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Hummus and Other Bean Dips



Spreading The Virtues Of Humble Hummus

by Susan L. Burke, MS, RD/LD, CDE

Whether or not you’re a vegetarian, vegan or even a steak lover, hummus has a place in your meal plans. Hummus (pronounced Hum-ess) is a wonderful, totally vegetarian dip made from pureed chickpeas (garbanzo beans), tahini (sesame seed paste), olive oil and lemon juice. It is often spiced with garlic and cumin.


Hummus is very nutritious. It’s low in fat, extremely low in saturated fat, has no cholesterol, and is a good source of fiber and protein.


You can even buy hummus already prepared (check the dairy/refrigerated section of your grocery store). But you can save a few pennies and get the satisfaction of whipping up your own hummus with my quick and easy recipe:


Susan Burke’s Hummus

All Phases


1 can (15 or 16 oz.) of chickpeas (garbanzo beans)

2 cloves garlic, roasted and mashed

Juice of half of one lemon

2 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed butter)

2 tablespoons of olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste


Rinse and drain the chickpeas. In a food processor or blender, process chickpeas with garlic, lemon juice and tahini until blended. Add olive oil slowly while processor is running until hummus is thick and smooth. Blend in salt and pepper to taste.


Nutritional value serving (two Tbsp.): 60 calories, 60mg sodium, 2 grams of protein, 4 grams of fat, and 0 grams of saturated fat.

Hummus 1

1 can garbanzo bens (chick peas) rinsed and drained
1/4 cup tahini (sesame seed butter)
Juice of 1 or 2 fresh lemons (to taste, 2 to 5 tablespoons)
1 clove garlic, chopped fine (or 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic from jar)
1/4 to 1/2 cup water (to desired consistency and depending on lemon juice)
1 tablespoon chopped parsley (optional)
Optional: 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper, 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Combine above ingredients (except parsley) in a blender and blend until smooth, adding water as necessary to desired consistency. Remove from blender and add chopped parsley. Makes 2 1/2 cups.

Hummus 2

All Phases.


1 can (15 ounces) chick peas, drained, reserving 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the liquid

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste)

1/4 cup chopped yellow onion

3 cloves garlic, chopped

2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

Chopped fresh parsley (optional, for garnish)


Combine the chick peas, lemon juice, tahini, onion, garlic, oil, cumin, pepper, and salt in a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth, adding the chick pea liquid, as needed,  to desired consistency.


Refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours before serving to blend the flavors. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

Hummus 3

Makes 2 cups. From http://www.pcrm.org: A creamy garbanzo spread that can be used as a sandwich filling, or served as a dip with fresh vegetables or wedges of pita bread.


2 garlic cloves
1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans
3 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed butter)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt


Place garlic and parsley in a food processor and chop finely.


Drain beans, reserving liquid. Add to the food processor along with tahini, lemon juice, cumin, and paprika. Process until very smooth: about two minutes. The mixture should be moist and spreadable. If it is too dry, add some of the reserved bean liquid to achieve desired consistency.

Hummus with Toasted Sesame Seeds

All Phases.


1 large onion, minced
1 to 2 cloves minced garlic, to taste (I sometimes use roasted garlic)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 cans chick peas, drained and rinsed (or equivalent dry-cooked)
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (juice of 2 lemons)
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup tahini (sesame paste)
1/2 cup toasted sesame seeds*
Salt to taste if desired

Sauté the onion and garlic in the oil until the vegetables are soft. Set aside.

In a blender or food processor, puree the chickpeas with the onion and garlic, lemon juice, soy sauce, salt (if used), tahini and sesame seeds. Serve the hummus with fresh or toasted pita and/or as a dip for fresh vegetables.


*Note: Toast them in a teflon pan or in the toaster oven; watch closely as they burn easily and quickly.

Garbanzo Spread with Red Peppers

All phases. Makes about 2 cups (8 1/4-cup servings. From  http://www.pcrm.org/health/recipes: This delicious spread has the look and taste of spreadable cheese and takes only seconds to prepare. Try it on bread and crackers, in casseroles, and as a filling for quesadillas. Look for jars of water-packed roasted red peppers near the pickles and olives in your supermarket. Tahini is available in the ethnic food section of many supermarkets and in natural food stores.


1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans

1/2 cup roasted red peppers

3 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed butter)

3 tablespoons lemon juice


Drain the garbanzo beans, reserving the liquid, and place them in a food processor or blender with the remaining ingredients. Process until very smooth.


