Homemade Hummus Recipe
Until this past week, I had never cooked dried chickpeas/garbanzo beans before. It’s funny how something so small can be so intimidating, but I guess you stick with what you know until you realize what you are missing. Who knew cooking beans was so similar to having children?!
Then I read this line in my trusty Bean Bible (Amazon), “Dry chickpeas are the most challenging bean to cook.” What’s that, a challenge? It’s on. Determined, I filled a small bag of dried beans in WinCo’s bulk section. (You can also find dried beans on Amazon with fantastic reviews!)
I came home and continued reading, “Check that your chickpeas come from a source that sells through its stock quickly. Shriveled, dried-out chickpeas will never get soft, no matter how long you cook them.” Hmmm. My beans were definitely on the shriveled end of the spectrum. I stubbornly pushed on, turning to the official Soaking Chart for Dried Legumes.
Let’s see… whole chickpeas… 10 hours?! My resolve started to waver, but I stuck with it.
And guess what? I am happy to report that I successfully soaked and cooked my shriveled little chickpeas. It was neither difficult, nor a disaster. And I’m not kidding when I say that as they were cooling on the counter, I started popping them in my mouth like candy. They were delicious; the flavor and texture were so superior to any slimy bean I had ever dumped out of a can.
Don’t take my word for it. Try this bean for yourself!
Cooking Dried Garbanzo (or other) Beans using the Speed Soak Method
- Sort 2-3 cups of beans on a rimmed baking sheet and rinse the beans in the cold water.
- I didn’t want to soak these overnight so I switched to the Speed Soaking Method. Brilliant. You can do this with any bean to speed up the soaking time. Here’s how it works: Place the beans in a pot and cover with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat. Simmer for 4-5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the beans soak in the warm water for 1 hour. Drain the water and rinse the beans.
- Dump the beans back in the pot and cover with several inches of cold water. Bring the water to a boil. Let simmer on medium heat, covered, for an hour or until tender. The beans should be soft but slightly firm. They will cook a bit more as they cool. You don’t want them to be so soft they are mushy or falling apart.
- Remove from the heat and stir in salt, if desired. Let the beans cool in the water, absorbing the salt as they cool.
- After half an hour or so, drain the beans and cool completely. Use them immediately or store in the fridge for several days, the freezer for several months.
I froze my cooked garbanzo beans in flat 1.5-cup portions. I will just pop them out of the freezer as needed for salads, hummus, falafel, or soup. Start to finish, this little cooking experiment took about 2.5 hours of very little effort.
Again, the benefits of cooking your own beans from scratch are totally worth the time involved. They are cheap, tasty, and healthy. And that’s a winning combination in my book.
One of my favorite things to make with garbanzo beans is hummus. For a concoction so simple: garbanzo beans, lemon juice, tahini, garlic, salt… it’s surprisingly addicting. And the best part is, you don’t even have to feel guilty about polishing off an entire container in one sitting. Well, at least my husband and I never do.
The one ingredient that most of us probably don’t have taking up space on our pantry shelves is tahini. It’s just a paste made of pureed sesame seeds. Most 15 ounce jars of tahini cost between $4-$6, but at 1-2 tablespoons per batch of hummus, a little bit goes a long way so it’s a relatively economical ingredient.
In most grocery stores it can be found in the organic/natural food section or the peanut butter aisle. You can also find it on Amazon.
Buying hummus at the grocery store will run you around $3-$5 for a 10 ounce container. I’ve often used coupons for hummus. Combined with a sale, this isn’t a bad deal. We’re perfectly happy with the flavor & quality. However, like many things, making a batch of hummus in your own kitchen is easy and economical.
Adapted from A Rachael Ray recipe
(1) 14.5 oz can garbanzo beans, drained (reserve liquid) or 1 3/4 c. cooked garbanzo beans
1 T. tahini sesame paste
2 T. olive oil
1/2 t. crushed pepper flakes
1 t. ground cumin
1 t. ground coriander
2 cloves garlic, finely crushed or 3-4 cloves*
reserved liquid or water
salt, to taste
1/2 lemon, juiced
- Combine beans, tahini, oil, pepper flakes, cumin, coriander, garlic, salt, and lemon juice in food processor bowl or blender; pulse to combine.
- Slowly add enough of the reserved liquid or water (or even more olive oil), pulsing and checking occasionally, to achieve the desired smooth consistency.
- Transfer to a smaller bowl and serve with vegetables, pita bread or crackers. Refrigerate leftovers for up to a week.
* I found this is one of the best places to use roasted garlic. The first time I tried making hummus, I used a clove of fresh garlic. It overpowered the dish, adding a bitter bite. Even when I minced it as finely as possible, it was too strong. We love garlic so that’s saying a lot. Try it either way, but by using roasted garlic, you’ll definitely get a more mellow, sweet garlic flavor. Learn how to roast garlic here.
Hummus is a delicious low-fat alternative to mayonnaise in sandwiches or wraps or served as an appetizer or snack. I even serve it for dinner with pita bread, vegetables, and sometimes grilled meat.
