These Caribbean-inspired falafel are the perfect weekend dinner. Basically, they’re like jerk-spiced fried hummus fritters, what’s not to love about that? They're made from sweet potato, which is possibly the best combination ever. Serve these crispy falafel in a pita with all your favorite vegetables.
Caribbean Jerk Sweet Potato Falafel [Vegan, Gluten-Free]
For the Falafel:
- 1 1/2 cups (peeled) cooked sweet potato
- 1 2/3 cup cooked chickpeas
For the Caribbean Jerk Spices:
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Oil, for frying
For the Toppings:
- Your favorite barbecue sauce (optional)
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1 medium tomato, diced
- 1 cup washed iceberg lettuce or Napa cabbage
- 1 large carrot, grated
- 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup pineapple, diced
- 4-6 large pitas (gluten-free if needed)
To Make the Falafel:
- First, make the spice blend.
- Combine all of the ingredients for the falafel, except the frying oil, in a food processor (a blender will work also if that's all you have) and pulse until combined into a nearly smooth mixture. It should be a thick dough.
- In a large skillet, heat about 1-inch of oil over medium-low heat. You can use a deep-fryer for cooking them instead if you have one. Using a large scoop, form balls and drop them carefully into the pan.
- Flatten them slightly with a spatula and cook them on each side for about 3 minutes until crispy.
- If desired, warm the pitas in a foil packet in the oven or one by one on a lightly greased skillet.
- Fill each pita with the falafel, your desired vegetables, and your favorite barbecue sauce, if desired.