When it comes to snacking and dips, I must say that hummus is my go to for being healthy, filling and versatile. I like to spice mine up a bit and this Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus is a kicker in flavor.
Served with either store bought or home made pita chips for dipping I usually add some sliced Persian cucumbers and tomatoes on the plate, too. Made in mere minutes if using canned chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans), whatever you call them, their transformation into this dip is wonderful.
Hummus is a Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dip that I have been a fan of forever.
For this Cilantro Jalapeño Hummus you need to remember to get those dried beans soaking overnight if making your own. I sometimes think of a dish to make and then realize one of the processes is a think-ahead one. I recently wrote a post entitled Forgot to soak your beans? Here’s a Quick Soak Method in my Tips & Tricks section on this, and I use it if I don’t do it the night before to save time! Feel free to use canned.
Making hummus from your own beans as opposed to using canned is so much better because I can have better control of the seasoning and flavor of the beans, plus it’s less expensive.
Hummus is basically a mixture of cooked, mashed chickpeas blended with tahini (ground sesame seed paste), olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic. I have a Vitamix and on occasion make my own tahini if none is on hand. I get mine from my local market that specializes in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern foods, the Balboa International Market up in Clairemont, San Diego.
Tahini is basically sesame seeds ground to a paste, although the oil keeps it the consistency of a goopy peanut butter. It is the ingredient I always missed in my earlier attempts at making this and used to use sesame oil as an alternate. Not the same, don’t do it. The consistency of the hummus gets thinned and oily.
I first read about the addition of the tahini years ago in Claudia Roden’s beautiful cookbook, The New Book of Middle Eastern Food. Check it out, there are so many good things going on in that book! Her recipe for Preserved Lemons inspired me to try, and step it up spice wise, and make my Preserved Lemons – Moroccan Style.
I like to use dried chickpeas, soak them overnight and cook until tender, but feel free to use canned. I toss them in salads, on soups or toast in the oven for snacking. 1 pound of dried chickpeas (about 3 cups) ends up becoming about 7 cups cooked. For this recipe you will need 1/2 the dried and cooked (3 cups total) or use two 15 ounce cans.
As a side note, each can when drained is about 1 1/2 cups total. In this recipe you can use 1 can with liquid and 1 can drained.
You can use either a food processor or Vitamix, but you will need to blend the cilantro, jalapeño, garlic, olive oil, tahini and lemon juice to a purée. Add the kosher salt and cooked chickpeas and continue to blend until this is a smooth, thick paste forms. If it gets too thick add more lemon or olive oil to thin. Season to taste.
I love to serve this Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus with pita chips and sliced Persian cucumbers and tomatoes. There are so many different varieties out there to choose form and if not making my own my choice is definitely Waleed’s as they come in a variety of seasonings on top.
Just spread the hummus on a plate, drizzle with some good olive oil and serve with the chips. In this recipe I added some whole chickpeas like I make in my Turkish Roasted Chickpeas on top, too.
This Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus is just the perfect snack and so healthy for you. You can try other herbs and spices and create your own flavored hummus. Come back and let me know your favorite. Enjoy!
This post has been updated with new photographs and recipe for cooking chickpeas from scratch.
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- 16 oz dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans) OR
- 2 15oz cans cooked garbanzo beans (one can drained)
- 1 bunch cilantro
- 2 jalapeños, stems removed
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 6 gloves garlic
- 6 tbsp tahini
- kosher salt to taste
- garnish with sumac (optional)
- Soak the garbanzo beans overnight in water without any salt. The water should be covering them by at least 2 inches, this will be absorbed. Add more water to the bowl if needed. OR you can use 2 cups canned garbanzo beans instead.
- Drain and cook the pre-soaked garbanzo beans in a pot with 1 inch of water covering. Bring to a boil and cook for 90 minutes, or until they are soft. Drain and set aside.
- In a food processor or Vitamix, blend all of the cilantro, jalapeño, garlic, olive oil, tahini and lemon juice to a purée. Add the kosher salt and 3 cups cooked garbanzo beans (OR 2 cans cooked, one drained) and continue to blend until this is a smooth paste. Save remaining cooked garbanzo beans for other use. If it gets too thick add more lemon or olive oil to thin. Season to taste.
- Serve with soft or toasted pita bread chips. Garnish hummus with a drizzle of good olive oil and sumac if desired.