RSS Feed | iTunes
Receive free advice, how-to videos and recipes from Moti!
He'll tell you what you can do:
Iraqi Food Recipes
Q & A:
out what else is sooo good...
Falafel from scratch (Mediterranean
|I'll tell you what you can
put there :
||Click to enlarge
Most people don't bother to make falafel from scratch, but the taste
is sooo much better! This recipe serves 4-5 people (about 20
I'll tell you what you can do
is quick to make by buying the
mix (see my recipe) from your local
supermarket, a fresh falafel is a whole lot better. It's
also healthier because it contains fresh vegetables and
a lot less salt than the mix.
This is an authentic Israeli falafel recipe. Enjoy!
First, soak the chickpeas (aka garbanzo
beans) in plenty of water overnight. Drain them in the morning. If you haven't got
the time, use canned chickpeas (for this recipe one 15-oz
can, drained, should do). In a food processor, finely chop
the onions, garlic, parsley and cilantro. If your food
processor is large, you can then add the chickpeas as
well. Otherwise, mash the chickpeas up in a large bowl
and then throw in the onion/herb mixture. Add your spices:
about 2 teaspoons of cumin, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1 teaspoon
of coriander. I like to throw in a little hot pepper too
when my wife isn't looking! Finally, mix in the flour and
baking powder, which will make the mix into more of a dough.
Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
Click to enlarge
After waiting patiently for at least
two hours (it's important!), remove the falafel mix from
the refrigerator. In a large pot, heat up vegetable oil
for frying, careful not to let it smoke too much. To form
the falafel balls, I use two spoons and gently slip them
into the oil one by one. It takes just a couple of minutes
to deep fry each side. Remove onto some paper towels.
you're done eat your falafel with some homemade
with tahini sauce. And why not? Pepperocinis and pickles
The most common problem people encounter when cooking falafel is
that the mixture falls apart as soon as it hits the hot oil.
This happens if you don't leave the mixture to sit covered
in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours prior to frying.
Also, your pot and oil must get very hot (but not smoking
of course). Your patience in these two aspects is rewarded
with falafel that is sooo good!
Cick here for a falafel from the box tune-up!
Best of luck,
New! Write a comment about this recipe:
(12 Nov 2013, 14:21)
Dear Moti, My mix is chilling in the fridge as we speak. I am a born and
raised Midwest girl now living in the south- I had never even heard of
Falafel until a Disney television show that my children watched- which
prompted me to "Google" Falafel! I love chickpeas so I thought I would
try! Can't wait to taste my very first Falafel ball from your recipe-
Thank you so very much!
Val Elliott writes:
(29 Sep 2013, 13:25)
Dear Moti, I am going to attempt this recipe,i will let u know how it
turned out thank You.
Falafel Man writes:
(21 Jul 2013, 09:02)
Skipped the baking soda and used Crisco (soybean) oil.
Now I'm from NYC and so falafel is well known here but I have to say these
were easily the best and tastiest I've ever had.
Holy cow is this good!
So skip the baking soda if you wish and party on!
Unreal, thanks very much Mosti!
Jen U writes:
(11 Jul 2013, 14:29)
Dear Moti, Great recipe! Very easy!Kids love it! Thank you!:)
(01 Jul 2013, 10:00)
Hey Eve - This dish has been around since chickpeas and oil existed and no
one knows who "invented" it. It's both a traditional Israeli and Arab (and
Turkish, and etc.) food. No one owns it!
(24 May 2013, 06:50)
I'd like to correct origin of falafel.This dish is traditional Arab food,
not an İsrail. But thank you for your recipe.
(25 Apr 2013, 08:54)
Thanks for the recipe. Good on ya! Sounds great and looking forward to
trying it. Going to have a 'felafel feast' at the hostel for our friends
and guests tomorrow! I just know from the ingredients and method this is
what I am looking for!
Peace and love, Poets Corner Hostel Olomouc Czech Republic.
(15 Mar 2013, 21:11)
Dear Ann, You can certainly try other flours, including chickpea! The flour
just helps keep it together.
(01 Mar 2013, 18:35)
Thank you SO much for this recipe :) Can you suggest flour options besides
wheat flour? What about chickpea flour?
