Speedy Sweet Potato Falafel Balls

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on January 4, 2010


January is always a difficult time of year.

The last hoorah of the holiday is now over and that can be hard to accept.

We have to pack up our Christmas decorations and try to fit them into the impossibly small boxes that they came in. Glitter is everywhere, Fluffy just chewed through expensive LED lights, someone threw a fruitcake through the car window, and we are cold.

Bone chilling cold. So cold in fact, we become accustomed to ice cube toes, randomly cold butt cheeks (not that I’m speaking from experience!), and our partner yelps in pain when our icy limbs should venture onto their side of the bed.

This is January for many of us.

For those of you in Florida, I’ll expect a drink come March. ;)

Despite the baggage that Mother Nature unloads on us this month, I am here to offer some relief. A cheery and sunny spot to brighten up those impossibly cold and dreary days. Healthy recipes and heart-pumping workouts to warm your soul and speed through the long winter season.

Speedy Sweet Potato Falafel Balls

After baking all day in the kitchen, I need dinner recipes that can be prepared in lightening speed. Last night I was craving falafel. Not just any falafel though, healthy falafel balls. Unlike its’ traditional counterpart, these falafel balls are not deep fried, which is always something to smile about. The base is also made from sweet potatoes instead of chickpeas. If you are looking for traditional falafel balls, you won’t find it here.



  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 2 small cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 1/2 t ground coriander
  • 1 heaping cup spinach, chopped
  • 1.5 T lemon juice or Juice or half a lemon’s juice
  • Just less than 1 cup of chickpea flour
  • Oil for pan
  • Chia seeds and chia flour for garnish
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions: Preheat oven to 400F. Pre grease a baking sheet with oil or spray. EASY method: Cut a few slits into the sweet potatoes and then microwave on high for 9-11 minutes until tender. [LONG method: Bake sweet potatoes in the oven for 45-60 minutes at 350F]. Let cool for several minutes and carefully peel away the skin. Alternatively, you might be able to peel the potato prior to microwaving to save time. While the potatoes are microwaving, in a medium sized bowl mix together the cumin, chopped garlic, coriander, and chickpea flour. Stir well. Add chopped spinach and lemon juice and mix well with a fork. Chop up sweet potatoes into small chunks and hen mash with a fork. Add potatoes to the other ingredients. Mix well until all ingredients are incorporated. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Place mixture in the freezer for a few minutes to cool. Wet hands and form falafel balls and then roll the balls in chia flour, ground almonds, or spelt flour (optional). You can also sprinkle the balls with chia seeds or sesame seeds. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until slightly golden.

Yields: Approx 17 balls

Recipe adapted from Leon: Ingredients and Recipes as seen on 101 Cookbooks.


I made some with a coating and some without.


I am on the fence with these falafel balls. When I tried them right out of the oven I loved them in a major way, but when I tried them the next morning I wasn’t a fan. Maybe it was because they weren’t heated up though. At any rate, I think these are best served straight out of the oven. I paired mine with some homemade ketchup (tomato paste, agave nectar, and sea salt).


Have you ever had falafel balls?


I got some fun Christmas gifts yesterday at our family get together!

A bird feeder, serving bowls from Costco, and some Clinique makeup:


A Costco hairdryer (works like a DREAM so far!!!) and a Kitchen Aid timer from my dear friend Laura.

IMG_8942 IMG_8944

All very useful gifts and things that I have been needing for a long time. Love that!

In Other News:

  • Check out the new FAQ page over at GMM! The Green Monster Movement is updated! Don’t forget to submit your green monster recipe, story, and picture to be placed on the website. Email: [email protected]
  • Eliana is raising money for The Cat Network which is a non-profit organization that works tirelessly in spaying and neutering of cats in Miami. OSG readers who make a donation will be entered into a raffle for a $25 gift certificate to Glo Bakery! Every amount helps!
  • My CTV Interview finally hit the airwaves in case you missed it over the weekend.


I have a 12 hour baking day ahead of me…I also need to find a way to squeeze in a workout, whittling and get caught up on paperwork and emails. Going to be a busy one.

Have a great start to your week! :)


Let's get social! Follow Angela on Instagram @ohsheglows, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Snapchat, and Google+

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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

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Lindsay January 4, 2010 at 4:21 pm

I adore falafel but sometimes you don’t want all the fat. Great compromise here :) And sweet potatoes are great in pretty much anything!!


Lisa January 4, 2010 at 4:57 pm

Love falafel! Epicurious has a wonderful recipe for it that is super yummy and healthy too. I pan fry them in a small amount of oil and drain on paper towels. If the oil is the right temp, falafel shouldn’t absorb much oil. We are actually having a COLD spell here in Florida right now and we’re all complaining and moaning about it…we’re totally spoiled! Stay warm!


