Baked Mini Falafel Salad

Baked Mini Falafel Salad (via abeautifulmess.com) Finding salads to make at home that are both filling and flavorful can sometimes be a challenge. A current favorite: baked mini falafel salad. It’s basically a souped-up Greek salad with a sweet and creamy tahini dressing and almost-too-cute-to-eat mini falafel babies. They are SO good I usually end up popping a few in my mouth after they come out of the oven, so I have to hurry to get the rest of the salad together before I eat them all!

Baked Mini Falafel Salad (via abeautifulmess.com)And I know this post is about salad, but, I have to tell you a secret. These mini falafels work great in a grilled cheese and tomato sauce sandwich as well. 🙂 I also suspect they would be delicious in tomato soup, but I haven’t technically tried that theory out yet. #weekendgoals

You ready to make some baby falafels?!

Baked falafel recipeBaked Mini Falafel Salad, serves two
The falafel in this recipe is basically the same as this falafel recipe, but the cooking method changes. 

For the falafel:
1 can chickpeas, drained
1/2 small red onion
3 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons parsley
2 tablespoons cilantro
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup white whole wheat flour
3 tablespoons olive oil

For the dressing:
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon tahini
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
salt and pepper to taste

For the salad:
1 head of lettuce
1/2 small red onion (the remainder from the falafel recipe)
1 tomato or a handful or cherry tomatoes cut in half
5-8 black olives, pitted and sliced
1/4 cup feta cheese, optional (dairy-free otherwise, see notes)

First make the falafel. In a food processor or good blender, combine the chickpeas, 1/2 small red onion, garlic, parsley, and cilantro. Pulse until a thick paste forms. Then remove to a bowl and stir in the salt and flour. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.

Tahini and honey salad dressingOnce the falafel batter has chilled, cover a rimmed baking sheet in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Pinch off about a heaping teaspoon of batter at a time and roll into a small ball, and place on the oiled baking sheet. Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes. Flip each ball over and bake for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and drizzle another tablespoon of oil on the baking sheet and gently toss so all the falafels get coated in a little more oil. Then bake for another 10 minutes (30 minutes total). Remove from the oven.

For the dressing, combine all the dressing ingredients in a bowl and whisk well, or in a jar with a lid and shake well to combine. Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking.

Baked Mini Falafel Salad (via abeautifulmess.com) Divide the salad on to two plates, drizzle in dressing, and top with the mini baked falafels. Enjoy! xo. Emma

Note: If you are enjoying this as part of the Weekday Weekend Challenge be sure to omit any dairy cheese for top unless it’s the weekend baby!

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with the NEW A Beautiful Mess actions