(19 Feb 2013, 12:45)
i loved the falafel, i used a food processor which gave it an airy texture
and i fried immediately. the balls did not fall apart at all. i assume its
because of the processor. the 1st time i made i w the canned and the second
time soaking the beans. the consistency also was a lot better the second
time i made it using the fresh beans as opposed to the cans.
Malay Baathist writes:
(12 Feb 2013, 08:25)
Dear Moti, I cooked the falafel today. I also add the anchovies in my
falafel, and it tastes great. I ate my falafel and listening to Arab
patriotic song during the time of Gamal Abdel nasser (1953-1970). I feel
like I am the Arab Socialist fighter under Gamal Nasser, I feel very happy.
Example of song, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iIrfSJL10JM. I cooked my
falafel and listened this song to commemorate the 55th anniversary of the
Union between Egypt and Syria under United Arab Republic on 22 February
(05 Dec 2012, 14:33)
Oh, forgot, and then I put the flour and baking soda in and mashed it with
a potato masher until everything was mixed! Still have a great texture, not
wet or mushy! And holding together already! I'm so excited. Can't wait for
two hours to go by!
(05 Dec 2012, 14:31)
I am making this recipe as we speak ;-) It smells so good in here with all
the spices. I just put it into the fridge. I used dried chick peas, soaked
for 24 hours. Put all in the Vita Mix processor, without the flour and
baking powder, and added some fresh squeezed lemon juice (i've always used
that for falafel.) I will let you all know how they turn out!
Ima Klowne writes:
(22 Oct 2012, 07:58)
Dear Moti, I have made your recipe 3 times, and every time it gets better.
I too had problems with other recipes falling apart in the pan. The
refridgeration is essential. I ended up losing your recipe and just today
found you again. Thank you so much.
(15 Oct 2012, 07:37)
I tried to make these before I found your website and advice - I will put
them in the frig for 2 hours and see if they dont fall apart when frying.
That is the problem I am having..I am considering baking them next time
also and making them more into flatter patties rather than balls so the
inside cooks and they dont fall apart... It was just a mess lol.
Thanks for the tip.
(10 Sep 2012, 14:43)
MY HERO!! After three batches of different recipes that all fell apart!!
Yours is amazing.... it worked perfectly :)
Peter Zelchenko writes:
(17 Aug 2012, 13:31)
Dear Moti, I have just one question. You say, "If you don't have time, use
canned chickpeas." But canned chickpeas are cooked. Dried chickpeas are not
cooked. That's a huge difference in a falafel recipe, wouldn't you say?
Judy in WA writes:
(13 Aug 2012, 12:17)
Dear Moti, I've been looking for a fresh falafel recipe. I'm allergic to
chickpeas. So substituted lentils--only need to soak a couple of hours
before grinding. Works pretty well. of source the taste is a little
different. But thanks for the great recipe guidelines.
And the Pita recipe is great as well. i also cheat a little here: dry
fried a few mixed seeds and put them into the flour adds another dimension
(13 Aug 2012, 05:57)
They came out great---round, savory, crisp on the outside, and soft on the
Thanks for the recipe (& also for the prompt reply to my question).
(10 Aug 2012, 11:01)
The mix should definitely be stored in the refrigerator. I've never tried
the freezer (I'm anxious to eat it!) but I suppose if you allowed enough
time to thaw, it should be fine. Just consider that you never want to throw
something frozen into hot oil, so be patient allowing it to thaw.
(10 Aug 2012, 10:46)
Can the mix be stored in the fridge before frying, or frozen?
(12 Jul 2012, 21:25)
They don't need to be cooked if you've soaked them long enough. They'll
cook in the oil later anyway.
(12 Jul 2012, 13:54)
Do you cook the chickpeas or just grind them and mix the rest of the
(30 Jun 2012, 17:30)
Dear Moti, I see I am not the only fan you have. I needed a real recipe
that did not have excessive ingredients. this was the perfect one. Shukran
(28 Apr 2012, 00:11)
THIS IS GR8!!!:)))
(01 Apr 2012, 07:33)
This falafel is incredible. I freeze some for use later. Where did you live
(08 Feb 2012, 08:15)
I've been a falafel eater for 35 years and a falafel maker for 10. This
recipe is hands down THE BEST and I will use no other. May the kitchen gods
bless you always!
