Hummus is one of the easiest healthy appetizers to whip up and serve for nearly any occasion. From an intimate family gathering to a backyard barbecue, this simple blend of chickpeas and seasonings seems to fit.
Paired with gluten-free pita bread, tortilla chips or fresh cut veggies, hummus is a wonderful way to add some plant-based protein to your table, too.
My guests are always surprised to know I make my own hummus. They seem amazed at how silky smooth it is, just like the kind you buy. It’s really simple – I have 4 tips that I always follow for making smooth hummus at home. All you need are a few ingredients and about 10 minutes and you’re all set! Making your own hummus is a real money-saver, too. You can blend up several batches for what a small container of store-bought costs. Give it a try!
4 Essential Tips for Smooth Homemade Hummus
1. Remove skins from chickpeas.
This is somewhat time consuming and some argue it is not absolutely necessary for smooth hummus, but it does make enough of a difference to me, so I think it’s worth it. For canned or homemade chickpeas, simply place the chickpeas into a bowl, cover with warm water and use your fingertips to gently rub the chickpeas to loosen the skins. Drain and pick away skins and discard.
2. Add ingredients to the food processor in the correct order.
It is important to whip the tahini and garlic together with a small amount of liquid before the chickpeas go into the processor.
3. Process for enough time.
Patience is essential, as it takes several minutes (sometimes up to 10) for a smooth hummus in the food processor. You will also want to scrape down the sides of the bowl in between processing.
4. Drizzle olive oil into hummus very slowly as a last step.
This is extremely important for smooth, fluffy hummus. Allowing the oil to become emulsified in the mixture creates a lighter, smoother result.
Here’s my basic hummus recipe. Of course, it’s fun to experiment and change it up with different herbs, by adding roasted red pepper and even by using a unique sea salt as a finish on top before serving. Have fun creating your custom hummus at home!
Super Smooth Basic Hummus Recipe
- 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained (reserve a few tablespoons of the liquid; if you prefer, use home cooked chickpeas, just plan ahead since it takes time for them to soak and cook – see How to Cook Dry Beans)
- ½ – 1 teaspoon salt (the amount depends on whether you use unsalted, low salt or salted chickpeas)
- 1/3 cup tahini (this is sesame paste, available here)
- Several cloves roasted garlic (see How to Roast Garlic)
- Juice from 1 lemon (You can also include a bit of the lemon zest if you like.)
- 2 – 3 Tablespoons of the reserved liquid from the chickpeas (or water, if you prefer)
- 3 Tablespoons good quality extra virgin olive oil (2 Tablespoons go into the food processor, 1 Tablespoon is reserved for drizzling over the finished hummus in the serving bowl.)
Garnish is optional and the possibilities are endless; try Kalamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, or chopped fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley.
- Add tahini, garlic, lemon and 2 Tablespoons reserved liquid to your food processor; pulse several times, then process for 1 minute.
- Add chickpeas, ½ teaspoon salt and pulse a few times, then process for 2 minutes.
- Scrape down sides of processor bowl (processor is turned off, of course), then process for 1 minute more.
- With the lid on the processor and the “pusher” removed so that the chute is open, very slowly drizzle 2 Tablespoons of the olive oil into the bowl with the processor running. Process for 2 minutes to create light, airy hummus.
- Scrape down sides of processor (processor is turned off, of course) and process 1 minute more.
- Spoon into serving bowl, drizzle with 1 Tablespoon reserved olive oil, garnish as desired.
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