Is Hummus Keto Friendly?


Hummus is a healthy and delicious dip made from chickpeas, tahini (sesame paste), lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil. Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are particularly high in carbs.  Each tablespoon of chickpeas contains 8 grams of carbs and each cup provides a staggering 121 grams of carbs!  But, don’t let that scare you… 

hummus calories and carbs

Even though chickpeas are high in carbs, once the other ingredients are added in (which are all low in carbs), hummus ends up with a moderate carb count.  So, it’s perfectly fine to enjoy a reasonably-sized serving of hummus while following a low carb lifestyle, as long as you’re careful not to overindulge.

How Many Grams of Carbs are in Hummus?  

A 1/4 cup serving of hummus contains 12 grams of carbohydrates. Hummus can be a healthy food to consume while on the ketogenic diet, if it’s eaten in moderation.

How Many Calories are in Hummus?

There are 102 calories in a 1/4 cup serving of hummus. A full cup of hummus contains 409 calories.

So, feel free to enjoy a 1/4 cup serving of hummus along with fresh low carb veggies, like bell pepper, cucumber, broccoli, and cauliflower for dipping.  Just forgo the naan, pita bread, and crackers to ensure that you keep your carb count in check.

What is Hummus? 

is hummus keto

Origin:

Chickpeas are the main ingredient in hummus.  In fact, the word “hummus” translates to “chickpea” in Arabic. (حمص)

According to various historical sources, the earliest mention of hummus dates back to 13th century in Egypt. The chickpea is one of the earliest cultivated legumes and the 7500 year old remains of this legume have been found in the Middle East. Chickpeas have always been abundant in the Middle East and are still commonly eaten there today.

In addition to their Middle Eastern roots, chickpeas are also an important staple in Indian and in Mediterranean cuisines.  This annual legume is of the Fabaceae family. Different varieties of chickpeas are also known as the Bengal gram, the garbanzo bean, and the Egyptian pea.

How is it Made?

Hummus is a thick paste that is made with chickpeas, also called garbanzo beans.

It is prepared by rinsing and draining a can of chickpeas, reserving half of the liquid. The rinsed chickpeas are then blended in a food processor or blender and a little bit of the reserved liquid is added.

Next, add in a squirt of lemon juice, a healthy spoonful of tahini, a clove of garlic and a sprinkling each of kosher salt and cracked black pepper. Blend while slowly adding olive oil, until it forms a rich, thick paste.  The consistency should be smooth like peanut butter, without any chunks. 

Taste the hummus, adjust the seasoning (if necessary), and serve in a small dip bowl. If you have company coming over, a hollowed out red bell pepper makes an extra fancy dip bowl in which to serve your homemade hummus. Top with a drizzle of olive oil, sprinkle some paprika or fresh parsley on top and serve.

Facts and Health Benefits:

Chickpeas contain powerful antioxidants, like Manganese, which protects against free radicals.  Free radicals are molecules that can cause damage to your body’s cells. 

Hummus is filled with a number of nutrients that promote good health.  It contains protein to help keep you feeling full for longer periods of time and is a good source of phosphate. It also lowers cholesterol and reduces the risk of breast cancer in women.  Not to mention, it is rich in iron and great for those who have iron deficiencies.

can eat hummus on keto

Hummus is also high in fiber, which supports a healthy colon.  The fiber in chickpeas is instrumental in helping you feel full as well as aiding in healthy bowel movements. For this reason, you may find a serving of hummus to be a great solution to constipation, often encountered by Keto dieters. Hummus just might be the answer to your digestive woes. 

The fiber in chickpeas is insoluble, which means that it stays intact all the way to the end of your large intestine. This fiber also supports the cells that line the insides of your intestinal walls, helping to lower your risk of colon cancer.

Ingredients:

Chickpeas contain properties to improve insulin resistance and stabilize blood sugar.  They lower cholesterol, support digestion, and decrease inflammation in the body.  Chickpeas also improve bone health, heart health, and blood pressure.

Tahini (Sesame Seed Oil) – A healthy fat, high in amino acids.  Works as a natural anti-depressant.  Provides gall bladder support and detoxifies the liver.

Olive Oil – Healthy fat buffers insulin spikes. It has anti-inflammatory properties, supports the cardiovascular system, and is rich in vitamin E.

Tahini – Detoxifies the liver.

Lemon – Prevents kidney stones and is high in vitamin C.

Garlic – An anti-microbial and anti-cancer food.

Sea salt – Composed of 94 minerals.

Which Keto-Friendly Dips Can I Enjoy?
(Hummus Alternatives)

Mutabal Recipe

Mutabal or Moutabel is a smoky Middle Eastern dip.  Its key ingredient is eggplant, a lower carb alternative to chickpeas. This delicious, creamy dip is a wonderful way to use eggplant, a vegetable that is often overlooked. A 1/4 cup serving of Mutabal contains only 6 grams of carbs.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Eggplant
  • 1/4 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons tahini
  • 1 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 6 Cloves garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Greek yogurt
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Thoroughly wash and pat dry 3 small eggplants.
  2. Make a few cuts on the eggplant (to let steam escape) and roast in the oven until the skin turns black and the flesh inside has softened.
  3. Let cool and then remove the skin from the roasted eggplant.
  4. Add the flesh and remaining ingredients in a blender.  Blend just enough to make the dip smooth.
  5. Garnish with olive oil, coriander and pomegranate seeds.
  6. Serve along with raw, low carb veggies instead of pita, naan or crackers.

Baba Ganoush Recipe

Baba ganoush is another dip similar to hummus, but made with eggplant. If you’ve never tried baba ganoush, you should! It has a unique, delicious flavor and rich, creamy texture. Like chickpeas, eggplant is rich in fiber.  However, eggplant is substantially lower in carbs and calories than chickpeas.

Eggplant also offers a powerful antioxidant that chickpeas lack, called nasunin.  This antioxidant helps improve the flow of blood to your brain and also helps to remove the effects of free radicals from your brain cells.

Eggplant is high in vitamin C, which supports your immune system and contains anthocyanins which support heart health.

For these reasons, Baba ganoush makes a fantastic low carb alternative to hummus.  It contains around 72 fewer calories per cup than hummus and a total carb count of only 7 grams per ¼ cup serving.

 Ingredients:

  • 3 small eggplants
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 Cloves garlic
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon coriander
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • Juice from ¼ lemon
  • Pomegranate seeds (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Choose three small, firm eggplants with dark, smooth skin. Poke holes in them with a fork.
  2. Rub eggplants with olive oil, sprinkle on some kosher salt and place them on an oiled baking sheet with two crushed garlic cloves.
  3. Roast the eggplants at 350 Degrees Fahrenheit for 30 to 45 minutes or until eggplants are soft. Let them cool enough to be sliced open down the center.
  4. Scoop the innards out into a blender or food processor. Add the garlic. Add kosher salt, cracked black pepper, paprika, coriander, a generous spoonful of tahini, a squeeze of lemon juice and blend.
  5. Add olive oil slowly until you have a smooth, rich dip.
  6. Taste the dip and correct the seasoning if needed. The consistency should be thick like butter.  Finish the dish with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds across the top.
  7. Serve with raw vegetables, instead of naan or pita bread.

Melissa Marshall

A litigation paralegal and writer. Her first novel debuts this fall. She lives with her kitten, Zoey overlooking the waterfront in beautiful Dartmouth, Nova Scotia - also known as the “City of Lakes”.

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