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Real Hummus Recipe

Making hummus isn’t too hard, and it’s certainly is something that you want to try at least once – or like many, time and time again, in search for the holly grail of real hummus flavor. Our simple recipe for traditional homemade hummus, is a good place to start.

originally published 14 October 2006. last update: 15 September 2015

There’s nothing like good, healthy, homemade hummus, and there isn’t really a reason for you not to try making it yourself.

Making good Hummus isn’t just about having a good recipe, though. True, there are quantities to keep and procedures to follow, but in order to make a really good hummus you must also practice a certain state of mind and a certain touch.

Homemade hummus

You shouldn’t, and can’t, compete with people who have been making hummus all their lives. On the other hand, you can still make a very tasty hummus the first time you try. It will taste 10 times better than any packaged hummus you can buy, and be 10 times healthier as well (read more here). With time, you will get the touch and become a hummus expert.

A hummus made right, will not make you feel heavy or bloated after you eat it. It will not make you – excuse my French – fart like crazy, either. It should go down smoothly, leaving you light and happy, and in a cheerful mood.

To solve the gas problem, BTW, you should soak the chickpeas in clean water for 10-15 hours, switch them at list once, and take off the foam that appears over the boiling water during the cooking. That’s all (and if you’re extra sensitive, put one bay leave into the cooking pot).

Also, washing the chickpeas well between every two steps of the making, will help you leave out the aftertastes.

There are lots of different hummus recipes. I came across dozens of hummus recipes, and practically tried them all. The recipe before you, is the best in my opinion. Accurate and well tested – although you should feel free to experiment. Good luck!



[4 extra-large bowls of Hummus]

  • 1 cups dried chickpeas (the smallest you can find)
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • juice from 1 squeezed lemons
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon + 1/8-1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • salt
  • olive oil
  • parsley



1. Pour the chickpeas over a large plate. Go over them and look for damaged grains small stones, or any other thing you would rather leave out of the plate.

2. Wash the chickpeas several times, until the water is transparent. Soak them in clean water over night with 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Then, wash it, and soak again in tap water for a few more hours. The grains should absorb most of the water and almost double their volume.

3. Wash the chickpeas well and put them in a large pot. Cover with water, add the rest baking soda and NO salt. Cook until the grains are very easily smashed when pressed between two fingers. It should take around 1-1.5 hours, during which it is advised to switch the water once again, and remove the peels and foam which float over the cooking water. When done, sieve the grains and keep the cooking water.

4. Put the chickpeas into a food processor and grind well. Leave it to chill a little while before you continue.

5. Add the tahini and the rest of the ingredients and go on with the food processor until you get the desired texture. If the Humus is too thick, add some of the cooking water. It should be thinner than the actual desired texture.

Serve with some good olive oil and chopped parsley.

43 Comments on Real Hummus Recipe

  1. Please have a look at my hummus recipe.
    I do think it is one of the best.

  2. I have a specific problem: My wife is allergic to sesame, and as a result I can’t make hummus with Tehini. Has anyone experimented with making hummus without that ingredient?

  3. If this tastes even half as good as it looks… Mmmm.

    Josh, can your wife tolerate just a litte Oriental sesame oil, such as Kadoya? I once used that (it doesn’t take much!) when I was out of tahini, and it was pretty good.

  4. In regards to your wife’s allergies:

    A teaspoon of PENUT BUTTER – two teaspoons should suffice. However, liquid amounts have to be slightly lowered to compensate.

    OR, grinding up SUNFLOWER SEEDS works very well as a substitue.

    Both of these come out sweeter (specially the penut butter one). Usually I up the garlic scale to compensate.

    Hope this helps, for the love of hummous.

  5. Yes, I’ve seen Alton Brown make it with peanut butter. Health food stores should sell the unsweetened variety.

    Thanks for the recipe. I love hummus! What does the baking soda do?

