Skip to main content

How To Make Falafel for a Deep-Fried-Delicious Vegan Dish

Beloved throughout the Middle East, falafel is a deep-fried dish that’s become an incredibly popular international cuisine. It’s also one hundred percent vegan and one of the best recipes to satisfy both carnivores and vegetarians.

Shalom Y’all Falafel Recipe 

Falafel at Shalom Y’all, Portland, Oregon. shalomyallpdx/Instagram

(By Chef Kasey Mills of Shalom Y’all in Portland, Oregon)

Kasey Mills is the co-owner and executive chef of Sesame Collective restaurant group in Portland, Oregon, whose restaurants include Shalom Y’all, Mediterranean Exploration Company, Yalla, and Bless Your Heart Burgers.


  • 1 qt chickpeas (soaked over night)
  • 1 bunch parsley rough chopped
  • 1 bunch mint rough chopped
  • 1/2 red onion small diced
  • 1 tbs whole coriander seed
  • 2 tbs white sesame seeds
  • 2 tbs ground coriander
  • 1 tbs ground cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 1 tbs baking powder
  • 2 tbs salt


  1. Add chickpeas, parsley, mint, and whole coriander to a food processor and roughly pulse till the mixture is ground and is sticking together.
  2. From there, take the mixture out of the food processor and place in a bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until everything is fully incorporated. Let sit for at least a half hour or overnight.
  3. To cook, heat up oil to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Use a candy thermometer to get the temperature right.
  4. Using a one ounce ice cream scoop, add the mixture to the oil and fry for 3 minutes.
  5. Once the time is up, use a slotted spoon to pull the falafel out and set onside on a plate lined with cloth to catch the excess grease.
  6. Let the falafel sit for one minute before serving. When it comes to falafel, the fresher the better.

The Origins of Falafel

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Most scholars believe falafel originated in Egypt. Although often considered a Coptic Christian invention for meatless Lent, most historians believe there is no evidence to this theory. Instead, falafel is a relatively modern dish. The first mention of falafel in Egyptian literature does not appear until after the British occupation in 1882.

Related Guides

Falafel is a contentious subject in some parts of the Middle East. Despite falafel’s current popularity in Israel, the country’s relationship to falafel is complex. For the native Jewish population in the Middle East, falafel was widely eaten alongside their Arab neighbors. It wasn’t until the arrival of Jews from majority Arab nations in North Africa, Yemen, and elsewhere, where falafel was popular, that the dish was embraced by most Israelis.

Falafel Variations

Falafel shop in Ramallah (West Bank). Image used with permission by copyright holder

As falafel spread throughout the Middle East, unique regional variations started to appear. Instead of chickpeas, Egyptian falafel, called ta’miyya, is made from fava beans. It’s also possible that falafel was named after the Egyptian dish of stewed fava beans known as fūl.

Falafel also appears in many shapes, ranging from round balls to patties. In Palestine, some shops make their falafel into long oval shapes. In Lebanon, falafel is sometimes made with both chickpeas and fava beans. Falafel will often be vibrant green, the result of a parsley, cilantro, and onion mixture. Spices can vary depending on both shop and country, ranging from cumin to sesame seeds and beyond.

Sauces and Accompaniments

Falafel can be served by itself or in a sandwich. When served by itself, falafel will often be served with hummus and a plate of raw and pickled vegetables (turnips, cucumbers, cauliflower). In sandwich form, falafel is either served in a pita or laffa, a flat bread rolled into the shape of a burrito. Common sauces for falafel sandwiches include fragrant tahini sesame and shatta, a hot sauce made with crushed chili peppers and herbs. Amba, a spicy, pickled mango sauce accompaniment, is originally from India and is popular in both Iraq and Israel.

Editors' Recommendations

Hunter Lu
Hunter Lu is a New York-based food and features writer, editor, and NYU graduate. His fiction has appeared in The Line…
How to make a delicious Philly roast pork sandwich
For the best of Philly, try this roast pork sandwich recipe
philly roast pork sandwich recipe guide high street

DiNic's roast pork. Image used with permission by copyright holder

The cheesesteak might be Philadelphia's most famous culinary item, but for many natives, there's another sandwich considered to be the true taste of Philadelphia — the roast pork sandwich. Made from slow-roasted pork, sharp provolone, and sautéed broccoli rabe or spinach, the roast pork sandwich is a beloved culinary staple throughout the city.
What makes a Philly roast pork sandwich special?
The Philly style of roast pork sandwich is believed to have originated from the Italian American community in South Philly, either from Italian porchetta or from leftover weekend pork roasts. Whatever the origin, the sandwich has remained popular and relatively unchanged for decades.

Read more
Low carb foods: These egg salad lettuce wraps are delicious, and take minutes to make
low carb lettuce wraps
Egg salad

We’re still only a couple of weeks into the new year, which means that many people - set on keeping those resolutions - are on the hunt for healthy, low-carb foods that feel more exciting than bland chicken breasts or baked salmon filets. These are acceptable, healthy staples, to be sure, and excellent choices for those watching their carbs. But one of the advantages of a low-carb diet is that one can (usually) indulge in many deliciously fatty and highly caloric foods many diets frown upon. Ingredients like bacon, cheese, egg yolks, and mayonnaise are often encouraged on low-carb diets, which, if you ask us, makes this one of the less devastating of all the diets out there. One of our favorite, deliciously satisfying low-carb foods is egg salad. This comforting dish is protein-rich, satisfyingly creamy, and will keep you feeling full for hours.

While the traditional way to serve egg salad may be between two slices of bread, that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying this delicious meal in a low-carb way. By spooning egg salad into lettuce cups instead, you can have a refreshingly light yet hearty meal that’s essentially carbohydrate-free. We love this alternative even if we aren’t watching our waistlines. The lettuce offers a bright, crisp freshness that makes this meal perfect for just about any time of day.

Read more
Chef-inspired recipe: How to make Mexican carne asada for a winning meat entree
Become an expert cook and make this at home
Carne asada

Carne asada, a smoky and savory Mexican-style steak, is one of the most popular items in Mexican cuisine. Spanish for “grilled meat,” carne asada is incredibly prevalent in America, and it can be quite tricky trying to find a Mexican menu that doesn't feature this iconic beef dish. But carne asada isn't only a restaurant treat — it can be recreated fantastically at home. All you need is quality meat, the right techniques, and a hot grill.

Origins of carne asada
The historic origins of carne asada can be traced to the Spanish colonization of Mexico. Cattle are not native to Mexico. Cows were brought to Mexico in 1521 by the Spanish to serve as labor and dairy animals. Initially, beef was not widely eaten, as the meat from these early working animals were tough and expensive because of their value as farm animals.

Read more