Lemon Love and Basil Hummus

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Lemon Basil Hummus, Hummus, In my last post where I wrote about those delicious lemony dessert bars, I think mentioned that I disliked citrus fruits.  Well…that’s not actually correct.  I dislike citrus IN desserts – they just taste too healthy to me.  I need stuff like chocolate and peanut butter and caramel in my desserts (I know, not the healthiest comment coming from the nutritionist).  However, if we’re talking about citrus in savory dishes, oh yea, I love it.  Especially lemons.  Lemons and I…we’e close friends.  I buy a bag of lemons every week.  And yes, I use the entire bag.  Maybe I should take out stock in the lemon trade?  Is there a lemon trade?
Lemon basil hummus, hummus, healthy recipes, lemon recipes, hummus recipes Lemon trade or not, I use the juice and zest on a daily basis.  Generally I add it to salad dressings, sauces, squeezed over roasted or steamed veggies and a lot of the time to keep my sliced avocados from browning.  It’s also my go-to “something’s missing” ingredient.  You know what I mean…you make dinner, taste it and realize there’s just a little something missing.  And you can’t really put your finger on it?  Yup, add in a squeeze of lemon and your dinner is magically perfect.  Seriously…magically perfect.
LemonBasilHummus2 I’ve had this idea of a basil hummus in my head for a while now.  As some of you may know, Trader Joe’s has the BEST basil hummus on the planet (if you’ve never tried it, you just have to go get some…immediately).  I’m semi obsessed with this dip and figured if I’m buying a tub a week, I could probably make it myself for a bit cheaper.

So, as I was pureeing the chickpeas and a bunch of basil, I gave the hummus a quick taste.  Mmmm something was missing.  It needed…lemon juice!  Of course.  But instead of just a little lemon juice, I added the zest of a big fat lemon and the juice of two.  Um…wow!  This is so bright and lemony and basily.  I know, none of those are words, but it’s true.  It tastes pretty darn close to TJ’s and that is saying something.  Just absolutely delicious!

Now that I’ve saved you a trip to Trader Joe’s, let’s get on to the recipe!

Lemon Basil Hummus:

  • 2 cups chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tsp salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice of two lemons
  • 1 cup basil, semi packed
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (more or less for your desired thickness)


  1. Put all the ingredients except the olive oil into a food processor.  Pulse a few times until the mixture starts to come together.
  2. With the blade running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil.  Check half way through and scrape down the sides of the bowl and check for consistency.  Continue to add more oil if you want a thinner consistency.
  3. Hummus will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week.

You tell me!  What’s your favorite lemon dish?  What’s your trick for fixing the “missing ingredient?”  Name your favorite hummus flavor!


  1. Colleen @ Culinary Colleen

    March 25, 2013 at 11:39 am

    I haven’t tried TJ’s basil hummus, but I love every other flavor they have…so much so that I avoid buying it because I can seriously eat a container in one sitting! The lemon in this sounds great!

    • mewinebrenner

      March 25, 2013 at 1:36 pm

      The lemon really makes it! So bright and fresh!

  2. lindsay | rosemarried

    March 25, 2013 at 10:20 pm

    This looks so simple, fresh, and healthy. I never make my own hummus (because Trader Joe’s does it so well!), but I think I’ll have to give this a shot!

    • mewinebrenner

      March 26, 2013 at 6:04 am

      I know – I love TJ’s hummus! But I figured with the quantities that we go thru in my house, I needed to come up with my own recipe!

  3. The Candid RD

    March 26, 2013 at 7:26 am

    This sounds amazing. It’s like a pesto hummus. Yes, please! Great recipe.

    • mewinebrenner

      March 26, 2013 at 1:44 pm

      It is kinda like pesto hummus! Hahaha!

  4. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies

    March 27, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    Ahh, this is so funny, I’ve been spending this week trying to recreate Trader Joe’s tomato basil hummus (to no avail). Maybe I should just give up and make yours instead!

    • mewinebrenner

      March 28, 2013 at 6:30 am

      Their hummus is just sooooo good! Hope you try it!

  5. Sarah@Kids Heart Real Food

    June 4, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    I just made this as I had some leftover basil to use up, and it is so delicious! I plan on giving it to my son as a snack when he wakes up from his nap. Your looks much creamier than mine though – maybe I didn’t add enough olive oil?

    • mewinebrenner

      June 4, 2013 at 1:27 pm

      Olive oil definitely makes it creamier. I also use some hot water too to limit the fat content. And just a good long pulse in the food processor helps too!

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