    The best hummus i’ve ever had was in La Shish in Detroit. But i’m moving to Jordan soon, so that might change…

  6. I tried to make hummus from dried chick peas last night. I did the steps more or less as stated above but the outcome is that the chick peas is lacking taste. I can taste a bit of the the garlic and lemon but the chick peas base is just plain, like a loaf of bread. What might be the reason for this problem? I just got a food processor and want to make some good homemade hummus for my family ;->

  7. Dear Bao,
    Next time you make hummus pay attention to these things:
    a. You should look for chickpea with smaller grains, not the Mexican garbanzos.
    b. see that you are using a really good tahini – taste it, if it’s good it should taste good also when it’s raw. The name Al-Wadi popped-up here, as a possible good brand.
    c. in principle, the flavor of most ingredients may vary. So feel free to experiment with the amounts. A little more of this, a little more of that – if you know both the desired taste and texture, you should come around it sooner or later.

  8. Do you know of a good website that chickpeas can be ordered on? A Whole Foods store is about 2 hours a way – do you think they are stocked there? There is a small health foods store in my city – what types of chick peas should I ask them to carry? Thanks so much!

  9. shooky,

    Thanks for your advice. I think the chick peas is the vital part of the recipe and I guess I just got it wrong. I am not sure if I used the Mexican garbanzos but the brand is ‘Goya’. Is there any brand or shop that you recommend?


  10. Jillyanne // May 7, 2007 at 8:05 pm // Reply

    Mmmm. I can’t wait to try it. What a great blog and recipe. I am orginally from Detroit and miss the delightful hummus I could get there. Living in Indiana, nothing compares. I’ll just have to make my own!

  11. Jillyanne – thanks for your kind compliments. This blog is still very young. It Hebrew older brother, which is 6 month older, is already affecting the local hummus market. We got a lot of fans, sending us emails constantly. Everybody in the hummus places knows us, and since we also post reviews there, they are also eager to be reviewed.
    This will probably take longer, but the ultimate goal of this blog is to do the same in the US.
    Good luck with the recipe!

  12. If I were to use canned chickpeas instead of cooking dried ones what quantity should I use?

  13. Jillyanne // May 11, 2007 at 6:21 pm // Reply

    A few questions about the recipe

    1) What tempature or level do I cook the chickpeas? Do I boil them rapidly?

    2) Should all of the peels come off when cooking? What happens if they don’t? Is this a sign that the chickpeas haven’t been cooked long enough?

    3) Can I make my own Tahini? What goes into it?

  14. Jillyanne –
    1. “soft” boiling is best.
    2. making your own tahini is not simple, but in the future we’ll supply a relatively easy recipe.

  15. Jillyanne // May 14, 2007 at 9:40 pm // Reply

    Thanks. I would appreciate the Tahini recipe.

    What about the peels of the chick peas? Should I look for those all to boil off, or will some remain? Will I need to manually remove them before I put them in the food processor.

  16. Jillyanne –

    This is REALLY a good question.

    Soon, I will write a post with some tips about this. Meanwhile:

    Chickpea peels tend to peal off during cooking, but every variety behaves a little differently. Ideally, the peels will float and you could simply scum them with a spoon.

    A simple way to achieve that is to drain the chickpeas after some 45-60 minutes of cooking, then put them back in clean cold water, boil it, and cook on. Most of the peels should separate from the grains in the process.

    In some cases this not enough, and some manual help is needed. If the peels are stubborn, you can also roll them gently between two clean kitchen towels, before putting it back to the pot.

  17. Because it takes quite a bit of time to make Hummus, how long can I expect it to last refrigerated? Thank you!

  18. LM – It’s best to eat it in the first 1-2 days after you make it. If it becomes too thick, add some water.

  19. I need a good source for dried small chickpeas. I think the organic ones sold at Whole Foods in my area, are the Mexican ones.

    Anyone find one?

  20. Has anyone tried cooking the beans in a pressure cooker? I’m just wondering what the approximate cooking time would be.