(30 Jan 2012, 18:12)
PS I followed a recipe for Greek pita, and the dough was so beautiful, and
rose so well, that I made both the pita and one of the most delicious
loaves of bread ever. Who knew? (And there is no salt in the bread).
(30 Jan 2012, 17:57)
Perhaps all chickpeas should come with a link to your website, with the
caveat that one should look at it before starting to make falfel. It would
save a lot of grief.
Oddly enough, none of the many recipes I have for falfel advised as you
have done, hence the 'soup'.
Well, the falafel, even though falafel soup, tastes delicious, and there is
no question that it will become a regular meal. Thank you.
(07 Dec 2011, 23:08)
Your falafel recipe turned out fabulously. Yes, so-oooo much better than
store bought. I've made it 3 times now. Thank you for sharing it.
(24 Nov 2011, 18:49)
delicious and easy. I soaked for just 8 hours, microwaved for 7 mins and
then cheated with the chilling : 1/2 hr in freezer and then 40 mins in
fridge. Didn't fall apart , just yum
(05 Sep 2011, 09:13)
That's quite an eagle eye you have! I did add some sesame seeds to one
batch I made, hoping for some added flavor. However, it was undetectable
and I left it out of future iterations of my falafel.
(02 Sep 2011, 11:13)
I see sesame seeds in your falafel. Where do they fit into your recipe?
Do simply add them as if they were a spice, to taste?
(31 Aug 2011, 14:14)
I was wondering if you can make a large amount of mixture and freeze for
when you want to use ? Will it still turn out fine?
(26 Aug 2011, 01:18)
Dear Moti, I used your recipe and my falafel were great! No falling apart.
Thank you and all the respondents.
(23 Aug 2011, 05:41)
Dear Moti, what a delicious recipe!!! I made it exactly as you say and
refrigerated it for 4 hours, no problem whatsoever with them falling apart.
Perfect little spoon shaped, crispy, super tasty morsels! Thank you!
(07 Aug 2011, 22:02)
Dear Moti, I made these tonight and the first batch fell apart. I think I
was impatient with the oil, I let it get a bit hotter and everything turned
(19 Jul 2011, 14:12)
Great recipe, thank you! I actually soak, then sprout my chick peas. Then I
use a pressure cooker for a few minutes to cook them. Also the sauce I like
is done in the food processor and includes: tahini, lemon, garlic, plain
yogurt, mayonnaise, a little honey, and sometimes fresh parsley and/or
cilantro. I use the yogurt to lighten it and the mayo just balances it all
out. I thin with water to desired consistency and use over my falafel and
(08 Jul 2011, 06:05)
The felafel were fantastic. To answer some of the problems: after soaking
chickpeas for over 24 hrs they were still unmashable. I placed them and the
water in a pot, brought to a boil, shut off heat and covered for about 1
hour. They were mashable yet not mushy. My mixture came out a beautiful
dough like and held together even prior to chilling.
After chilling, I briefly dusted in some cumin flavored flour and deep
fried them. They did not fall apart.!
Thank you for the wonderful recipe.
(05 Jul 2011, 13:27)
que nous ferions sans votre trÃ¨s bonne idÃ©e
(05 Jun 2011, 11:05)
Dear Moti, You are the best! I added some jalapenos to it and it was
(28 May 2011, 12:38)
Dear Moti, One way to tell if the garbanzo beans are fully soaked is to cut
one down the center; if the color is even, without a chalky center, then it
is fully soaked.
(11 May 2011, 08:23)
Good to know! I live in Taiwan, so I guess it's easy to see why the
chickpeas would be older...what a pity
Thanks for your advice and I'll try out a few different methods and see how
All the best!
