Plant-Based oil-Free Falafel Salad with Yogurt Dill Dressing

After my Falafel Burger experiences while traveling (see my post here  I thought I would try a lighter and healthier falafel dish at home. This one is great! No oil,  no deep frying, and it is filled with nutritionally dense ingredients like beans, garlic, parsley, sesame seeds, spinach, bell peppers and more.

This is similar version of falafel to my oil-free falafel sandwich recipe that you can see here ( with a few differences, and presented as a salad.

Here is how I made it:

I started with one ascetic package of garbanzo beans in liquid and drained the beans, reserving the liquid “aquafaba”. Then I spread the beans onto a small baking pan and put them in my toaster oven set on bake at 400 degrees. For falafels, it is good to roast cooked garbanzo beans first.

While the beans were roasting, got together the rest of the ingredients and started prepping. I had some leftover cooked potatoes that I thought I could use for a filler–I think it would be about 3/4 cup.

I chopped some fresh parsley and added about a cup to my food processor.

I also chopped a little fresh garlic–about 2 cloves–and some fresh mint leaves and  added that too–about 2 tablespoons

I also added 1/4 rolled oats, and 1 tablespoon of tahini.

Next, I added the spices–2 teaspoons cumin, 2 teaspoons coriander, a little onion powder, chili flakes, and costco salt-free seasoning, and salt and pepper.

By then, the garbanzo beans were nice and golden and I added them to the mix.

I wish you could see the comedy that came next. A while ago, after a thorough search, we realized that my toddler granddaughter had thrown the locking lid to the cuisinart food processor into the trash. Since then I have ordered a replacement lid, which has been backordered for several months. Without the lid-lock mechanism, you can’t operate the machine, for obvious safety reasons. I found that with careful manipulation, I could try to cover the bowl of the machine, insert a plastic disposable knife into the safety locking mechanism with one hand and try to hold the bowl in place and operate the controls at the same time with the other hand. Quite a feat!!

After that aerobic activity, I scooped the falafel dough onto a baking sheet, and then flatted each ball a little.

Then I baked them in a preheated 375 degree oven–oh yes–preheat your oven if you didn’t have it hot already from roasting the beans. I baked them for about 15-20 minutes, turning once, until golden.

While they were baking,

I assembled a salad with a base of fresh spinach, some diced roasted bell peppers, sliced radishes, sliced raw mushrooms,sliced cucumber, and sliced scallions. Really whatever vegetables you have are fine–just make it pretty with lots of colors.

Next, I mixed up the dressing, which is incredibly easy. I used one small container of unsweetened almond yogurt, 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill and a little mint, salt, pepper–and stirred. I topped it with a little paprika.

When the falafels were nice and golden brown, I topped the salad with a few,

drizzled on the dressing,

and it was delicious!! So fresh and light and filling –and healthy. An improvement I think over the  fried version. Which do you think your body would like better? Mine pictured above, or the restaurant version pictured below?

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