Easy baked falafel

18 Apr

I’m a member of Lifetime Fitness and the gym membership includes a free subscription to their magazine Experience Life. It’s actually a really great magazine full of healthy living tips and great healthy recipes! The most recent edition included a recipe for baked falafel that I knew I wanted to try as soon as I saw it.

Have you ever had falafel? For those who don’t know, falafel is a Middle Eastern food made with chickpeas. The chickpeas are ground up and then spices, onion and herbs are added and the mixture is formed into patties. Traditionally, falafel is deep fried and that is how you will find it prepared in many restaurants. The recipe in Experience Life took a healthier spin on falafel by baking the patties instead. I thought this would make a great weeknight dinner, plus I love vegetarian main dishes. I try to somewhat limit my meat consumption and vegetarian recipes tend to be much cheaper than meat-based meals as animal protein is usually the most expensive part of the grocery bill! Cheaper and healthier? What’s not to like!

To make falafel you’ll need:

1 15-oz. can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) drained and rinsed

dried parsley (the Experience Life recipe called for fresh but I think dried subs just fine and it’s cheaper and I had it on hand!)

cumin

coriander

cayenne pepper

salt

corn starch (the Experience Life recipe called for potato starch which I didn’t have on hand. I substituted corn starch after googling it and finding out that it is ok to substitute)

olive oil

I actually had everything on hand to make this recipe! Love when that happens!

To prepare: After draining and rinsing chickpeas, put them in a blender or food processor and blend until coarsely ground. Add remaining ingredients and pulse until just combined. Spoon mixture into a large bowl. Form the mixture into 8 small patties.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray foil with olive oil spray. Bake falafel for 15 minutes on each side or until browned.

Falafel is usually eaten sandwich style on pita bread and topped with lettuce, tomato, onion and other vegetables. You can also serve the falafel on a salad sans pita bread. Tahini sauce is usually used as a condiment for falafel. I will post a recipe for that later!

I hope you enjoy this easy vegetarian recipe if you try it! What are some of your favorite vegetarian meals?

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