Let me tell you about these baked spinach falafels right now…they’re spicy, they’re flavorful, they’re super tasty, super healthy and make a great vegan meal prep recipe. You can serve them with some garlicky tahini sauce, hummus or with tzatziki for a tasty appetizer…Or, or go full-on dinner or lunch by serving with salad, olives, bread and hummus or tzatziki. Or both, why not.
You can also wrap these spinach falafels in some flatbread with hummus, roasted vegetables and salad for a delicious falafel wrap.
These healthy baked falafels are the perfect recipe to make ahead for the week, simply store in the fridge or even freeze leftovers and reheat in the oven.
You’ll Love These Baked Spinach Falafels
I know you will, because this is such an easy, healthy and tasty recipe! You can make the mixture in one bowl, it is completely vegan and gluten free and packed with so much flavor and deliciousness. Just so good, these spinach falafels are:
- spicy and flavorful
- super uncomplicated
- filling and satiating
- very versatile
- easy to customize
- completely plant-based
- high in fiber and protein
Baked Spinach Falafel Ingredients
Chickpeas. Cooked or canned chickpeas are what we’ll be using to make the batter for the falafels. I know authentic and traditional falafel recipes use dried chickpeas, but my digestion hasn’t had much success with that, so we’ll be inauthentic here and use cooked chickpeas.
Spinach. Use raw spinach for the color, nutrients and taste!
Olive Oil. Do not skip olive oil! It is so important to add enough of it since baking can make the patties very dry if there isn’t enough fat in the mixture. Think about a cookie without butter or coconut oil in it – they turn out super dry.
Parsley and red pepper. Lots of chopped parsley and a chopped red pepper also make it into the falafels for extra vitamins and freshness.
Dry Herbs and Spices. Dried mint, chili powder and cumin are the dried herbs and spices I went with for the patties and loved the taste and aroma they provided. If there are any dried herbs or spices you love and must have in the falafels, you can try adding them as well.
Onion and Garlic. We can’t go without onions and garlic! These falafels will not be the same without these flavorful vegetables.
How To Make Baked Spinach Falafels
You really don’t need to do much to the falafels, it’s basically placing all ingredients into a bowl or a food processor, shaping the resulting mixture into patties and then baking for a little while. That’s it!
Here’s the step by step
Add the chickpeas, olive oil, spinach, parsley, chili powder, cumin and mint into a food processor or a bowl if using an immersion blender.
Process until almost smooth (about 1/5 of the mixture can stay chunky). Add in salt and pepper, the chopped bell pepper, thinly chopped onion and minced garlic.
This is important: Do a taste test! Now is the time! You need to check whether the mixture tastes good to you or not. Does it need more salt or more spices? And trust me, when you’re making any vegan patties or falafels, always test the taste when raw. If the mixture isn’t all you want, adjust it with some spices, more garlic or salt and pepper.
Preheat the oven to 350F/180C.
Use a tbsp to take out the mixture and shape balls using your wet hands. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and grease the parchment paper with some oil. Place balls onto the baking sheet, leaving some space between them. Flatten balls by pressing down to shape patties. You should get about 24-25 falafel patties.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.
After baking, let the falafels cool off and serve with your favorite sauces or with salad, bread and hummus or tzatziki.
Why Are These Baked Spinach Falafels Good For You
These spinach falafels are very healthy, nutritious and a great, filling plant-based protein option.
Chickpeas are a great source of fiber and plant protein. But they’re not just those two things! One cup of cooked chickpeas covers 26% of your daily iron needs, over 70% of your daily requirements for folate and 23% of zinc. (source)
Spinach. It’s no secret leafy greens are good for you and spinach is no exception. Rich in antioxidants, proteins, fiber, minerals and vitamins (especially K, A and folate) this is a great food to enjoy on a regular basis (source). However, keep in mind that spinach is also rich in oxalic acid that can bind minerals and trace elements and form insoluble complexes with them. This can reduce the absorption of nutrients like calcium, iron or zinc. (source) What I basically want to say with this, to myself as well, is to enjoy spinach, but don’t try to be too much of a saint when it comes to nutrition. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.
Garlic and onion. Garlic and onion, on the other hand, help to improve the bioavailability and absorption of certain trace elements and minerals from plant foods like grains and legumes (source). They’re also packed with molecules that have detoxifying, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties.
Dried herbs and spices. You might be adding these for just a bit of flavor, but there’s so much more to herbs and spices. Herbs and spices have been used as medicine pretty much since the beginning of time, and modern medicine has started to catch up with its research. Plants like cumin and mint have anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-diabetic properties, so it only makes sense to eat these more often. (source)
How To Serve These Baked Spinach Falafels
These baked patties can be the star of so many delicious healthy meals, seriously.
- Use in wraps with hummus, fresh and roasted vegetables with garlicky tahini sauce
- Turn them into an appetizer with some garlicky tahini sauce or with yogurt garlic sauce for a vegetarian option
- Build healthy bowls with salad, hummus, tzatziki and roasted vegetables
Meal Prep and Freezing Falafels
This plant-based recipe makes 24-25 patties, which is enough for about 5-6 servings, depending on how much of an appetite you have. This means, the entire batch will last you for about 4-5 days, so this is a great vegan meal prep recipe. Store in an airtight container in the fridge and reheat in the oven.
That being said, if you’re like me and don’t want to eat the same thing all week long, you can also share with others or freeze leftovers in an airtight container in the freezer. You will need to let the falafels defrost for a few minutes and reheat in the oven when it’s time to eat.
More Healthy Vegan Recipes
- 4 cups cooked chickpeas
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups spinach
- 1/4 cup parsley
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 2 tbsp mint
- 1/3 cup red onion, chopped
- 1 small red pepper, chopped
- Add the chickpeas, olive oil, spinach, parsley, chili powder, cumin and mint into a food processor or a bowl if using an immersion blender. Process until almost smooth (about ⅕ of the mixture can stay chunky). Add in salt and pepper, the chopped bell pepper, thinly chopped onion and minced garlic.
- This is important: Do a taste test! Check whether the mixture tastes good to you or not. Does it need more salt or more spices? Adjust to your taste!
- Preheat your oven to 350F/180C.
- Use a tbsp to take out the mixture and shape balls using your wet hands. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and grease the parchment paper with some oil. Place balls onto the baking sheet, leaving some space between each one. Flatten balls by pressing the balls down tand shape patties. You should get about 24-25 patties.
- Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.
- After baking, let the falafels cool off and serve with your favorite sauces or with salad, bread and hummus or tzatziki.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 70Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 22mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g