Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 40 mins

Serves 4

 

The first step toward excellent health is to eat a healthy diet. Eating more fruits and vegetables, replacing processed meals with whole grain foods, minimizing salt and sugar intake, and limiting alcohol and fat consumption are all part of a healthy diet.

Baking is a popular culinary technique that health experts advocate for making healthy dishes for you and your family. Baking can be used to cook poultry, lean meat, and vegetables in addition to bread and pastries.

Today we will be looking at one of my favorite gout-friendly foods: the baked falafel. It’s a simple recipe with a wonderful balance of healthful and delicious tastes. Even better, this baked falafel recipe is ideal for managing gout symptoms. Let’s get this party started!

According to research, eating a low-purine diet may help you lower your uric acid levels. However, knowing which foods are safe might be challenging because purine content is not readily apparent on the package of most foods.

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What’s so special about falafels?

Falafel is a Middle Eastern meal that is popular with vegetarians and vegans. It consists of deep-fried patties made from chickpeas (or fava beans), herbs, spices, onion, and dough.

Falafel can be eaten as a standalone side dish, although it’s more usually served in a pita pocket, flatbread, or as part of a meze, which is a selection of appetizers.

Despite its popularity and variety of nutritional ingredients, many people are skeptical that it is truly a healthy dish.

Chickpeas and Gout

Purines are chemical compounds that break down in the body to form uric acid. Reduce your intake of purines in your diet to lower your blood uric acid levels and your chance of developing gout.

It is recommended that patients at risk of gout limit their daily purine consumption to less than 400 milligrams. Chickpeas and hummus are generally low in purines, therefore persons with high uric acid levels can eat them.

Patients at risk of gout should limit their daily purine consumption to fewer than 400 mg. Because chickpeas and hummus are often low in purines, people with high uric acid levels can consume them.

Hummus originated in the Middle East. Chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, salt, and garlic are common ingredients. It’s frequently garnished with olive oil, parsley, or paprika. Chickpeas have fewer than 50 milligrams of purines per 100-gram serving, which is considered minimal.

​​Purines in Veggies Versus Meats

It appears that not all purine-containing foods have the same effect on your body. According to a 2017 review of studies published in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, eating a diet high in meat and seafood is linked to higher levels of uric acid and a higher chance of developing gout.

A diet somewhat high in purine-rich foods such as peas, beans, lentils, spinach, mushrooms, and asparagus, on the other hand, is not connected with elevated uric acid levels. It’s unclear why purine-rich veggies don’t seem to raise the risk of gout, although some researchers believe it’s because of their fiber content.

So, Are Falafels Healthy?

Falafel possesses different properties that may improve your health in a variety of ways. To begin, it’s high in fiber and plant-based protein, two nutrients that work together to keep you fuller for longer throughout the day.

Chickpea fiber may also help regulate blood sugar levels by decreasing glucose absorption, according to research. This promotes sustained blood sugar climbs rather than spikes. In addition, they have also been related to better bowel health, as well as a lower risk of heart disease and colon cancer.

However, depending on how it’s made, falafel can have drawbacks. It’s frequently deep-fried in oil, which raises the calorie and fat content dramatically. Deep-fried food consumers have an increased risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, according to studies.

Why Baking Is a Healthier Cooking Option Than Frying

Eating healthy is more than just eating fruits and veggies; it also has a lot to do with how you cook. Deep-fried foods should be avoided if you are dieting, have high blood pressure, gout, or have diabetes.

You can make the dishes healthier for you and your family by baking them instead. You can bake seafood, poultry, lean meat, and vegetables in addition to bread and pastries.

Because oil is saturated fat, it is heavy in calories. The use of oil in frying raises the calorie count of the dish. Baking, on the other hand, does not add any extra calories or fats to the dishes you make and is thus always recommended over frying.

Now, without further ado, let’s get ready to prepare this delightful baked falafel recipe.

How to Prepare a Baked Falafel

List of Ingredients

  • Optional: 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp olive oil or other oil of choice
  • 1 cup dry chickpeas soaked overnight in 4 cups of water
  • 1/2 cup chopped medium red onion
  • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley or cilantro, or a combination of the two
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon cumin powder
  • 1 kosher salt teaspoon
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder

Step-By-Step Recipe Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and oil a baking sheet.
  2. In a food processor, blend the chickpeas, onion, parsley, garlic, cumin, salt, baking powder, sesame seeds, and lemon juice.
  3. Pulse the ingredients just until minced but not pureed, scraping down the edges as needed.
  4. With an ice cream scoop or your hands, make small 2-inch balls and gently flatten them to make falafel forms. Place the falafel on the oiled baking sheet and brush the tops with oil.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping halfway, or until golden and crispy on the outside. Serve with tahini or make sandwiches with it.

Store Your Leftover Falafels

Let leftover falafel cool completely before storing it in a paper towel-lined airtight jar. Separate the layers as much as possible with extra paper towels to protect the balls from touching. The falafel can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You might also place it in the freezer.

Let us know what you thought of this tasty recipe in the comments below!


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