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I cobbled together this recipe from Kaylyn’s KitchenMinimalist Baker, and One Green Planet. It’s hard to find falafel recipes that don’t have some kind of flour in them. Having some kind of binder helps a lot to get the texture right, but you can get away with leaving it out. The result just might be a little crumblier.

I’m not comfortable eating any kinds of flours, but in the end I decided that I was okay with a little bit of almond meal. It is minimally processed, comes from a protein rather than a grain, and is still fairly coarse. For a meal on maintenance, adding 1 oz of rolled oats as a binder would probably work well too, but I would be careful not to process the mixture too finely. I have yet to try that, because I don’t eat a grain at dinner yet. I will someday though… so stay tuned!

If the almond meal or grinding-up food thing gives you reservations, you may want to skip this recipe. Or, you could just do a less processed version of it with whole chickpeas, parsley, and spices. The flavors are wonderful either way.

Falafel Bowl

  • Servings: Makes 1 Serving
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Each Serving Contains:

  • 1 Veggie Serving (adjust quantity to your individual food plan)
  • 1 Protein Serving
  • 1 Fat Serving

Ingredients

Protein Serving

  • 3.75 oz chickpeas, cooked or canned (5/8 protein serving)
  • 1 serving of any of the dressing options given below (each contains 1/4 of a protein serving)
  • 0.25 oz almond meal (1/8 protein serving)

Veggie Serving

  • 2 oz chopped onion for falafel (roughly 1/4 cup)
  • 2 oz salad greens
  • 6 oz diced tomatoes, cucumbers, & red onions

Fat Serving

  • Options:
    • Use 1 serving of the yogurt-tahini sauce below and count the tahini as the fat
    • Add 1 fat serving of olive oil to the hummus dressing
    • Massage or toss the salad greens with a fat serving of olive oil
    • Use a fat serving of oil to lightly fry the falafel in a skillet
    • Add 1 fat serving of olive oil to the tabouleh mixture

Condiments & Spices

  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • A pinch of fresh or dried dill
  • 2 cloves minced garlic (about 1 tsp.)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • a pinch of salt and pepper

Maintenance Modifications

  • Grain Additions: Add 4 oz of cooked bulgar wheat to the veggies for a tabouleh-like addition. Or, add 1 oz rolled oats to the food processor at the beginning and use ground oats as a binder instead of the almond flour.
  • Protein Addition: Add more hummus or tahini to the dressing.
  • Fat Addition: Add more oil or tahini to the dressing.

Dressing Choices

The hummus dressing is the easiest, but makes the least amount of dressing. The Tzatziki sauce gives the most volume, because you get to blend some cucumber in there. They are all delicious.

Option 1: Hummus Dressing (Protein only) – Pictured Above

  • 1 oz hummus (1/4 protein serving)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic or 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • A pinch of fresh or dried dill (optional)

Stir together all ingredients with a fork. Use water or more lemon juice to thin, if desired.

Option 2: Yogurt Tahini Sauce (Protein + Fat)

  • 2 oz plain unsweetened yogurt (1/4 protein serving)
  • 0.5 oz tahini (1 fat serving)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • salt to taste
  • Water to thin (if desired)

Stir together all ingredients with a fork. Use water or more lemon juice to thin, if desired.

Option 3: Tzatziki Sauce (Protein + Fat)

  • 2 oz plain unsweetened yogurt (1/4 protein serving)
  • 0.5 oz tahini (1 fat serving)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • salt to taste
  • 1 oz cucumber (subtract from veggie serving)
  • 1/2 tsp fresh or dried dill
  • Water to thin (if desired)

Add all ingredients to a small blender cup, blend. Use water or more lemon juice to thin, if desired.


Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Add the chickpeas, almond meal, and everything on the condiments list above into a food processor. Pulse, scraping the sides frequently, until the mixture is fine enough to form into patties but not completely pureed.
  3. Form into small patties or balls with your hands, and bake on a piece of parchment paper, flipping partway through, until both sides are browned and they are cooked through, about 30 minutes total. I spritz mine with oil, but that’s optional.
  4. Meanwhile, make your dressing of choice and mix up the salad.
  5. I like to mix up the diced tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, bulgar wheat, a squeeze of lemon juice, 1 fat serving of olive oil (if that’s your fat serving choice), and chopped fresh dill, parsley and cilantro to make a little tabouleh mixture. The tabouleh is a maintenance plan addition for those who eat grain with lunch and/or dinner.
  6. Top the salad greens with the veggie mixture, falafel, dressing, and a sprinkle of paprika. Enjoy!