Falafel is made from fava beans and/or chickpeas and is then fried into a ball shape. It originates from the Middle East and has become more popular in Western countries more recently.
Falafel can be eaten on their own, with hummus, in bread and wraps or even in burgers. Because neither fava beans or chickpeas have a particularly strong and distinct flavour, falafel tends to get most of its flavour from spices and other ingredients added to the mix before it is fried. Onions, cilantro lemon and cumin are popular additions added to falafel to offer a unique and strong flavour.We'll be going through some of the best falafel mixes on the market today so you won't have to go searching for the delicious meal when you want to experiment in the kitchen or when you end up craving classic Middle Eastern flavours. We hope that through this article you can find the best falafel mix that perfectly belongs in your kitchen.
The best pick is the Casbah Authentic Grains - Falafel Chickpea Mix. This falafel mix is suitable for vegetarians, Kosher and offers authentic flavours in the comfort of your own home. You can make either falafel balls or patties with this product, making it a fun option to keep in your pantry - especially on those days when you’re stumped on what to cook. This mix has 160 calories per serving and 7g of protein, making it a great option to have at home. Be wary, however, as the salt content is on the higher end of the spectrum.
The best budget pick is the Knorr Falafel Mix - Meditteranean Style. This product has 110 calories per serving, 400mg of sodium and 4g of protein. To make, add the mix to 100ml of water and let it rest for 10-15 minutes. Then, create balls that are roughly 1 inch in width with this mixture. After pouring corn oil into a deep skillet, fry the falafel balls at 350 degrees for around 2 minutes until they are ready.
Quick Comparison: Top 6 Best Falafel Mix
1. Casbah Authentic Grains - Falafel Chickpea Mix
The first item in our list is the Falafel Chickpea Mix made from Casbah. This mix is fully vegetarian and suitable for those who eat Kosher.
This falafel mix is easy to use and prepare as it only takes a few minutes to prepare. Simply, mix the falafel mix and cold water and let it rest for around ten minutes.
Then, place some vegetable oil in a pan or skillet (bringing the stove to 350 degrees) and mould the falafel mix into patties or balls and begin to fry them in the pan. There is also a way to cook this falafel mix without using oil if that suits your diet needs better. Mould the falafel and cold water mix into patties that are around half an inch thick. Then, use a nonstick pan or griddle and cook the patties for around 3 minutes on each side on medium heat. If you prefer to bake, you can bake the patties for around 10 minutes at 375 degrees.
You can also opt to eat this item as a snack or in various kinds of meals - making it a great versatile option, especially on the days you don't know what to cook that day. It is made from garbanzo bean flour, granulated garlic, sea salt, sesame tahini, corn starch, citric acid, lemon powder and spice.This falafel mix has 70 calories per serving, 220mg of sodium and 2g of protein.
2. Knorr Falafel Mix - Mediterranean Style
The next product is the Knorr Mediterranean Style Falafel Mix. This mix is made from chickpeas, wheat flour, spices, onion powder, palm oil, garlic powder, onion and turmeric.
It has 110 calories per serving, 400mg of sodium and 4g of protein. To make, add a packet of the mix to 100ml of water and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.
Once this is done, mould the mixture into balls that are roughly 1 inch in width. Then, pour corn oil into a skillet or pan so that half an inch of the pan is covered from the bottom. Heat the pan to 350 degrees and then begin to fry each falafel ball for around 2 minutes, or until it is golden brown.
3. Osem Falafel Mix
If you eat a Kosher diet, you'll be thrilled with this next product. The falafel mix by Osem is supervised meticulously to ensure that every packet is kosher and suitable for your dietary needs.
Of course, this product is not just limited to those of you who are Jewish and can be enjoyed by many. This product is also suitable for vegetarians, however, it contains wheat and therefore is not suitable for those who must eat gluten-free.
This falafel mix is made from hummus (which is ground chickpeas), wheat flour, salt, various spices, dehydrated parsley and some leavening agents which are chemicals that cause the falafel mix to become softer and lighter in texture.
To cook, mix a sachet of the falafel mix with 200ml of water and stir. Let it sit for around 7-8 minutes and pour vegetable oil in a pan or skillet in the meantime. With slightly wet hands, mould the mix into small balls and then begin to fry them until they turn a golden brown colour.This product has 240 calories per serving and comes with 550mg of sodium and 5g of protein. Neither the calories nor the sodium is extremely high, but if these are things you look out for, be mindful that there are falafel mixes that are lower in calories and salt that are available too.
