Southwestern Salad with Black Bean Falafel

Happy {early} Cinco de Mayo!

I’m just going to get right to the point today…. black. bean. falafel. Yep. What better way to ring in this delicious holiday?!

Southwestern Salads with Black Bean Falafel

Southwestern Salad with Black Bean Falafel

Basically I took my favorite baked falafel recipe, tweaked the spices, added in some jalapeños, and of course, substituted black beans instead of chickpeas. Easy as that! Just like my original recipe, these falafel are beautifully crispy on the outside, moist on the inside, and just that perfect amount of spicy. I threw mine on a veggie loaded salad with the most delicious creamy cilantro dressing, but I’m loving the idea of stuffing them in a taco or even on a burrito bowl!

Southwestern Salad with Black Bean Falafel

Looking for more Cinco de Mayo recipes? Check out my last edition of Friday Favorites for some of my favorite Mexican inspired recipes from some incredible blogs! AND I totally recommend the Vegan Burrito Bowl Enchiladas I made last week 🙂

Have a wonderful Monday every one and eat an extra taco for me tomorrow!

Southwestern Salad with Black Bean Falafel

Southwestern Salad with Black Bean Falafel

Southwestern Salad with Black Bean Falafel

Serves 2 dozen falafel
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 25 minutes
Total time 35 minutes
Dietary Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Meal type Lunch, Main Dish, Salad


for the black bean falafel

  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 red onion diced
  • 1 jalapeno, diced (I didn't use the seeds)
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • pinch salt and pepper

for the salad

  • 2-3 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 2 small tomatoes, sliced
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn, defrosted
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced


For the creamy cilantro lime dressing, check out the garden grazer's recipe

If the texture of the batter is too wet, try adding 1/4-1/2 cup of flour of choice to thicken up the batter before baking.


for the black bean falafel
Step 1
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In your food processor, combine all the ingredients for the black bean falafel. Puree until the mixture is still a bit chunky, but the ingredients are completely combined.
Step 2
Using a cookie scoop, drop falafel batter onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Press down falafel until flattened (about 1/2 inch thick). Spray with olive oil and bake for 12 minutes. Flip the falafel, then bake for an additional 12-15 minutes. The falafel are done when they are crispy on the outside, but moist on the inside.
for the southwestern salad
Step 3
Prepare the salad by layering romaine lettuce, tomatoes, corn, red onion, cilantro, and falafel into 2 large bowls. Top with the creamy cilantro lime dressing, or dressing of choice!


Hi, I’m Liz and this is my food blog where I share my love of healthy foods and whole ingredients. You will find mostly vegetarian dishes, plenty of sweets, and lots of love from this little kitchen in Durham, North Carolina!


  1. This may be crazy but I’ve never had falafel! I think I’d like yours, though, because I love all of the ingredients that go into it. The creamy dressing on top looks so yummy, too!

    • Whatt!?! Oh my goodness you must try it asap! Usually it’s fried, but I like to bake mine at home to make them a little healthier. I LOVE the garden grazer’s creamy dressing. It’s a perfect topper to this salad!

    • Thanks Bianca! I love falafel too— black beans just totally made sense one day 🙂

  2. the flavor was spot on but i couldn’t get rid of the moisture…. so they were just floppy bean cakes.. any suggestions?

    • Hmm I haven’t had that issue before. Try adding 1/4 or 1/2 cup of flour (gluten free, whole wheat, whatever you prefer) when you food process them and see if that will give them more texture. I apologize that they didn’t turn out as nice 🙁

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