Dips, Dips, Dips (& more dips!)


I love hummus… but I have a dark secret! I have always made a terrible hummus and have never found a good recipe, so I always buy it from supermarkets. However I thought I’d try again when I got Dreena Burton’s new book. I am SO happy I did. This is the best ever hummus recipe. Make it now! I’m never going back to supermarket hummus now. If you use canned chickpeas it only takes a few minutes to wiz up a big batch. I think the nutritional yeast really adds to the flavour and also gives you some B12 so I reckon it’s a win, win! I’d recommend making the recipe exactly as Dreena suggests and then you can adapt it to suit your own personal taste, for example maybe add a bit more garlic or less tahini. I also really like the fact there is no oil in this recipe. Enjoy!

Makes 4–41/4 cups

  • 4 cups cooked chickpeas (rinsed and drained, if using canned)
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2–3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 medium clove garlic, sliced or quartered
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 4–5 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice to taste
  • 2–4 tablespoons water

In a food processor, combine the chickpeas, tahini, nutritional yeast, garlic, sea salt, black pepper, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of the water, and puree until smooth, adding 1–2 tablespoons water to thin as desired. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times, and continue pureeing until very smooth. Season to taste with additional salt, black pepper, and/or lemon juice, and serve.

Hummus 101

Hummus 101


So, after finding a great hummus recipe, I’ve been exploring lots of different dips. Although I’m a big chickpea fan this lentil hummus recipe really caught my eye. It takes a little longer to make than the Hummus 101 because you have to cook the red lentils first, however it really is worth the while. I think I liked this even more than I like regular hummus. It really is a scrummy dip and again is very easy to make.

Makes about 3 cups

  • 1 cup dried red lentils, rinsed (see note)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1–2 medium-large cloves garlic (see note)
  • 3 1/2–4 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2–1 teaspoon lemon zest (see note)
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

Place lentils and water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to very low. Cover and let cook until all the water is absorbed and the lentils are fully softened, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 1/2 hour or longer. In a food processor, add the cooked lentils, garlic, tahini, sea salt, coriander, lemon zest, paprika, vinegar, and lemon juice. Puree until smooth. Add more garlic or salt to taste. This mixture is much looser than a traditional hummus. When refrigerated, it thickens considerably. So, you can enjoy it a little thinner, or wait until it is chilled. Serve with whole-grain pitas or tortillas.

Lentils Note: You can make the lentils a day or two in advance, and then refrigerate until ready to use. They will already be chilled for this dip, and therefore the puree will be thicker.

Garlic Note: Adjust garlic to taste.

Lemon Zest Note: While zest may seem like an unusual addition here, it truly adds some lovely flavour.

Ideas: Try adding 1/2 teaspoon of cumin to this puree for extra spice. You can bump up the garlic quotient for adults, and also try adding a punch of heat with hot sauce. If you want to add fresh herbs like cilantro, basil, or parsley, wait until the dip is cooled and then puree through.

Kitchen Tip: You can always make a double batch if you think you’d like to store portions of this dip in the freezer!

Red Lentil Hummus

Red Lentil Hummus


The picture of this dip looked beautiful so I was keen to try it. I liked the fact it used two types of beans and it’s got a vegetable (pumpkin) and some seeds in there too. It’s a creamy, lightly smoky hummus and has the brilliant flavour and colour of pumpkin! I was lazy and didn’t toast the pumpkin seeds and it still tasted great.

Makes about 5 cups

  • 1 can (14 oz) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14 oz) white beans (cannellini or other), rinsed and drained (see note)
  • 1 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2–2 tablespoons tahini to taste
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 rounded teaspoon allspice
  • 1 large clove garlic, sliced or quartered (see note)
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup toasted pumpkin seeds (see note; reserve about 2–3 tablespoons for garnish)

In a food processor, add the chickpeas, white beans, pumpkin, tahini, sea salt, cumin, paprika, allspice, garlic, lime juice, and maple syrup. Puree until very smooth. Add more garlic or spices to taste, if desired. Then, add most of the pumpkin seeds (reserving a couple of tablespoons), and pulse the mixture. Transfer mixture to a serving dish, and top with remaining pumpkin seeds. Serve with whole-grain pita breads, tortilla chips, warm whole-grain bread, and more.

Beans Note: The combination of chickpeas and white beans makes this hummus a little creamier than using just chickpeas alone.

Garlic Note: As with many recipes, adjust garlic to taste when making for your family. Kids usually pick up on the sting of garlic quite quickly, so use a smaller clove to make it kid-friendly.

Pumpkin Seeds Note: To toast pumpkin seeds, place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 400°F for several minutes until they turn a golden colour and you can smell a nutty aroma. This won’t take long, maybe 5–7 minutes, possibly longer depending on your oven. Just be sure to watch them after 6–7 minutes, as they can burn quickly.

Pumpkincredible Hummus

Pumpkincredible Hummus


I like guacamole and it is always disappointing to see that many shop bought guacamole is not suitable for vegans. I liked the look of this recipe because of the added protein boost from the white beans. Again it was very simple and quick to make. It was my least favourite of the four dips I tried from this book although it was still pleasant. However my partner thought it was delicious so I thought I should share it anyway. I think next time I would definitely add garlic or some salsa as Dreena suggests.

Makes about 3 cups

  • 2 lightly packed cups roughly chopped/sliced ripe avocado
  • 1 cup white beans
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2–2 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Water, to thin as desired

Place the avocado, white beans, sea salt, lemon juice, and water in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Season to taste with additional salt and/or lemon juice.

Ideas: Kick it up for the adults by stirring in one of these add-ins: a few tablespoons of a mild salsa, minced fresh parsley or cilantro, or grated garlic. Try pureeing in a handful or two of baby spinach (this will smooth out best in a Blendtec). It will simply intensify the green colour and you’ll have added a little extra green power!

White Bean Guacamole

White Bean Guacamole

Thanks to Dreena Burton for her permission to use recipes and photos from Plant Powered Families.