Allergy-Friendly Quinoa Falafel Bowl with Red Pepper Sauce

The flavorful Mediterranean falafel patties in our bowl are packed with fresh herbs and spices. Be sure to plan ahead and use dried chickpeas, not canned, for superior results. Photo: Andrew Grinton

Makes: 6 servings
Free of: gluten and all top allergens


Shallot and Red Pepper Sauce

  • 8 shallots, peeled
  • 1 tsp grapeseed oil
  • 3/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 3/4 cup roasted red pepper, chopped
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Cinnamon-Scented Quinoa Pilaf

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced yellow onions
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 cups low-sodium, allergy-friendly vegetable broth
  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 1/2 cup black or golden raisins
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 tsp salt


  • 1 cup dry chickpeas, soaked overnight
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp minced jalapeño, seeded
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 3/4 cup cooked, mashed sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 2 tbsp garbanzo bean flour (such as Namaste Foods)
  • Canola oil or other high-heat oil, for frying

Bowl Assembly

  • 1 lb carrots, peeled and diagonally cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2 medium avocados, seeded, peeled and diced
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved


  1. For shallot and pepper sauce, preheat oven to 400° F.
  2. Place shallots on a foil sheet, drizzle with oil and wrap to enclose. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until soft.
  3. Put roasted shallots, parsley, pepper, vinegar and salt in a blender. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate until needed.
  4. For quinoa pilaf, heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and cook for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, to slightly caramelize. Add lime juice and cook 1 minute.
  5. Add broth, quinoa, raisins, cinnamon sticks and salt and stir to combine. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook 20 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed. Remove pan from heat and let sit 5 minutes. Fluff quinoa with a fork.
  6. For falafel, put chickpeas, onion, cilantro, parsley, garlic, jalapeño, salt, cumin, coriander, paprika, curry powder and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until coarsely chopped, stopping to scrape down bowl as needed. Add lime juice and pulse to combine.
  7. Transfer mixture to a large bowl. Fold in quinoa, sweet potato, peas and flour.
  8. For each falafal, drop 2 heaping tablespoons of chickpea mixture onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Gently shape into disks about 3/4-inch thick.
  9. Fill a deep fryer with oil and preheat to 325° F or heat 1/4 cup oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Fry in deep fryer for 3 minutes, or in skillet for 2-3 minutes per side, adding more oil to skillet as needed.
  10. To assemble bowl, steam carrots for 5 minutes or until tender. Divide the pilaf among 6 bowls. Top each with carrots, avocado, tomatoes and 3 falafel. Drizzle with roasted shallot and pepper sauce.

Baking Option: Bake prepared falafel at 400° F for 20-25 minutes or until golden.

are the husband-and-wife culinary team behind Chef Joel is the former Special Dietary Manager at Walt Disney World who developed the food allergy program used across the Disney properties and cruise line.