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How to make falafel

A traditional Middle Eastern dish, falafel are made from ground chickpeas and deep-fried to give them a satisfying, crunchy coating. Learn how to make falafel at home with this easy step-by-step guide and get prepped for shopping with the ingredients list at the bottom.

  1. Make the falafel mixture

    Open 2 x 400g tins of chickpeas and drain, reserving 2 tbsp of the brine. Put half the chickpeas into a food processor and whizz for 30 seconds, then 1 tbsp of the reserved liquid, 2 finely chopped spring onions, 4 crushed garlic cloves, 1 tsp ground cumin, 1 tsp ground coriander, a pinch of allspice, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 4 tbsp flour and a large bunch each of fresh parsley and coriander.

    Whizz again until smooth and well combined, then add the remaining chickpeas and whizz very briefly – you want the second addition of chickpeas to stay coarse in the mixture. If the mixture seems a little dry, add more of the reserved liquid until you achieve the desired consistency.

    Make the falafel mixture
  2. Chill

    Spoon the mixture into a bowl and chill in the fridge for 30 mins.

  3. Make the houmous

    Meanwhile, make the herby houmous. Add 1 x 400g tin drained chickpeas, 3 tsp tahini and a couple of teaspoons of cold water to the food processor and blitz for 2-3 minutes, until smooth. Add in the 1 crushed garlic clove, 1 tsp salt, 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, the juice of 1/2 a lemon, and a large pinch of paprika. Blitz again until the houmous is very smooth, adding more water if the mixture is too thick. Add a small bunch of chopped fresh parsley or coriander and blitz until well-distributed. Spoon into a bowl and chill until required.

    Make the houmous
  4. Shape the falafels

    Shape the falafel mixture into ping pong-sized balls (you should be able to make 14-16), then flatten slightly into patties about 5cm (2in) wide. Use 50g (2oz) flour to coat the patties.

    Shape the falafels
  5. Fry the falafel

    In a large frying pan, heat 4cm sunflower oil. Fry the falafels in batches for 3-4 minutes each side or until golden. Drain on kitchen paper and leave to cool slightly.

    Fry the falafel
  6. Serve

    Once cooled slightly, serve the falafel with the herby houmous.

    RFO HERO 636x418 Falafel

  7. Ingredients

    Ready to give these delicious falafel a go at home? Here's your handy shopping list for all the ingredients you need, just jot down or take a screenshot before you head to the shops.

    For the falafel
    2 x 400g tins chickpeas
    2 spring onions, finely chopped
    4 garlic cloves, crushed
    1 tsp ground cumin
    1 tsp ground coriander
    pinch of allspice
    1 tsp salt
    ½ tsp baking powder
    4 tbsp plain flour, plus 50g extra for coating
    large bunch fresh parsley
    large bunch fresh coriander
    sunflower oil, for frying

    For the herby houmous dip
    1 x 400g tin chickpeas
    3 tsp tahini
    1 garlic clove, crushed
    1 tsp salt
    3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
    ½ lemon, juiced
    large pinch paprika
    small bunch fresh parsley or coriander, chopped

    Serves 4

    Each serving contains

    • Energy

    • Fat

      21g 30%
    • Saturates

      3g 13%
    • Sugars

      2g 2%
    • Salt

      2.7g 45%

    of the reference intake
    Carbohydrate 42.4g Protein 16.4g Fibre 9.9g