Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Falafel Burgers with Tahini and Tzatziki

Falafel. Sweet, sweet falafel. Need I say more?

As you know, I have always had a love for Middle Eastern fare (excuse some of the pre- me knowing about the white balance button on my camera! Can we say… yellow photos! haha).  Anyhow, you may remember me telling you that I have a Lebanese Uncle (which is how my love for Middle Eastern/Mediterranean food started at a young age)? And let me tell you… I love it all: hummus, kefta, kibbeh, ma’anik, baba ganoush, hashwey… BIG FAN of those.

One of my all time  favorites, though, is Falafel. Crispy, delicious, and savory falafel! It’s the one treat that I HAVE to find when visiting big cities (the Falafel joints in South Florida are extremely limited, people!)! While visiting Washington D.C., we may have dragged my sister in-law on the public transit to a semi-seedy part of town… then we might have forced her to walk a couple of miles in flip flops (ouch)… just to get to this well known Falafel joint to try their amazing falafels (True story. And yes, it was totally worth the trip)! We also MAY have dragged her back there a second time that trip. haha

It was D.C. that changed hubby’s mind about Falafel. He used to gag at the sound of it, but after one bite of those glorious falafels, he was sold.

Thankfully convincing him that Falafel burgers were a great dinner idea this week was pretty darn easy! These burgers were DELICIOUS (and super filling… I could only eat a half!)! The mix of the Tahini and Tzatziki was a perfect compliment! Add whatever toppings you would like: Tomatoes, Red Onion, Lettuce, Cucumber, Kalamata olives, Feta… etc! We kept it super simple with fresh tomato and cucumber.

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Falafel Burgers with Tahini and Tzatziki

Yield: 4 large (or 6 smaller sized) patties

Prep Time: 15-20 minutes

Cook Time: 8 minutes

Total Time: 25-30 minutes

This is one vegetarian burger option that will have you forgetting that there is no meat!


For the Tzatziki:
7 ounces Greek Yogurt
1/2 cup peeled and diced seedless cucumber
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 garlic clove
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried mint
pinch of black pepper

For the Tahini Sauce:
1/3 cup tahini paste
1/2 lemon juiced
3 tablespoons water
salt and pepper to taste

For the Falafel Bugers:
2 cans chickpeas, drained
1 small red onion
3 tablespoons flour
4 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon coriander
1 teaspoon tumeric
1 teaspoon salt
3-4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 Rolls
sliced cucumber

Other toppings ideas: Lettuce, Red Onion, Feta, Kalamata Olives


For the Tzatziki:
MIx all ingredients together and set aside.

For the Tahini Sauce:
Mix all ingredients together and set aside.

For the Falafel Bugers:
Add the chickpeas, onion, garlic, flour, and spices (cumin, chili powder, coriander, tumeric, and salt) into the food processor and pulse until combined (add additional flour until it holds together). Divide mixture into equal sized patties (we made 4 large, but they were HUGE, and I will probably make it into 6 next time).

Heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add two falafel patties to the pre-heated skillet and cook for 4 minutes. Gently flip patties (they are fragile!), and cook for an additional 4 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside (either keep in a warm oven or under some aluminum foil). Add the remaining olive oil and repeat process with remaining 2 patties.

To serve: toast up buns for a few minutes under the broiler. Spread some tahini sauce on the bottom bun and top with a falafel patty. Top with desired toppings followed by a dallop of tzatziki. Serve while hot!

Falafel Patties Adapted from: Rachel Ray

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15 Responses to “Falafel Burgers with Tahini and Tzatziki”

  1. 1

    Rachel — November 9, 2011 @ 12:54 pm

    These look super good. Need to psych myself up to be adventurous enough/not lazy and make them some time :-). Hope you are doing well!

  2. 2

    Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean — November 9, 2011 @ 1:31 pm

    can’t wait to try these. always looking for new vegetarian burger recipes!!

  3. 3

    Cassie @ bake your day — November 9, 2011 @ 3:15 pm

    I have become very adventurous when it comes with meatless burgers and I honestly don’t miss the meat. I’ll be trying this one!

  4. 4

    Erin — November 9, 2011 @ 4:13 pm

    Falafel is amazing! Love this burger.

  5. 5

    Maggie @ A Bitchin' Kitchen — November 9, 2011 @ 4:18 pm

    I live right outside of DC! Are you talking about Amsterdam Falafelshop in Adams Morgan? If not, you must get back to DC and try them out 🙂

    Falafel is one of my absolute favorite foods, so these look delicious!

    • Kristina replied: — November 9th, 2011 @ 7:55 pm

      haha yep- you guessed dead on! Amsterdam Falafelshop in Adams Morgan! 🙂 It was SO amazing… i need to get back there!

  6. 6

    Krissy@DaintyChef — November 9, 2011 @ 4:37 pm

    My best friend from college introduced me to falafel, I need to invite her over, and serve this to her 🙂

  7. 7

    michelle @ The Village Cook — November 9, 2011 @ 6:19 pm

    LOVE falafel, I haven’t had it in years, since my health food days….

  8. 8

    Tanya - Three Square Meals — November 10, 2011 @ 5:08 am

    I have been looking for a great, not good, great tzatziki sauce. I can’t wait to try yours! Thank you!

  9. 9

    Dad — November 10, 2011 @ 9:04 am

    I’ve never tried falafel as a sandwhich even though I have seen it on menus in the past. I have only had it as a fried falafel ball dipped in hummus. This sounds great and I’ll have to try it. I love falafel with hummus so that might make a good topping as well. You are so correct on the limited places to get middle eastern food in south florida I wish there were more of them.

    Love you,


    • Kristina replied: — November 15th, 2011 @ 9:36 am

      I know it’s a bummer… i just make the hummus/baba ganoush myself now. You should try the Kalamata Tapenade (in the appetizer section) sometime… goes great with Pita and hummus! xoxo -t

  10. 10

    Dad — November 10, 2011 @ 9:08 am

    I forgot to ask do you drain the chickpeas or use the liquid as well?

    • Kristina replied: — November 15th, 2011 @ 9:35 am

      drained… I’ll add that to the recipe (oops)!

  11. 11

    Dara — November 10, 2011 @ 3:51 pm

    Love it. This looks amazing. I love falafel but have never made it for myself. Well done.

  12. 12

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