Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (2024)

by Caitlin Shoemaker

updated on

GFGluten Free

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This Falafel recipe is easy, gluten-free, and naturally vegan! It’s packed with fresh herbs and flavor and you can prepare it in the oven, on the stovetop, or with an air fryer!

I had never made traditional Falafel before my recent trip to Israel, but once I had a bite of that crispy goodness, Iknew I had to re-create it for the blog.

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (2)

I must say, I am pretty dang proud of this recipe! After doing my own taste-testing abroad plus some of my own internet research, I’ve learned a few things about Falafel:

  • It should be made with dried andsoaked chickpeas, not canned. Otherwise, it will be too mushy.
  • The best Falafel should be green on the inside. (This is somewhat up for debate, but I agree with this sentiment).
  • Traditional Falafel is deep-fried, which somehow absorbsless oil than pan frying?!

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (3)

Not sure how I feel about that last one, but apparently it’s the truth! Either way, I asked you all on Instagram how you would like to prepare yourFalafel, and the majority of you voted for a Baked Recipe. I did provide several different options in the recipe instructions though, so you can do whatever you’d decide! My favorite version of preparation was with my Air Fryer. It made the mostgolden-brown andcrispy Falafel exterior while keeping aflavorful greenandfluffy interior. WIN!

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (4)

Regardless of how you prepare it, I do hope you enjoy this recipe. One thing that I love about Middle Eastern cuisine is how recipe ingredients are so simple (and affordable!), but everything is stillpacked with flavor. And this Falafel Recipe is certainly no exception to that rule!

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (5)

A Few Final Thoughts:

  • Traditional Falafel is usually made with flour, to help the mixture bind together. However, I wanted to keep things Gluten-Free, so I used Chickpea Flour instead and it worked out perfectly!
  • This recipe does make quite alot of Falafel. If you’re putting in the effort to make it, I think it’s worth it to go big or go home. Ha. It does keep well in the fridge, but you can also cut the recipe in half.
  • You can serve this Falafel however you’d like! I enjoy it dipped in either homemadeHummus or a creamy Tahini Sauce, but you can also put it in wraps, on top of salads, etc.

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (6)

If you’re looking for more Middle-Eastern Inspired recipes, you’ll also love this Quinoa Tabbouleh and this Fattoush Salad with Creamy Sumac Dressing!

Finally, if you make this recipe and decide to share it on Facebook or Instagram, don’t forget to tag me @FromMyBowl + #FromMyBowl! I love seeing your delicious recreations 🙂


Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (7)

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★★★★★4.6 from 12 reviews

This Falafel recipe is easy, gluten-free, and naturally vegan! It’s packed with fresh herbs and flavor and you can prepare it in the oven, on the stovetop, or with an air fryer!

  • Author: Caitlin Shoemaker
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 Minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: ~30 balls



  • 16 oz dried Chickpeas/Garbanzo Beans, soaked*
  • 1 small Yellow Onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves of Garlic
  • 1/2 bunch fresh Parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 bunch fresh Cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Cumin
  • 1/4 tspCayenne Pepper
  • Black Pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 tspSalt
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon
  • 1/4 cupChickpea Flour*
  • 2 tbsp Tahini
  • Optional Serving Suggestions: Hummus, Tahini Sauce, Pickled Onions, Tomato, Parsley, Pita


  1. Preheat your oven to 400F, if you are using it. Place the Soaked Chickpeas, roughly chopped Onion, and Garlic into a large Food Processor. Process until the mixture is finely chopped, but not mush.
  2. Next, add in the fresh Herbs, dried Spices, and Lemon Juice. Process again until well incorporated — the mixture should turn a bright green color.
  3. Finally, add the Chickpea Flour and Tahini to the Food Processor, and pulse until well combined.
  4. Transfer the Falafel mixture to a large bowl, and use your hands to form round balls using ~2 tbsp of the mixture.
  5. To bake…
    1. In the Oven:Bake at 400F for 18 minutes, flip, then bake for another 15-18 minutes.
    2. In the Air Fryer: (recommended)Bake at 350F for 20 minutes. For extra crispy Falafel, spray the balls with some oil or a nonstick cooking spray before baking.
    3. On the Stovetop:add 1 tbsp of heat-safe oil to the pan for every 5 Falafel balls. Pan-fry over medium heat, rotating the balls every 2 or so minutes, to brown all sides. This process took about 20 minutes for me.
  6. Serve as desired. The Falafel will dry out slightly in the fridge, but will keep well in a sealed container for up to 5 days.


  • To soak your Chickpeas, simply place them in a large bowl and cover them with water for 12-24 hours at room temperature. Keep in mind that they will expand with time, so make sure you add enough water!
  • I have not tested this recipe with any other regular or GF flours, but I imagine you could substitute any grain-based flour for the Chickpea Flour successfully.