(09 May 2011, 09:03)
I'm sorry you had a bad experience. It sounds like you are buying very old
chickpeas! If you can't get fresher ones (Middle Eastern markets are
usually best since people area actually buying chickpeas there) than use
the can. Obviously you can cook them as well if they aren't soft enough,
but if soaking them overnight wasn't successful I wouldn't even use those
(09 May 2011, 08:59)
I was dubious about the tenderness of chickpeas soaked overnight, and was
proven right today when I did a test batch. My chickpeas were soaked a
good long while longer than just overnight, but were totally unmashable. I
even took a mallet to them in frustration! Bits of chickpea all over the
place was no fun. I don't have a food processor. Tried them in the
blender but they just got swept to the sides without much blending going
on. I really want to try your recipe, but I think I'm going to have to
pre-cook those pesky chickpeas.
(11 Apr 2011, 07:43)
Toda!!!! A million times. What a delicious recipe. My daughter loves
(27 Mar 2011, 11:42)
I will try this recipe tonight. I was just curious, after soaking do you
take out the skin/pod of the chickpeas?
Thanks in advance
(19 Mar 2011, 12:27)
(05 Mar 2011, 21:17)
You made my night! I lived in Iraq as a kid and on the way home from
school we'd pass by a falafel stand and it was amazing back then. They'd
drizzle the pita sandwich with puree'd pickled mango.
As an adult living in the US, I've tried many times to make homemade
falafel which all resulted in failure... until now! Thank you! They
stayed together in the oil, and taste amazing. And I still get amba from
local international markets, so all is good!
(26 Feb 2011, 13:58)
Oops, here's that link without the double http tag:
(26 Feb 2011, 13:56)
Thank you for the awesome recipe, Moti! One of the hosts of the party I
made this for is sensitive to wheat, so I left it out. Letting the mixture
rest in the refrigerator is a fantastic tip! It really helped keep the
falafel together even without a binding agent. Here are some pictures:
(04 Feb 2011, 01:05)
What a WONDERFUL recipe! Very fresh and authentic. Thanks so much for
(23 Jan 2011, 08:17)
Thank you for this amazing recipe. They turned out PERFECT. My husband
said they are just as good or better than the falafel we love at a Middle
Eastern place we frequent, what a compliment! Thanks again for this
amazing recipe. (I did adjust just a bit - used 1/2 onion, 1/3 cup parsley
& cilantro. Also I did not refrigerate - no time - but they did not break
down on me!)
lana ranae writes:
(26 Dec 2010, 21:28)
i would like to know how to make some Caucasian (no offense) do you know
On the other the falafels were great
(27 Oct 2010, 11:47)
Falafel in the middle east is always great! The red sauce you are talking
about goes by a lot of names, but is always made of crushed red peppers. In
America the closest one is called "Harissa" and usually sold by Moroccans,
but basically any red pepper sauce is great. I actually love Indian and
Mexican hot sauces. As for the mango, my guess is they put on Amba -- an
Indian mango pickle. For those who don't know, it tastes nothing like a
mango but rather of tumeric and other spices. This can also be found in
many international supermarkets. I don't have any recipes for these, but
perhaps it's worth experimenting!
(27 Oct 2010, 08:07)
I'm going to attempt your recipe in the near future. I am military and
went to Iraq for a year in 2003 and spent this past year there as well. I
LOVE Falafels, Shwarmas, and everything. The Falafel Guy on base would put
a spicy sauce on the falafel and I have no idea what it was...but it was
good. Sometimes he also put a mango sauce on their. Do you have any
recipes for either of these sauces? He also made the best burgers with
some type of spicy mayonaise! I miss it! :) Thanks so much!
(12 Oct 2010, 11:48)
Dear Moti, I've made falafels using your recipe many times now, it's my
favorite recipe out there. I share it with all my friends. A group of us
get together for a falafel dinner and enjoy every bite. Thank you!
(22 Sep 2010, 17:47)
Dear Moti, This was wonderful. I added a splash of lemon juice to the wet
ingredients and I soaked the beans for 24 hours. I did everything else
just like you said and WOW! So much better than the box & even tastier
than the authentic restaurants I go to. Any suggestions on baking them?
(06 Sep 2010, 19:42)
I used your recipe to make my first batch of falafel tonight - my whole
family LOVED it! Thank you for posting this recipe and making it so easy
and so delicious! :)
(05 Sep 2010, 00:34)
Dear Moti, Hip Hip Hooray to you. First time a falafel recipe has turned
out for me without crumbling in the oil. Thank you so much for your
recipe. I have beans soaking for another lot to do in the morning. My
daughter just loved them. Falafel is just my favourite.