I absolutely love my Progressive International Lemon Squeezer. I also own a fancy juicer attachment for my KitchenAid stand mixer, but it rarely sees the light of day.
This lemon squeezer, on the other hand, gets pulled out several times a week. I use it for both lemons and limes; it quickly presses out fresh juice, while separating the pulp and seeds for any recipe that calls for a small amount of fresh citrus juice. Amazon carries this lemon squeezer for under $10!
Leave a comment, question, or tip! Oh, and has anyone ever frozen hummus before? I’ve read it can be done, but I am skeptical it holds well. Opinions?
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I love to use fermented garlic (black garlic) – use organic !
Yvette Tillema says
I’ve been in this thread for years now, make my own tahini w the bean water. But lately I enjoy mixing my hummus with yogurt. I do it at serving time.
Kathy shaw says
I basically use same recipe that you have except I throw in a handful of whatever unsalted nuts I have on hand instead of tahini paste. Cashews are especially delicious. Also I cook my beans in the crockpot…so simple.
Thank you for being so kind to share these amazing tips on cooking dried garbanzo beans 🙂 Bless you!
I have always frozen hummus, whether large size container or single serve – I separate the large volume into smaller volumes, whether single serve or larger that will sit ready to use until I need to pull out some of my frozen stash — I also purchase single s
serve quac from Costco and freeze — wonderful to have on hand —— My friend Elsie gave me advice to use 1/4 c sesame seeds to 3 c canned beans – in place of tahini —- in blender or processor combine lemon juice, olive oil, sesame seeds and and garlic. add a little liquid from beans if
needed —–process until smooth and creamy. gradually add chick peas and blend until smooth . Stir in seasonings – yummy — big difference in price fro using tahini — the recipe may be halved
Joi poulin says
hey love the recipes! we are canning some garbanzos right now and would like to make the humus…can we make the tahini sesame paste? or do we have to purchase it? and the big question how do we preserve the hummus? is it pressure can-able?
Yvette Tillema says
I make the tahini every time. I use the bean cooking water and lemon juice with raw sesame seeds in vitamx to make a loose tahini which I than add garbozos ans spices.its great!
As you know and as I recently discovered falafel works best if you grind the uncooked, soaked garbanzos before deep frying. But do you have any experience grinding soaked beans before making hummus. I’ve got the paste cooking now on low heat … not sure if it’s working but it sure is smooth! I can never get a truly smoith hummus, so I’m looking for other ways to achieve this.
I have never tried grinding the soaked beans before cooking them but it is an interesting idea. I have extended the process, which seems to make the paste smoother, by soaking the beans, cooking them and then leaving them in the water until they cool, and then in the refrigerator for another day, before grinding in the food processor. That made them smoother.
Most recently I started using a pressure cooker, and I am experimenting on the time at pressure that is needed. It really speeds up the process and I can start with dry beans to hummus in just a few hours.
I love making hummus. Always try to be creative and add something different. I like to add some pesto, bacon bits, siracha mayo, or spinach.
Just read all the comments on this page re hummus, what a pleasure! I have only made a couple of batches of hummus and am delighted with the results, much better and WAY cheaper than commercial hummus. I found that keeping the water from the cooking and adding as needed was definitely an improvement over tossing the drained liquid. I am pleased to see options for tahini, as well. I’m on the tiniest healthy budget and appreciate all the contributions made by hummus enthusiasts. I’ve been sprouting mung beans regularly for topping the hummus on organic rice cakes, along with avocado when available. appreciatively linda,
Nice page. I have been making hummus for a couple of years and finally decided to make my own garbanzo beans. And yes they are far superior to the canned version.
I got a great hummus recipe from Joy of Cooking believe or not. But it’s quite a bit different in quantities than yours. For the same amount of beans it calls for 3/4 cup of lemon juice. 2/3 cup of tahini. 2 cloves of garlic. 1 teaspoon of salt. I add a little extra garlic and some cayenne and cut back on the salt.
(it also calls for olives(!) which I tried once but didn’t like.)
Ellen in Conn says
Why would you freeze these? They were initially dried so that they would store well and cheaply (in a used glass jar – free!). To then process more of them than you need to an unstable (but delicious) state, and then use more containers and now electricity to store them again, and then have to bring them out in good time to thaw or else use even more electricity to microwave them… it just seems silly and wasteful to me. I keep dried garbanzos on the shelf in the pantry. No extra expense. Um, well, that is, until my husband decides he needs to make hummus RIGHT NOW so he goes to the store to buy a couple of cans … 😉
I freeze because I cook enough to make at least 5 two cup containers. It’s like having 5 cans in the cupboard. I’m 45 minutes from the market and I only use the energy to cook one time. Plus they are organic and not available locally. I cook a pot full in my pressure cooker. This is what works for me.
“This is what works for me”. You are so right! Actually, I think I was “channeling” my German grandmother when I said “silly and wasteful”. Please forgive us, that was really rude.
