It’s possible that this has been done before, but I still feel like a genius. Over the holidays I did a lot of cooking, so much that I almost ran out of time to prepare everything I signed myself up for. And of course buying something pre-made was not an option—you know how I roll.

It was one of those moments where everything falls together just when you think things are coming unraveled. I needed something quick and simple to bring to a party that would travel well and didn’t require heating – hummus is the perfect go-to. Except, I didn’t have any chickpeas or tahini in my pantry. Never one to be easily deterred, I dug out some black sesame seeds and cooked black beans from my freezer and got to work. The seeds soaked as I prepared the rest of my offerings and the rest is history.


I present you with Black Hummus. Oh, it’s good and, dare I say, better than the classic chickpea version. I’ve been telling myself for a while now that I should try my hand at making tahini. Besides, I’ve made all kinds of other nut and seed butters, but sesame had somehow eluded my interest. Now I’ve gone a skipped the whole process, making the tahini while making the hummus and why not? It came together lighting fast and in a jam you could even skip the soaking process and have this lovely hummus at your fingertips in mere minutes. (Though you’d be sacrificing nutrients and digestibility skipping the soaking, so get those babies soaking for a long as you can.)


Open Sesame!

Sesame seeds are high in a lignan called sesamin, and are thought to lower cholesterol by inhibiting cholesterol manufacture in the liver and absorption from the diet. More widely known are the ability of sesame seeds to relieve constipation, remove worms from the intestinal tract, and support digestion, blood circulation and the nervous system.[1]

Sesamol, an antioxidant found in sesame seeds, helps prevent loss of muscle control and mental decline and is thought to be effective in managing and treating Huntington’s disease, a genetic disease that can lead dementia and paralysis. Sesamol also halts amyloid beta creation, which is found in the plaque in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. It is hoped that sesamol could be used in the treatment of the disease. [2]


Tasty Treat To-Go

Hummus has a great balance of protein, complex carbs and fat that will surely keep you satisfied for hours. It pairs well with raw veggies and crackers for a satisfying and well-balanced snack or use it as a spread in sandwiches or wraps. It travels well to work, school or on a hike and usually makes it through airport security as well.

This hummus has a milder flavor that lends itself to some experimenting. I’ve kept it simple here but don’t hold back – coriander would be awesome or add some salsa or hot sauce for a little fire, use lime instead of lemon and add some fresh cilantro to the mix.

Let me know how you experiments turn out in the comments below!

Black Hummus

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: about 2 1/2 cups


  • 1/3 cup black sesame seeds, soaked for 1-6 hours
  • 2 cups cooked black beans
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • few sprigs of cilantro to garnish
  • To Serve:
  • Chopped veggies such as carrots, cucumber, peppers, jicama, kohlrabi or rice crackers.


  1. Drain and rinse the sesame seeds well.
  2. Place all ingredients except for cilantro in a high-speed blender and blend until very smooth.
  3. Taste and add more salt or lemon to taste. If it is too thick add a tablespoon of water at a time to reach desired consistency.
  4. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve with veggies or crackers.

[1] Murray, Michael and Pizzorno, Joseph. The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, Atria Books. 2005 p.457. Print.

[2] Aggarwal, Bharat B. and Yost, Deborah. Healing Spices. New York: Sterling Publishing, 2011, p.218, Print.


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