Falafel is a deep-fried ball-shaped fritter made from chickpeas, fava beans, or a combination of both: it’s a traditional Middle Eastern food, eaten as common street food, and very popular with vegetarians worldwide.
It’s a popular and well-loved dish, and it would be a pity to just throw away any leftovers: this is why we made this handy guide on how to reheat falafel!
What is the best way to reheat falafel? The fastest and safest way to reheat falafel is to use an oven, but a skillet or a frying pan can also work pretty well. You could also use a microwave, but keep in mind that the texture of your falafel may change a bit.
The Best Ways To Reheat Falafel
The first thing to keep in mind is that it’s always better to eat fried food fresh, in fact, even the best method to reheat fried food won’t give you the exact same flavor as freshly fried goods.
If you need to reheat your falafel leftovers, you want to be sure they retain as much as possible their classic texture and flavor and to avoid ending up with soggy falafels. Nobody likes to eat soggy falafel with a weird texture, right?
It’s important to keep in mind that, while dried beans can remain safe for years if stored properly, bean-based dishes like falafel are perishable just like any other cooked food: if you want to reheat them and eat them the next day, you must store them properly.
When your falafels have cooled to room temperature, place them in a container and put them in your refrigerator. Don’t let them sit more than two hours at room temperature, otherwise, they will have to be discarded.
Falafels stored in the refrigerator will last for three or four days, but they can also be frozen for longer storage. If you can reheat falafel, you can definitely reheat frozen falafel too!
There are a few different methods to reheat falafel, and the best one depends mostly on your kitchen appliances and what you have handy with you. Falafel can be reheated in a skillet, in an oven (regular or toaster), in a microwave, or in a frying pan.
Some methods work better than others, but if you do it correctly you can definitely use whichever method suits you better: the important thing is to follow the correct steps and to try to keep the original texture intact.
That’s why we have prepared a handy guide to help you choose the best method to get the perfect texture and the perfect flavor from your leftover falafel.
How to reheat falafel in a skillet
The best thing about reheating falafel in a skillet is that this is a really fast method, in fact, you can get really good reheated falafel in a matter of just a few minutes! Falafel reheated in a skillet should also remain crispy, so you’ll still get to enjoy their texture.
The downside of this method is that you’ll have to add baking oil to your cold falafel: since your falafels have already been fried, adding more oil could change their flavor a bit. Be careful not to use too much oil, because otherwise, you’ll end up with oily and soggy falafel.
If you have large falafel balls, your best bet is to cut or chop them in smaller pieces, so that everything is well heated and you won’t end up with a falafel still cold on the inside.
Here are the steps to reheat falafel in a skillet:
- Choose a heavy skillet, preferably one made from cast iron, and put a small amount of oil in the pan, depending on how many frozen falafel balls you have.
- Make sure that the skillet is hot, which takes about 4-5 minutes, before putting falafel in.
- Put the falafels in the heated oil and fry them on both sides until they are done.
- Remember to cut the larger balls into smaller pieces, because the outside cooks way faster than the inside!
How to reheat falafel in a frying pan
Reheating falafels in a frying pan is a method pretty similar to the previous one: it’s fast and simple, but you’ll have to add oil. A lot of oil.
Falafels are usually already deep-fried, so deep-frying again can help them maintain the same texture and flavor. It’s a really convenient method, but it needs to be done correctly, otherwise, you’ll end up with soggy falafel because of the wrong temperature of the oil.
Much like the previous method, this tends to leave the center of the falafel cold. Be aware of this if you’re trying to reheat larger falafels: with this method, you can’t really chop them in smaller pieces, so it would be better to choose a different way of reheating them.
Here are the steps to reheat falafel in a frying pan:
- Choose a deep-vessel pan that can work for frying foods.
- Heat up some oil and wait until it’s hot: you really don’t want to drop your falafels into a pan of cold oil.
- Once the oil is hot, drop the falafels into the frying pan and cook them until their exterior becomes crispy and golden-brown.
- Make sure the exterior doesn’t become too brown, otherwise you’ll end up with burnt falafel.
- If the falafels start becoming too brown, reduce the flame or take them out.
How to reheat falafel in the oven
Another really easy method you could choose is to reheat falafel in the oven, both in a toaster oven or in a regular oven.
The best thing about this method is that it’s really easy: you just place your falafel in an oven-safe container and then in the oven. This way you get to reheat your falafel without any added oil, which is always a good thing.
If you’re using a toaster, make sure it’s not too full in order to ensure really smooth airflow. This way you’ll avoid ending up with burnt falafel in just a few minutes.
Here are the steps to reheat falafel in an oven:
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Take your falafels and wrap them loosely in something like aluminum foil to prevent them from drying out when reheating.
- Leave the falafels in the oven for about 5-10 minutes, depending on their size.
- Keep in mind that smaller falafels will take less time, while bigger falafels could take a while to completely reheat.
- If you want crispy and perfect falafels, flip them over halfway through reheating.
Reheating store-bought falafel in an oven is similar to reheating them in a toaster oven: follow the same steps and keep an eye on the temperature. Remember to make sure you’re not using anything that isn’t oven-safe!
How to reheat falafel in a microwave
Reheating falafels in a microwave isn’t the best option: experience shows that using a microwave could dry, break or even harden falafels. They could even turn into a bit of mush in the microwave.
Sometimes the microwave is your only option, though, and it’s always good to remember that using a microwave to reheat food is one of the easiest, fastest ways.
So, if you really want to reheat falafel in a microwave, keep in mind that the texture can change and that you’ll definitely not get the same taste and texture as fresh falafel.
Here are the steps to reheat falafel in a microwave:
- Place a damp paper towel over your falafels.
- Microwave on medium power for 1 minute.
- Heat them at short intervals and check regularly the temperature.
- Check often the level of moisture and juiciness so that you won’t end up with hardened falafels or with mush falafels.
Can you reheat falafel?
The answer to this question is yes, you can reheat your leftover falafels and get them to taste almost as good as fresh, provided that you store them and reheat them properly.
You can choose your preferred method for reheating falafel between the ones we’ve listed above: each one works for different needs and based on the availability of your kitchen appliances.
The safest way to reheat falafel is the oven: it’s easy, simple, and it’s almost impossible to do something wrong, other than burning them. Reheating falafel in an oven can help you make sure the falafels are heated thoroughly.
Reheating leftover falafels in a frying pan or in a skillet is another really easy method, but you have to make sure you’re not adding too much oil, and that your falafels are reheating correctly. Remember that the outside cooks way faster than the inside!
You can also reheat falafel in a microwave, even if it’s not the best method: just be sure to regularly check the temperature and to heat them at short intervals.
Whatever method you choose, keep in mind that you want to keep the falafels crispy and with the same texture they would have if they were fresh.
You should also be careful to reheat falafels without overcooking them, especially if you’re using a frying pan because it’s pretty easy to get them from a nice golden-brown color to a burnt mess.
Follow our step-by-step guide to make sure you’re reheating falafel in the correct way, and you can be sure to enjoy your leftovers even in the next few days!