Hummus is the height of versatile snacks. It’s quick, made using storecupboard ingredients and is great for adding extra veg to your diet. Try the traditional dip or throw in peas, peppers, beans or beetroot to create a colourful, crowd-pleasing treat.
What is hummus made of?
This tasty Middle Eastern dip is made primarily of chickpeas, tahini, garlic, olive oil and lemon. It’s got to be one of the most popular foods of the last 10 years. It’s delicious as a dip, spread on flatbreads or as part of a mezze platter. Here are some useful tips to know about hummus preparation.
How to make hummus
What equipment do you need to make hummus?
The best equipment to create a smooth textured hummus is simply a food processor. You can also use a NutriBullet or handheld blender. Blitzing your hummus for 8-10 mins gives you a super smooth texture.
- Chickpeas are the core ingredient in hummus. Dried are the best to use. Soak them overnight, rinse and boil before blitzing. This method requires a little more time but using dried gives you a particularly authentic and creamy texture.
- However, most of us like the idea of simply throwing together a bowl of hummus. In this case, canned chickpeas work well, just make sure you thoroughly rinse off any brine before blitzing them, or use the jarred fatter chickpeas that are preserved simply in salt and water. They are slightly pricier but leave you with a buttery hummus with the silkiest texture.
- Tahini is a sesame seed paste. You can purchase it in a deep or lighter roast. Tahini is crucial to hummus. It binds the chickpeas together, is rich and nutty and gives it that creamy flavour that makes hummus so moreish. You can buy it in Turkish shops, online and in most high street supermarkets.
- Lemon The juice of a lemon cuts through the fattiness of the pulses and sesame. It also helps to preserve the hummus for a little longer. For a slightly stronger citrus taste, finely grate the zest in as well.
- Garlic Finely grate or crush garlic and add to the chickpeas before blitzing. Be sparse with the garlic though, starting with half a clove and adding more as you go. Remember you can add it but can’t take away, and garlic can vary in strength just like chillies.
- Olive oil is the last of the key ingredients in hummus. Use a good quality extra virgin oil, its fragrant and richer. Save a little of your best olive to drizzle on top. The combination of a big scoop of hummus and a slick of earthy olive oil is heavenly.
- Water A splash of water can make all the difference to your hummus. Turning it from a paste to a soft, spoonable dip.
Easy hummus recipe
- 400g can chickpeas, drained
- 80ml extra virgin olive oil
- 1-2 fat garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 1 lemon, juiced, ½ zested
- 3 tbsp tahini
- mixed crudités and toasted pitta bread, to serve (optional)
- Thoroughly rinse the chickpeas in a colander under cold running water. Tip into the large bowl of a food processor along with 60ml of the oil and blitz until almost smooth. Add the garlic, lemon and tahini along with 30ml water. Blitz again for about 5 mins, or until the hummus is smooth and silky.
- Add 20ml more water, a little at a time, if it looks too thick. Season and transfer to a bowl. Swirl the top of the hummus with the back of a dessertspoon and drizzle over the remaining oil. Serve with crunchy crudités and toasted pitta bread, if you like.
Extra hummus flavouring ideas
Spices such as sumac, za’atar and ground cumin are delicious lightly sprinkled on hummus. Crunchy dukkah also gives a nutty bite (available in supermarkets and Middle Eastern shops). Reserving a few chickpeas to scatter on top adds texture. Toasted pine nuts or pistachios also work really well scattered over.
Another traditional way to serve hummus is to fry lamb in spices until crispy and scatter over. Try serving with warm flatbread.
For a less authentic but still delicious hummus, try swapping out the chickpeas for other pulses. White beans such as cannellini work well, as do flageolet. You can also add cooked butternut squash or beetroot.
Top 5 hummus recipes
1. Avocado hummus
Get all five of your five-a-day with our easy avocado hummus & crudités. This simple, healthy recipe works as a light lunch or buffet snack for your next party. The avocado gives the hummus an irresistibly creamy texture.
2. Luxury hummus
Go the extra mile and make a batch of our luxury hummus. Using the best quality chickpeas gives this vegan dip a deliciously silky feel. This rich recipe is infinitely superior to shop-bought versions and will disappear twice as quickly.
3. Carrot & cumin hummus with swirled harissa
Our carrot & cumin hummus with swirled harissa is something a little bit special for picnic season. Roasting your garlic and allowing it to caramelise before blitzing deepens the flavour and adds an irresistible touch of sweetness. Everyone will be dipping in for seconds, so bring plenty of flatbreads.
4. Chorizo hummus bowl
Our chorizo hummus bowl is sure to bring a little spice to your standard lunchtime plate. Add some texture to your hummus with wilted kale, chunks of chorizo and crispy chickpeas. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and serve with a warm flatbread for a satisfying lunch for one.
5. Beetroot hummus party platter
Our beetroot hummus party platter is great for feeding a crowd at short notice, it takes just 15 minutes to prepare and uses clever shop-bought extras. There’s no cooking involved, so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time entertaining guests.
Enjoyed these recipes? Try our other sensational snacks…
What’s your favourite way to serve hummus? Leave a comment below…