Sobbing into Your Sabra

HummusCOLOR450My story for this week is one of passion and betrayal, of the smooth, rich and popular getting ousted by a rough, rustic competitor.

As you may have guessed, this is a story about hummus.

Until now, I’ve been a devoted—even smitten—admirer of Sabra hummus. It’s the richest, creamiest, smoothest, and most balanced of the store-bought brands, plus it has all those sexy mix-ins like pesto, roasted garlic, and toasted pine nuts. Not to mention they sell it by the truckload at Costco—and when you like hummus as much as I do, truckload is definitely the quantity we’re talking about. (Don’t worry; I know it’s not actually good for you.)

I eat hummus on every raw vegetable you can imagine, and on crackers, chips, and pretzels, and I spread it on sandwiches (because mayo freaks me out). Hell, I’ve been known to eat it right off a spoon.

I was in a happy, committed relationship with Sabra until one day when Tony made a rogue suggestion. “Let’s just make our own hummus,” he ventured, “the way you eat that stuff, it’d be so much cheaper!” So, we cooked some dried chickpeas and whirled them in the food processor with garlic, cumin, cayenne, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Oh. My. God. “Good” just doesn’t describe it. I felt like I was cheating on my solid store-bought life-partner. All the things I thought I liked about hummus were all wrong now. This had a rustic, rougher texture, it wasn’t creamy so much as tangy and spicy and complex. And it cost a sum total of $1.50.

I tried the sad, neglected Sabra in my fridge a few days later and it’s creaminess tasted fake, it’s smooth texture seemed unnatural, and it lacked the spice and acid of the homemade stuff, and the mix-ins seemed cheap and gaudy like heavy make-up under fluorescent light.

This is now our go-to appetizer, and we’ve gone a bit wild with it. It works with canned beans or cooked dried ones. We’ve made it with chickpeas and cumin, red beans and smoked paprika, white beans and rosemary, and I am eager to try others. You can use any bean and any herbs or spices. I plan to experiment with different oils and acids—different vinegars and citrus juices.

And now that I know I can put my food processor in the dishwasher (thank you, Tony!), there is absolutely no reason not to make the homemade stuff.

Seriously, try this at your own risk. Once you’ve made homemade hummus (or bean dip), there is no going back. You can try, but you’ll wind up sobbing into your Sabra.

10 Comments

  1. says

    Yum! I love making these too. My favorite is white bean, rosemary and lemon.The other great thing about these home-made hummuses is that if by any chance you have some left over, add an egg, some breadcrumbs, maybe some chopped onions, peppers, carrots or whatever other vegetables you have around and you’ve got a great veggie burger!

  2. Maggy says

    Sharon, you are so right. I think I wrote a similar post a while back about making pesto. It’s amazing how simple it is to make things like hummus, yet we still buy it from the store. Not to mention the fact that a) it tastes better when you make it and b) it’s so much cheaper. I think a small tub of hummus is nearly $4. We bought a couple cans of chickpeas for about $1.50 and it made several cups. I made this hummus for my birthday party on Saturday and everyone loved it. It’s my new go-to recipe. Thanks!

    p.s. – Sarah, what a great idea! I will give that a try with my leftover hummus.

  3. says

    White bean dip with rosemary is my go-to snack, especially since rosemary grows wild around my house!
    I wanted to tell y’all that I made the granola recipe you posted a little while back and it’s PERFECT. Not only does it taste delicious, but it has the perfect texture for cereal or yogurt topping. So many granola recipes out there are too sweet and therefore they are too hard once cooked, and other recipes are too healthy tasting and not delicious. But yours is perfect. My new go-to! Thanks a bunch!

  4. Pam says

    It had been awhile since I made hummus and I had forgotten how ridiculously easy it is. And so good too. Remind me, Sharon, why hummus is not that good for you? Unless you’re eating lots of it exclusively on bread and crackers, it seems perfectly healthy. (Better for you than a brownie!)

  5. Lori says

    I”m on a hummus kick right now and always make it myself. Funny that you post this now. But why do you think it isn’t good for you?

  6. says

    We just had a discussion about Sabra’s superiority this weekend! But it’s true – I’ve made my own too and it is so much better. I need a bigger food processor though so I can make more at a time. Yum!

  7. Ket says

    I make my own too and it is yummy…btw, I always considered it a healthy snack. Why isn’t it good for you?

  8. susan says

    Hummus is a staple at our house but I was feeling a little guilty when the fam would polish off a couple tubs of Sabra’s in one evening — too pricey for me. Why did it not occur to me that maybe I could make my own? Thanks, Sharon. I’m making it this week — also liked the above idea from Sarah — veggie burgers!

  9. Hilabee` says

    Hello, just found ur site off of Pioneer Woman! I love hummus too! I eat some as a snack spread on a tortilla or pita or crackers (or anything that is mostly carbs) almost every day when I get home from work. I usually buy the Athenos kind. I tried the sabra brand, but I also found it to be lacking the tangy-ness and the texture of it was also much too smooth. I like the almost air whipped texture of the Athenos brand. I’ve never made hummus at home before, but I am more than willing to try! Thanks!

  10. says

    White bean dip with rosemary is my go-to snack, especially since rosemary grows wild around my house!
    I wanted to tell y’all that I made the granola recipe you posted a little while back and it’s PERFECT. Not only does it taste delicious, but it has the perfect texture for cereal or yogurt topping. So many granola recipes out there are too sweet and therefore they are too hard once cooked, and other recipes are too healthy tasting and not delicious. But yours is perfect. My new go-to! Thanks a bunch!

Share Your Comments & Feedback:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *