These falafel burgers will become your kids'--and your--favorite homemade veggie burgers. They are wholesome with chickpeas and other good-for-you ingredients, but most importantly they are crunchy and delicious.
Falafel burgers are perhaps an obvious idea, but they are so popular in our home, I just had to share my recipe with you.
These are Jay's favorite homemade burgers, and given just how kid-friendly falafel are, it is not surprising. The burger patties are crunchy, savory and they are full of flavor from parsley, cilantro, coriander and cumin.
While the falafel burgers use many of the same ingredients as traditional falafel, there are some key differences in how you would make them, and I'll tell you all about it.
Once you have them ready all you need to do is cradle them in a bun smeared with eggplant hummus or vegan mayo, layer on lettuce and tomato, and you'll have before you a meal you'll remember long after it's gone.
What you'll love about these falafel burgers
- They're crunchy.
- They're hearty.
- They are packed with good-for-you ingredients.
- They are easy to make.
- They're incredibly delicious.
Tips and steps
- As you would when you're making falafel, start out by soaking the chickpeas. In this case, I soak them for an entire day, because I don't deep-fry the burger patties. Instead I shallow-fry them in a pan with about a quarter of an inch of oil added. The reason you do need a good amount of oil in the pan is because the chickpeas are uncooked when you make the patties, as they are with traditional falafel. Frying them in some oil ensures the patty is crunchy, with lots of great texture, but you also want to be sure that your burger is cooked through. You won't use up all of the oil, so don't worry, and if you fry your falafel patties at the correct temperature, you can make sure they absorb very little oil.
- You can use cooked chickpeas if you absolutely do not want to shallow-fry the patties, but keep in mind that falafel made with cooked chickpeas will be more mushy than crunchy, although they'll still taste great.
- Making the falafel "dough" is super easy. Toss the chickpeas with other ingredients, including cilantro, bulgur or quinoa, ground coriander, cayenne, parsley and cumin into the food processor and blitz until you have a grainy mixture that holds together when you form it into a patty. However, I do add one more thing to these burger patties--panko breadcrumbs. The breadcrumbs add more crunchiness to the burgers and also help them hold together.
- Finally, when you form your falafel burger patties make sure you make them quite thin. The falafel will puff up in the oil and become fatter, so starting out with a thin patty ensures everything will cook through evenly and the patty will be even crunchier.
- Dried chickpeas
- Ground coriander
- Ground cumin
- Flat-leaf parsley
- Bulgur (finely cracked wheat) or quinoa.
- Baking powder
- Turmeric (optional)
- Panko or other breadcrumbs. Gluten-free are fine.
- Salt and ground black pepper
- Vegetable oil for frying
More veggie burger recipes
- Quinoa and Bean Burger (great for the grill)
- Sprouted Mung Bean Burger with Mint Cilantro Chutney
- Vegan Chana masala Veggie Burger
- Spicy Vegan Black Bean Burgers
- Tandoori Naan Burger
- 1 cup dry chickpeas (cover with water by at least three inches and soak for 24 hours. Change water once, about 12 hours in)
- 4 tbsp parsley (roughly chopped)
- 4 tbsp cilantro (roughly chopped)
- 4 cloves garlic (minced)
- 2 tbsp fine cracked wheat (bulgur. You can use quinoa instead, especially if you want these to be gluten-free. Rinse the quinoa before adding)
- 1 small red onion (finely minced)
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp cayenne
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs (or any breadcrumbs, including gluten-free for a gluten-free falafel patty)
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
- Place the parsley, coriander and garlic in the bowl of a food processor and pulse three to four times.
- Add the drained chickpeas, cracked wheat or quinoa, ground coriander, ground cumin, cayenne, salt, ground black pepper, baking powder and turmeric and process until the mixture has the texture of cornmeal. When you press it into a ball using your fingers, it should hold.
- Remove the mixture to a bowl and mix in the onion and breadcrumbs.
- Heat a quarter of an inch layer of oil in a skillet. The oil should be around 350 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don't have an oil thermometer, heat the oil to a point where a piece of the falafel batter dropped into it immediately bubbles and rises, but doesn't brown immediately.
- Shape the mixture into patties about 3 inches in diameter and about a quarter of an inch thick. If you want the patties to be crunchy, shape them as thinly as you can. Thicker patties are fine, however, but don't make them too thick as you want the chickpeas to cook through on the inside.
- Place the patties in the hot oil at least an inch apart. Do not overcrowd the pan because when you do that the oil temperature drops and the patties won't cook properly. Also, when you overcrowd the pan the patties will steam rather than fry, which means they won't be as crunchy.
- Fry the burger patties on both sides until golden-brown. Remove to a paper-lined plate.
Love these falafel burgers? Check out more kid-friendly vegan recipes on Holy Cow Vegan!