white bean hummus

After a crazy month of May, including a whirlwind trip to Atlanta last weekend for BlogHer Food 2011, I’m ready for some calm. I’m craving simplicity, a day with no task more challenging than transferring clothes, heavy and damp from the washing machine, over to the dryer. I need a day to spend with my children at our community pool – Madeline and Oliver swimming and splashing each other, and me lying on a lounge chair with the book I’m reading. I want to catch up on the growing mountain of food magazines that I have neglected. I have two cookbooks at home that I’ve not earmarked and cooked from yet, and those gorgeous hardcovers are begging for my attention.

This weekend, I think to myself, just get me to this weekend. Three full days without work obligations, without travel, without children’s birthday parties to buy gifts for and attend, and without any home projects that must be accomplished before a certain deadline.

In the spirit of simplicity, I am sharing this white bean hummus recipe with you. This dip is an uncomplicated variation on traditional hummus made from chickpeas. Until recently, I never kept my pantry stocked with cans of chickpeas (of course, that was before my recent chickpea obsession). We’ve always had plenty of cans of white beans to pull off the shelf, though. So for this straightforward appetizer, I branched out from the chickpea to the white bean – and specifically, the cannellini bean.

The canned cannellini beans and tahini paste, when blended in the food processor with the other ingredients, make a savory dip that is creamy and reminiscent of traditional hummus. A dash of cayenne pepper kicks up the heat, and the amount can be adjusted to your own liking. Paired with crudités or pita chips or pretzels, white bean hummus makes an easy appetizer or snack for the lunch box.

And I am so about easy right now.

Yield: 6-8 servings

Total Time: 10 min

White Bean Hummus

Because the tahini (roasted sesame seed paste) tends to separate, be sure to stir it well prior to measuring it out and adding it to the food processor. Also, feel free to adjust the amount of cayenne pepper depending on how much heat you like.


1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (15.5 ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 garlic clove, peeled
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
Pita chips or crudités


Place parsley, tahini and next 7 ingredients (through cayenne) in a food processor. Process until smooth. Spoon into a bowl and serve with pita chips or crudités.

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12 Responses to “white bean hummus”

  1. 1
    diabeticFoodie — May 26, 2011 @ 4:16 pm

    Sounds great! I also have a version I do with cannellini, sweet potatoes and Parmesan.

  2. 2
    Sara @ Saucy Dipper — May 26, 2011 @ 7:18 pm

    Oh, I made this not long ago and was surprised at how delicious it turned out. A nice, well-rounded flavor. Enjoy your weekend!

  3. 3

    I’m so glad to know that you will have an opportunity to rest and recharge this weekend! From your recent tweets, it sounds like work has been pretty grueling for you lately. Hope you take the whole weekend to just enjoy the children, relax and maybe do a little cooking 🙂

  4. 4
    Cookin' Canuck — May 27, 2011 @ 11:10 am

    It sounds as though you have a wonderful weekend planned. I hope you enjoy every moment of it. This hummus is the perfect thing to be snacking on – I am tempted to make a batch for my family.

  5. 5

    I’m obsessed with chickpeas (+ butter beans)! I eat them everyday. true confession. It’s probably time for me to branch out and venture to white beans – need to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing and hope you have a lovely weekend! xx

  6. 6
    Maria Raynal — May 28, 2011 @ 10:48 am

    Cannellini beans are my all-time favorite. As are those unstructured, simple weekends. I hope you enjoy both!

  7. 7
    Chris — May 28, 2011 @ 11:07 am

    Love hummus, especially where there is a twist to it, like white beans instead of garbanzos. Yum!

    Enjoy your weekend!!

  8. 8
    Aggie — May 31, 2011 @ 9:50 pm

    Everything about your visions of simplicity sound absolutely wonderful. You’ll have to tell me more about your book and I’m going to look for those cookbooks at the bookstore…they are both new to me. I haven’t been traveling but know how you feel, the magazines are stacked, the cookbooks are staring and I feel like I’m just treading water, waiting for school to end so I can “catch up”.

    I am becoming a bit white bean dip obsessed myself, I’ve made a couple that I just love (one is Giada’s recipe), I will try this one next. Love having it around, especially on the weekends for snacking. Your plate looks delicious! Hope your weekend was as calm as you wanted it to be 🙂

  9. 9

    This looks perfect… I often keep white beans on hand, too, and I really love the mild, buttery flavor of them! Will definitely give this a try!

  10. 10
    Cookin' Canuck — June 6, 2011 @ 9:53 pm

    I already told you how much I love this appetizer. Would you consider sharing it the online Get Grillin’ & summer bbq event I am hosting (it’s appetizer week right now).

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  12. 11
    sweetsugarbelle — June 8, 2011 @ 6:49 am

    Simple and wonderful. I need to grab some tahini. Thats new for me *embarrassed* I live in a very rural area.

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