Hummus Variations*













Make hummus.  Then make it three times a week so you’ll always have it on hand.  Freeze some.   

Compared to traditional hummus, this is much lower in fat because it uses less tahini.  You can make it even lower in fat by using “low-fat tahini” which is just as easy to get out of the jar as the regular variety.  Steer clear of the store-bought hummus which has a lot of added oil, and also too much tahini.

I have this most often as a sandwich on toast with sliced sweet onion or tomato.  It's unbelievably quick, and unbelievably delicious.  The tomato or onion slice does something magic, for example if your hummus isn't exciting enough by itself (like if you left out the tahini in a noble attempt to avoid fat). There's something about the onion or tomato that makes it taste great no matter what.  (The principle that food tastes better in combinations). 

Basic hummus with a small amount of tahini tastes great by itself, but without the tahini, it's a little bland.  Exceptions to this rule are olive hummus and pepperoncini hummus which are so flavorful (and salty!) that you could actually omit the tahini if you wanted to.  Basil and cilantro are also exciting additions, but they still need a little tahihummus_bowl_exp.jpgni with them.  (Unless you're having them with tomato or onion, like I mentioned).

See the essential recipe, a favorite, for toasted hummus tortillas, or even healthier, roll some in a blanched leaf of collard greens.  Plop a pile next to your stir fry or salad, like a side-dish.  Or serve it as a dip, sprinkled with paprika for looks.

If you're adding a salty ingredient, of course you don't need salt.  With tomato or onion in a sandwich, you probably won't need salt. Otherwise, a little salt may be welcome, especially for beginners who have not yet learned to love the taste of real food. 


  • Two 15-oz cans of chick peas, drained & rinsed (or 3 cups of cooked chick peas = approximately 18 oz. by weight). If you start ahead of time with dried chick peas, you would soak them for at least 4 – 5 hours, then either boil for about 40  minutes until tender – or pressure-cook for 8 minutes). 
  • 6 TBSP (or up to one-half cup) of lemon juice. 
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder   (or 2.5 Tablespoons sliced fresh garlic).  We just use the powder; it's fine.
  • 2 TBSP of low-fat tahini, (or regular tahini = sesame seed paste, available in the supermarket)
  • Optional:  ¼ - 3/8th teaspoon powdered cayenne / red pepper.  (The 3/8th is quite spicy).
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, if desired (optional).  (The Engine 2 recipe calls for 2 teaspoons of tamari or soy sauce instead)


Blend ingredients in a food-processor until smooth.   If more liquid is needed, add water.  (If too thin, it will firm-up in the fridge). 



(You should never make a single recipe unless you're showing off multiple variations as in the above photo).

  • One 15-oz can of chick peas, drained & rinsed (or 1.5 cups of cooked chick-peas)
  • 3 TBSP lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoons garlic powder or 1 TBSP of chopped fresh garlic
  • 1 TBSP of low fat tahini or regular tahini
  • Optional:  1/8 teaspoon powdered cayenne / red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, if desired (optional), or 1 teaspoon of tamari or soy sauce.



1/2 - 1 cup of fresh basil leaves OR
1/2 - 1 cup of fresh cilantro     OR
1/2 cup of pitted Kalamati olives  OR
Several pepperoncini peppers (see photo), with stem removed.

Note that pepperoncinis taste out of this world in hummus for some reason, probably from all that salt.  You probably recognize them as salad peppers, see the photo:

How would you tag this recipe?
Do you like this recipe?

Showing 6 reactions

tagged this with Excellent 2020-01-21 12:39:53 -0500
commented 2020-01-21 12:17:30 -0500 · Flag
tagged this with Excellent 2012-12-15 12:43:15 -0500
tagged this with Excellent 2012-07-09 11:47:56 -0400
tagged this with Excellent 2012-06-26 21:38:36 -0400
published this page in Spreads and Dips 2012-06-14 00:36:00 -0400