Falafel and Tahini Sauce

This image courtesy of Celine Steen

You can eat them as is or fill half a pita bread with slices of tomato and cucumber, a small handful lettuce, and as many falafel as will fit, and then top with sauce.

NotesIf you’re not fond of deep-frying foods, try baking these instead: Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C, or gas mark 5). Lightly coat the falafel with cooking spray. Bake for 10 minutes, covered with foil. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 minutes, or until the falafel golden brown and firm.

10 falafel, 2 to 4 servings, with 1½ cups (455 ml) sauce

Cooking Methodfrying


Total Timeunder 1 hour

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionFamily Get-together

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationegg-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, tree nut free, vegan, vegetarian



  • ¼ cup (64 g) tahini
  • Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons [45 ml])
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon (8 g) cornstarch
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) unsweetened soymilk
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 can (15 ounces, or 425 g) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • Juice of 1 small lemon (about 3 tablespoons [45 ml])
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon granulated onion
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons (4 g) ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons (½ g) dried cilantro
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 6 tablespoons (30 g) panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons (18 g) vital wheat gluten flour
  • 1 tablespoon (16 g) tahini
  • 1 small roasted red pepper, chopped
  • Vegetable oil, for frying


  1. To make the sauce: Using a blender, combine all the ingredients. Heat over medium-high heat in a medium-size saucepan, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Set aside.

  2. To make the falafel: Using a food processor, pulse the chickpeas a few times just until none are left whole. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until combined: you want the batter to hold together when pinched, but not be completely smooth because you want some texture left. Gather 2 generously packed tablespoons (40 g) per falafel, and shape into a ball. You will get 10 falafel in all.

  3. Use a deep fryer, or fill a heavy, deep saucepan with 3 inches (7.5 em) of oil. Heat to 350°F (180°C). Do not overcrowd! Fry the falafel in batches until golden brown, flipping them once, about 2 minutes. Remove from the oil with a heat-proof slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels. Repeat with the remaining falafel.


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