(26 Aug 2010, 00:37)
Best Falafel ever, first time it's ever turned out without disintegrating
on me. Thanks Moti!!
(14 Aug 2010, 20:45)
(27 Jul 2010, 08:33)
I haven't tried your recipe yet, but my mother used to make it and it was
absolutely delicious. Now, your recipe calls for chickpeas when my mom
only used fava beans (all green inside) Being bought at restaurants I never
liked the recipe with chickpeas. Why do so many places now adays use
(29 Jun 2010, 01:41)
Dear Moti, I have made falafel for the first time tonight and they all fell
apart, then I found your website! So I think the flour and the
refrigeration might be my issues... I saw where you mentioned about
activating the gluten... Trouble is that I am gluten intolerant so used
gluten free flour... Any alternative suggestions if the gluten is the 'glu'
that holds them together??? Thanks!! Megan
(17 Jun 2010, 10:35)
Thank you. The falafel was perfect.
One more question: How long can you keep the falafel mix in the fridge?
(17 Jun 2010, 04:10)
Yes, by fresh cumin I mean cumin seeds. Enjoy!
(10 Jun 2010, 12:56)
When you say fresh cumin, you mean cumin seeds, right? Just checking
whether the recipe calls for ground cumin or cumin seeds.
getta n writes:
(10 Jun 2010, 07:14)
(30 May 2010, 15:05)
I was about to give up on falafel when my previous attempts disintegrated
into garbanzo soup. Then I found your recipe, which saved the day. Thanks!
(27 May 2010, 15:48)
recipe worked great. Maybe a small comment about food processing the
chickpeas. I would up making two batches, one of which I over processed.
It fried okay, but it didn't have quite the right texture.
(13 May 2010, 22:29)
Perfect recipe. I did exactly what you said and I got exquisite felafel.
Thanks for sharing your recipe.
Heather D-H writes:
(10 May 2010, 06:37)
This recipe was fantastic and delicious, thanks!
One Less Thing writes:
(27 Apr 2010, 10:01)
I have used chick pea flour in place of the regular flour as a binder, adds
more flavor. As far as wet, falling apart, etc, I think using dried
garbonzos, letting them soak at least 8 hours, drained well and pureed with
the other ingredients until pretty smooth works. Using canned garbonzos
just won't work for this, too wet. Going to try freezing since I have a lot
(26 Apr 2010, 11:03)
So glad you posted the tip on the side. I can't wait to try this recipe.
I'm hoping for better success on my second attempt.
Mary Ann writes:
(14 Mar 2010, 18:20)
Dear Moti, absolutely delicious! the balls disintegrated on me, but I had
softened the chick peas in the microwave and hadn't let the dough sit.
(25 Feb 2010, 07:55)
I've never tried chickpea flour, but honestly I don't see how it would
work. It would be like substituting potato flour to make hash browns. You'd
get something, but it won't be a falafel!
Best of luck,
(22 Feb 2010, 08:13)
Is it possible to use chickpea flour in place of the dried beans? I am not
sure whether or not I would get the same outcome. Any thoughts? :)
(06 Feb 2010, 23:25)
Dear Moti, I am going to try falafel with baking powder today. I have made
earlier it was delicious, may texture will be better with baking powder.
(30 Dec 2009, 18:04)
THANK YOU! The tips on preventing falafel from falling apart in the oil
saved my dinner! I almost had quite the kitchen disaster on my hands. :-)
Tonight I made fresh pita bread and tahini dressing and then was happily
sticking falafel in the hot oil when BAM! They just disintegrated in the
frying pan. After I had an emotional meltdown I found your recipe here
after a quick google search. I picked myself up off the floor (almost
literally) and returned to the task. I put the falafel in the freezer for
about 30 minutes and then rolled them in flour before putting them in the
hot oil. It worked! They were amazing, perfectly round, golden brown drops
of heaven! My husband enjoyed them almost as much as my drama.
