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Hands holding a falafel sandwich.
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5 from 2 votes

Falafel sandwich recipe

Classic falafel pita recipe with lots of topping ideas. Warm pitas with crunchy falafel, tomatoes, arugula, creamy tahini sauce and much more. An ultimate lunch or dinner idea to share with family and friends.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Middle East
Diet: Halal, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 10 pitas
Calories: 231kcal
Author: Amira

Ingredients

  • 5 pita bread

To make the falafel:

  • 2 cups dry chickpeas 350g
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 1 cup fresh parsley leaves about 15g from 6 springs
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves about 7g from 10 springs
  • 1 small onion 130g quartered
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 Tablespoons water

Instructions

  • Wash chickpeas and add them to a big bowl.
  • Add water, generous enough to cover and top by 1 inch, this can be 4-5 cups.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and leave on the counter for 20-24 hours, if possible change the water halfway through.

Make the falafel:

  • Drain chickpeas and give them a quick rinse.
  • Working in batches, depending on your food processor size, add about ⅓rd of the chickpeas and ⅓rd of all the fresh herbs, onion and garlic.
  • Process scrapping the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  • Dump the ingredients of the food processor into another large bowl and proceed with the remaining ingredients until you are done.
  • You will have a coarsely grind mixture, now repeat the grinding again by adding about ⅓rd of the mixture to the food processor and process again to get the mixture finer until you are done with the whole batch.
  • If your mixture gets hot from the food processor, refrigerate for 20-30 minutes to cool down.
  • Add in all the spices, baking soda and mix well.
  • If your mixture is still very crumbly add the water one tablespoon at a time and mix with your hand.

Frying the falafel:

  • In a frying pan add about 1 ½ inches of oil, heat on medium until oil reaches between 330-350F.
  • Lower the heat to medium low and start shaping the falafel.
  • Wet your hands with cold water.
  • Scoop about two tablespoons of the mixture in your hands and lightly shape into a disc, 4cm wide and 1 cm height.
  • Drop the falafel into the hot oil and proceed to make others, do not cram the pan.
  • Raise temperature to medium again and wait for falafel to cook and brown nicely all over.
  • With a slotted spoon take falafel out into a plate lined with kitchen paper towels.
  • Reduce the heat to medium low and start shaping the next batch of falafel.

Assemble the sandwich:

  • Cut the pita in half, place 3 falafel or to your liking in the pita pocket with some sliced onions, arugula and tomato slices. Drizzle some tahini sauce over.

Notes

  • This recipes makes about 30 falafel so if you are not frying them all, add spices and baking soda only to the amount that you are going to fry. Keep the rest in an airtight container and freeze.
  • It is recommended to test one falafel before proceeding with the rest of the amount. Fry one and check that it will not break into the oil, if it does, then most probably the falafel mixture is too wet, add a couple of tablespoons of flour ( preferably chickpea flour).
  • Wet your hands in between falafel so they glide easily into the oil.
  • When dropping falafel into the oil, they should not brown instantly ( this means the oil is too hot), or dip to the bottom of your pan ( this means the oil is not hot enough). Instead they should float and be surrounded with bubbles.
  • In Egypt we call this kind of falafel Syrian or Shamy falafel which is actually falafel made with chickpeas. Original Falafel does not have any herbs but home cooks like us love making it with some green herbs.
  • To serve:
    • Serve with sliced onion, tomatoes, cucumber, chopped parsley, arugula, pickled turnips and tahini sauce or as we call it tahini salad.
    • My take: I like adding feta cheese to my falafel sandwich, try it you might like it.
  • Storage: Store falafel in an airtight container for up to 4-5 days.
  • To reheat: Place falafel in you oven or an air fryer and air fry for 5 minutes on 400F or until crisp and heated thoroughly.
  • Please check the nutrition disclaimer policy.

Nutrition

Calories: 231kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 538mg | Potassium: 471mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 652IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 4mg