Learn how to make hummus, a mouthwatering homemade spread from the Middle East with chickpeas and a few other simple ingredients.
This creamy-dreamy hummus is easy to make, healthy, nutritious, and delicious. You can serve it as a dip, spread, and much more.
On this page:
Check out our best vegetable sides recipe collection!
One big secret to making the best hummus recipe is using the right kind of tahini.
The right type of tahini will elevate your hummus recipe, giving it a creamy-dreamy texture with a subtle nutty taste and silky mouth feel.
Unfortunately, the wrong kind of tahini will ruin your hummus, making it bitter, coarse, and unpleasant to eat.
Learning how to choose the right tahini was a game-changer for us. See tips below.
We didn't like homemade hummus until then, and now it has become a staple in our kitchen, the hero of many last-minute dinners.
After all, to make hummus, you only need a few pantry staples: a can of chickpeas, tahini, cumin, garlic, lemon juice, and salt.
Hummus is nutritious and packed with healthy fats, fiber, and plant-based protein. It's vegan and gluten-free, and everyone loves it thanks to its creamy texture and a mild taste.
You can eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You can spread it in a sandwich or a wrap, have it as a dip with falafel, veggie sticks, or in a falafel bowl.
And why not make a delicious hummus pasta or a beautiful mezze platter with other Mediterranean and Middle-Eastern dishes.
Tahini is the most crucial ingredient in hummus; therefore, you should pick the right one.
Pick light-colored tahini, made with 100% hulled sesame seeds, ideally imported from Lebanon or Palestine.
Those are the best for making hummus.
You can use canned chickpeas or dry chickpeas (garbanzo beans).
If you use dry chickpeas, you've got to soak them overnight in water and baking soda, then rinse them and boil them in fresh water until tender. Instructions below.
Ground cumin is best so that it gets evenly distributed in the hummus.
On the other hand, whole cumin seeds are hard to blend for the food processor, so I would advise crushing them beforehand if you do use them.
Note that hummus shouldn't have a strong cumin flavor but a hint in the background.
Fresh Lemon Juice
Freshly squeezed lemon juice without the seeds.
To get the blender going and thin up the hummus. We recommend using cold water to get a lighter hummus texture.
We like to use sea salt or kosher salt.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
There's no need to add oil IN this easy hummus recipe; however, we recommend adding a drizzle of good quality extra virgin olive oil ON the hummus once it's on the plate.
If you don't have good quality extra-virgin olive oil, then I would skip the oil; low-quality oil can ruin your hummus.
Like olive oil, freshly chopped flat-leaf parsley is for garnishing the hummus. You can sprinkle some on top.
Garnish with optional spices such as sumac, za'atar, dukkah, cayenne pepper, paprika, and sesame seeds.
You can also garnish with olives and whole chickpeas.
Hummus from Canned Chickpeas
Drain and rinse the canned chickpeas, then boil them in a small pot with water for 15 minutes.
Note: you can skip the boiling if you are in a hurry, but in this case, rinse the canned chickpeas well with water.
Tip: Add ½ teaspoon of ground cumin to the boiling water to infuse them with flavor.
Save a cup of boiling water, drain them, and put them in a bowl with cold water.
Now, rub the chickpeas between your hands to separate their skin.
Discard the skins. You don't have to discard all of them, just the ones that come off quickly.
Cut the garlic in half lengthwise and remove its core to make it less sharp and more digestible.
Add chickpeas, chopped garlic, tahini, ground cumin, salt, some reserved water where you boiled chickpeas, and lemon juice to a food processor or a blender.
Blend until you reach your desired consistency and texture, adding more water if necessary.
Taste and adjust seasoning. You might want to add more tahini, lemon juice, salt, garlic, or cumin, based on your preference.
Note: A food processor makes a better, lighter, and airier hummus, although a little less smooth.
A blender makes very smooth hummus, which we feel it's less authentic, and it gets more compact and heavy, but it still tastes delicious.
Transfer into a serving bowl, swirl with the back of a spoon and drizzle with good quality extra virgin olive oil and chopped flat-leaf parsley.
You can garnish with chickpeas, olives, sumac, and sesame seeds.
Hummus from Dry Chickpeas
Soak the chickpeas overnight or during the day (8 to 24 hours) in a large bowl or pot with plenty of water and a teaspoon of baking soda to soften their skin.
You can leave them at room temperature on your kitchen counter.
They should almost double in volume.
Rinse them, transfer them into a large pot with plenty of water, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and gently simmer for about 1 - 2 hours.
Cooking time varies greatly depending on the chickpea. Taste them at the 1-hour mark.
When the chickpeas are almost cooked, add about a teaspoon of salt.
The chickpea will foam while cooking. That's fine; no need to do anything about it.
Reserve two cups of chickpea cooking water, drain the chickpeas, and transfer them onto a clean kitchen towel.
Place another kitchen towel on top and rub them to remove some of the skin.
Note: Removing the skins of home-cooked dry chickpeas is more challenging, so don't beat yourself up if they don't all separate easily.
