A simple Baked Gluten Free Falafel Bites Recipe makes the perfect plant-based meal for any night of the week. Best served with a sweet tahini sauce and hummus on top.
Falafels are one of my favourite things and I couldn’t resist making a super healthy, super simple version at home.
These chickpea patties are loaded with tons of those delicious middle-eastern flavours – warm spices, fresh herbs and ALL the tahini.
These gluten-free bites are best served with a boldly dressed salad, with lots of the more traditional toppings – more tahini, garlicky hummus and just a drop or two of spice. Good for dinner tonight or as part of your lunch all week long.
I think making healthier versions of my favourite take-out food at home is the best weekend activity! As Rachel Ray would say, it’s a take-out fake-out. And I swear I could eat take-out fake-out every night of the week. And especially these super simple (and super healthy!) baked gluten-free falafel bites!
MORE ABOUT THESE BAKED GLUTEN-FREE FALAFEL BITES…
It took me many times to get this recipe just about perfect. To get that great balance between herby flavour and strong spice; between texture and not too crumbly; between can be eaten hot or cold with ALL the toppings or nothing at all.
The trick to these GF Falafel Bites is starting with the herbs – a solid cup of either cilantro or parsley or both. Pulse the herbs in the food processor until evenly chopped into small bits and pieces. This is key – I found when adding the herbs in a later step gave really leafy falafels that fell apart more easily.
I use canned chickpeas that were drained, rinsed and patted dry. Very dry. Why dry? Any extra moisture in the chickpeas made the falafels too mushy and crumbly. Mushy and too crumbly do not make for good falafels. I pat my chickpea with some paper towel and even give them a spin in the salad spinner just to be sure.
The dried chickpeas are added to the food processor with lots of spices – cumin, coriander, garlic, cayenne, salt and pepper – and processed until just about the consistency of dough. You want to go for a delicate crumb for just a little bit of extra texture.
Then bake in the oven for about 30 minutes until just golden brown and firm. I definitely prefer the taste and texture of a baked falafel bite to a pan-fried bite. The pan-fried bites are much softer in the middle and don’t quite hold together as well.
These baked gluten-free falafel bites are best served with ALL the toppings over some leafy greens. My toppings of choice are a sweet honey tahini sauce, a couple drops of hot sauce and lots of garlicky hummus.
Because chickpeas on chickpeas are the best.
These bites are good in the fridge for up to 3 days – I reheat them in a frying pan with just a spray of oil. Heating these in the microwave makes them too soft but they stay nice and crispy when heated in the pan. So crispy = so delicious!!Print
A simple Baked Gluten Free Falafel Bites Recipe makes the perfect plant based meal for any night of the week. Best served with a sweet tahini sauce and hummus on top.
For the Falafel Bites:
- 1 cup (packed) fresh herbs (I used parsley and cilantro)
- 2 cups canned chickpeas, drained, rinse and patted really dry (from 1 19 oz can)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- Fresh ground pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne (optional but recommended)
- 2 tablespoons runny tahini
- 1–2 tablespoons oat flour
For the Sweet Tahini Sauce:
- 3 tablespoons runny tahini
- 1 tablespoon honey (or use maple syrup)
- Big pinch of salt
- 4–6 tablespoons warm water
- Hot sauce or chili sauce (like sriracha) to taste
For the Falafel Bites:
- Preheat oven to 375 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper of a baking mat.
- To the food processor, add the herbs and pulse, scraping the sides of the food processor often, until the herbs are evenly chopped.
- Add the chickpeas, spices and tahini and pulse, scraping the sides of the bowl well, until a doughy consistency is reached. You want a little bit of texture in your falafel so have some fine chickpea crumbs is ok. If the mixture is too dry and crumbly you can add an extra tablespoon of tahini.
- Transfer the chickpea mixture to a large mixing bowl and fold in the oat flour. Start with tablespoon and add the second if the chickpea mixture is still too wet.
- Take about 2 tablespoons of the mixture and roll into a tightly formed ball then press into a flat disk shape. Smooth the edges and place falafel onto the baking sheet. Continue until chickpea mixture is used up.
- Spray each side of the falafels with oil (I use my Misto for this – or use cooking spray) and bake for 20 minutes then flip and continue cooking for 10-15 minutes.
- Serve immediately with sweet tahini sauce, garlicky hummus and a little dash of hot sauce or keep in the fridge and use as a salad topper for lunch all week long.
For the Sweet Tahini Sauce:
- While the falafel bites are baking, add the tahini, honey and salt to a small mixing bowl. Whisk to combine.
- Whisk in 4-6 tablespoons of warm water to thin the tahini sauce until desired consistency is reached. Add a couple drops of your favourite hot sauce if you’d like.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes