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Baked Falafel Salad

Falafel Salad with baked falafels, fresh leafy greens, cucumber, tomatoes, and creamy tahini dressing is easy to make and absolutely delicious!

top down view of baked falafel salad with tahini dressing.

Chickpeas are an amazing bean and I’m finding out just how versatile they are!

I’ve used chickpeas in a lentil stewroasted them with spices for snacking, and sprinkled them on top of salads. They are the main ingredient in hummus, which is just as versatile as the chickpea itself.

You can also make good things like socca bread and chickpea omelets. Its flour can be used and combined with other gluten-free flours to make gluten-free baked items too.

And now, I have come across the falafel, another great way to use chickpeas! High in protein and full of fiber, anything made with chickpeas is a great addition to a healthy lifestyle.

Falafels are a Mediterranean food and can be served in various ways, such as topped on salads or stuffed into pita bread. Enjoy them with a drizzle of creamy dressing, or pair them with hummus, flatbread, and fresh fruit for a healthy snack or simple meal.

Along with the falafel recipe are 2 creamy style dressings. One is a more traditional dressing using tahini as the base, while the other uses avocado and refreshing cucumber. The avocado and cucumber dressing is inspired by my Avocado & Cucumber Soup and works great as a dressing too. I couldn’t pick just one to share, so they both are here for varying tastes.

Everything is super easy to make and I hope you enjoy it all!

top down view of ingredient to make falafels.

Baked Falafel Salad Tips & Suggestions

  • Use canned or fresh soaked chickpeas. I have used canned and freshly soaked garbanzo beans, but once everything is blended together, the canned and fresh soaked chickpeas tasted about the same. I like the convenience of using canned, but it’s nice to be able to use dried, soaked beans as well. The soaking just takes patience.
  • If using dried beans, there isn’t any need to cook them, just soak them as they will be soft enough to use in the recipe. Use whatever is easiest and convenient for you. You may like to try both ways and see which way you like best.
  • These are flour and oil free. I’ve made baked falafels with flour and oil like some recipes call for and found them not necessary.
  • I’ve baked my falafels in a skillet and on cookie sheets, both work great!
  • I’ve also added a few extra ingredients like ground dried coriander which is nice but have omitted it here just to keep it simple as possible (although I do have the garlic & onion powder – I like them for good measure). But by all means, if you have coriander on hand, go ahead and throw in a teaspoon.
  • As for the greens, feel free to use only parsley or cilantro.

That’s a little about my experiences. I’m sure there is more to learn, and each of us will have varying outcomes due to our kitchen appliances, tools, and taste.

These were flavorful, delicious falafels, and I see them being made fairly regularly around here!

side by side photos showing process of making falafel mix in a food processor.

How To Make Baked Falafels

Here is a quick overview with photos. You can find the full printable recipe card below.

In a food processor/blender, combine the chickpeas, parsley, cilantro, dill, onion, garlic, cumin, garlic & onion powder, cayenne, lemon, and salt. Blend until fairly smooth but not pureed, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed.

side by side photos showing the process of baking falafels on a baking sheet.

Shape your falafels into medium size patties like you see here or make bite-size nuggets. The falafels shown above are made with a 4 tablespoons trigger scoop, and I was able to get 6 patties.

The bite-size ones were especially great in a salad, and I was able to get 16 with a 1 1/2 teaspoon scooper. You can vary your size according to your needs and uses.

All the sizes cooked for the same amount of time and came out nicely firm on the outside and perfectly soft and tender on the inside. They weren’t dry and crumbly. Any size will work great for salad toppers or sandwich fillers.

Once falafels are formed, place on lined baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees F.

top down view of baked falafel salad with items surrounding.

Once ready, layer your salad with leafy greens and top with falafels, cucumber, tomatoes, carrots, and a drizzle of dressing of choice.

Now your are ready to dig into this was a most delicious and healthy salad!

top down view of baked falafel salad with tahini dressing.

More Healthy Salads!

If you try this falafel recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think or any changes you make.

Print

Baked Falafel Salad + Two Creamy Dressings

Falafels are incredibly easy to make! There is no need to fry falafels in tons of oil as they bake up perfectly in the oven. Add them to a fresh salad with a creamy tahini-dill dressing and you’re in for a delicious meal!

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 25 min
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 3
  • Category: Entree, Salad
  • Method: bake, food processor, mix
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean, Vegan

Ingredients

Scale

Salad Base

  • leafy greens (I used a spring mix)
  • shallot or red onion, thinly sliced
  • tomatoes, sliced
  • cucumber, thinly sliced
  • shredded carrot

Falafel

  • 1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed or 1 cup dried and soaked overnight
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed cilantro, chopped
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed parsley, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 small shallot or 1/4 small onion, roughly chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional but for good measure)
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder (optional but for good measure)
  • pinch or two red pepper flakes, cayenne, chili powder or smoked paprika (depending on your mood)
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • salt + pepper, to taste

Lemon-Tahini Dressing

  • 4 tablespoons tahini
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • juice of 1 large lemon
  • few dill fronds, cilantro or parsley, minced
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/3 cup water, + more to thin
  • pinch of cayenne

Avocado-Cucumber Dressing

  • 1 avocado
  • 34 inches cucumber, peeled (leave the peel on if you like)
  • a few sprigs cilantro and dill fronds
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • dash of onion powder
  • salt, to taste
  • water as needed to thin

Instructions

FALAFELS

Chickpeas: If using dried chickpeas, place beans in a large pot and cover with at least two inches of water (they will puff up), let soak overnight or at least 12 hours. There is no need to cook them as they will soften enough to use in the recipe. If using canned chickpeas, be sure to drain and rinse well by running the beans under cool running water. If using freshly cooked chickpeas, you will need about 1 1/ 2 cups.

