I love sliders … double-decker falafel sliders! If you don’t already have a favorite plant-based recipe for mini “burgers,” you must try this one.
This version of falafel features my personal, “half Lebanese” heritage interpretation (hello mint, scallions, lemon, and hint of cinnamon!). I also start with canned chickpeas instead of going the more authentic route with dry chickpeas—that’s simply to make it a more convenient recipe to get made often. As for my preferred herb combination … it’s about ¾ cup each fresh cilantro and flat-leaf parsley plus ½ cup fresh mint. But please use your own personalized combo in the falafel patties.
It’s easy to fix, too! At first glance, the ingredient list might look long, but several ingredients are just spices. Plus, the directions are really straightforward … whirl up everything in a food processor, roll mixture into balls, press with your fingertips into patties, quickly pan-fry, and enjoy!
To serve as sliders, stuff these freshly-prepared patties in whole grain dinner rolls along with grilled veggies and condiments of choice. For the grilled vegetables, I’m a fan of zucchini and red bell pepper here. For my condiment pick, I either go with a lemony tahini dressing (see recipe below) or I stir up a mixture of plant-based pesto and mashed avocado with a splash of lemon juice and pinch of sea salt. Like it spicy? Dribble in some harissa or hot pepper sauce. Here they’re served double-decker-style for more of a wow-worthy presentation. But you can totally prepare these as single sliders if you prefer.
You can also serve up my (your!) favorite falafel slider patties any other way you wish. Try them stuffed into whole grain pita bread along with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, and pickled onions, plus a sauce, such as lemony tahini dressing or tzatziki. Or enjoy the patties as avocado toast, grain bowl, or salad toppers. Yum!
- 2 cups loosely packed fresh herb mixture of cilantro, flat-leaf parsley, and mint leaves (1 ounce)
- 1 (15-ounce) can organic no-salt-added chickpeas, well-drained
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/3 cup chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour
- Juice of ½ lemon (1½ tablespoons)
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¾ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup sunflower or avocado oil
- FOR SLIDERS: 8 whole grain dinner rolls; grilled veggies of choice (try red bell pepper and zucchini); condiment of choice (try mashed mixture of plant-based pesto avocado, a little lemon)
- Add all ingredients except oil to a food processor. Cover and blend on low speed until combined into a textured dough, but not fully pureed, about 1 minute total, scraping down the food processor bowl as needed.
- Line a sheet pan with unbleached parchment paper. Firmly roll the falafel mixture by hand into 16 balls, about 1 ounce (2 scant tablespoons) each. Place onto the sheet pan and press with your fingers to form thick or thin patties (max of 2-inches diameter).
- Heat the oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, fry the falafel in batches, 8 patties each, until crisp and brown, about 2½ to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the patties to an unbleached paper towel-lined sheet pan to absorb excess oil.
- Serve falafel while warm, double-decker style, in the rolls along with the veggies and condiment of choice. Hint: Use a knife and fork … unless you have a really big mouth!
Per serving (2 sliders): 400 calories, 23g total fat, 2.5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 850mg sodium (varies), 8g dietary fiber, 6g total sugars includes 0g added sugars, 12g protein
If you serve the falafel patties in another recipe -- Per serving (4 falafel patties): 170 calories, 15g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 600mg sodium, 2g dietary fiber, 1g total sugars includes 0g added sugars, 3g protein
lemony tahini dressing
Whisk together 1/4 cup tahini, 3 Tbsp. lemon juice, 2 Tbsp. cold unsweetened green tea or water, 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, 1 large minced garlic clove (optional), 1/4 tsp. ground cumin, and 1/8 tsp. each sea salt and ground cayenne pepper. (Hint: Drizzle in a little more tea or water, if needed, for desired consistency.)
falafel farro bowls
Toss cooked, chilled farro with lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, diced English cucumber, and fresh mint and flat-leaf parsley leaves. Top with falafel patties. Drizzle with lemony tahini sauce (see below). Sprinkle with toasted sliced almonds and more herbs.
grilled falafel hummus toast
Brush a large slice of whole grain sourdough bread with extra-virgin olive oil. Grill or pan-grill until rich grill marks form. Top with hummus of choice, such as beet hummus, and extra-thinly sliced fresh hot pepper. Drizzle with evoo. Sprinkle with fresh mint leaves and pan-toasted pine nuts.