Want to save this Falafel Recipe for later? Pin the recipe to your Pinterest boards:

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (8)

Easy Falafel Recipe (Gluten Free) - From My Bowl (2024)


How do you make falafel balls stick together? ›

And the perfect binding ingredient for falafel is flour. Nothing fancy, just plain all-purpose flour. Add a few tablespoons at a time to your mixture, until you can press it easily into balls or patties.

Why can't you use cooked chickpeas for falafel? ›

Turns out that dried chickpeas are essential to good falafel. See, canned chickpeas have already been cooked. Starch molecules within them have already burst and released their sticky contents, much of which get washed away in the cooking liquid, leaving the remaining chickpeas with very little clinging power.

Can celiac eat falafel? ›

Your average store bought and restaurant falafel has both chickpea wheat flour in it, which makes it not gluten-free. The best bet is to make your own gluten-free falafel, and this recipe from Joy Food Sunshine fits the bill nicely.

Why is falafel not gluten-free? ›

Falafel is bound together with wheat flour in standard recipes. If you order it from a restaurant or buy it at a store then it won't be gluten free. Traditional felafel is made from ground chickpeas, with added herbs and spices for flavor.

What flour can replace falafel? ›

Traditional Falafel is usually made with flour, to help the mixture bind together. However, I wanted to keep things Gluten-Free, so I used Chickpea Flour instead and it worked out perfectly! This recipe does make quite a lot of Falafel.

What can you use to bind falafel? ›

Keep in mind that the balls will be delicate at first; if you can get them into the hot oil, they should bind together and stick. If they still won't hold together, you can try adding 2-3 tbsp of flour or chickpea flour to the mixture. If they still won't hold, add 1-2 eggs to the mix.

How do you keep falafel balls from falling apart? ›

If the mixture is too wet, the falafel has a tendency to fall apart when being fried so please pat dry the ingredients before using them. If you find the mixture is too wet, simply add little more breadcrumbs. The falafel mixture after prepared can be shaped by hand or with a tool called an alb falafel (falafel mold).

Why is my falafel not fluffy? ›

They have to have enough fresh herbs and onion. Too much onion and your falafel will have a bad after taste. Too little and they won't be as moist and fluffy as they should be. It's all about balance.

Why do you need baking powder in falafel? ›

Along with the fresh herbs, this trio of spices is what gives falafel it's bold authentic taste. - Baking powder: this is what gives falafel an airy, fluffy texture (many recipes skip this, causing the falafel to come out too dense.) - Sesame seeds: these are optional here, but I do like the added nuttiness.

Why add baking soda to falafel mix? ›

The baking soda is meant to be added just 5-15 minutes before frying! If you don't have baking soda, then use baking powder instead. Don't skip this ingredient as it helps your falafel become airy and soft rather than tough and dense.

What 3 foods should someone with celiac disease avoid? ›

A gluten-free diet generally means not eating most grains, pasta, cereals, and processed foods. The reason is that they usually contain wheat, rye, and barley. You'll need to become an expert at reading ingredient lists on packages. Choose foods that don't contain gluten.

What 3 grains should be avoided with celiac disease? ›

People with celiac disease (gluten-sensitive enteropathy) must avoid eating wheat, rye, and barley storage proteins in order to avoid adverse changes to their intestinal mucosa that can lead to serious malabsorption of almost all nutrients (Kasarda 2000; Feighery 1999; Maki and Collin 1997; Wieser 1995).

Does tahini have gluten? ›

Tahini. Tahini, which is a paste made from ground sesame seeds, is typically gluten-free. Sesame seeds themselves do not contain gluten, so pure tahini made solely from sesame seeds and oil should not contain any gluten.

Does falafel contain gluten? ›

Traditional Homemade Falafel Ingredients

Traditionally, homemade falafel is made from a mixture of ground chickpeas and or fava beans, herbs, spices, baking soda, onions and garlic. These ingredients are naturally gluten-free, making falafel an excellent option for individuals avoiding gluten.

Do falafels contain flour? ›

Here's a quick overview of how to make falafel: Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) and grease a baking sheet with oil. Combine the chickpeas, garlic, onion, parsley, olive oil, flour, baking powder, lemon juice, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until combined for approximately 1 minute.

Does chickpea contain gluten? ›

Yes, chickpeas are gluten-free. Chickpeas have many other names, including garbanzo beans, garbanzo, gram, Bengal gram, Egyptian pea, cici beans, chi chi beans and cece beans. The most common variety of chickpea is a beige, tan color, but they can also be black, green, or red.

Does hummus have gluten in it? ›

Hummus is usually gluten-free, but not always. Traditional hummus is naturally gluten-free as are most brands such as Sabra Hummus. There are reports out there of certain brands either including flour in their hummus or just declaring that their hummus may contain wheat and/or is made on shared equipment.

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