How to Reheat Falafel

Falafel is a delicious Middle Eastern food made from a mixture of garbanzo beans and traditional spices. It is a very popular meal among vegetarians and carnivores alike. Falafel is often served with pita bread and some type of hummus or tahini-based sauce and some pickled vegetables.

If you have found yourself with some leftover falafel, there are multiple ways to go about reheating them. Each method takes a different length of time and will result in a slightly different exterior. Depending on your schedule, you could have reheated falafel in as little as three minutes.

You can choose to reheat your falafel in the oven, on the stovetop, or even in the microwave. The microwave would be the quickest option, but won’t allow you to have a crispy exterior. The oven and the stove methods are going to be the best options in this scenario.

Should Falafel Be Served Warm?

Falafel is typically a fried food, but can also be made in the oven and baked instead. Similar to most fried food, falafel is best eaten fresh for the ideal texture and taste. However, you can still enjoy your leftovers by following a few basic tips for reheating falafel.

If you’re wondering whether or not you have to reheat falafel before consuming it, the answer is dependent on your preferences. While it is not necessarily unsafe to consume cold falafel, it is far from ideal. It is recommended to reheat your falafel before enjoying them so that you can enjoy the proper texture.

How to Reheat Falafel in the Oven

Using the oven is one of the best ways to reheat your leftover falafel. The oven distributes an even amount of heat to ensure that they are properly warmed in the center.

  • 1. Preheat your conventional or toaster oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • 2. Wrap your falafel loosely in aluminum foil before placing it into the oven.
  • 3. Heat the falafel balls for 8-12 minutes. This will depend on the size of your falafel, as well as how many you’re reheating at once.
  • 4. Once warmed through, remove the falafel from the oven and unwrap the foil.
  • 5. Wait a minute before eating the falafel, to ensure you don’t burn your mouth.

Pros and Cons of the Oven Method

The oven allows for the falafel balls to be reheated gently and slowly as compared to the other methods. You’re sure to end up with a warm falafel ball that will be delicious with a dip of your choice.

To avoid drying out your falafel in the oven, it is recommended to wrap them with aluminum foil. This helps to protect the falafel and retains some moisture within them.

The oven won’t get the exterior of the falafel as crispy as the next method, but it’s a great option nonetheless. This is the best choice for when you need to reheat a large portion of falafel at once. You can do everything in one batch.

How to Reheat Falafel on the Stove

You can quickly reheat falafel by using a pan on the stove. If you have a heavy-bottomed skillet, like a cast-iron, this would be a good time to use it.

  • 1. Place a small amount of neutral oil in a cast-iron skillet.
  • 2. Allow the oil to heat up before adding the falafel balls into the pan.
  • 3. Heat the falafel for 1-2 minutes, undisturbed.
  • 4. Flip over the falafel, so that both sides can be exposed to the hot pan and crisp up properly.
  • 5. Remove the falafel from the stove and allow them to cool before eating.

Tip: If you want to get an extra crispy falafel from this method, you could try cutting the falafel in half. This way, more surface area is exposed to the hot oil.

Pros and Cons of the Stove Method

Opting for the stovetop/skillet method will provide you with reheated falafel in a shorter period than the oven will. There’s less time spent waiting for the stove to preheat.

This is the best method for ensuring that the exterior of the falafel gets crispy and crunchy again. However, if you use too much oil, the exterior can become soggy and undesirable to eat. Make sure you keep a constant eye on the falafel and don’t walk away while they’re reheating.

Overall, this is likely to be the best method if you’re reheating a serving or two of falafel. It is quick and the results are superior to the other two methods.

How to Reheat Falafel in the Microwave 

Heating your falafel in the microwave is going to be the quickest method by far. If you’re on a tight schedule and need a quick snack, then you can certainly opt for this method.

  • 1. Place your falafel balls on a microwave-safe plate.
  • 2. Heat the falafel for 30-45 seconds, checking them to see if they’re warm in the center.
  • 3. Heat in increments of 5-10 seconds if the falafel needs more time.
  • 4. Remove the falafel and allow them to cool briefly before enjoying.

Pros and Cons of the Microwave Method

The main benefit of using the microwave is the speed at which you can have your falafel reheated. However, you will have to sacrifice crispiness. The microwave has no way of making the exterior crisp.

You can also dry out your falafel if you microwave them for too long. To avoid this, consider placing a damp paper towel over the falafel before heating them. This allows the falafel to retain its original moisture so that the inside can stay soft.

While the microwave isn’t the best choice in terms of texture, it still has its place. The convenience is second to none and you’ll have warm falafel on your plate within minutes.

Can You Freeze Falafel?

If you find yourself with too much falafel and you’re unable to eat it all, then consider freezing it. Falafel freezes quite well and you can thaw it out later.

If you need to reheat your frozen falafel, then it’s best to defrost it in the refrigerator overnight. Once the falafel is thawed, then reheat according to the aforementioned steps above.

If you don’t have time to thaw your falafel, then you can still reheat them. However, you’ll have to add extra time as frozen falafel will take longer to warm up. You may also lose crispness due to the ice adding to the moisture content.

In Conclusion

While reheated falafel may never taste as good as it was fresh, you can still enjoy your leftovers. The above methods will all provide you with a tasty and quick meal.

You can choose to reheat your falafel in the oven, in a skillet, or even in the microwave if you’re in a time crunch. All three are great options and if done properly, will leave you with safely reheated falafel.

Now, just enjoy your meal with some pita bread or hummus and maybe some pickled onion. If you opt to freeze your falafel first, then you can enjoy this delicious snack at any time.