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Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

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This recipe makes me SO happy!  You are probably wondering what to expect with these Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce.  I would say, think falafel with a crispy exterior.  I am in LOVE with that crispy exterior and to be quite honest, I wasn’t sure that idea in my head would translate on the plate.  I’m pretty pleased with the outcome.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

There are just a few simple steps that begin with the chickpea mixture.  A food processor makes easy work of these tasks and I highly recommend picking one up if you don’t currently own one.  Best kitchen invention ever!

I add the chickpeas, parsley, salt, pepper and garlic.  You can choose to add any herbs of your choosing here.  I kept it simple with just a smidge of smoked paprika.  Pulse until finely minced and remove the mixture to a large bowl.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

No need to clean the processor because we aren’t finished just yet.  I add sliced mushrooms (if using canned, squeeze out the excess liquid using paper towels) and diced carrots.  Pulse until finely minced.  Add to the chickpea mixture.

UPDATE: I have heard from a few people that they just don’t like mushrooms. You can either omit them entirely, or add a few more carrots or chickpeas in their place 🙂

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

So you should have two mixtures that look something like this.

Add the flour, flax “egg” and breadcrumbs, mixing until well combined.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

Here is the final product.  Resist the urge to add more flour or breadcrumbs. You just don’t need them.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

I form them into rustic “cutlet” shapes and pat with a thin layer of additional flour.  This helps us get that crispy crust we are looking for.

In a small amount of oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat, fry the cutlets on one side until golden brown. Flip and repeat.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

Remove to paper toweling to absorb any excess oil.  I like to hit them with a bit of salt straight out of the pan.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

They hold together beautifully and have a wonderful crispy exterior and a tender interior.

Now let’s take a moment to talk about the dipping sauce which is nothing more than a simple mixture of vegan mayonnaise, drained capers, lemon juice and salt.  It provides a nice tangy contrast to the chickpea cutlet.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

I serve with a side of cool, crispy chopped heart of romaine and fresh cut lemons for squeezing.  I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce

Did you make this recipe for Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce?  Let me know what you thought in the comment section below.  You can also tag me on Instagram with a photo @theveglife1 I love seeing what you come up with.




And, if you enjoyed this recipe why not PIN IT FOR LATER! 🙂

Crispy Chickpea Cutlet

If you enjoyed this recipe, how about these Chickpea Nuggets.  With a crispy pretzel crumb crust and a vegan “honey” mustard dipping sauce, these little dippers are popular with both kids and adults alike!


You might also enjoy my:

Chickpea Fried Steak
Vegan Chickpea Parmesan

Crispy Chickpea Cutlets with Lemon Caper Sauce
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4.04 from 29 votes



  • 1 can Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans) rinsed, drained and patted dry with paper towels
  • 1 Green Onion (Scallion) rough chop
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Pepper
  • 1 c fresh Italian Parsley


  • 1 large Carrot rough chop
  • 4 oz Sliced Mushrooms if using canned, be sure they are drained and squeezed completely dry using paper towels. A 7 oz. can will yield 4 oz. of mushrooms)


  • 1 tbsp Ground Flax mixed with 3 tbsp WATER allow to sit for 10 minutes
  • 1/4 c Panko Breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 c All Purpose Flour plus more for coating
  • Oil of your choosing for frying


  • 1/2 c Vegan Mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 tbsp Capers chopped
  • Salt & Pepper to taste


  • Combine 1 Tbl of ground flax with 3 Tbl of water. Allow to sit for at least 10 minutes to thicken.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, add the chickpeas, green onion, parsley, salt, pepper and garlic. Pulse a few times until it's a coarse mixture. Remove to a large bowl.
  • No need to clean the processor, just add the carrots and mushrooms. It is imperative that the mushrooms (if using canned) are squeezed completely dry. Process until finely minced. Add to the chickpea mixture.
  • Add the flax mixture, flour and panko breadcrumbs. Stir to combine. If it seems to moist, add more flour or panko. It will still be sticky, but should be workable. Damp hands make forming the cutlets easier.
  • Using a handful of the mixture, form into a ball and then into a rough cutlet shape.  Proceed directly into the breadcrumbs. Completely coat the formed cutlets in light coating of flour.  I found it simpler to do this when patting between my hands.
  • Heat a pan over medium high to high heat and add oil suitable for pan-frying. Add the cutlets to the pan 1 at a time and fry until golden on one side. Flip and repeat. Remove to paper toweling to cool.
  • Combine all of the ingredients for the dipping sauce and serve warm.




  1. I can’t wait to make these. I think by adding a few spices, I could end u with felafel patties. What do you think?

    1. Hi KJ, these are very close to falafel…just a bit crispier on the outside. Give them a try, I think you’ll love them as much as I do 🙂 Thanks for visiting my new site!

  2. Looking for the lemon caper sauce.

    1. Hi Cynthia, I wrote in the post itself, but there is no real “recipe”. It’s just: vegan mayonnaise, drained capers, lemon juice and salt. I play around with the amounts by taste 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Made for dinner this evening. Patties hold together well. I made just as per recipe using fresh mushrooms instead of jarred. Delicious!

