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Restaurant Style Hummus

Recipe Info

Difficulty: Easy
Mess Level: Low
Yield: 6 Servings
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: None


  • 1 15 oz Can Chickpeas
  • ¼ Cup Tahini Paste
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2 Medium Cloves Garlic
  • 1 ½ Cups Olive Oil
  • ½ teaspoon Coarse Kosher Salt


  1. Rinse and drain the chickpeas well, then add them to the bowl of a food processor. Add in the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and salt.
  2. Pulse the food processor a few times to begin the mixing process then turn it on and slowly drizzle in your oil until the hummus reaches your desired texture.
  3. Taste and adjust if needed. Enjoy!

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Savannah Says...

  1. Can I use a blender to make this?

    1. You're not making a chickpea smoothie!
      Unless you have a really good blender I wouldn’t try it. The blender is built for liquids and if your hummus falls into the liquid category we need to take another look at your methods. 😉
  2. Can I substitute some of the oil for water?

    1. You betcha!
      Although I haven’t tested exact amounts so try at your own risk, I would start with 1-2 Tablespoons in with the chickpeas and then add oil until it is smooth.
  3. What can I use to make different flavors?

    1. Get creative!
      You can use a roasted bulb of garlic, roasted beets, dill, pine nuts, roasted red pepper… You have as many options as you can imagine!

Ramblings of a Line Cook

I was working as a prep cook in a fairly high-end restaurant a few years back. A prep cook is essentially the runt of the litter, you get assigned jobs like peeling five pounds of garlic, finely dicing quarts and quarts of mirepoix (carrot, celery, onion), running fries to the line when a panicked line cook bellows back at you, the list goes on.

I lived in a constant state of nervous anxiety about messing up the gallons and gallons of product I was making (Someday I’ll tell you about the “Tomato Mistake”) and the shrewd Sous Chef with the glasses had little patience, short answers, and high expectations.

The whiteboard that hung above the prep sink in the back of the kitchen had a running list of projects for me to start on. That particular day “Hummus” appeared on my list and I breathed a sigh of relief and went to get the recipe from the worn-out folder… I could make hummus! The dried chickpeas had been soaking since yesterday in a 24-quart container and I was in the middle of awkwardly fishing them out and weighing them when the sous chef materialized next to me and ordered “Wait! I want to make that hummus with you.”

I stopped and then tried to look very busy doing nothing while I waited for him to reappear. He strode over, added the chickpeas to the food processor, and took the jar of tahini paste. He snatched a large spoon and dolloped a HUGE amount of tahini in with the chickpeas. I remember watching the gooey, brown paste fall while he said in a matter-a-fact voice “Hummus is an olive oil and chickpea puree. This recipe calls for water and water has no place in hummus, it is flavorless!“

He added lemon juice, a few cloves of garlic and then pressed the “on” switch and began pouring in olive oil. The mixture went from dry to chunky, to creamy and smooth. He twisted the lid off which stopped the machine mid-spin and turned to me “Now what haven’t I added?” “Salt” I blurted, pleased with myself for knowing.

“Correct,” he said. He handed me the box of salt and walked away. And I tasted the hummus he had so casually thrown together and it was amazing. It was worthy of the $14 we charged for it on the appetizer page.

I’d made hummus before and wondered why, with the same ingredients, it never tasted like this. I’ll tell you why, I used too much lemon, not enough tahini and I didn’t fully understand what I was doing. And now that we’re safely out of earshot of the sous chef, I’ll let you in on a little secret… You can add a little water if you want to and it will still be ok. 😉

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