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HUMMUS 101 from Plant-Powered Families

Those of you who have followed my work know that I love my hummus. Our entire family loves hummus. I make many different versions, taking many liberties with the pure definition of “hummus”! Here is my basic, traditional version of hummus. Freshly cooked chickpeas taste best, but busy parents will often rely on canned beans—that’s perfectly fine!
Servings 4 - 4 1/2 cups


  • 4 cups cooked chickpeas rinsed and drained, if using canned
  • 1/4 cup tahini or more, if you like it even nuttier!
  • 2-3 tbsp nutritional yeast optional; see note
  • 1 medium clove garlic sliced or quartered (see note)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 4-5 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice to taste
  • 2-4 tbsp water


  • In a food processor, combine the chickpeas, tahini, nutritional yeast, garlic, sea salt, black pepper, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of the water, and puree until smooth, adding 1–2 tablespoons water to thin as desired. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times, and continue pureeing until very smooth. Season to taste with additional salt, black pepper, and/or lemon juice, and serve.


Nutritional Yeast Note: Classic hummus recipes do not include nutritional yeast. However, I have found that kids often like the cheesy flavor that it lends. If you are encouraging kids to eat more hummus, add the nutritional yeast—start with a bit less if you like, and adjust to taste!
Garlic Note: Many traditional versions of hummus include a heavy amount of garlic. Children typically do not like the sting of raw garlic, so I have included a modest amount in this recipe. Feel free to adjust to your own tastes. Serving Suggestions: Serve with crudité, pita breads, or tortilla chips, or on Hummus Tortilla Pizzas, page 138.