If you have a sesame allergy, hummus is off the menu unless it is sesame free.
Is it just me, or is hummus everywhere these days? With so many people focused on healthy or plant based eating, it seems very popular. Just look in the ready made dip cabinet at the supermarket. There are so many brands.
Unfortunately none of them are coming home with us. We have a family member with a very severe allergy to sesame. He reacts on contact. And hummus is made with tahini, which is of course sesame paste.
This makes hummus the sesame allergy sufferer’s equivalent of peanut butter when you have a peanut allergy. It is a popular snack, it’s sticky and it gets all over everything.
So we either avoid hummus altogether, or do what all allergy people do and make our own! Hummus without sesame can be a great option if you are having friends over and would like to serve a safe dip.Jump to Recipe
Sesame free hummus
Here is a really simple recipe for hummus which makes a lovely smooth dip. Without the sesame.
The first time I made my own hummus, I just use rinsed and drained chickpeas from the can. Rookie mistake! The chickpea skins leave you with a grainy dip instead of a nice smooth texture. The key is to either soak the chickpeas in a bowl with a 1/2 teaspoon of bicarb (baking) soda for an hour or to boil them for 20 minutes with the bicarb soda and enough water to cover the chickpeas. Either way, it helps the skins to come away and gives a smoother texture when blended.
- 1 can of chickpeas
- 1/2 teaspoon of bicarb (baking) soda
- 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 clove of fresh garlic, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon good quality olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon of fine sea salt to taste, or to taste
- Prepare the chickpeas. Drain and rinse first. (If you have an egg allergy as well, don’t forget to keep the liquid – aquafaba – as this is a fantastic egg replacer! You can freeze it in ice cubes trays for later, or use in a recipe like our egg and dairy free crunchy cornflake cookies.) Either place the chickpeas in a bowl with the bicarb soda and enough water to cover and leave for one hour, or do the same in a large saucepan and boil for 20 minutes. Then drain and rinse again.
- Blend the garlic, lemon juice and salt in a food processor. Add the cumin, drained chickpeas and olive oil and blend to a smooth texture.
Tips: This recipe can be adjusted for taste and texture. You can add more salt and lemon juice to taste. You can also add a small amount of water if you need a slightly thinner texture.
Serve your sesame free hummus in a bowl and garnish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of paprika or fresh parsley. And a sesame free pita or flat bread is a great accompaniment.
A word about kids and sesame allergy
If you have children with a sesame allergy, make sure that you talk to them about hummus. If you do make your own and your children eat it at home, they need to know that this is special hummus that won’t make them sick. Make sure they understand not to eat hummus that you haven’t made especially for them.
I also make a point of specifically telling my child’s teachers that hummus is made with tahini, which is ground sesame seeds. And that it is the sesame allergy sufferer’s equivalent of peanut butter in the classroom. It is a good opportunity to talk about the importance of not sharing food and washing hands, which is so important for all food allergies.
More on sesame allergy and more sesame free recipes
Find out more about sesame allergy and avoiding seeds, oil and tahini – Spotlight on sesame allergy: little seeds that can cause big reactions,
This sesame free hummus dip would be great as part of a dips platter. Why not try our dairy free French onion dip to go with it?
And make sure you have a look at the allergy-friendly recipes on our recipe page – all of them are free from sesame.
Sesame free hummus
- large sieve
- large mixing bowl or large saucepan
- food processor
- 1 can chickpeas (400g)
- 1/2 tsp bicarb (baking) soda
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 clove fresh garlic, chopped
- 1/2 tsp ground cummin
- 1 Tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp find sea salt, to taste
- Paprika, parsley and/or extra olive oil to garnish
- Drain and rinse the chickpeas.
- Place the chickpeas in a large bowl with the bicarb soda and enough water to cover. Lease to soak for 1 hour. Alternatively place the chickpeas and bicarb soda in a large saucepan, cover with water and boil for 20 minutes.
- Drain and rinse the chickpeas again to remove the skins.
- Blend the garlic, lemon juice and salt in the food processor. Add drained chickpeas, cumin and olive oil and blend until smooth.
- Use a spatula to empty the hummus into a serving dish. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika or fresh parsley and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil if desired.