Beetroot & Butter Bean Falafels with Chopped Salad

Cooking time
Serves2 people
Beetroot & Butter Bean Falafels with Chopped Salad

Go deep purple for dinner with these beetroot falafels, made with creamy butter beans and flavoured with cumin and coriander. A simple chopped salad is the perfect side dish.


  • 1 beetroot
  • 1 garlic clove
  • A 400g butter beans
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1½ tsp ground cumin
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 75g bulgar wheat
  • 150ml boiling water
  • 100g kale
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cucumber
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 lemon
  • 25g sunflower seeds
  • 40g tahini

Prep: 30 mins | Cook: 10 mins

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1. Peel and grate the beetroot. Pop the beetroot in a clean tea towel or muslin cloth. Squeeze as much liquid as possible from the beetroot (this is important or your falafels will end up too wet). Put the squeezed beetroot into a food processor (or see our tip).
2. Peel and crush or grate the garlic. Drain and rinse the butter beans. Add to the beetroot. Measure out 1 tsp of the coriander seeds and add to a dry frying pan. Toast for 1-2 mins till they smell nutty. Add to the processor with 1 tsp of the cumin. Season well with salt and pepper.
3. Pulse the processor till the ingredients come together to make a thick paste. Scoop out spoonfuls and pat into around 12 rounds. Lay them on a plate and freeze for 10 mins. If you don’t have a processor, see our tip on how to make the falafels.
4. Tip the bulgar wheat into a heatproof bowl. Pour in 150ml boiling water. Add a pinch of salt. Cover with a plate and leave to soak for 15 mins till all the water is absorbed.
5. Slice the kale leaves off the thick cores. Slice the leaves into thin shreds. Put in a bowl and add ½ tbsp oil and some salt and pepper. Massage the oil into the kale for 1-2 mins to soften the leaves up. Set aside.
6. Finely chop half the cucumber. Finely chop the tomatoes. Peel and finely chop the onion. Finely grate the zest from the lemon. Fluff up the bulgar wheat with a fork, then stir in the kale, lemon zest, chopped cucumber, tomatoes and onion. Add ½ tsp cumin. Toss together and sprinkle over the sunflower seeds.
7. Juice the lemon and whisk it with the tahini and ½ tbsp oil. Set aside. Warm 1 tbsp oil in a frying pan. Add the falafels (you may need to do this in batches). Gently fry for 3-4 mins on each side over a low heat till crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper. Serve warm with the chopped salad and tahini sauce.
8. Tip: If you don’t have a processor, mash the butter beans with a masher, then stir in the grated beetroot, garlic, chopped shallots and cumin to make the falafel mix.
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