August 1, 2022
You’re going to love this Air Fryer Falafel recipe that yields golden and crispy on the outside and perfectly cooked falafels without having to fry them in oil!
Whether you eat them as a side, place them on top of a salad, or turn them into a falafel sandwich, these bite-sized balls are delish!
What is Falafel?
Traditional Falafels are typical of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. They are fried ball-shaped bites made out of chickpeas and spices filled with flavor.
Falafels with Canned Chickpeas
Many recipes call for dry chickpeas, which need to be soaked overnight, so using canned chickpeas makes this recipe fast and simple!
You literally add everything to a food processor, and before you know it, the air fryer is loaded, and the falafels are being cooked to perfection.
I’m constantly on the hunt for fast and healthy foods, and this is why falafel is on my radar. The added chickpeas are high in fiber which helps with gut health, and I love that they have calcium which is great for bone strength!
Not a fan of chickpeas? Try this falafel recipe without chickpeas.
This simple list of ingredients is all you need to make the best falafel balls! Check that you have the following and print the recipe below:
- Canned chickpeas: rinsed and drained.
- Chopped parsley: One small bunch should do the trick.
- Cloves garlic: it all gets chopped up, so if you buy it minced, use that.
- Small onion or large shallot: they’re cousins, both work.
- Oats: used as the binding agent to hold the ingredients together, can be substituted with bread crumbs.
- Cumin: Such a great flavor enhancer for Middle Eastern dishes.
- Paprika: Smoked paprika would also be delicious.
- Salt: for seasoning.
- Coriander: This is optional.
- Lemon: Fresh lemon juice adds a nice citrus taste.
How to Make Falafels in the Air Fryer
Cooking falafels in the air fryer is a great way to make them healthier since we won’t be using oil to fry them and achieve a terrific crispy texture that, when baked it’s hard to achieve.
Here are the simple steps to make this recipe, which you’ll find in detail in the printable recipe card below:
- Make the falafel dough
Simply add all the ingredients to the food processor, pulse, and watch it turn into a dough-like mixture -no chopping required!
- Shape the dough into falafel balls
Remove the blade from the food processor and begin to form small rounded balls. Set them aside on a piece of parchment paper or plate.
- Preheat the air fryer
5 minutes at 400F will help you start with a nice hot air space to achieve that golden look and crispy texture you love.
- Air fry the falafel balls
Air fry the falafels for 8 minutes at 350F, open the air fryer basket, flip, and air fry for another 6 minutes, more or less, depending on how big you make them.
- Repeat and serve
Repeat the process with the remaining falafels, and serve immediately.
How Long to Air Fry Falafels
In a preheated air fryer, the falafels will cook for a total of 12 to 14 minutes, depending on how big they are, making sure to flip them halfway through.
Shaping Falafels for Air Frying
Shaping the falafels for air frying is as easy as making meatballs. Once the mixture is ready, just grab a small amount and shape it with the palm of your hands to form a ball.
Can You Make Falafels Ahead of Time?
The falafel mixture can be made up to 3 days ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to be air fried or frozen for up to 1 month.
When you’re ready to cook them, simply remove them from the fridge or thaw them out on the counter for about 10 minutes.
Leftover falafels should be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days. They can be enjoyed cold or reheated in the microwave or the air fryer at 325F for 5 minutes.
Easy Air Fryer Falafels
- 30 oz chickpeas (2 cans), rinsed and drained
- ½ cup chopped parsley, about 1 small bunch
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 small onion or large shallot
- 3 tablespoons oats
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon coriander, optional
- ½ lemon, juiced
- In the bowl of your food processor, combine chickpeas parsley, garlic, onion or shallot, oats, cumin, paprika, salt, coriander, and lemon juice.
- Pulse to coarsely chop the ingredients and slowly turn the food processor on until it turns into a thick mixture.
- Remove the blade from the food processor and begin to form small rounded balls, set them aside on a piece of parchment paper or plate.
- Preheat the air fryer for 5 minutes at 400F.
- Air fry falafels for 8 minutes at 350F, open the air fryer basket, flip, and air fry for another 6 minutes.
- Repeat the process with the second batch, and serve immediately.