Healthy Snack of the Week: Homemade Hummus
Hummus and chips certainly ranks among the easiest of healthy snacks to keep on hand and to serve.
Just don’t spoil it by telling your kids that grocery store hummus is usually made from mashed chickpeas (neither chick nor pea), also known as garbanzo beans.
Beans, in general, are good for them—low in fat while full of protein, fiber, and vitamins such as potassium and iron.
While there are plenty of high-quality and quite-delicious hummus varieties available at your local market, making your own hummus enables you to control the flavor and the content. Utilizing a canned product from your pantry shelf provides the option of creating your hummus any time you want.
For the most basic hummus, take one drained 15-ounce can of garbanzo beans, one-third cup of tahini (sesame paste), one-quarter cup of lemon juice (about two lemons if freshly squeezed), two cloves of garlic (cut in half), and a teaspoon of salt. Combine on low-speed in a blender or food processor.
For an interesting twist, try making sweet potato hummus. Add a large, cooked sweet potato (which has cooled) to a mixture of cooked chickpeas (two cups); two tablespoons of olive oil; four tablespoons of tahini; lemon juice; two garlic cloves; a tablespoon of cumin; and dashes of cinnamon, salt, and black pepper. To spice up this version, consider a teaspoon of sriracha sauce.
Another chickpea idea—chickpea poppers—comes recommended by Brenda Kline, a registered dietitian and nutritionist from Northern Virginia.
“I made them with my grandchildren last week,” she says. “They love chickpeas and love to help out. Food should be fun in addition to being healthy. With this recipe, I let them do the measuring and it still only took about three minutes (to prepare).”
What’s your favorite hummus recipe? Share your experience with our K12 readers.
Seth Livingstone is a veteran writer and editor who has spent much of his career in sports journalism covering multiple Olympic Games, Super Bowls, World Series, and Daytona 500s. He covered the Boston Red Sox throughout the 1980s and 1990s before joining USA Today and Baseball Weekly in 1999. He maintains his membership in the Baseball Writers Association of America and is a Hall of Fame voter. Seth holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Northeastern University and has also worked as a substitute teacher (all grades and subjects). He lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and has two grown children.