Chickpea Falafel Pitas
with tomatoes / feta / tzatziki sauce
We tend to think of falafel as a dish reserved for dining out, but canned chickpeas and a flavorful mix of spices make this a simple enough dish to prepare at home. Fill pita rounds with tomatoes, crisp lettuce and feta cheese and top them with falafel and tzatziki for a customizable dinner the whole family will love.
- Cucumbers, medium - 1/2 , grated
- Lemons - 1/2 , zest of
- Yogurt, Greek or plain - 3/4 cup
- Garlic salt - 1/2 tsp
- Dill, dried (opt) - 1/2 tsp
- Onions, small - 1/2 , chopped
- Garlic - 2 cloves , peeled
- Parsley, fresh - 2 Tbsp , chopped
- Beans, garbanzo (14 oz / 387 g) - 2 cans , drained and rinsed
- Flour, all-purpose - 1 Tbsp
- Coriander, ground - 1/2 tsp
- Cumin, ground - 1/2 tsp
- Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Red pepper flakes (opt) - 1/8 tsp
- Oil, cooking - 3 Tbsp
- Tomatoes, cherry or grape - 1 cup , halved
- Cucumbers, medium - 1/2 , diced
- Lettuce, romaine (sub butterhead) - 1 heart , chopped
- Cheese, feta - 3 oz , crumbled
- Pitas, large - 4
- Chickpea falafel (ingredients listed separately) - ~16
Make falafel mixture - Drain and rinse beans. Transfer onions, garlic and parsley to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until garlic cloves are finely chopped. Add beans, flour, coriander, cumin, salt and red pepper flakes and pulse until well combined but not completely smooth. If mixture looks wet, add a bit more flour. If it looks dry, add water a tablespoon at a time to help it come together. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, preferably up to 2 days. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)
Make tzatziki - Grate cucumbers (just the portion for the tzatziki). Zest lemons. Combine with yogurt, garlic salt and dill. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
Form falafel - Roll falafel mixture into even balls, aiming for 3 falafels per serving. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
Tomatoes / Cucumbers (the portion for the pitas) / Lettuce / Feta - If prepping right before cooking, get falafel in the oven before continuing with these steps. Prep as directed and store in separate containers. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
Heat oven to 425F / 218C degrees.
Line sheet pan with foil and brush with half the cooking oil. Add falafel and brush the tops with the remaining half of cooking oil. Bake, flipping the falafel halfway through cooking, until golden brown on all sides, 25 to 30 minutes total.
Heat pita according to package directions. Slice in half and gently open to form pockets.
Assemble by filling each pita with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, feta and falafel. Top with tzatziki (or serve on the side for dipping). Enjoy!