Traditional falafel is deep-fried and takes quite a while to prepare. This easier falafel-flavored filling is my healthier solution. Made with quick-cooking lentils and quinoa, this filling can be wrapped in lettuce leaves or stuffed in a pita along with a drizzle of tahini dressing and your favorite Mediterranean toppings for a fast and flavorful meal.
Prep: 10 minutes
Pressurize: 10 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Natural Release: 10 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 cup green lentils
½ cup quinoa, rinsed
1¾ cups water
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
½ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more as needed
¼ cup tahini
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 to 4 tablespoons water
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Romaine or butter lettuce leaves, for serving
Sliced cucumber, red bell pepper, and carrots, for serving
1 Combine the onion, lentils, quinoa, water, garlic, cumin, coriander, and cayenne in the Instant Pot. Secure the lid and move the steam release valve to Sealing . Select Manual/Pressure Cook to cook on high pressure for 5 minutes.

2 While the lentils are cooking, make the dressing. In a bowl, combine the tahini, lemon juice, 3 tablespoons of the water, the garlic, salt, and several grinds of black pepper. Add up to 1 tablespoon of the remaining water as needed to thin the dressing. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.
3 When the cooking cycle is complete, let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes, then move the steam release valve to Venting to release any remaining pressure.
4 When the floating valve drops, remove the lid and stir in the salt, parsley, cilantro, and lemon juice. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed, adding more lemon juice to brighten the flavors.
5 Spoon the filling into lettuce leaves and top with the sliced cucumber, bell pepper, and carrots. Drizzle the tahini dressing on top and serve. Place leftovers in two separate airtight containers—one each for the filling and the dressing—and store in the fridge for 5 days. Serve warm or chilled.