what is the vegan chocolate bar you used in this recipe?
August 28, 2021
Henry (Hank) Mader
thank you for the oil free recipe. I'm getting introduced to wild Bolete mushrooms here in Colorado, and everyone sautes Bolete's in butter or olive oil. I'm on a veggie, oil free regimen for heart health reasons. and your recipe suggestion may fill the bill. I can't wait to give it a try.
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This is so fun! Loving your creamy photography :)
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This looks incredible! So yummy and pretty photography