Hummus has a funny place in the food world. People either love it (“Hummus on everything!”)… or they’re not quite sure what it is (“What exactly is this stuff made of?”).
While it has soared in popularity in recent years, hummus still holds lots of surprises. Its bland color might lead you to think it has a bland flavor—but nothing could be further from the truth. As a dip or spread, it adds rich, distinct flavors to anything from fresh veggies to pita sandwiches.
Unlike other dips, hummus is made from beans--the crunchy chickpeas--which means that in addition to the fat and carbs it also offers up a good dose of fiber and protein. And that is one of the reasons why hummus is a great weight-loss food.
The fiber in hummus helps you feel full faster and stay full longer. Other dips, like ranch, lack fiber, which means you’ll end up eating a lot more before feeling satisfied.
To ensure you get the best of all hummus around, we put some popular brands--and four homemade recipes--to the test.
We threw a hummus tasting party at Good Shepherd Community Clinic, a local nonprofit, and invited their entire team to participate. We met hummus skeptics, hummus newbies, and even a few aficionados.
Each participant was entrusted with a score card and a numbered plate. They then proceeded down the hummus line and added a dollop of hummus to each assigned number.
After dipping veggies, pita chips, or crackers in each flavor, they scored it according to taste and texture.
We identified the best of the best, and now we’re sharing our recommendations with you. Here’s how they ranked:
It’s no surprise that the crowd pleaser was this herb infused Tuscan White Bean Hummus. The creamy cannellini beans give this dip a smooth texture that pairs well with veggies and cracker alike. And savory pine nuts and herbs give it a more aromatic and rich taste than the bitter hint of tahini in regular hummus. If you’re a hummus newbie, this is the best flavor to try first!
Roasted red pepper gives this mild hummus a smoky sweet flavor to counteract the bitter taste of the tahini. Even better? This hummus is made from non-GMO products, and is Certified Gluten Free which makes it a great choice for anyone worried about allergies.
We’ll be the first to admit that classic or original hummus can be off-putting for a lot of people because of the bitter taste of tahini - a creamy “butter” made from toasted sesame seeds. But the Pita Pal brand has found a perfect blend of ingredients that gives this spread its creaminess while still maintaining a mild taste, without relying on other flavors like red pepper or herbs. This hummus goes well with crackers or pita chips.
Our nutritionist is an all out hummus lover. When we asked her to share her favorite recipe in the hummus tasting party, she was torn between simplicity and all of her array of amazing flavors - including pumpkin hummus. In the end she chose her go to Garlic Rosemary Hummus because of how easy it is to prepare.
The hummus lovers at Eat Well Embrace Life like to live life on the edge when it comes to the tasty bean spread. Their edamame hummus rounds out the top 5 of our list, for a good reason--the roasted red peppers add a sweetness to the protein rich baby soybean in this unusual, though popular, recipe.
If you put money on me loving hummus ten years go, I would have bet against you. And lost. Thoroughly. Turns out, that first bite of the Middle Eastern spread I had at the local mediterranean joint isn’t all there is to hummus. And roasted red pepper was the saving grace when it came to making this dip a regular in our refrigerator. This recipe is a family favorite because it’s mild in taste and perfectly creamy--which makes it an ideal spread for a pita sandwich.
If you’re looking for an authentic Lebanese tasting hummus, Cedar’s Hommus is a wonderful choice. Smooth and creamy, with just a hint of tahini, this spread is the perfect fit for hummus lovers.
When my office roomie Michelle started gushing about this new Dill Hummus she had at a co-worker’s house, I was intrigued. But honestly, I didn’t really believe the fuss. Hummus is hummus, and dill? It can’t make THAT big of a difference. It took me a while to even try the spoonful she plopped on my plate. But when I did? My little hummus world tilted. Because fresh dill in hummus is EXACTLY what I’d been missing. And the next time she brought some in the office, I wasn’t shy. I ate an entire half cup!
Roasted garlic adds a sweetly spicy flavor to this classic hummus, and mixed with savory herbs, it transforms the original flavor into a delicious sandwich spread. Top with your favorite veggies, and sprinkle with a little cheese, for the perfect on the go lunch.
Sabra’s version of Red Pepper Hummus is no disappointment. Delicious with veggies and crackers alike, this dip is perfect for on the go meals--picnics and summer cookouts.
If you’re looking for a creative hummus recipe to make at home, look no further. Though not great as an introduction to hummus, this recipe is perfect for the seasoned hummus lover. The diced chiles kick up the flavor just a bit.
If you’ve ever been tempted to make a pita pizza, Sabra’s Roasted Garlic Hummus is the perfect spread! The rich, earthy taste pairs up well with veggies - both grilled or roasted.
If you’re a bagel lover, you’ll most likely enjoy Tribe’s Everything Hummus. Just like your favorite bread, this hummus bathes your taste buds in familiar flavors: poppies, onions, sesame. Definitely not for a hummus newbie. But if you’re adventurous when it comes to hummus, you won’t be disappointed.
The best hummus for weight loss is homemade, because you can control the ingredients that go into the dip. One fourth cup of homemade hummus can have the same amount of fat as just two tablespoons of store-bought hummus. That means you can eat twice as much of the homemade version! In some cases three times. The best part? You can fine-tune the taste exactly to your preference--don’t be surprised if you end up liking it better than the stuff served in restaurants or your local store!
Makes 9 servings
Serving Size: ¼ cup
Calories: 130 • Fat: 8g • Sodium: 260mg • Carbohydrate: 12g • Fiber: 3g • Sugar: 2g • Protein: 4g
Makes: 10 servings
Serving size: ¼ cup
Calories: 130 • Fat: 8g • Sodium: 330mg • Carbohydrate: 12g • Fiber: 3g • Protein: 4g
Makes 10 servings
Serving size: ¼ cup
Calories: 90 • Fat: 5g • Sodium: 240mg • Carbohydrate: 10g • Fiber: 3g • Sugar: 2g • Protein: 3g
Makes: 10 servings
Serving size: 1/4th cup
Calories: 80 • Fat: 4g • Sodium: 330mg • Carbohydrate: 10g • Fiber: 3g • Sugar: 2g • Protein: 3g
A study found that people who regularly eat hummus tend to weigh less and have healthier diets—so why not get in on this delicious trend? Whether you’re a hummus expert or someone wondering what the foodie fuss is all about, we think you’ll like our testers’ favorite, Eat Well Embrace Life Tuscan White Bean Hummus. Add it to your shopping list this week—or try one of our simple recipes for a homemade version.
Hummus tastes amazing in a Pita Pocket Sandwich or Veggie Wrap. And, once you start eating it, don’t be surprised if you find yourself eating more raw veggies--because dipping them in hummus can be absolutely addictive!