Peanut Butter Hummus

by Erin

I’ve been wanting to make a basic hummus for awhile. But finding tahini was a serious limiting factor. I don’t know what it is about general grocery stores in Memphis, but they stink. I couldn’t even find canned pumpkin the other day.

While driving back from my third grocery store, I started to think about what things might be good tahini substitutes. Which made me realize I have no idea what tahini really is. Google search told me it is ground sesame seeds. So like nut butter? Wait… wait… peanut butter!? Huge light bulb over my head. I’m surprised it didn’t blind the other drivers on the road. But at the same time I worried – this could either be the best idea ever, or totally gross. Only one way to find out.

After changing up a few other ingredients (didn’t really think lemon juice and garlic would pair well with peanut butter, but I could be mistaken) I hesitantly dipped in a stick of celery. Moment of truth… ::bite, chew:: …I think I like it… ::another bite, chew:: …yup totally in love! Not a dessert dip, but not your plain old hummus either. It’s my new favorite snack dip and it has peanut butter in it, hooray!

So here is today’s motto – “No tahini? No problem, just use peanut butter!” Serve with carrots, celery, and crackers. Or pretzels! Or maybe apple slices.

P.S. I did end up finding canned pumpkin and tahini paste at Fresh Market. But I don’t regret making this with peanut butter :-).


Makes approximately 1 cup


1 can (14.5 oz) Garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

1 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon


2-4 Tbsp cold water

1/2 Tbsp vegetable oil


  1. Place garbanzo beans, peanut butter, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon into a food processor (or blender). Pulse until mixture is mostly smooth. Add salt to taste.
  2. Add water one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency reached. Add oil and pulse a couple times to mix. Transfer mixture to a bowl and serve immediately. Store any leftovers  in refrigerator.

Source: The Spiffy Cookie original, but Bob came up with the vanilla idea to substitute for lemon juice.

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Baking Serendipity September 17, 2011 - 3:35 pm

I always struggle to find tahini too. Love this substitution even more than the original recipe!

Lynne @ 365 Days of Baking September 15, 2011 - 8:05 am

What a concept! It is scary when we come up with a combination and wonder if it will work or how it will taste. But I love when the heavens open and I hear the angels sing, “Hallelujah”!
Next one to try, Erin, Fluff Hummus.
Ok, maybe not. ;-)

spiffycookie September 15, 2011 - 10:57 am

Ha yea I’m not sure about that one, but you never know!

Aimee@Clevermuffin September 15, 2011 - 7:48 am

This is so funny, coz I read your title and screwed up my nose a bit at the idea of peanut butter hummus, but of course, you’re totally right! Tahini is just ground up sesame seeds! I’m keen to give this a go, I like making my own hummus, it’s so simple I feelt quite ripped off when I buy it from the store.

Miriam @ Overtime Cook September 14, 2011 - 10:05 pm

Fascinating! It’s so interesting to see how different regions have different products; it’s something I have become much more aware of since I started blogging. Can you try to order it online?

On a separate note…I will be extra appreciative of my local grocery store’s selection of 15 types of tahini paste next time I make hummus!


Christina @ Sweet Pea's Kitchen September 14, 2011 - 9:10 pm

PB hummus?! Am I dreaming? Such an interesting combination….I bet it tastes great! :)

spiffycookie September 14, 2011 - 9:13 pm

Nope you’re definitely not dreaming – except you may be if you don’t make it ;-)

Melissa (MelissaLikesToEat) September 14, 2011 - 8:51 pm

Wow…what a unique idea! Love it!

Cassie (Bake Your Day) September 14, 2011 - 2:54 pm

Holy perfection! I have never dreamed of making peanut butter hummus but my life is now complete, love it! I sometimes have a hard time finding tahini too. I can usually find it in the health food section of my local grocery store. This sounds so good!

Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts September 14, 2011 - 2:13 pm

What a great idea! FYI – I found a giant jar of Tahini for cheap at the Asian store if you have one of those!

Kara September 14, 2011 - 12:45 pm

Great idea, i’m going to try this!

Bobby September 14, 2011 - 12:14 pm

way to not give me credit with helping with the substitutions.

spiffycookie September 14, 2011 - 2:52 pm

I did too!!! Look at the bottom where I list source

Bobby September 14, 2011 - 7:17 pm

aww my inability to read strikes again!

Mama J September 14, 2011 - 10:21 am

I am SO intrigued by this!

Jennifer @ Mother Thyme September 14, 2011 - 10:21 am

I am totally making this TODAY! Do you know how much I L.O.V.E Peanut Butter? I am one of those who is constantly eating spoonfuls of PB out of the jar. It was my biggest craving when I was pregnant, and I still can’t get enough. Now I won’t be able to get enough of this! Love this recipe!! Great idea!!


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