  21. Roger – well, yes, I’ve tried it. I don’t have a pressure cooker today, but I had one in the past. It’s about 30 minutes until the chickpeas are fully cooked. It may take a little longer or shorter, depending on the chickpea variety, size of the cooker etc. Feel free to share with us your findings after you make your own research.

  22. I have been trying to duplicate a hummus recipe for 7 years with no success. This recipe is prepared by a Jordanian man, and it is addictive. I have eaten alot of other peoples hummus and all are good, but his hummus I never get tired of. The problem is, that he shut his restraunt down and I can no longer get his hummus. I know this is an impossible question, but where do I begin learning his secret. I believe his hummus is what you hummus bloggers know so well. The taste lies in the consistancey and taste (not too beany, not to much tahini), I am losing this battle.

  23. I too have a lot of canned chickpeas on hand. I’m thinking the conversion from the dried would be 2 or 3 cans. Has anyone tried this?
    Looking back to the Musicalchef’s entry: I use Baking Soda in my tomato sauces to cut down on the acid (meaning heartburn) content. Plus the kids think it’s cool when it foams up. ;O)

  24. I love making hummus and have experimented quite a bit with it. However, one problem that I always have is that it becomes very sick after about half an hour. I follow approximately the same recipe, as described above. I do use salt during cooking and do not leave chick peas to chill after I have grinded them. I also add water during grinding. How can I make hummus so that the texture stays soft and does not sicken over time?

  25. Thanks for this recipe, made it today with Al Wadi tahina with excellent results. To answer Chuck’s question, I made it with canned chick peas that were about two cups each. Since the recipe says to soak 2 cups of dried chick peas til they double in volume (to four cups), I just used two cans so it started out at four cups already soaked and proceeded from there. 45 minutes to an hour in boiling water was enough.

  26. Does anyone use a foodmill to sieve the chickpeas? I would like to know the name of a good foodmill. Thank you.

  27. This looks great! i have my dried chickpeas ready to sor thru! funny story tho – that I thought would have the hummus lovers laughing…..I recently made the mistake of buying hummus from the store – I hadn’t made it – but my sister does and it’s great and what can I say – I has a hankering…..the store bought stuff was just TERRIBLE!!!! I couldn’t even eat it – it was just icky and not nice. I told this to my sister – who was kind enough to bring me some that she made. When I was serving it up on a tray with pita wedges and carrots – my nephew (who is 4) innocently asked me “auntie jennifer – why would you buy icky hummus from the store?” I just started to giggle – I didn’t have a good answer and what can you say to that….outta the mouths of babes….. well i’m off to use this recipe to start making my own! hurray!

  28. Jennifer – good luck with the hummus! Tell us how it came out.

  29. Keith – canned chickpeas are hardly as tasty and healthy as dried ones. I dedicated a post to that. True it’s easier to make hummus with them, but than again – it’s also easier to buy packaged hummus.

  30. Lydia – both tahini and hummus can absorb a lot of water, during the preparation but also after. You should always make the hummus a bit thiner than you want it to be – or eat it right away. If it gets too thick after some time in the fridge simply add a little warm water and mix it.

  31. A question.
    Does anybody know how to make musabacha (humus with some cooked beans intact)
    Try when you have made the humus not only a topping of olive oil but a mix of chopped green chillis a little garlic all in the juice of a lemon.Be advised pour this on sparingly. Serve with a quartered hard boiled egg in the middle and scoop up with pitta and quartered onion.
    Aside from cummin what are the herbs on the top. Shooky may know, at places like abu hassan and roni ful

  32. Foody –
    there’s a complete recipe in the Hebrew version of this blog, and if there’s a demand I’ll post it here too.

    But it’s actually pretty simple and much the same as making hummus, with minor exceptions: the chickpeas should be cooked until VERY soft, and you don’t use a food processor.

    There are different variations – some include tahini, cooked chickpeas AND hummus, and some without the hummus. The spicing should include lemon juice, salt, garlic, paprika and lots of parsley. Cumin is good but not vital. You can also make a hot pepper sauce like in Abu Hassan with the liquids from a conserved hot-pepper jar, with some lemon and garlic.

