Is falafel healthy? The answer might surprise you! Falafel is a traditional Middle Eastern dish made from ground chickpeas or fava beans, and it’s a popular vegan and vegetarian option. But what about the nutrition? Let’s take a closer look at the falafel nutrition facts to see if this dish is a healthy option.
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What is Falafel?
Falafel is a traditional Middle Eastern dish that is made of chickpeas or fava beans that are ground and formed into balls or patties. They are then fried or baked. Falafel is often served inside a pita bread with lettuce, tomatoes, and tahini sauce. It can also be served as a side dish.
Falafel’s Nutritional Content
Falafel is made from fava beans, chickpeas or a combination of the two. Most often, we see it in balls or patties, but it can also come in the form of fritters. It’s typically fried, but you’ll also find baked versions. No matter how it’s prepared, falafel is usually served in a pita with veggies and tahini sauce.
Like most fried foods, falafel is high in calories and fat. A typical falafel balls has about 100 calories, 6 grams of fat and 2 grams of saturated fat.
Is Falafel Healthy?
Falafel is a traditional Middle Eastern food that is made from chickpeas or fava beans. It is usually served as a pita sandwich or on a salad. Falafel is high in protein and fiber, and it is a good source of iron. However, some people worry that falafel is not healthy because it is fried. Let’s take a closer look at the ingredients in falafel and see if it is a healthy food choice.
The Pros of Eating Falafel
Falafel is a deep-fried ball or patty made from ground chickpeas or fava beans and spices. It is a popular street food in the Middle East and is also enjoyed in other parts of the world.
There are many different ways to make falafel, but most recipes include chickpeas (or fava beans), onion, parsley, cumin, and garlic. The ingredients are pulsed in a food processor until they form a thick paste. Then, small balls of the mixture are formed by hand and deep-fried until golden brown.
Some falafel recipes also include additional ingredients like bread crumbs, flour, eggs, and baking powder to help bind the balls together. However, these ingredients are not necessary and many traditional falafel recipes do not include them.
So, is falafel healthy? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of eating this popular street food.
The Pros of Eating Falafel
1. Falafel is high in fiber.
2. Falafel is a good source of protein.
3. Falafel is made with healthy ingredients.
4. Falafel can be baked instead of fried.
5. Falafel is usually served with healthy sides.
The Cons of Eating Falafel
Like most fried foods, falafel isn’t the healthiest option. A typical falafel balls has about 140 calories and 6 grams of fat. But it’s not all bad news. Falafel is also a good source of fiber and protein, with 3 grams of each in a single ball. And if you eat it as part of a meal with vegetables and whole-wheat pita, it can be a healthy option.
The cons of eating falafel include:
-It’s high in calories and fat. A single ball has about 140 calories and 6 grams of fat.
-It’s fried. Fried foods are generally not considered healthy because they’re high in fat and calories.
-It’s made with chickpeas. Chickpeas are a high-carb food, so eating too many falafel balls can cause your blood sugar to spike.
How to Make Falafel Healthier
Falafel is a popular Middle Eastern dish that is made from chickpeas or fava beans. It is usually fried and served in a pita pocket with vegetables and tahini sauce. While falafel is a delicious and convenient food, it is also high in fat and calories.
Baking Falafel Instead of Frying
Baking falafel is an easy and healthier way to enjoy this delicious and popular Middle Eastern street food. While traditional falafel is deep-fried, resulting in a high-fat, greasy dish, baking the little fritters produces a crispy exterior without all the unhealthy fat. Baked falafel are just as flavorful as their fried counterparts, but much lighter and easier on the waistline.
To make baked falafel, you will need:
1 cup dry chickpeas
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Adding More Veggies to Your Falafel
Falafel is a traditional dish that is popular in many Middle Eastern and Mediterranean countries. It typically consists of ground chickpeas or fava beans that are shaped into balls or patties and fried. Even though it is fried, falafel can actually be a fairly healthy dish if it is prepared properly. One way to make falafel healthier is to add more vegetables to the mixture.
One study that was published in the Journal of Food Science found that adding grated zucchini to the falafel mixture resulted in a final product that was lower in fat and calories. The study also found that the addition of zucchini increased the amount of antioxidants in the falafel. If you are looking for an even healthier option, you could try baked falafel. Baked falafel will still have some fat and calories, but it will be significantly lower than fried falafel.
Another way to make your falafel healthier is to pay attention to the type of oil you use for frying. Many people use vegetable oil when frying falafel, but you could also use olive oil. A study that was published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition found that olive oil-friedfalafels had a higher antioxidant content than vegetable oil-friedfalafels.
In conclusion, falafel is a healthy food that can be part of a nutritious diet. It is high in protein and fiber and low in saturated fat. Additionally, it is a good source of vitamins and minerals, including iron, potassium, and magnesium. While falafel is generally safe to eat, it is important to note that it can be high in sodium. If you are concerned about your sodium intake, be sure to check the nutrition facts label before purchasing or consuming falafel.