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If you love falafel, but need a break from the beans, try my easy, keto baked pepita falafel! In addition to being bean-free, they are vegan, grain-free, gluten-free, high in protein and fiber, and ideal for a meal or a snack on the go.

keto baked pepita falafel on a white plate

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you enjoyed the holidays and are off to a happy, healthy start! I’ve been enjoying time with my family, but I am happy to be back to posting and sharing ideas with you.

Keto Falafel, Made without Beans

My back-in-the-saddle recipe is the result of a request from a friend who cannot eat beans but misses the days when she could eat falafel without a care. Hence, in place of the typically chickpeas, I devised this simple recipe, subbing pepitas (green pumpkin seeds) for the usual chickpeas.

I am an equal opportunity falafel lover, and this new variation does not disappoint!

pepita falafel piled on a white plate

Healthy Highlights of Baked Keto Pepita Falafel

No matter what kind of eating resolutions you may have made for the New Year (including “Must eat more delicious food!”), these falafel will more than likely fit the bill. Here what you get with these falafel:

  • Keto? Yes!
  • Low-carb? Big time! (1.6 carbs, .6 net carbs per falafel)
  • Low in sugar? Absolutely!
  • High in protein? Sure thing!
  • Grain-free?  Check!
  • Gluten-free? Double-check!
  • Paleo? Yes!
  • Vegan? Yes, indeed!
  • Loaded with vitamins? You better believe it.

How to Make Baked Keto Pepita Falafel

They are easy-to-make, too. The pepitas get a 10-minute soak in hot water, then (a short list of) everything goes into the food processor. Shape into patties, bake, and you’ve got falafel, my friends.

keto baked pepita falafel on a baking sheet

In my first tests of the falafel, I used all seeds, save for some spices and a bit of cilantro and green onion. It was tasty, but really dense and more like a thick, heavy cracker.

After further experimentation, I settled on the a healthy addition of carrots, which balances the pepitas to create a more traditional falafel texture.

Are the Carrots in this Recipe Keto-Friendly?

Yes! Carrots are not strictly banned in keto diets. It’s all about balance, and these falafel. The overall carbohydrates in the recipe are extremely low, even with the addition of carrots.


baked keto pepita falafel piled on a white plate

Vary the Recipe to Create Newfangled Options!

Now that you have a basic formula to work with, feel free to experiment with flavors as much as you like. Try differents herbs and spices to create entirely new options!

The vegetables are changeable, too. Other hard vegetables, such as cauliflower, parsnips, broccoli, or even beets, are delicious swaps for all or some of the carrots.

And don’t feel wedded to pepitas, especially if you have trouble sourcing them. Shelled, raw sunflower seeds, almonds, or a combination of nuts and seeds (clean out the cupboard!) should work just fine.

Here’s to a brand new year of healthy eats and happy living!


close up of baked pepita falafel

  1. Vegan Breakfast Sausage Patties {Grain-Free, High Protein}
  2. Beet & Toasted Pepita Dip {vegan, oil-free, nut-free}
  3. 1-ingredient Pepita Butter {vegan, keto}
  4. Mustard Greens Pepita Pesto {Vegan, Nut-Free}
  5. 3-Ingredient Grain-Free Granola Bars {Vegan, Keto Option}
Baked Keto Pepita Falafel {no beans}

Baked Keto Pepita Falafel {no beans}

Yield: about 16 patties
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Delicious, nutritious, and easy-to-prepare baked falafel that are made with pepitas (no beans!). They are naturally vegan and paleo and are high in fiber and protein--perfect for a meals or a portable snack!


  • 1-1/4 cups pepitas (green pumpkin seeds)
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 medium-large carrots, trimmed, cut into chunks
  • 1 big handful cilantro leaves (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (or oil of choice)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • Cooking spray (e.g., olive oil, avocado oil or coconut oil spray)
  • Optional: extra pepitas for pressing on top of patties


  1. In a small bowl, cover the pepitas with the boiling water; let stand for 10 minutes and then drain.
  2. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a rimmed baking pan with parchment paper.
  3. In a food processor, finely chop the carrots and cilantro. Add the drained pepitas, oil, cumin, salt and pepper. Process the mixture, stopping to scrape down the bowl periodically, until mixture is thick and comes together into a shapeable "dough."
  4. Scoop out 2 tablespoons of mixture at a time and shape into 1/2-inch thick patties; place on prepared baking sheet. Spray tops of falafel with cooking spray. If desired, press a few extra pepitas on top of each patty.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown and edges appear crispy. Serve hot, warm or chilled, in salads, tucked into wraps, as a main dish, or solo as a portable power snack!


Seeds: An equal amount of shelled sunflower seeds can be used in place of the pepitas,

Troubleshooting: If the processed "dough" seems too wet, add a teaspoon or two of coconut flour, or additional finely ground pepitas. If dough is too dry, add a small amount of water at a time until it is pliable.

Cilantro Sub: An equal amount of parsley can be used in place of the cilantro.

Nutrition Information
Serving Size 1 falafel patty
Amount Per Serving Calories 68Total Fat 5.6gSaturated Fat 0.9gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 147mgCarbohydrates 1.6gFiber 1gSugar 0.4gProtein 3.6g

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About Camilla

I'm Camilla, food writer, author, runner, and spin instructor. PowerHungry® is where I share my easy, minimalist, plant-based recipes, designed for living a healthy, delicious, empowered life.

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