Transfer the chickpeas to the food processor with chopped garlic, tahini, ground cumin, salt, lemon juice, and some reserved chickpea cooking water.
Blend until you reach your desired texture and consistency, taste, and adjust seasonings.
Then transfer on a plate/bowl and top with extra virgin olive oil, spices, and chopped parsley.
If you are wondering what to eat with hummus, we've made a list of 25+ ways to eat hummus. Check it out! Some Ideas are:
On a mezze platter
Traditionally, hummus is served as a dip with warm pita bread with a meze, a selection of small dishes served as an appetizer in the Middle East.
To make your appetizer platter, serve it next to our falafel, fattoush salad, tabbouleh salad, Zaalouk (Moroccan eggplant), avocado spread, tofu cream cheese, confit tomatoes, caramelized onions, tzatziki, vegan basil pesto, grilled asparagus or zucchini, and some homemade focaccia, flatbread, piadina (Italian flatbread), olives, pita chips, and raw veggies (carrots, celery, and red peppers)
In a pita sandwich
Warm up some pita bread and spread a generous amount of hummus on the bottom. Fill it with grilled or roasted vegetables, falafel, salad leaves, tomatoes, and more.
Drizzle with a delicious tahini sauce and add a sprinkle of sesame seeds. Of course, this is just a suggestion, but you get the idea, right?
In a falafel bowl (or grain bowl)
You'll love this falafel bowl with homemade deep-fried or air-fried falafel. A couple of spoonfuls of hummus fit right in!
We serve it with warm pita bread, roasted red peppers (jarred are fine), pickled beets, tabbouleh, kalamata olives, jalapeños, lemon wedges, crumbled feta cheese, sesame seeds, fresh parsley, and a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and tahini sauce.
In a wrap with falafel
This is how we ate hummus and falafel when living in Berlin, Germany, where many Lebanese restaurants serve falafel this way.
Warm up a large wrap (tortilla wrap good), spread a generous amount of hummus on the base, then top with smashed falafel, Shirazi salad, jalapeños, pickled beets, fresh parsley, fresh mint, squeezed lemon, and a good drizzle of tahini sauce. Enjoy!
Roasted Eggplant Hummus
Add the flesh of one roasted or air-fried eggplant to the hummus to give it a mild roasted eggplant flavor.
Eggplant is water-rich, so you'll need less water in the hummus.
Preheat the oven to 430°F or 220°C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then wash, dry, and cut the eggplants in half lengthwise.
Score the flesh of the eggplant with a knife, then season with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
Arrange the eggplant cut side down and bake at 430°F or 220°C for 50 minutes.
Tip: for an extra smokey flavor, turn the broiler on and broil for 5 to 10 minutes to slightly char the peel of the eggplant.
Let the eggplants cool down for 10 minutes, then scoop the flesh out of the peel with a spoon and transfer it into the food processor with the rest of the ingredients.
Blend until you reach your desired texture and consistency, then serve in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil, warm pita bread, and veggie sticks.
This rich and creamy lentil hummus is a perfect last-minute appetizer, sandwich spread, or topping.
It's ready in 5 minutes, made with canned brown lentils, and the preparation is similar to chickpea hummus.
Red Pepper Hummus
Add roasted and peeled bell peppers to the hummus to give it a delicious sweet, and smokey taste of the bell pepper.
Preheat the oven to 480˚F (250˚C). In the meantime, wash your bell peppers and place them on a baking tray lined with a silicone baking mat or some parchment paper.
Bake in the oven for about 30 to 40 minutes. The peppers should be soft and slightly burned on the outside.
Put the peppers in a glass, steel, or ceramic bowl straight out of the oven. Cover the bowl with a well-fitted lid and cool down for 20 to 30 minutes.
Peel the peppers and add them to the food processor with the other ingredients.
Blend until you reach your desired texture and consistency, then taste, and adjust the seasoning.
How to pick the best tahini?
Tahini should be light in color. Imported if you can find it. Made with 100% hulled sesame seeds. Stone ground if you want to be picky.
Getting the correct type of tahini was the single biggest game-changer for hummus and diet because we now use it all the time (we even make crunchy oil-free granola with it).
Suddenly, recipes like this hummus, tahini sauce, baba ghanoush, avocado spread, and anything tahini-drizzled made sense.
They went from bitter, gritty, and overpowering to silky smooth, rich, nutty, and I-want-to-eat-this-thing-with-a-spoon-like-Nutella kind of thing.
You can find good tahini in ethnic food stores; middle eastern or Asian grocery stores are your best bet. Some supermarkets also keep imported tahini.
Generally, I would be wary of western brands unless you have tried them before or are ready for some try and error.
We cannot stress this enough: the right tahini is the most crucial ingredient in making a tasty, creamy, and delicious homemade hummus.
Blender vs. Food Processor
Food processor vs. blender? Canned vs. dry chickpeas?
We tested them all for you; the winner is hummus with dry chickpeas in a food processor, BUT...
