Also found in: Thesaurus, Wikipedia.


or fe·la·fel  (fə-lä′fəl)
a. A mixture of ground spiced chickpeas or fava beans that is shaped into balls and deep-fried.
b. A fried ball made of such a mixture.
2. A sandwich filled with such balls.

[Levantine colloquial Arabic falāfil, perhaps from pl. of earlier *filfal, from Aramaic pilpāl, small round thing, peppercorn, from palpēl, to be round, roll.]


(fəlˈɑːfəl) or


(Cookery) a ball or cake of ground spiced chickpeas, deep-fried and often served with pitta bread
[C20: from Arabic felāfil]


or fe•la•fel

(fəˈlɑ fəl)

1. a small deep-fried croquette of ground chickpeas or fava beans and spices.
2. a sandwich of pita bread filled with these croquettes.
[1950–55; < Arabic falāfil]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.falafel - small croquette of mashed chick peas or fava beans seasoned with sesame seeds
dish - a particular item of prepared food; "she prepared a special dish for dinner"
Middle East, Mideast, Near East - the area around the eastern Mediterranean; from Turkey to northern Africa and eastward to Iran; the site of such ancient civilizations as Phoenicia and Babylon and Egypt and the birthplace of Judaism and Christianity and Islam; had continuous economic and political turmoil in the 20th century; "the Middle East is the cradle of Western civilization"
References in periodicals archive ?
I also went for a Middle-Eastern style falafel wrap - discs of minced chickpeas and broad beans, mozzarella and a spiced tomato sauce.
But as a philosophical falafel maker cryptically advises, he should aspire to be like the runaway falafel that defies the laws of gravity and jumps out of the frying pan.
Not as permissive as when he allegedly told a coworker he wanted to "take the other hand with the falafel thing and .
Yet from pasta e fagioli to falafel, from chana masala to lentil pilaf, there's a world of great-tasting packaged bean dishes out there.
Falafel are said to have originated in Egypt where they are called tameya, and are made with plump dried broad beans, spiced then deep fried until golden.
We ate falafel (a fried chickpea sandwich that is one of Israel's most popular fast foods), danced in discos, and picked up Hebrew slang.
What would you bring an unlimited supply of, falafel or home run pies?
The package tells you how to make basic falafel balls.
I enjoy falafel, but have in the past often avoided it because it is deep-fried.