Falafel Bites are a tasty and crowd-pleasing appetizer, but they can definitely translate to any meal! Follow the directions to make the falafel and serve in a salad or pita instead! Here we used the air fryer to quickly and evenly cook the falafel, while giving it a nice, crunchy exterior (without extra oil). Don’t have an air fryer? No worries. Sauté in a pan or bake instead!

So what’s the deal with falafel? These herby, flavorful chickpea patties make a tasty and satisfying plant-based protein. Not only are chickpeas a great source of protein, they are also full of fiber and contain micronutrients like B vitamins and magnesium.

The recipe calls for flour so is not gluten free, but it can easily be made gluten free by substituting GF flour, or for best results, chickpea flour! You can also save time by using canned chickpeas, but I recommend rinsing and draining the chickpeas, then spreading out in a single layer on a paper towel-lined baking sheet and sticking in the fridge overnight. This helps the chickpeas dry out and gives your falafel bites a better texture,

Once you try this tasty recipe, you will no longer purchase Falafel mix or frozen Falafel.  You will be motivated to make your own homemade falafel using dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans) below.

Looking for more party foods for the holidays? Here are a few crowd pleasers as well as foods that are perfect for football season!

Air-Fried Falafel Bites

Who doesn't love a crispy falafel? With just a hint of spice and topped with cool tzatziki sauce, these air-fried falafel bites are sure to please a crowd.
Course: Appetizers and Snacks
Cuisine: Greek, Mediterranean, Vegetarian
Keyword: Easy, Make ahead, Quick
Cooking Method: Air Fryer
Condition: Cancer, Dairy Free, Diabetes, Heart Health, Low Sodium, Nut Free, PCOS, Vegetarian
Servings: 16 bites


  • 1-1/2 cups chickpeas dry, soaked overnight
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 handful parsley
  • 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • cooking spray
  • pita bread
  • 1 cup tzatziki


  • Dry chickpeas over paper towels until completely dry. Place chickpeas, onion, parsley, flour, cumin, coriander, cayenne, salt, and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until combined and starting to resemble a coarse paste.
  • Place falafel mixture in a bowl and cover. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. While falafel is chilling, cut out 2-inch circles from the pita bread. Set aside.
  • Pinch off a heaping tablespoon of falafel mixture and roll into a ball. Flatten slightly. Continue with remaining dough. Spray the falafel lightly with cooking spray.
  • Heat air fryer to 400° F. Working in batches, cook falafel until crispy and cooked through (about 10-15 minutes).
  • Assemble falafel bites by placing a falafel on a pita bread round, and topping with a dollop of tzatziki. Enjoy!


This recipe can be made gluten-free by substituting gluten-free flour in step 1. 
Nutrition facts are approximate and may contain errors. 
Photo by Kaitlin Eckstein


Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 250mg | Potassium: 105mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g

Please note:

Nutrition info is an estimate and may contain errors. 

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An award winning recipe developer, Dietitian Kaitlin’s mission is to empower others to reach their health goals by encouraging them to get back into the kitchen. Co-author of Nourished: 10 Ingredients to Happy, Healthy Eating and Cooking with Diabetes.