4. Orgran Falafel Mix
The next product in our list is the Orgran Falafel Mix which is all-natural and gluten-free. You won't need to worry about consuming any artificial ingredients, colours or preservatives as there isn't any included in this falafel mix.
It is also free from eggs and dairy making it suitable for those who are intolerant to lactose. Don't worry about the grains that are included being cross-contaminated. They are manufactured in a secure and special facility in Australia that takes precise care to keep each ingredient safe.
With that being said, this product has a spicy and nutty flavour and provides a level of crunch that leaves you feeling satisfied. It is made from yellow pea flour, onion, garlic powder, salt, parsley and a raising agent called sodium bicarbonate.To prepare, mould the mix into balls and bake in the oven for 15 minutes at around 180 degrees celsius. This product has 86 calories per serving size (25g) and 5.4g of protein, making this a great option for those who are mindful of their weight.
5. Fantastic World Foods Falafel Mix
Next up is the falafel mix by Fantastic World Foods. This product is made from garbanzo beans, green and yellow peas, dehydrated onions, garlic and potatoes, sea salt, spices, expeller pressed canola oil, soy sauce (which includes wheat so this product is not gluten-free), yeast extract, natural flavours and sodium bicarbonate.
It is recommended that you be mindful with this falafel mix if you are allergic to milk, soy, peanuts and wheat. Though the falafel mix itself may not include all of these ingredients within it, the products used to make the mix may have been cross-contaminated with such ingredients.
There are 130 calories per serving and 8g of protein which are great for those who are conscious of their weight or who like to include a lot of protein into their diet. To enjoy, mix the product with about a quarter cup of cold water and let it rest for around 15 minutes so that all of the water is absorbed by the falafel mix. When this is done, form balls that are around an inch thick.Then, getting a deep skillet, add vegetable oil into it until it is around half an inch thick from the bottom of the skillet. Begin to fry the falafel balls for around 3 minutes or until each section of the ball is golden brown and crisp.
6. Mediterra Spread the Health Premium Falafel Mix
The last item in our list is one that prides itself on being healthy. The Mediterra Spread the Health Premium Falafel Mix is used in thousands of restaurants due to its authentic flavour and perfect texture.
What makes this product unique is the fact that you can deep fry it in a pan but also use a waffle maker or toastie machine to cook the falafel too. This is a great alternative if you are trying to use less oil in your meals. Even if you choose to fry it with oil, this falafel mix absorbs the least amount of oil so that you can enjoy each meal without feeling guilty.
This product is suitable for both vegetarians and vegans and is made from dehydrated vegetables, chickpeas, salt, sodium bicarbonate and cornstarch. This product may also come into contact with gluten, soy, sesame and nuts. This product has 125 calories per serving and 740mg of sodium. Though the calories are pretty low, be mindful of the amount of sodium which is present in this product.To prepare, stir the falafel mix with water of the same amount and let it rest for 40 minutes in the fridge so that it sets properly. Stir the mixture from time to time as it sets. When this is ready, shape the mixture into small balls and begin to fry them in vegetable oil which is at 340-degree Fahrenheit until they turn a golden brown colour.
Things to Consider before Buying Falafel Mix
Though falafel is a widely popular dish that originated from the Middle East and is now enjoyed all around the world, there is some debate as to which country first created the dish. It is so flavourful and versatile that it seems that many people want to claim it as its own.
Falafel is not only versatile and can be eaten as both meals and snacks, but they are also healthy and nutritious, providing a large amount of protein in small portions, thanks to the chickpeas that are used as the main ingredient in many falafel recipes.
In this section, we will go through some important areas to consider before you set out to get your falafel mix so that you can ensure you get a product that won't let you down.
As with any other type of food, considering the flavour is one of the most important aspects to always consider. Though most falafel mixes typically have a similar flavour thanks to using ingredients such as chickpeas, dehydrated vegetables and spices, there are some variations to look out for with each packet of falafel mix.
The most distinct and varying flavour when it comes to falafel that you should look out for is spice. If you enjoy spice, you may want to opt for falafel mixes that have more of a kick to it than other ones. If you do end up with a falafel mix that is too bland, don’t fret. Consider adding your own spices to it so that it suits your tastes better.
If you cannot handle spice or are unable to eat it due to medical conditions, be mindful to not get a box of falafel mix that won’t suit you. Spicy food, though great for increasing mood and improving immunity, can also be harmful to certain individuals. If you have a particularly sensitive stomach going for milder options may be more suitable.