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed them! Thank you for stopping by Living Vegan. I hope you continue to find new recipes you love 🙂

  4. You could take this a step further and make chickpea parmigiana, with this delicious Cutlet.

    1. I did 🙂 —-> https://www.living-vegan.com/vegan-chickpea-parmesan/ It was delicious!

  5. Help, I have no flaxseed – can I use olive oil instead?

    1. If you are vegetarian, use an egg. For other vegan options: vegan sour cream, if you use oil … use much less! Almond milk with a bit of flour, or cornstarch. Try the mixture without the flax egg at first. You might be able to get away without it. You could also just try a bit of water & keep it simple! Good luck 🙂

  6. I just made these, but I had to substitute peas for the mushrooms which I didn’t have at home. They are quite good! I’m looking forward to trying these with mushrooms next time!!

    1. I don’t eat eat mushrooms and was wondering if I could leave them out, or use a substitute! I’ll try peas. Did you use canned or frozen? Thanks.

      1. I used canned for the recipe but drained them really well. You could always use another type of bean instead. I am not a fan of peas lol but you could certainly try them. Just be sure the moisture is patted off of them. The cutlets will seem soft until they are cooked and allowed to cool for a few minutes. I really think you’ll enjoy them 🙂

        1. Thanks for this info.

      2. I use frozen peas

        1. Thanks.

  7. How many servings does this recipe make?

    1. I made mine quite large and got four. So I guess it just depends on how big you decide to make them 🙂

  8. I’ve made these few times and they are delish. I add a few extra spices to add some extra flavor, but I was wondering if these would turn out ok baked in the oven instead of fried?

    1. I think you could, but you would need to brush with oil or use cooking spray. I am not sure how crispy they would get without that. I’m feeling it would be more like texture of a falafel if you are familiar with that. But they will still be tasty! 🙂

  9. I added half a cup of grated cheese to mine and made them smaller. YUM!

  10. Can you tell me the carb amount? I am diabetic and have to watch them.

    1. Hi Julie, While I am working towards eventually providing nutritional labels for my recipes, it’s not something I currently have available for this particular recipe. There are several online nutritional calculators however, where you could copy and paste the ingredients. This should give you a rough estimate of the carbs if that helps.

  11. Any suggestions if you don’t like mushrooms

    1. Hi Clara, you can actually just substitute for a few more chickpeas or just leave the mushrooms out completely. I have had people tell me they’ve done it and it works just fine 🙂

  12. I’ve made these twice now, and they are so yummy. Only problem is they have fallen apart, both times, and ended up being hash. I’m not sure why. Me and the family still love it though.

    1. Hi Jill, Hmmm…let’s see. Well, you really need to allow the first side to get that crispy layer before flipping. Next time, try leaving out the mushrooms. They are the only thing I can think may have had too much moisture. Also, I do find that if you make them smaller and thinner, you get a better crispy exterior. Allow them to sit for a few minutes on a paper towel before serving. They get a bit more stable at that point. In the end, you should have something similar – but firmer – than falafel. Have you ever tried the chickpea nuggets (link is in this post)? The batter is the same, but the shape is more manageable.

  13. Um…where did the lemon caper dipping sauce part of the recipe go?
    I’ve made these a few times and dont remember not being able to find the dipping sauce ingredients??

    1. Hmmm…Good question. I am not exactly sure! But I just put the ingredients back in the recipe card. Thanks for letting me know 🙂

      1. Thank you. I love this with the sauce <3

  14. Made these for dinner tonight and they were amazing. I have one daughter that is vegetarian, but even the meat eaters loved them. I added some zucchini and parmesan cheese to the mixture too. Sooooooo good! Thank you!

  15. Made these for dinner tonight and they were amazing. I have one daughter that is vegetarian, but even the meat eaters loved them. I added some zucchini and parmesan cheese to the mixture too. Sooooooo good! Thank you!

  16. Can the white flour be substituted with a gluten free flour?

    1. I am not super experienced with gluten free flour but since we aren’t baking with it, I can’t see why it wouldn’t work here. It may be more fragile to work with, but even so, once pan fried, should work perfectly. Let me know if you try this. I’d be curious to know how it turns out 🙂

  17. Dinner tonight – delicious exactly as written!

    1. Thanks for the comment Eugenie! I am glad you enjoyed them. It’s one of my all time favorites.

  18. What can I substitute for Ground Flax? I prefer not to buy it for 1 tbs.

    1. You could use any egg substitute equivalent to one egg. One egg equals a total of 1/4 cup measurement. You could even use something like the brine from a can of chickpeas or pureed tofu. Since this is a savory dish, I would steer clear of things like banana or applesauce.

  19. I love this recipe and we eat it regularly. We are a mix of vegetarians and omnivores in our family and everyone likes it. I do use an egg instead of flax as we have our own chickens and I spice the patties up with a mix of cumin, paprika, cayenne, chili powder and oregano. I am not keen on capers so I make a sauce with homemade chopped sweet pickles instead.

    1. That sounds great! I love how you switch it up to make it your own. Thanks so much for the comment 🙂

  20. I made these and they fell apart on me. No worries because they were delicious! Very flavorful.

    1. Hi Shelley, they can be a little tricky unless they are crispy on one side. It’s all about that flip! 🙂 I’m so glad you enjoyed them. This recipe has become the most popular on this site!

  21. This recipe is absolutely amazing! We’ve been making these for years and love love love them. I serve it with a salad with Greek dressing and it is such a big hit. We do not do the mushrooms instead I substitute a large zucchini. And it is perfect!

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