Shelly’s Hummus Recipe

BASIC Hummus

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 15 mins
  • Serves: 12, Yield: 3 cups


  • 2 (15 ounce) cans garbanzo beans
  • 1/2 cup tahini (sesame seed paste – buy in a jar, or make your own… see below)
  • 6 tablespoons FRESH lemon juice (or MORE – to taste)
  • 3 garlic cloves, pressed (or MORE – to taste – I always just use Costco’s pre-minced garlic)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin (or MORE – to taste)
  • salt and pepper (to taste)


  1. Drain beans and reserve the liquid when you do so.
  2. Blend beans in a food processor, along with the other ingredients and 1/4 cup of the liquid.
  3. Process until the mixture is smooth.
  4. Add liquid until the desired consistency is reached. (Add bean liquid LAST – sometimes you won’t need it if you add other wet ingredients in modifications below)
  5. Adjust seasonings along with more cumin, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

For Tahini:

Buy 2-3 cups HULLED (Hull-less?) white sesame seeds in bulk at Fred Meyer or Pilgrim’s.

Make Tahini ahead of time, because it’s probably the most time-consuming part of the deal. Once you toast & grind, you can store in the fridge for quite a long time (a couple months??).

Put seeds in Teflon frying pan on medium high and stir constantly until they start to get golden, but not too brown – basically toasted.

Cool them down by pouring them into another pan or container (doesn’t take very long once they’re out of the hot pan).

Pulse in food processor until it starts to turn into paste/ball. It won’t really be very smooth, like REALLY dry peanut butter, but as soon as it pastes up enough you can use it for the “tahini ingredient” for the hummus and then just mix everything there… the point is to just not have little seeds in the hummus.



  • Sub a few tablespoons of the lemon juice for lime juice
  • 1-2 seeded, fresh jalapenos (to taste)
  • ½-3/4 bunch of cilantro (to taste)
  • Agave syrup and/or rose’s lime juice (adjust lemon/lime juice accordingly) to add sweetness – again, TO TASTE – I like things spicy/sweet so I tend to add more sweet than others might.
  • Green onion – ¼ cup?

Red Curry/Thai

  • Cilantro (to taste – maybe ½ bunch?)
  • Fresh Basil – preferably Thai basil, but regular fresh basil works too.
  • Sub peanut butter or peanuts for half of tahini (or just add additional peanut/peanut butter if you want a nuttier flavor)
  • Red curry paste (really thick red, concentrated paste from asian food market – maybe Trader Joe’s? can’t remember if Fred Meyer has it… – if you can’t find, some sort of red or green curry seasoning/paste would probably work – just not the yellow/Indian version)
  • Sub some lime juice for the lemon juice again
  • Pineapple/pineapple juice or Agave syrup/sweetner/rose’s per comment above
  • Green onion – ¼ cup?
  • Lemongrass? (haven’t tried)


  • Sundried tomatoes (usually use Costco big jar – rinse in warm water to soften & remove most of oil)
  • Feta – TINY bit – like maybe a teaspoon to start – really goes a LONG way
  • Kalamata olives – maybe ¼ cup? Adds some interesting “tang”
  • Onion – usually use green, but white/yellow would be more fitting for Mediterranean so would have a bit of “bite.”


  • Cilantro
  • Jalapeno
  • Taco seasoning and/or chili powder
  • Cayenne to taste
  • Ground Adobo and/or Chipotle powder to taste
  • Lime juice sub for some lemon


  • Oregano
  • Basil
  • Sundried Tomatoes (drained/softened)

Other notes:

  • Sub almost any other kind of bean to mix it up (e.g. sub a can of black beans or kidney in the taco/mexi)

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