Gluten Free Falafel Recipe

Before I started eating gluten free, I used to treat myself to falafels at Pita Hot every now and then.  They’re the perfect vegetarian/vegan comfort food… sometimes you want something deep fried, right?

When I was forced to eliminate gluten from my diet a few months ago, I thought would have to eliminate falafels, too.  Thankfully, after some experimentation in my kitchen, I was able to satisfy my craving for these protein rich fritters.

Instagrammed Falafels ;)
Instagrammed Falafels 😉

To make my falafels I modified Tori Avey’s recipe.  I made some substitutions to accommodate my laziness and gluten free diet.


  • 2 cans of chickpeas/garbanzo beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup parsley (fresh is better but I use the stuff that comes in a spice jar)
  • 5 tbsp gluten free flour (I use Pamela’s)
  • 1 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of ground cardamom
  • Olive oil

Kitchen tools:

  • food processor (I use my Ninja blender)
  • skillet (I use my wok)
  1. Combine all of the ingredients, except for the oil, in the food processor. photo
  2. Pulse the ingredients to form a paste.  Since I was using a blender, I had to pour out the contents in a bowl after a few pulses, smash some of the chickpeas, and then put them back into the blender for a few more pulses.  Be careful not to over process or else you end up with hummus.
  3. The original recipe says to place the mixture in a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for a couple of hours… Honestly, I rarely plan that far ahead so I skip that step and go ahead and start shaping the paste into balls.  They turn out okay, anyway.  While forming the balls, preheat the oil in the skillet.  You’ll need enough oil to fill the skillet 1 1/2 inches deep.
  4. To form the balls, I use a cookie dropper (about 2 tbsp) and roll in my hands. photo 2 photo 3
  5. Fry the falafels for 3 minutes on each side.  You might want to do a fry a test falafel first.  If it browns too quickly, the inside may not cook thoroughly… but since these are vegan, it’s not that big a deal if they aren’t fully cooked. IMG_2092
  6. When done, scoop up falafels with a slotted spoon and let them drain on paper towels.  Serve hot with hummus, rice… it’s up to you!  If I could still consume gluten, I’d have them with pita bread.

Tori Avey shares other varieties of falafels on her blog… Be sure to check them out.  Enjoy!

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