Emily from Frugal Living NW says
This comment made my night. Love it. Thanks, Ellen! (and Yvette and the German grandmother)
Yvette Tillema says
Thanks, I admit to being a little bit perturbed. I also buy them 25 pounds at a rip, dried and store dried beans in fridge or freezer. They come in brown paper, doubled bags. No plastic. Every time I see a plastic bag blowing in the wind I remind my self to try, try to get it out of my life. I joined a UNFI co-op and purchase bulk garbonzos, lentils, black beans, rice, oats in large quantities. 50 pounds of oats, lasts me a year. I just got organic oats from Canada through the co-op for 99cents a pound. We buy no cereal, I make Museli (cold soaked oats) or granola instead. Do we have a Museli thread?
Anyhow, it’s a big pain to drive to market because we live in the mountains and I’d rather run the freezer than the car and almost anything I want it’s usually better to make than to drive and buy. I’m really into making two six cup loaves of bread, no knead method, bake them at same time, two varieties, store them in the dutch oven, no plastic again.
Thanks, my faith has been restored. funny thing, I made hummus last night and sat down this morning and had some for breakfast and caught this thread. I wish the best to all, the whole wide world.
I live a mile from the food co-op and I work there, running the bulk department. I tend to forget about people who live far away from stores. Although I “ought” to live out in the sticks, growing and hunting and raising and canning and foraging … I live in a little city. And I work at a food store. It narrows my focus and makes me a bit provincial.
My Mom did a lot of those things – we went out berrying along the power lines in New Jersey and made many jars of jelly. She loved grape jelly best, because of the beautiful ruby red color that came through when she put the jars on the windowsill. In those days, corn had to be processed right away, so she took us in the car to the farm stand so we could start shucking the bushel bag full of corn and maybe have it half done by the time we got home. It had to be in the freezer within 4 hours of being picked.
Me, I garden and keep chickens. At the moment I have 10 chooks and they have been producing a total of one egg every few days. I think it’s turned into a retirement home for them. But I don’t do it for financial reasons any more, but so that I see the earliest morning and early dusk sky every day. Also because I don’t like to kill animals that used to be so good to me. And they are doing a nice job on the garden when the snow isn’t covering it.
hey ellen in Conn.. who are you to judge the ease of cooking more than you need, saving on energy the first time round? no one has to justify them selves to you
Well good grief, I keep trying to “pin” this recipe and it keeps coming up as strawberry rhubarb pie….YUCK
Kate from Frugal Living NW says
Oh, we’ll have to fix that. Thanks for the heads up.
THe finer garlic is chopped, the stronger the taste.
Diane Mills says
I have been making hummus from dried beans and find it a much smoother texture than I get from canned beans. I freeze the hummus in plastic containers and it is great when thawed. I also started making my own celery juice and using it for the liquid in place of olive oil. It reduces the calories from fat, adds a nice flavor and eliminates the need for salt, for those trying to reduce salt in their diet.
Excellent idea on the celery juice. Your goals of reducing fat and salt fit right in line with mine, so I’ll be trying this today. Thanks much!
The olive oil is a healthy fat.
Ann Wright says
I am absessed with making and eating hummus. I put it on everything. I haven’t put it on cold ceral just yet, but everything else. I have even dried it in my dehydrator like a fruit roll up. I have put it in ice cube trays and frozen it to put in stews, soups,crockpot with roast. I love that you can eat alot of it and it is about 10 calories for a large amount. It is great grilled inside hot jalapeno peppers with cream cheese and wrapped with bacon around the pepper, great on pizza grilled on the grill, great in stuff peppers with rice and other veggies, on celery sticks,etc.. I have never eaten can beans, it is hard to find the fresh chickpeas/garbanzos beans. When I do, I buy alot and make lots of hummus and freeze it or freeze the beans. I grow my own elephant garlic ,it gets as big as an apple and I roast this and put hummus on it and it is so yummy. I carry some hummus in a container and when I go out to eat , I bring it to put on my food. I have spoiled myself so bad that I eat it on everything and I can’t eat food with our hummus. I love reading your articles and what people have wrote in. Can you grow your own peas,/beans? We grow alot of sesame seeds here where I live.Great photos and information.
Yvette Tillema says
I add the reserved bean liquid, lemon juice, olive oil first into high speed blender along with sesame seeds and make a very liquid tahini paste. Next the rest of the ingredients. I use quite a bit more seeds than this recipe. Personal preference. I have a vitamix. Lately I’m into smoked paprika on top. I often don’t add olive oil in recipe but drizzle on top.
Richard Huber says
Very nice on how to cook garbanzos. But now we’ve got the base, how about a method for converting sesame seeds into tahini?
Kate from Frugal Living NW says
Get a the highest power blender you can find (Blendtec or Vitamix) dump in a cup and set to high until you see a paste.
In India we cook dried beans and lentils all the time. Usually we soak it over night and next day we pressure cook it to 4-5 whistles. Thats why every Indian household has a pressure cooker 😀