Preheat oven to 400. Coat your cast iron skillet or cookie sheet with olive oil.

Falafel mix: In a food processor/blender, combine all the ingredients for the falafel. Blend until blended and fairly smooth but not pureed, scraping down the sides as needed.

Form falafels into whatever size you like:

  • Medium (shown above): Scoop 4 tablespoons per patty will yield approx. 6 patties.
  • Small: Scoop 1 heaping tablespoon per patty will yield approx. 9.
  • Mini nuggets: Scoop 1 heaping teaspoon will yield approx. 16.

Bake: Place on greased skillet/cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Flip and bake for 15 minutes. Total cooking time 25 minutes. If you find that your falafels are not as browned as you like, place them under the broiler for a minute or two. Just be sure to keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.

Store: Leftover falafels can be kept in an airtight container for 5 days. They will soften overnight. To warm them up and return crispness to the outside, place under broiler or in a toaster oven at a high temp for a minute or two while keeping an eye on them so they don’t burn.

DRESSING

While the patties are in the oven make your falafel dressing of choice.

Lemon Tahini Dressing: In a small bowl, combine all ingredients and mix until well combined. Taste for seasoning and add more water as needed 1 tablespoon at a time or add more lemon juice. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days.

OR, for something different and refreshing…

Avocado-Cucumber Dressing: In a food processor/blender, combine all the ingredients except for the water. Blend until smooth. Taste for seasoning. Add water a tablespoon or two at a time until desired consistency. Best chilled in the refrigerator before serving. Leftovers will hold up a day or two in a sealed container in the refrigerator. It may last a little longer but it’s gone by day two around my house.

ASSEMBLE SALAD

Once patties are ready, make your salad by layering leafy greens into individual bowls and top with falafels, cucumber, tomatoes, carrots, onion, and choice of dressing.

Notes

Nutrition information is calculated without dressing.

Updated: This Falafel Salad recipe was originally published in April 2013. It has been retested and updated with new photos and helpful tips in May 2021.

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33 Comments

  1. Freda Love Smith says:

    Thanks for this lovely recipe – nice and clean and simple! Falafel is one of my favorites and I can't believe I've never tried to make it at home. I have cooked chickpeas in the fridge and this is going on my to-do list for the weekend!

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Perfect…give it a try!

  2. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

    Thank you! I love Greek food and hope to have more in the future. :)

  3. I love falafel in salad! Yours look great :)

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you. :)

  4. This looks divine, Julie. I pinned it to my vegan recipes board. Just gorgeous! We recently went to VegFest and enjoyed a very delicious falafel wrap. I have never made falafels but it's about time to!

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you Aubrey!

  5. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

    Thank you! I'm going to look into some of those other chickpeas you mentioned. I'll definitely take a look at your recipes…I love me some inspiration…that is what got me into blogging about food, glorious plant based food! Hail to the chickpea :)

  6. *SWOON* I love me some falafels! I much prefer to have them baked rather than deep-fried, which is unfortunately how they are usually sold in shops here in London. I love those two salad dressings you shared, as well. I'm so picky with my salad dressings, I hate the sour ones you always get in restaurants, I prefer mine quite creamy. I will definitely give these a shot :)Oh, and chickpea omelette? CANNOT WAIT.

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      I've never had fried falafels but I'm sure I wouldn't want to eat it anyway either. Baked is great! Would love to know what you think of these if you get a chance to try them. Cheers to creamy dressings. :)

    2. They're baking in the oven as I type this. I don't have a food processor, only a blender, so the texture is still very rough, and I found it hard to shape the falafels as the batter was so sticky, so I used a bit of gram flour to keep my hands from sticking. I'm adding roasted peppers and tomatoes to the salad–it's a bit chilly tonight, so I want a bit of warmth :)

    3. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      I hope you love them as much as I did! Your take on this sounds wonderful. I love roasted peppers and tomatoes…and in a salad…oh my!

      It's true that the hands may get sticky with the dough. I like to rinse my hands every now and then. I find that helps with the stickiness. I will make a note of that. :)

  7. Beautiful Pictures! It looks delicious. Have a wonderful day!

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you! You too :)

  8. Wow! These look fantastic, I really want some falafel now! Have you ever tried making falafel with sweet potato? I've heard good things about it!Just stumbled upon your blog and am really enjoying it so far, looking forward to hearing more! Laura xx

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you Laura!

      I've heard of squash, sweet potato sounds great too! I will have to try the sweet potato since I have a whole bag waiting to get made into something. :)

  9. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

    Oops, correcting now…thank you! :)

  10. This looks delicious!!! I love falafel and I'm definitely gonna try your recipe, home made is so much better than store bought! Thanks :)
    Amy

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you, and your welcome! Would love to know how they go for you. Enjoy :)

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