Recipes

Baked Falafel Sandwiches | LEBANESE RECIPES

Baked Falafel Sandwiches

PHOTO: JOEL GOLDBERG; FOOD STYLING: LENA ABRAHAM

These weeknight and meal-prep friendly baked falafel sandwiches are the perfect balance of healthy and satisfying. Although these shortcut falafel aren’t as crispy as the classic fried variety, they develop a nice golden crust and contain all the key spices. A zippy roasted pepper salad is the perfect foil, and creamy tahini sauce (aka tarator sauce) ties it all together. (I mean, can you really have falafel without tahini sauce?) If you don’t feel like flipping the falafel midway through cooking, skip it. Your falafel will be a little fluffier and less crispy, but still delicious.

If you’re meal-prepping, pack your falafel, salad, and sauce in separate containers and refrigerate. When ready to eat, heat falafel in a 425° oven or toaster oven until crisp and warmed through, about 10 minutes.

Made this? Let us know how it went in the comment section below!

YIELDS: 4 | PREP TIME: 20 mins | TOTAL TIME: 1 hr

BY LENA ABRAHAM

Ingredients

FOR FALAFEL:

1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for baking sheet

1 (15-oz.) can chickpeas, drained, rinsed, and dried well

1 c. fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems

1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 tbsp. all-purpose flour

4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

1 tbsp. ground cumin

2 tsp. ground coriander

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. lemon juice

1/2 tsp. ground cayenne

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon 

1/4 tsp. baking soda

FOR ROASTED RED PEPPER SALAD:

2 bell peppers (red, orange, or yellow), cut into ¾” strips

1/2 medium yellow onion, cut into ½”  wedges

1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 c. cilantro leaves and tender stems, roughly chopped

1/4 c. cornichons or dill pickle slices

1 tsp. lemon juice

FOR TAHINI SAUCE:

1/4 c. tahini 

1/4 c. water

2 tbsp. lemon juice

1 clove garlic, grated or finely minced

Kosher salt

FOR SERVING:

4 pitas, warmed

Directions

Step 1

Preheat oven to 425° and brush a baking sheet with about 2 teaspoons olive oil.

Step 2

Make falafel: Add all falafel ingredients to a food processor and pulse until coarsely ground, scraping down sides of bowl with a spatula and reprocessing as needed to make sure everything is combined. Don’t overprocess–you are looking for a bit of texture.

Step 3

Use your hands, form mixture into 16 heaping tablespoon-sized balls and place on baking sheet.

Step 4

Roast vegetables: On a separate baking sheet, toss peppers and onions with 1 tablespoon oil and season with salt and pepper.

Step 5

Bake falafel and vegetables for 10 minutes, then remove from oven. Use a spatula to flip each falafel, and stir peppers. Return to oven until falafel are golden on both sides and peppers and onions are tender, 10 to 15 minutes more. Let falafel cool at least 5 minutes before removing from baking sheet.

Step 6

Meanwhile, make tahini sauce: In a medium bowl, whisk together all tahini sauce ingredients and season to taste with salt.

Step 7

Make roasted pepper salad: Add cilantro, pickles, and lemon juice to baking sheet with roasted vegetables and toss to combine.

Step 8

Build sandwiches: To serve: Cut off the top ⅕ of each pita and spread a thin layer of tahini sauce on the inside of each. Divide salad and falafel evenly between sandwiches.

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