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Gluten Free, Baked Falafel

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Gluten Free, Baked Falafel, originally uploaded by Kate Chan.

Today we had one of our “at home” interviews for our home study for adoption. Our time line is picking up the pace QUICKLY! We will be finishing the immigration paperwork and waiting for our referral soon. We expect a “referral” (or child match) by early next year/spring . Amazing, huh?

I was surprisingly calm today and last night, to be honest. I thought I would be *really* nervous for our meeting today. To top it off, we didn’t get much sleep last night because my Love wasn’t feeling well. (A little too much at the gym, I think. He sprained his ankle. That leaves me to go it alone for a little while. Ho. Hum.)

I really think that the change in our diets is what is helping keep me grounded. We’ve cut out soda, limited coffee, are keeping food journals, going to the gym 3-4 times a week, and increased the amount of fresh fruit/veg that we are eating. I’ve tried to slip a few complete veg meals on the plates for dinner…. to not much avail. The one night I succeed was when I made these baked falafel.

A little bread (here is a pita recipe or just use the lavash wrap), some hummus and a huge salad make these baked falafel a perfect dinner. And the leftovers? A perfect lunch -sandwich or salad-style! (A little tahini + lemon juice + water = the perfect dressing.)

Usually falafel include a bit of flour or bread crumbs (this has neither). In addition, falafel are fried – deep fried. These are baked. And to be honest, I’m not going back to the fried ones. Not only do I NOT have to clean up that mess in the kitchen, but I don’t have to worry about what it is doing to my heart/cholesterol levels. Phew.

I know some of the recipe ideas that I have been posting lately are not your typical American-family fare. I guess I’m hoping you guys will try some of these recipes if they are new to you. Falafel are basically seasoned chickpea balls. They can be made in to patties or the seasonings can easily be altered to fit your taste ideals. In fact, here are a couple great other bloggers (and their recipes) who have made falafel recently too:

And here’s roughly what we did. Honestly, I didn’t think about writing down what we were doing until my husband starting raving about them. He never even asked me where the meat was for his dinner. And then a gluten-gulping buddy raved about her falafel sandwich… and then she saw me eating it too. The shock on her face that both the wrap and the falafel were GF was priceless. AND she went back for seconds! LOL So again, here is a *rough* estimation of what we did. DON’T worry! You really can’t screw these up – and they are fairly versatile.

Gluten free, baked falafel
Makes 24-25 inch and a half falafel balls

3 cups dried garbanzo beans, soaked at least overnight but up to 12 hours
OR 2 – 15 oz. cans of garbanzo beans
2-3 cloves of garlic
1/2 sweet onion (about 3/4 cup), roughly chopped
1/2 cup chopped parsley
3 Tablespoons GF Oat flour (grind up the oats in the food processor) or quinoa flakes
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1 1/2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt/black pepper to taste
+ water IF necessary to even out the texture (like 1/4 – 1/3 cup)


  1. Dump all ingredients into your food processor and grind well. You want to create an even texture of the chickpeas.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350F.
  3. Roll in to balls and place on a piece of parchment or a silicone baking mat.
  4. Bake for 15- 18 minutes or until golden on the outside and crispy.
  5. Serve with tahini dressing and/or cucumber sauce along with pita/wraps and salad greens for your sandwiches.

And what is a falafel sandwich? Consider it a Middle Eastern version of a taco: One wrap/pita, a couple falafel, greens and drizzle with tahini or cucumber dressing. You might not ever go back to tacos again!

Happy GF Eats!