Basic Falafels

These basic falafels are packed with flavor and made quicker thanks to a shorter chickpea cook time. They're firm without crumbling and can be pan fried or baked for a lower fat option.

prep time

20 minutes

cook time

6 minutes


basic falafels in a bowl of greens

These basic falafels are packed with flavor and made quicker thanks to a shorter chickpea soak time. They’re firm without crumbling and can be pan fried or baked for a lower fat option.

Basic Falafels in a bowl of greens

After years of making countless falafel recipes, I finally perfected my own basic falafels. Hurray!

I had many failed attempts along the way. Falafels that turned out soft and crumbly when cooked. Some without enough flavor and some with too much flavor (if that’s even a thing). I was close to giving up, when I found this chickpea-soaking technique from The Kitchn.

See, despite beeing a food blogger, I have no patience when it comes to long, complicated recipes. They’re unrealistic for most of us and when I spend hours cooking every day, I look for any way to make my recipes quicker. Not only that, but I rarely think of preparing for recipes the night before, so soaking chickpeas overnight only for falafels wasn’t really an option.

With this technique, you can pepare the chickpeas and cook the falafels on the same day, without using canned chickpeas (my attempts using canned chickpeas were not a success AT ALL).

Before someone says something: No, these are not traditional falafels. However, they are the closest thing to restaurant falafels I’ve ever had and they are DELICIOUS. I would love to know what you think!

falafel ingredients in a food processor
falafel mixture in a food processor
Basic Falafels uncooked

How to Make Basic Falafels:

First, you need to soak the chickpeas. Simply bring them to a boil, then let them soak covered for 1 hour. Yes, it does require a bit of thinking ahead, but at least it can be done the same day. Plus, this is all hands off time.

When the chickpeas are done, you throw them in a food processor, along with all the remaining ingredients. Process it until the mixture comes together and sticks together when pressed (3-4 minutes, depending on your food processor).

Finally, you can cook your falafels using your method of choice! My favorite is to pan fry them, but you can bake them for a lower-fat option.

How to Use Falafels:

  • Salads (I have a recipe coming soon!).
  • Wraps with hummus, greens, tomatoes, tahini dressing and other fillings of choice.
  • As an appetizer or snack, served with hummus or other dips of choice.
  • On their own. Yum!
Basic Falafels fried in cast-iron skillet
Basic Falafels in a bowl of greens
Basic Falafels with sauce in a bowl of greens
Basic Falafels closeup in a bowl of greens with sauce

This is a recipe from my Cooking with Legumes eBook. I didn’t think it was fair to keep this one from you (plus, the blog really needed a good falafel recipe). So I hope you’ll love them!

basic falafels in a bowl of greens
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5 from 1 vote

Basic Falafels

These basic falafels are packed with flavor and made quicker thanks to a shorter chickpea cook time. They're firm without crumbling and can be pan fried or baked for a lower fat option.
Course Main Course
Cuisine vegan
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Soak Time 1 hour
Servings 16 medium falafels


  • 1 1/2 cup chickpeas, dry (don't use canned in this recipe)
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 6-7 medium garlic cloves
  • 2 teaspoons cumin, ground
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander, ground
  • 2 tablespoons flour (I used whole wheat)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt (more to taste)


Prepare the Chickpeas

  • Add the dry chickpeas in a medium pot. Cover with 2 inches of water.
  • Bring to a boil and let it boil 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and let it sit covered for 1 hour. Once done, rinse and pat them dry using a clean towel. Set aside.

Prepare the Falafels

  • In a food processor, add the soaked chickpeas and all the remaining ingredients. Process until well combined and the mixture sticks together when pressed. This can take over 3-4 minutes, depending on your food processor. Scrape the sides as needed. It will look crumbly at first, but it should come together. If not, add a touch more of oil.
  • At this point, you can let the mixture sit in the fridge until ready to cook (you can make it a day ahead if desired). Leaving it a few hours to sit can help the flavors meld together, but this is not necessary.
  • Form 16 falafels (more or less depending on their size).
  • Add enough oil in a skillet to cover the bottom. Heat the oil over medium-high heat.
  • When the skillet is heated, layer the falafels in the skillet, leaving enough room to flip them comfortably. Cook 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden and crispy on the exterior. Repeat until all the falafels are cooked.
  • You can store them cooked or uncooked in the fridge in an airtight container.


For a baked version of these falafels, preheat the oven to 400F. Bake them 30 minutes, flipping them once halfway through. I like them better pan fried of course, but this is a good lower fat alternative.
For a gluten-free version, use gluten-free flour or oat flour.
Serve them in salads, wraps or as an appetizer/snack with hummus of other dips of choice.
You can freeze them once cooked and cooled. You can then bake them until warm.

If you make these basic falafels, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! I love to hear from you guys. And of course, if you try this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram!

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2 responses to “Basic Falafels”

  1. Darlene Avatar

    5 stars
    These were absolutely delicious. I’ve tried several recipes using dry chickpeas and none were as good as this. Thank you so much for posting.

    1. Nourished by Caroline Avatar

      Hi Darlene, thank you, that made my day! I’m so happy to hear you loved them. 🙂

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