This Mediterranean falafel bowl is a complete meal in one dish. It’s a rainbow of colors, flavors, and textures.
You’ve got crispy falafel, creamy hummus, and a leafy green salad. It’s all tied together with lemony tahini dressing. So fresh, nourishing & delicious! Vegan & gluten free.
What I love about a warm falafel bowl is that each bite is unique.
From one forkful to the next you get creamy, crunchy, tangy, salty, cool, and steamy.
Falafel bowls offer lots of veg with romaine, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, and avocado. And the falafel, hummus, and almond feta are packed with protein.
That makes it a satisfying lunch or dinner that’s substantive and hearty. It’s one of those meals that feels both healthy and indulgent all at once.
Brown rice: This grain makes up the “bed” of the bowl that everything else sits atop.
Homemade falafel: The headliner in this bowl is beautifully golden brown air fryer falafel (or oven baked).
It is easy to make, thanks to canned chickpeas. No soaking or pre-planning required!
The air-fried version is ready in just 30 minutes. Baked falafel takes about 10 minutes more.
Hummus: Chickpeas on chickpeas? Absolutely! Hummus and falafel go together like Tina and Amy.
Homemade hummus is extra creamy, thanks to aquafaba. Perfect for dipping pita chips and falafel balls.
Romaine lettuce & cucumbers: Mild romaine and cucumbers add crunch and coolness without any bitterness.
Cherry tomatoes & bell peppers: These two veggies add color and sweetness.
Pickled red onions: Easy pickled red onions offer vibrant pink color as well as tartness.
Kalamata olives: Olives add salt & brininess.
Avocado: Avocado improves any dish it touches! Here it adds creaminess and fat.
Almond feta: Homemade vegan feta cheese adds tang and creaminess. (This feta also freezes well, in case you want to make a big batch & stretch it out.)
Tahini sauce: Vegan tahini dressing ties everything together. It’s made with just four ingredients – tahini, water, lemon juice, and salt.
Make it your own
You can make this bowl your own by varying the ingredients. The options are only limited by your imagination & what’s in your produce drawer.
Add any of these items instead of (or in addition to) the other ingredients:
- Baba ganoush (instead of hummus)
- Tomato cucumber salad (instead of romaine salad)
- Israeli couscous salad (instead of rice & salad)
- Kalamata olive hummus (instead of plain hummus)
- Roasted sweet potatoes (instead of rice)
- Homemade pita chips (made in the air fryer or oven)
- Castelvetrano olives (instead of kalamata)
- Pickled turnips (instead of red onions)
- Toasted pine nuts or sesame seeds
- Roasted cauliflower (made in the air fryer or oven)
- Marinated lentils
- Quinoa (instead of rice)
- Vegan tzatziki (Trader Joe’s makes a good one)
Simplify lunch with some store-bought shortcuts.
- Instead of homemade falafel, use boxed falafel mix or frozen falafel.
- Instead of making hummus, buy a container of any pre-made hummus you enjoy.
- Instead of homemade vegan feta, use store-bought. I recommend Violife, Trader Joe’s, or Herbivorous Butcher brands.
- Instead of pickled red onions, use any store-bought pickled vegetable and/or green onions.
- Instead of making rice from scratch, reheat frozen rice. (I buy the boxed variety at Trader Joe’s.)
Great for meal prep
Falafel bowls are ideal for meal prep, because you can make the individual components at your leisure. Then compile them together as a bowl.
Or use the same ingredients for a salad or falafel sandwich.
You can also re-purpose several of the ingredients.
- Use leftover hummus on a bagel sandwich, crostini appetizer, or double hummus wrap.
- Use leftover feta in vegan shakshuka, vegan poutine, or Mediterranean pasta.
- Use leftover pickled red onions on tempeh tacos, baked tofu bowls, or vegan ramen noodles.
- Use leftover tahini dressing on veggie wraps, brown rice bowls, or kale salad.
- Use leftover rice in pineapple fried rice, air fryer stuffed peppers, or kimchi fried rice.
How to store leftovers
Store any leftovers separately in their own covered containers in the refrigerator.
Leftovers will last roughly 3 or 4 days.
Reheat falafel in the air fryer by cooking at 360 degrees for about five minutes or until warmed throughout. Reheat rice in the microwave until warm.
Mediterranean falafel bowl with rice
- Put a scoop of brown rice at the bottom of four bowls. Top with a dollop of hummus, and several falafel balls.
- On the side of the bowls, add a salad made with chopped romaine lettuce, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, red bell peppers, and pickled onions.
- Add a garnish of vegan feta cheese, kalamata olives, and sliced avocado.
- Finish each bowl with a generous drizzling of vegan tahini dressing.
Content, recipe, and photos updated March 10, 2022. Originally posted December 8, 2015 as a curried falafel bowl.