A Middle Eastern fried cake or ball made from ground chickpeas and seasoning, falafel is a longtime staple in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines.
Falafel has grown steadily on U.S. restaurant menus in recent years as a vegetarian that’s rich in protein and an easy and accessible way for more consumers to experience a new cuisine.
With most Americans first experiencing them in fast-casual concepts, falafel has now become widespread on a variety of menus, and are prepared in a number of ways, from a traditional wrap or sandwich to a larger patty standing in as a vegetarian burger option.
Market research firm Datassential reports that falafel is found on 4.3% of U.S. menus, up 15% over the past four years.
Click through the gallery and watch the video below to learn more about this Flavor of the Week and see how one restaurant is using falafel on its menu.