5 Ingredient Oven Baked Falafels
New year, new me..right? So cliche but this is still the hard truth for everyone setting new years resolutions, me included. I’ve always been pretty healthy (I created a vegan/vegetarian food blog for god sakes!) but never took a good look at my current state of health. Towards the end of 2017 I made a resolution that I wanted to loose weight and improve my health. I want to be in the best shape of my life. Who doesn’t?! I’m still working on these goals but I can honestly say that these baked falafels have been a lifesaver this past week.
At the beginning of January I took the plunge and joined a Beach Body challenge group. I had been doing the online workouts for a while on my own in my living room, and yes, I did see results but I felt like for the amount of work I was putting in these results were sub-par.
The biggest change about joining a challenge group compared to just a living room sweat is the meal plan and the accountability. Every day I would post a sweaty selfie after I finished my workout and pictures of what I was eating. The hard part is not the posting or the food but the challenge that you have with yourself when you want to grab something else to eat or you think to yourself “Well just one more portion wouldn’t hurt, right? Just this one time.”
I had been eating what I considered healthy for the longest time; however had no idea that I was eating enough for two or three people at times. I’m not going to lie, the first week was tough. I wanted to eat more than my plan. I had some bad gas that my husband was not a fan of. And for the life of me, no matter how much water I drank I had a horrible headache. Then it hit me. My body was adjusting to its new regime and it was done adjusting. FINALLY!
I felt AWESOME! I had so much energy and actually looked forward to the daily workouts. The particular program that I chose had a 30 minute workout every day and for some reason exercising every day turned out to be easier for me than only Monday thru Friday like I had been doing before. It turned into the daily reminder of my resolutions of being a better version of me and finding my strongest self. (Yes, there were lighter active recovery days and no, I did not kill myself)
I have yet to weigh myself, mostly because I don’t own a scale, but the proof is in the pudding. The pictures speak for themselves. I couldn’t be more proud of myself that I did this more myself.
I know I have mentioned meal planning before here on Healthish Foodie and how great it is, but for me this past month meal planning was the game changer. Not just planning out what I was going to eat, but actually making it ahead of time, putting it into containers and having it ready for whenever it was meal time.
For starters this really helped me stay on track with my meal plan and not cheat. I didn’t have to. My meal was already made and waiting for me. It also really helped me stick to the right portions and not over eating like I normally would if I had just made that meal fresh.
This past week I was craving falafels so I figured out how to make a version that would fit with my meal plan. And can I just say…I LOVE FALAFELS! Okay maybe a little bit of an exaggeration but they are really good.
I made a batch of these five ingredient oven baked falafels as part of my meal plan and ended up using them on everything. I used them in a wrap with veggies like traditional falafels. I crumbled them up in my salads for an extra protein punch. I when I was feeling lazy I just dipped them in my favorite sauce and ate the like the little nuggets they are. Even when I was too lazy to actually make something to eat or needed a snack, these pre-made falafels saved me from binge eating on something I was going to regret. I’m telling you, LIFESAVERS!
I prefer to cook my own chickpeas using a slow cooker. Here’s how!
5 Ingredient Oven Baked Falafels
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas
- 1/2 cup red onion finely chopped or minced
- 1/2 cup cilantro finely sliced
- 1 tbsp cumin
- 2-3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp flour
- salt and pepper to taste
Thoroughly mash chickpeas until they have few chunks. This could be with a food processor, blender or old fashioned fork. Add water or juice from chickpeas 1 tablespoon at a time as needed.
Add all other ingredients and mix well.
Spoon out portions of 2 tbsp each onto a well greased or lined baking sheet. Either roll portions into a ball or flatten into a patty.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes turning halfway through.