This delicious falafel sandwich is made with canned chickpeas so you can make this recipe in just 15 minutes! Drizzle it with a simple tahini sauce to take it to the next level!

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I love falafel and lately I’ve been making it at home. It’s traditionally made with dried chickpeas and while that’s the proper way to make falafel, I’m going to share my little shortcut: canned chickpeas. I know it’s not exactly the same as falafel made with dried chickpeas but the result is falafel that is crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. Plus, it only takes a few minutes to make.

For this sandwich, I added a few of my favorite sandwich toppings and drizzled on a simple homemade tahini sauce. It’s simple but the combination is quite good. It’s perfect for a quick meatless dinner or midday meal.

canned chickpeas

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • Chickpeas– Traditionally, falafel is made with dried chickpeas but I make easy vegan falafel using canned chickpeas to save time.
  • Garlic powder– I used garlic powder for a milder garlic taste, but you can substitute with 2 cloves of fresh garlic, minced, if you prefer.
  • Lemon juice– This adds brightness to the overall flavor. If you don’t have lemon juice, substitute with a splash of red wine vinegar.
  • Cumin– This adds a warm, earthy, herbal flavor to the falafel.
  • Parsley– I highly recommend fresh parsley as dried parsley doesn’t have much flavor.
  • Za’atar seasoning– This is optional but it’s one of my favorite seasoning blends for falafel, hummus, and other Middle Eastern inspired dishes. I highly recommend adding some to your pantry!
  • Tahini– This sesame paste is the base of our sauce and it’s a great way to add creaminess to sauces and dips.
  • Mayonnaise or Veganaise- This also adds creaminess to the sauce. Regular or vegan mayo works great.

What is Tahini?

Tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds that is widely used in Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, and North African cuisine. To make tahini, sesame seeds are first toasted and then ground into a smooth paste that kind of resembles creamy almond butter. Sometimes the oil will separate and float to the top of the jar so be sure to stir the tahini well before using. Tahini is available in most grocery stores, often sold near the natural nut butters like cashew butter and almond butter.

How to Make Falafel