(21 Mar 2009, 17:38)
I have always wanted to attempt a falafel recipe as it is one of my
favorite foods. Yours worked PERFECTLY. I made it for a few of my friends
and everyone loved it. Then I made it again. And then again. It's been a
delicious week. Thanks Moti!
P.S. I put in a lot of hot pepper when no one was looking.
P.P.S. I tried it with and without baking powder. It still worked without
it, but they are fluffier if you add it in. Yummm!
(17 Mar 2009, 00:44)
Yes, the chickpeas shouldn't be cooked (you're going to fry them later of
course!), but they certainly need to be soaked long enough to soften.
(15 Mar 2009, 19:08)
I just want clarification. You do not mention cooking the chickpeas at all
after soaking them, am I to understand that they go into the food processor
(12 Mar 2009, 07:01)
If your falafel is falling apart, even after waiting several hours, the
most likely culprit is that they are still too wet. (This is why people add
flour -- flour doesn't help it stay together as much as it helps dry it
out). My suggestions are:
1) Before placing in the fridge, make sure it's pretty dry and drain any
2)Leave it overnight next time
3) Add a bit more flour if it's still too wet.
4) When rolling the balls, play with the dough a bit longer to active the
Hopefully the combination of these things will help you!
(12 Mar 2009, 01:15)
I make these all of time! When my sister was pregnant I knew she needed
wholesome food and made these constantly! Thank you so much for sharing
your wisdom and recipes with us
(11 Mar 2009, 06:57)
I just tried making falafel for the second time (third, fourth, fifth). Day
one, balls fell apart in the oil. Day two, I found your website and the
comment about letting the balls sit for a while. By this time, they sat for
more than two hours. Tried again and they still fell apart. Day three, I
bought a thermometer to make sure the oil was hot enough. Still fell apart.
I followed a recipe that uses flour instead of baking powder. I used canola
oil which I let reach 350 degrees. I add just a single ball. It starts out
fine, but then when it really gets cooking, it falls apart within 30
seconds. I'm at a loss. I've asked around and no one I know has ever
attempted it. Any suggestions?
(13 Feb 2009, 05:14)
Egg may help to bind the falafel, but it will change the taste and texture
considerably. The true way to make it bind is refrigeration! As for the
pan-fry -- it just won't work, sorry! I've tried. Best of luck! If you
discover something new, be sure to let me know!
(11 Feb 2009, 03:05)
I have never cooked Falafel, and am testing different tips. I have heard
that egg with flour helps the Falafel bind really well. Also, I don't want
to fry them in a lot of oil - maybe just brown a couple minutes on each
side with cooking spray in the pan and/or a little oil, and then bake.
Will you please tell me what you think?
(02 Jan 2009, 11:13)
How do you do kubbe adoma? I did it once with beets but I don't remember
the rest. Could you please tell me how you do it. by the way I did the
kubbe Fried it was great. Thank you very much
(25 Dec 2008, 14:20)
YOU R THE BEST IRAKI ON EARTH
(21 Oct 2008, 08:40)
Let me try and answer both of these last questions. First, you can
substitute baking soda for baking powder (divide the amount in half
though), or you can just leave it out of the recipe. The falafel will be
less springy though. As for cooker's question, falafel dough lasts just a
couple of days in the refrigerator. you may have better luck frying them
all up and freezing the balls instead.
sidney from australia writes:
(18 Oct 2008, 20:45)
Thank you for the wonderful falafel recipe...I am trying it right
now but i do'nt have baking powder (closest town is 60km away), can i make
without or substitute with something? cheers sid.
(06 Oct 2008, 17:50)
This really sounds good, but i am been looking for a recipe to make my own
falafel mix in a large amount to be able to just mix it up when I want
it...does a recipe exist for this !?
(14 Jun 2008, 16:46)
Sorry mg! It's baking powder. I've corrected it in the falafel recipe.
(13 Jun 2008, 20:28)
Dear Moti, is it baking soda or baking powder? You say BP in the
ingredients but then BS in the receipe.
(19 Apr 2008, 05:21)
I am going to try this. I love falafel.
(28 Jan 2008, 12:47)
This is delicious!
[ Back to Recipe Index ]