Also, consider who will be eating the falafels. If you will be serving it to a large group of people or even children, we recommend that you go for milder falafel mixes so that everyone can enjoy the meal without any issues.
The next important factor to consider is the ingredients. Sure, ingredients are essential for the flavour of any food, but they also determine how healthy or unhealthy it may be and how it can affect your body.
We believe you must know what you are putting into your body so that you don't damage yourself in the process of eating delicious food. With this being said, look out for certain ingredients that could make you feel ill.
Most of the time, many falafel mixes include chickpeas, dehydrated vegetables and spices as their fundamental ingredients. In many mixes, there is also sodium bicarbonate which is a raising agent that helps with the texture of the falafels. Though this is approved by food organisations, it is noted that consuming too much of the ingredient can lead to coughing and sneezing.
Many falafel mixes do not have too many preservatives in them but this is also something to look out for when shopping. If you like to eat as healthy as possible, go for products that have as few ingredients as possible and include ingredients that you are familiar with.
Continuing from the previous section, buying foods that are suitable for your dietary requirements is essential to keep healthy. This is especially important if you are cooking for other people who may need to avoid certain ingredients.
Many falafel mixes include wheat and may even be contaminated with milk, eggs, soy or nuts, despite not using these ingredients in the recipe itself. This is usually done if the same equipment is used to prepare different types of food products by the same company. If this is the case, however, it will be specified on the packet of any falafel mix so please ensure you read the packaging before purchasing any mix.
There are also falafel mixes that are gluten-free and do not use any wheat or soy sauce, and though slightly more difficult to find, there are also vegetarian and vegan options. Be mindful of nut and soy allergies as well, and make sure to check for the ingredients and any warnings on the packaging beforehand.
Nutritional Benefits and Information
Falafel is usually quite low in calories despite most commonly being fried in oil. Per serving, falafel can be anywhere from 90-300 calories, and this entirely depends on the brand of falafel mix you go for. If you like to count calories, make sure you read the nutrition label on the back of the packet to see how many calories the product offers.
Though not usually high in sodium, there are a few brands on the market that will sneak in extra salt into your diet if you are not careful, so it is a good idea to check for sodium levels too.
One of the most beneficial aspects of falafel is that it offers a high amount of protein - even in small batches. This is a great option if you are vegetarian or vegan and don’t eat meat, as finding other forms of protein may prove to be a little difficult if you eat a meat-free diet. Falafel mixes also have a wide variety of other nutritional benefits, however. It is also high in fibre which is great for keeping you full for long hours and preventing diabetes and heart disease.
Falafel is also rich in healthy fats and has a wide variety of vitamins and minerals that are all packed into those tiny balls. Be mindful that in most cases you will be using oil to fry to falafels which may not suit your diet. If this is the case, there are also falafel mixes that you can prepare without using oil and a deep frying pan. Instead, opt for options that you can bake or use in a waffle machine.
In most cases, you will need to do at least a little preparation in the kitchen instead of instantly being able to eat the falafels straight from the bag. Typically, you will require a deep skillet or pan, vegetable oil and some water.
The amount of each of these ingredients will be specified on the packaging of your product, but fundamentally, you will need to mix cold water and the falafel mix to form a doughy consistency. After letting it rest for the recommended time, mould them into balls or patties and begin to fry them in the oil.
This is the traditional way of eating falafels, but we understand that this may not suit everybody. If this is the case, you can opt for falafel mixes that can be baked instead of fried and even used in a waffle or toastie machine. Be mindful that baking the falafels may take a little longer than frying them, so consider which method best suits your style in the kitchen and take it from there.
In terms of versatility, we believe that almost all falafel mixes are versatile, to begin with. They can be used in salads, in wraps, on their own, with hummus and much more. With this being said, we also believe that if you can get more uses out of a single product, the better it is.
There are falafel mixes that also allow you to make a vegetable patty replacements that you can use in burgers - making it a great party food or lunch idea for any vegetarians out there. Think about how you will want to consume your falafels and whether due to the ingredients and texture you will be able to enjoy it in a variety of ways before getting your own falafel mix to enjoy.
We hope that through this article you now know how to make falafels easily, what to look out for to get the best falafel mix and how you can enjoy the famous meal in a variety of ways. Food is not only necessary but it should be as enjoyable as possible, convenient and easy. We believe that there is always a perfect product out there for everyone that you won’t be disappointed with and we hope that you get a step closer to finding your perfect falafel mix after reading this article.