  33. Shooky-

    Please post the Hebrew version. I’ve been wondering about the sharpness of the blade on the food processor. It seems to either liquify or shread the grains, instead of making creamy. Thank you.

  34. Bruce,
    This is what you need to know:

    A. If the falafel “melts” in the pan, It usually means too much moisture or over-grinding in the food precessor. Ask yourself: did you put the mixture in the fridge and let it thicken? Did you sqeezed the bread really good? Or have you accidentally added some of the soaking water into the mixture? Also, did you use white bread crumbles? Other breads aren’t good for this.
    Solution: add a little dry bread crumbles.

    B.”Disintegration” of the falafel in the pan ussualy means that the mixture is too thick – not enough moisture or or a too grainy mixtrure, which may be a result of a bad food processor blade, or a soaking proccess which was too short.
    Solution: add very little water and knead a little, or add soked and squeezed white bread to the mixture.

    Remember: you should be able to make fine looking burgers, which remain stable in shape when you play them in your hand.

  35. First of all: I love this website. I stumbled across it while looking at hummus photos on Flickr (yes, I have a hummus problem.)
    Anyway, I just wanted to share a tip related to storing hummus once you’ve made it (if someone else has already shared this, I apologize):
    I usually boil more chickpeas than I need for one batch of hummus, use the ones I need, then freeze the rest of the boiled (but still plain) chickpeas. When I take them out of the freezer I just throw them in boiling water for a minute or two then they are ready for hummus-making.
    A word of warning, this way the chickpeas will be a bit more watery than when they are freshly boiled, so add less water to the hummus/tehina mixture than you normally would. voila! instant “real” hummus.

  36. Completed this recipe today – amazing! There are soo many bad ones online.

    I found that making a good, flavoursome tachina first then adding the chick pea mush bit by bit works well. Just have to top-up the lemon and salt along the way. Yarden make a good raw tahini available in most Tescos in the UK (in the world foods section).

    Not quite Israeli standard yet, but working hard towards it.

  37. Dana Chazanov // January 9, 2008 at 3:34 am // Reply

    Have eaten excellent hummus ful at AbuDabi on King George in Tel Aviv and also at Hummus Givataim at a mall (believe it or not).
    They were both delcious, warming, in a meat stew kind of way, and so nutritious.
    I see wonderful suggestions for hummus, but please fill me in on what the ful bean is and what the American name for the ful bean might be. How do you cook it and how along with the hummus? Do they both cook at about the same rate (different pots of course) and what are the other seasonings and herbs that are added? Also, how are the eggs cooked so they have the lovely brownish color.
    Anxiously awaiting a recipe so I can make it at home.

  38. Dear Sana,

    Ful is the Hebrew/Arab name for Fava Beans and Broad Beans. You should use the Fava (“Egyptian Ful”).

    In a later post I’ll give an exact recipe, but it’s basically very simple: soak it over night, than cook like the chickpeas. When the ful is completely soft (2-2.5 hours) add some salt, cumin and mashed garlic. Earlier during cooking, some people add chopped tomatoes.

    Traditionally, ful was cooked over a paraffin stove for many hours. So, try to make the cooking process longer (over small fire) if you want the flavor and

    About the brown eggs (“Huevos Haminados”): make regular hard-boiled eggs, than leave it over night in a warm oven (80-100 celsius). Very simple.


  39. congratulations to this blog..
    i have just found it a few hours ago while searching for a really good hummus recipe and here we are! i have always loved hummus, but never as much as i do now, after i have eaten it in israel last december… and because its taste is incomparable to the packaged hummus from any supermarket here, i decided to do it myself.
    ..and until my chickpeas are ready to cook, i read further trough this amazing weblog! thank you for all your infos and recipes!!

  40. How much salt should be used in the recipe?

  41. Adam – I can’t really tell because I go by the taste. It should be something around half a teaspoon, but it is best simply to add and taste.

  42. elisabeth – thanks for your kind words. Hope to see you here a lot friend!

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