Hummus with homemade Tahini!

This last weekend, Winco put broccoli on sale. Now, recently I have really been enjoying cooked broccoli with rice, but I always have a hard time spending the $2.50ish a head it usually costs (have I mentioned that I’m cheap?) So, when my roommate came home from the store and told me she’d got two heads for just over two dollars, I was ecstatic!

Sesame seeds ready to be toasted

A little later in the day, I was once again inspired by my wonderful roommate, who happened to be cooking garbanzo beans and prepping snack bags of carrots and broccoli. I decided that I was going to try making hummus, which I could then enjoy with my raw broccoli.

Just finished making the tahini

When I tried looking up recipes, I remembered that hummus usually has tahini in it. Last year, my roommate decided to make cole slaw (or as she pronounces it, “coe slaw”), and I distinctly remember looking all over town for tahini and how expensive it was when we finally did find it. Not to be deterred, I googled “hummus recipes without tahini” and engaged my wonderful roommate in a lively discussion about how essential tahini really was in a hummus recipe. After learning that “yes, Katherine, you really need tahini”, and that it was approximately one million dollars (or around 8, to be more precise-but same difference), I had the bright idea to look up how to make tahini.

My faithful little helper, dutifully resisting jumping up on the counter.
My  little helper, dutifully resisting jumping up on the counter.

As it turns out, homemade tahini is fairly easy and inexpensive. I went to the store, and another cooking adventure began. Along the way, I got coffee with a friend and ended up dragging him to the store. He tried his best to convince me that trying to make my own tahini was a bad idea, that homemade hummus was a bad idea, and that food mills were one of the great inventions of the 20th century. Let the record show that he was wrong about at least two of the three things.

Enough with the story, let’s get down to the recipe:


1 cup sesame seeds

1/4 cup oil


3 cups garbanzo beans ( I like to cook my own, but canned would work fine too)

3 (or more!) tablespoons lemon juice

two heaping spoonfuls minced garlic

1 tablespoon ground pepper

1/2 tablespoon cumin

1/4 tablespoon cayenne pepper

salt to taste

  1. Preheat the oven to 375.
  2. Lay out the sesame seeds on a pan and toast them in the oven for 10 minutes. Turn them with a spatula every 3 or so minutes so they do not get too brown/burn.
  3. Take the seeds out of the oven and let them cool for about 20 minutes.
  4. Put the seeds in the food processor with the 1/4 cup oil and process until smooth, scraping down the sides.
    1. note: next time I make this, I will probably experiment with adding less oil.
  5. Done with the tahini! I just left mine in the food processor since I was going to be making hummus anyway.
  6. Add the garlic, lemon juice, and cumin. Blend until evenly mixed.
  7. Add the garbanzo beans and blend together, scraping down the sides frequently.
  8. Then, add the pepper and cayenne pepper, and salt. I would recommend adding the cayenne pepper a little bit at a time until you get to your preferred level of spiciness. Taste it and decide if you want to add more lemon juice (or anything else).
  9. Done! Enjoy:)

Next time I make this, I will probably try a few things to cut down on the amount of fat: 1) add less oil to the tahini 2) use a smaller tahini:bean ratio.

Calories: 528. This is per serving, with each serving as 1/4 of the recipe. Note: I use loseit to calculate my nutritional information. Chances are, it’s not exactly correct. Keep this in mind.



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