Note: If using a blender, you will have to stop it occasionally and push everything down into the blades with a rubber spatula. The mixture should be quite thick, but if it really seems too thick to blend, add a tablespoon or two of the reserved bean liquid.

Recipe from Eat Right, Live Longer by Neal D. Barnard, M.D.; recipe by Jennifer Raymond.

Hummus with Yogurt

All Phases


3 garlic cloves, minced (more if you like)

1/4 cup plain, low-fat yogurt

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 19-ounce can chickpeas, drained


Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Chill.

Green Bean and Garlic Dip

Two servings. Recipe from Simply Vegan by Debra Wassermen.


1/3 pound green beans

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1-1/2 tablespoons tahini

1 teaspoon soy sauce or tamari


Steam green beans for 10 minutes in about a cup of water until tender, yet firm. Rinse beans under cold water when done. Meanwhile, place remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor. Add cooked beans. Blend 2 minutes or until creamy. Serve with crackers.

Black Bean Hummus 1

All phases. From www.diet.recipes-to-go.com. Source: American Diabetes Association at http://www.diabetes.org.


1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained

1 tablespoon sesame tahini

1 tablespoon low-fat sour cream

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon minced tomato

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 teaspoon cumin

Freshly-ground black pepper, to taste


Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth.


This recipe makes 12 servings at 2 tablespoons per serving.

Black Bean Hummus 2

All Phases. Eight servings. From http://vegetarian.allrecipes.com: This is the absolute best hummus I have ever had. It goes great with some toasted pita bread. Add more lemon juice if this hummus tastes like it needs a little extra kick.


A refreshing change from the same old hummus, this one features black beans, tart olives, and a spicy little bite from cayenne pepper.


1 clove garlic, peeled and sliced
1 (15 ounce) can black beans (drain and reserve liquid) (can also use garbanzo beans)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (or apple cider vinegar or lime juice)
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
10 Greek olives (for garnish)


Mince garlic in the bowl of a food processor. Add black beans, 2 tablespoons reserved bean liquid, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, tahini, cumin, salt, and cayenne pepper; process until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.


Add additional seasoning and liquid (bean or lemon juice) to taste. Garnish with paprika and Greek olives.

Black Bean and Pinto Bean Hummus
All phases. From ArcaMax.

1 15-oz. can black beans, drained
1 15-oz. can pinto beans, drained
2 Tbsp. tahini (sesame seed paste)
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/ tsp. paprika
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Serve with pita bread and /or crackers.

Black Bean Dip with Walnuts

All Phases.


2 cups cooked or 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/3 cup toasted walnuts

1 or 2 cloves garlic, or to taste

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon cumin or to taste

1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper

Tabasco to taste (try the new chipotle flavored one)

Water as needed for texture


Put all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Optional: Stir in some freshly chopped parsley or cilantro.

Black Bean Dip with Salsa

All Phases. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.


1 (16-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 cup tomato salsa, hot or mild

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste


In a food processor, combine all ingredients except salt and pepper. Process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, process again briefly.


In Phase 1, serve with fresh-cut celery, cucumbers, zucchini sticks.


In Phase 2, can also serve with whole wheat pita.

In Phase 3, can also serve with corn chips.

Bean Dip with Horseradish
All Phases. Recipe from Dr. Weil. 8 servings

If you're using canned beans, be sure to drain and rinse them to get rid of excess salt.

2 cups (or 1 can) cooked beans (Cannellini, pinto, or Great Northern)
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp prepared horseradish
2 scallions, trimmed and minced
Salt to taste

Combine beans, olive oil, horseradish and scallions in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth, adding a little water if necessary. Season with salt to taste.

Hummus with Yogurt

1 can (16 ounces) chick-peas, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup nonfat plain yogurt
1/4 cup minced scallions
1/4 cup packed finely minced fresh parsley
Juice of 2 lemons
5 teaspoons tahini (sesame butter)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Dash of reduced-sodium soy sauce
Pinch of ground red pepper

In a food processor or blender, process the chick-peas until smooth. Occasionally stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary. Add the yogurt, scallions, parsley, lemon juice, tahini, oil, garlic, black pepper, and soy sauce. Process until smooth and creamy. (If necessary, add a small amount of water or canned bean liquid to achieve the desired consistency.)

Transfer to a serving bowl. Sprinkle with the red pepper. Serve at room temperature.

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