Sadie Holloway loves trying out new easy-to-make recipes that help her enjoy a healthy, stress-free lifestyle!
Did you forget about that potluck party your friend is throwing tonight? Are you looking for a fresh and healthy appetizer you can make without much fuss? Then homemade hummus is perfect for almost any casual get together. It's inexpensive, easy to prepare, and you may already have most of the ingredients on hand!
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- 1 can chick peas, drained
- 1–2 cloves garlic
- 1–2 tablespoons olive oil
- lemon juice, squeezed from 1/2 of a fresh lemon
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- ground black pepper, to taste
If you want an authentic hummus flavor, without a strong garlic taste, use less garlic. Start with 1/4 a clove, and add more as you like. You can also roast or sautee the garlic first to reduce the garlic’s kick. Cooked garlic is a bit sweeter and tangier than raw garlic.
How to Make Healthy Hummus
- If you want a super smooth hummus, remove the skins of the chickpeas by gently squeezing them until the skin comes off. This will take a bit of time, but the effort is worth it if you prefer a creamier hummus. If you want a high-fiber, chunkier, hummus, leave the skins on.
- Put the chickpeas in a food processor or blender with garlic, olive oil, ¼ cup water, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. (You can add more salt to this hummus recipe if you like, but it’s better to start with a pinch first so that the mixture doesn’t end up being too salty.)
- Blend or puree the ingredients until very smooth. If the hummus mixture is too thick, add more water, one tablespoon at a time. If you want an extra creamy texture, a bit more olive oil until your hummus is the desired consistency.
- For an extra spicy hummus, add a dash or two of cayenne pepper. Siracha sauce is another ingredient you can add to achieve the level of heat you want in your hummus recipe. Dried chili pepper flakes are another option to increase the spiciness of your hummus.
- If you find that your hummus is too runny, you can thicken the mixture by adding 2–3 plain crackers to the mixture and blend until the mixture is firm enough for dipping and spreading.
- Garnish with black pepper, paprika, or lemon rind.
- Whole grain chips, crackers, and crispy breads
- Tortillas, pita bread and other flat breads
- Sliced fresh vegetables including bell peppers, carrots, snap peas, and other 'dippable' veggies
Hummus makes a tasty spread for sandwiches, wraps, paninis and toasted baquette (crostini). It is goes well with grilled chicken breast, lamb, beef, and pork.
Why is this hummus recipe good for you? Hummus is an excellent source of protein. In fact, it's a favorite dish of many vegetarians who want to make sure their diet is balanced and nutritious.
The fiber content of hummus is quite high thanks to its main ingredient: chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans). If you want to get the maximum number of fiber grams as you can out of this hummus recipe, don't peel the chickpeas. Your hummus won't be quite as smooth and creamy as this recipe, but some people prefer a chunkier texture.
Garlic has always been well-known for its immune-boosting properties. Not only can it help you fight off colds, but it is also heart-healthy and can help protect against some of the harmful carcinogens that are caused by grilling at high temperatures. If you aren't a big fan of that garlicky after-taste, you can modify the amount of garlic you use in this hummus recipe to suit your palette.
The olive oil in this hummus recipe is considered a healthy fat that can help reduce bad cholesterol. Olive oil is also rich in Vitamin E and iron, and it contains a phytochemical that may help reduce joint and muscle inflammation.
When served with an array of colorful crudites such as sweet red bell peppers, crisp snap peas, and crunchy green beans, you can up the nutritional value of this healthy hummus recipe. One medium-sized red bell pepper has as much vitamin C as an orange, plus it's a great source of beta-carotene. Snap peas, green beans, and celery are high in fiber.
Nutrition Information Source: Chatelaine Magazine, Superfoods: Nature's Healers (bonus insert, April 2014)
© 2014 Sadie Holloway