...the most significant difference is between the hummus made in a blender and the one made in a food processor, not in the type of chickpeas.
The food processor produces better hummus in texture and taste.
The hummus is lighter, airier, and tastes more authentic overall.
The blender version is still excellent but more compact and feels heavier. This is because there's less air in it.
When it comes to dry vs. canned chickpeas, it's tough to tell the difference, although the home-cooked chickpeas do taste more natural.
In conclusion, try to use a food processor, and if you don't have time to cook the chickpeas, be assured that hummus made from canned ones is still absolutely delicious!
Make Ahead and Storage
Make ahead: hummus is an excellent recipe for meal prep and making ahead. It keeps well in the fridge; you can always give it a quick blend if it dries up too much after storing.
Refrigerator: keep it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Cover the top with a thin layer of extra virgin olive oil to prevent it from drying out. Stir it before serving.
Freezer: we don't recommend freezing this recipe.
More Chickpea Recipes
Want to add more chickpeas to your diet? Here are some of our favorite chickpea recipes. If you want more, check out our best chickpea recipe round-up.
More Dip Recipes
Here are some of our favorite, most delicious dips:
- Food processor or blender
- 2 cans (15 oz each) chickpeas or 3 cups cooked chickpeas
- ¼ cup water best if reserved from boiling the chickpeas, not the liquid in the can
- 3 tablespoons tahini or more to taste
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice or more to taste
- 1 clove garlic or more to taste
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin or more to taste
- ½ teaspoon salt or more to taste
- good quality extra virgin olive oil
- olives or chickpeas
- freshly chopped herbs flat-leaf parsley, mint, and more
- pinch sumac sub za'atar or paprika
HUMMUS FROM CANNED CHICKPEAS
- Drain the canned chickpeas and boil them in a small pot with water for 15 minutes.Tip: you can add ½ teaspoon of ground cumin to the boiling water to infuse them with flavor.
- Reserve 1 cup of the boiling water, drain them, and put them in a bowl with cold water. Rub the chickpeas between your hands to separate their skin.
- Discard the skins. You don't have to discard all of them, just the ones that come off quickly.
- Cut the garlic in half lengthwise and remove its core to make it more digestible.
- Add chickpeas, chopped garlic, tahini, ground cumin, salt, half of the water, and lemon juice to a food processor or blender.
- Blend until you reach your desired consistency and texture, adding more water if necessary.Taste and adjust seasoning. You might want to add more tahini, lemon juice, salt, garlic, or cumin based on your preference.
- Transfer into a serving bowl, swirl with the back of a spoon, and drizzle with good quality extra virgin olive oil and chopped flat-leaf parsley.You can garnish with chickpeas, olives, sumac, and sesame seeds.
HUMMUS FROM DRY CHICKPEAS
- Soak the chickpeas for 8 to 24 hours in a large bowl with plenty of water and a teaspoon of baking soda to soften their skin. You can leave them at room temperature on your kitchen counter.
- They should double in volume.
- Rinse them, transfer them into a large pot with plenty of water, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and gently simmer for about 1 to 2 hours.Cooking time varies greatly depending on the chickpeas. Taste them at the 1-hour mark. They should be cooked throughout.When the chickpeas are almost cooked, add about a teaspoon of salt.The chickpea will foam while cooking. That's fine; no need to do anything about it.
- Reserve 2 cups of chickpea cooking water, drain the chickpeas and transfer them onto a clean kitchen towel. Place another kitchen towel on top a rub them to remove some of the skins.Removing the skins of homecooked dry chickpeas is harder, so don't beat yourself up if they don't all separate easily.
- Transfer the chickpeas to the food processor with chopped garlic, tahini, ground cumin, salt, lemon juice, and some of the reserved chickpea cooking water.
- Blend until you reach your desired texture and consistency, taste, and adjust seasonings as you like.Serve with olive oil, parsley, and olives.
You might also like the following:
Is there a particular brand of tahini that you use or would recommend? Many thanks!
Hi Kellie! I always look for hulled tahini, as it doesn't taste bitter (and makes the hummus a lot smoother). We use Baron's organic tahini or Trader Joe's organic tahini 🙂 I hope that helps. Cheers, Nico
Jazmine May Palminteri
Hello guys! I absolutely love all your recipes, just wanted to say thank you so much! There isn't anyone else's food blog I like as much as yours! I live in Sicily with my husband who is Italian! I can't tell you how much I've appreciated your Italian and English recipes.. the how to prepare and cook artichokes I found so helpful! As I never used them in England!!!!! Thank you grazie mille..Jaz (and Emilio!) Please write a cookbook!!!!
Hi Jazmine (and Emilio)! Oh, thank you so so much for your kind words - that means so much to both of us!
That reminds me that we have to go back to beautiful Sicily soon, there is just no better place for fantastic granita, gelato, and amazing people 🙂
Lots of love from both of us, e grazie ancora, Jazmine!
All the best,
Hubby is going to love this when I send it to him! 😀
Oh, I'm delighted to hear!! <3