• n. The deep-fried chick pea ball itself.

  • n. A Middle Eastern sandwich featuring a deep-fried ball made of chick peas and spices inside pita bread, often served with other vegetables, hummus, and techina.

Example Sentences

  • I'm going to grab falafel for lunch.

Languages of Origin

  • Modern Hebrew
  • Arabic


  • פלאפל, from the Arabic فلافل‎ falāfil 'lit., peppers'

    • Who Uses This

      • Jews: Jews of diverse religious backgrounds and organizational involvements
      • Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)


      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings



  • As the first definition states, "falafel" can refer to the sandwich; among those for whom "falafel" is merely the ball, the term "falafel sandwich" is sometimes used.

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