If you don’t know what falafel is, you are missing out! One struggle many of us have as parents is trying to get enough good sources of protein into our children’s diets. If you are always thinking along the lines of animal proteins (chicken, beef, pork, etc), you may find yourself getting bored with the lack of variety. Or you may be worried about your children eating too much animal protein and not enough plant based protein.
Even in our adult diets, we know that protein is essential. If you are aiming to lose weight, protein helps to keep you full for a longer period of time, therefore helping to cut back on cravings. But too much animal protein, especially the higher fat variety, can have a negative impact on your waistline and overall health.
I’ve been wracking my brain trying to come up with various plant-based protein sources my whole family will enjoy. Joey especially is a challenge. Although he enjoys the taste of foods like beans and lentils, he is currently not a big fan of their texture. When I was shopping the other day, I ran across Nature’s Early Choice Falafel with Quinoa. After analyzing its nutrition label, I decided to pick it up and give it a try.
Falafel is a ball or patty typically made from ground chickpeas, fava beans, or both. Usually this is deep fried in oil and served. However, falafel can be baked as well, making it a lower calorie option. This particular product also included quinoa in it’s blend, boosting both the protein and fiber content. And honestly, it was so simple to make. You just add water, mix, let it sit for 10 minutes, and then form into balls or patties.
Once you have made your patties or balls, you can choose to fry them or bake them. I used a lightly greased try to bake my patties. About 5 minutes per side in the over and they were crispy and ready to eat. They make a great snack option if you are looking for a crunch and they make the perfect bite-sized meal addition for my little one.
Do you think your family would enjoy a falafel?