4 portions. Approximate cost: £4.20, 

Skill level: Medium (has a few stages), 

Total cooking time: 1 hour 45 minutes (minimum), 

  • Prep time: 1 hour 30 minutes, 
  • Cooking time: 15 minutes, 

Equipment used: Mixing bowl, baking tray,

Original recipe: Allegra McEvedy’s Sweet potato falafel


Allegra McEvedy of Leon fame, has a number of recipes listed on the Guardian website. Even if you’re not taken with this particular recipe, I’d recommend checking out the article to get acquainted with one ballsy chef. The photo alone is worth a view. 

Allegra recommends eating these little balls as part of a mezze, but I like to serve them in a tortilla wrap with some punchy pesto, pickled red cabbage and spinach leaves.

If you need to buy gram flour specifically for this recipe, rest assured there are other uses for this – check out the recipe for flat breads to accompany the vegan daal.

To prep:

(Original recipe in bold font, my comments in italic)

Preheat the oven to 220C/425F and roast the sweet potatoes whole until just tender (45 minutes to 1 hour). Turn off oven, leave the potatoes to cool, then peel.

Into a large bowl add the following;  3 cloves of diced garlic, 2 tsps of ground coriander, 2 big handfuls of roughly chopped fresh coriander, the juice of 1 lemon and 120g gram flour. (The original recipe also states to add ground cumin but as I actively dislike this, I simply leave it out.)

Into a second bowl, add the peeled potatoes, season well, and mash until smooth with no large chunks. Stick in the fridge to firm up for an hour, or the freezer for 20-30 minutes.

When you take it out, your mix should be sticky rather than really wet. You can add a tablespoon or so more of gram flour if necessary (the water content of sweet potatoes varies enormously). Add the flour mix to the sweet potato and mix well.

At this point I also like to add something a little sweet – 3 tablespoons of mango chutney or even orange marmalade will add a much needed sweetness (especially if your potatoes are a little old).

Reheat the oven to 200C/400F. Using a couple of soup spoons (put a well-heaped spoonful of mix in one spoon and use the concave side of the other to shape the sides) or a falafel scoop if you have one, make the mixture into falafelly looking things and put them on an oiled tray.

Sprinkle sesame seeds on top and bake in the oven for around 15 minutes, until the bases are golden brown. 

Leon sweet potato falafel

Serve in a tortilla wrap with humous or pesto and something crunchy  – I love broad bean, pea and roasted garlic pesto and Yarden’s red cabbage in mayo (£1.80 from Sainsburys), although bear in mind that this is not vegan

Super colourful and so delicious.



  • 3 medium to large sweet potatoes (£1)
  • 2 big handfuls of fresh coriander, chopped (£1 for a big bunch)
  • Juice of 1 lemon (30p)  
  • 2 small cloves of garlic, chopped (50p for a bulb)
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 120g gram flour (£1.40 for 1kg) 
  • a sprinkling of sesame seeds
  • wraps or flat breads (£1) – Nour has a great selection of wraps, naans and flatbreads which are all crying out for stuffing!


View other vegan recipes