::christine:: January 4, 2010 at 5:40 pm

Angela is coming to Florida ~ ~ Angela’s coming to Flo-ri-dah!!!! (sung to Happy Aniversary Flintstone style)

I’m a happy girl :D I KNEW I’d meet you one day, I just knew it. I’m the girl who learned to run because of you. Can’t wait til March for you to see how far I’ve come along ~ ~ ~ ~


Chrysta January 4, 2010 at 5:46 pm

I love falafel!! I lvoe the fact you used sweet potatoes too. This just sounds amazing. Keep warm too!! Have a wonderful monday and good luck with the baking!


Paige @ Running Around Normal January 4, 2010 at 5:55 pm

That’s such a cute little cartoon! And you’re right – it’s BONE chilling cold here in Illinois…and the forecase doesn’t look purty.

Those falafel balls look delicious! Do you buy the chickpea flour or do you make it?


Cindy January 4, 2010 at 6:36 pm

not only do I love falafel, but I bake a lot of yams and always have leftovers. So far I have made yam bread and yam muffins with the leftover puree. I am way going to make these…and perhaps for our next “card” night.

great appetizers.

Thanks Angela!
and SHEW what a day!


Meghan January 4, 2010 at 6:36 pm

We are a bunch of freezing Floridians right now. It was about 20-30 last night. Brrrrr!


Kristine January 4, 2010 at 6:43 pm

That recipe looks great!! I don’t know how you do it with all your baking and working out! I am impressed!


Mary :: A Merry Life January 4, 2010 at 8:27 pm

Healthy falfel balls? Oh my goodness. That looks great!!


Hillary @ Nutrition Nut on the Run January 4, 2010 at 9:27 pm

Yes, I have had falafels, but not with sweet potato – sounds delish!


Kristin (whimsyville) January 4, 2010 at 9:49 pm

I’ve officially been banned from venturing to the other side of the bed with my “death feet”. Stupid January – how many days until summer?!?! :)


Gracie January 4, 2010 at 9:53 pm

Those look absolutely delicious! How do you find time to find/cook such amazing recipes? I always feel like I’m too busy, but I know that you’re probably 10x busier than I am during the day. I really want to start experimenting with new recipes but I have no idea where to begin :/


*Andrea* January 4, 2010 at 10:38 pm

cute cartoon! i’ve never had homemade falafel balls but i always see the mix at wholefoods and have been dying to buy it! yours look great :) Mediterranean food is the bomb


Kristy January 4, 2010 at 11:39 pm

Okay, am I the only one who is annoyed cause they called you “Andrea”?? Your “balls” look good! I will have to try them :)


Janice @ O.S.M.B. January 4, 2010 at 11:46 pm

Those falafel balls look an awful lot like my mom’s favorite ice cream balls…

Except that if you bit into one expecting to find ice cream you might be a bit surprised!


Heidi January 5, 2010 at 12:04 am

Yessss!!!! I love all your gluten-free recipes. Thesse are wonderful little balls of heaven and can’t wait to try them! Thanks for posting! Time to go WMM2 now.



EatingRD January 5, 2010 at 2:45 am

mmm those sound wonderful! We actually had falafel tonight with roasted veggies. I like to bake mine too or saute them with a bit of olive oil in a non-stick pan :) Hope you had a good baking day and were able to stay warm! I think my fingers and toes would just freeeeeze right off brrr


Lisa January 5, 2010 at 4:16 am

ooooh I love falafel – and LOVE your adaptations :) Will have to give these a try for sure.


[email protected] January 5, 2010 at 9:41 am

That recipe looks awesome! Have to try it.


Heather (Where's the Beach) January 5, 2010 at 11:55 am

Thanks for sharing this recipe (and the ketchup). They look and sound tasty. Will definitely give these a shot!


jayme January 5, 2010 at 2:40 pm

no way! i bought the same serving bowls for my mama for christmas haha.
she told me she wanted ‘these serving bowls from costco that look like a pie’ for christmas, it caused a lot of confusion.
and the recipe looks awesome.


Michal January 6, 2010 at 6:44 pm

I love that recipe! Sweet potatoes and falafel in one tasty creation :) I am so trying this out soon!


Jolene January 6, 2010 at 10:48 pm

I have never had falafel balls, but they look really good.


Caroline January 21, 2010 at 9:25 am

This recipe is great! I’ve been wanting something easy like falafel balls a lot recently but my husband is allergic to legumes so it never seems fair to make them! I’ll definitely have to try this soon.


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