Jun 23, 2011

Falafel-Pita Sandwich

Summer is ideal for picnics! Beaches, parks, riverbanks, trails, campsites are ideal for picnics. Picnics would never be complete without food and snacking! I have chosen the theme - Picnic Food for my blogging marathon this week. Yes, I will be continuously be posting recipes everyday for a week all revolving around the theme Picnic Food!

Food taken for picnics are dishes that taste great even when served cold, spill-proof and great eaten without the use of much cutlery. This falafel-pita sandwich is great for such situations. they can be made ahead and wrapped in plastic or foils and makes great picnic food. The falafels can also be prepared individually and then sandwiches can be assembled with the pita bread and the sauce just before eating.

Here is a simple and easy recipe for making great falafel-pita sandwiches. I have used hummus and greek yogurt as the sauce in this sandwich. Any kind of sauce can be used. I bought most ingredients from the grocery store except for the falafels which I made at home.

I used the kuzhipaniyaram pan to make the falafels more healthy with less oil. Falafels are traditionally deep fried. I have also tried baking the falafels. But we loved this version better.

Ingredients (makes 4 sandwiches)
For the falafel
Dried garbanzo beans - 1 cup/16 oz. can of chickpeas
Onion - 1 medium sized
Garlic cloves - 2
Fresh parsley/coriander leaves - 2 tablespoons chopped
Coriander powder - 1 teaspoon
Cumin powder - 1 teaspoon
Chilli powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Salt to taste

For the sandwich
Falafels - 8
Pita bread - 2
Cherry tomatoes - 12 (or) Regular tomatoes - 2
Onion - 1/2 cup chopped (optional)
Cucumber - 1
Greek yogurt - 4 tablespoons
Hummus - 4 tablespoons

To make the falafels
Soak the garbanzo beans overnight or atleast for 5 to 6 hours. Drain the chickpeas and pressure cook for about 10 minutes. If using canned garbanzo beans, you can skip the above step.
In a blender add the cooked and drained chickpeas along with all the ingredients listed under falafel and grind to a coarse mixture.
If using the kuzhipaniyaram pan, drizzle a little oil in each hole and place a lemon sized ball of the falafel mixture. Slightly press with the back of a spatula.

Cook on low heat for about two minutes on each side. Do not cook on high heat, because the outsides might brown too quickly and the inside might remain uncooked. Remove the falafels once cooked and allow it to cool. You can make these falafels ahead and refrigerate or freeze leftovers for future use. The falafels stay good in the freezer atleast for a month.

Alternatively, you can also make the falafels by deep-frying or baking them.

To assemble the sandwich
Take a pita bread and slice it into two equal pieces. You can toast the pita on a pan for a minute. this step is optional.

Open the pita pocket carefully, and smear one tablespoon each of the greek yogurt and hummus. Place two falafels in each sandwich. Top with your favorite toppings - cherry tomatoes, sliced onions, sliced cucumbers, coriander, parsley etc. You can also use tzatziki or tahini sauce as toppings.

Enjoy your falafel-pita sandwich!


  1. wow, looks perfect and a great array of things to fill the pita sandwich with :)

  2. Absolutely love this, totally yummy and protein packed, healthy and filling :)
    US Masala

  3. wow, looks superb dear, delicious !!!

  4. Am just drooling here, filling,protein rich and satisfying sandwich..

  5. This looks very tempting and yumm...a perfect fud for picnics...

  6. hey this looks great!...n wat a coincidence for picnic foods day 1 my post is the same ...Falafel!

  7. Falafel sandwich looks fresh and delicious. It's nice to run the marathon with you Divya and my theme is picnic food too..

  8. Wow.. looks simply superb and delicious.. perfect shots !!
    Indian Cuisine

  9. Toatlly mindblowing presentation of yummy falafel sandwiches..power packed.

  10. Mouthwatering pics...Made falafel for the first time few days back. Yet to try pita bread.

  11. Wow looks so yummy and filling... Loved the falafel..

  12. I like the way you've shallow fried the falafels. The sandwich looks colourful and filling.

  13. beautiful healthy falfal is looking so tempting

  14. fantastic idea of making this for picnic, looks very inviting

  15. Tempting falafel!!!! Very well presented divya :)
    Prathima Rao
    Prats Corner

  16. This looks unbelievably good! I love falafel, but the only time I tried making it didn't turn out well. Have any interest in sharing this recipe in my summer recipes blog hop? http://www.favedietsblog.com/the-healthy-hop-june-edition/

  17. Absolutely love this, totally yummy and protein packed falafel..

  18. Great looking ones Divya, do send this also for the event!

  19. WOW, I was searching for picnic sandwiches and this page popped up, i am soo lucky, thank you

  20. Falafel sandwich is a popular recipe from Middle East, consists of chickpeas that are shaped into patties.
    Falafel sandwich


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