Ode to Hummus

cauliflower hummus, as good as it looks I have a confession to make…. I love snacking. Now, I will also admit since going paleo/primal my cravings have magically disappeared but I still like a snack in the late afternoon when the batteries are running low.

As you have probably noticed, snacking is way different on this path. It used to be grab some cracker and cheese or carrot sticks and hummus. Hummus…. We must pause here in reverence……. I love hummus. I mean really really love hummus.

The first moment I had it is still so clear to me. It was love at first bite. My senses exploded in a fourth of July like celebration. I looked at the mushy undescript paste in the bowl and couldn’t believe that such a simple looking thing could be so complex and compelling! I had to know what it was!

I soon started making it myself since I couldn’t get enough. Working on the nuances of hummus was a great joy for me. More or less garlic? Smoked paprika or sweet? One or two lemons? You get the picture.

Since going Primal I have dearly missed hummus. I have actually laid in bed and wondered, “How do I make a really great paleo hummus?” Then the other day, I was writing an article on the many attributes of cauliflower and it hit me. Cauliflower hummus! That’s it!!

beautiful cheddar cauliflower from my garden

After all Mark Sisson always sings the praises of the adaptability of cauliflower. So I bought a beautiful yellow cauliflower and steamed it. I tossed it into a food processor with a touch of tahini, lemon juice, garlic, actually lot of garlic and olive oil. The cauliflower wasn’t steamed enough. It just went round and round in lumps but the flavor was great.

Try number 2. This time I steamed the cauliflower till really soft, back into the food processor with all the ingredients except the tahini. I tried macadamia nut butter instead to make this a truly paleo dish. It was an incredible success!

Steamed cauliflower ready to rumble!

So here it is. Even if you are not a hummus fan I think you will love it. Add the garlic to your personal preference. I like a lot of garlic. Serve it up with fresh cut veggies and a drizzle of olive oil. Enjoy!

Cauliflower hummus, as good as it looks

Cauliflower Hummus

One large head of cauliflower (preferably yellow)

2 to 10 cloves of fresh garlic, minced in the food processor first

2 tablespoons of macadamia nut butter (or almond)

The juice of one medium lemon

¼ cup (or so) of olive oil

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 – 3 tablespoons of fresh parsley

Or 1 tablespoon of dried parsley

½ teaspoon of smoked paprika

Salt to taste; about 1 teaspoon

Garnish with parsley, smoked paprika and olive oil

Steam your head of cauliflower till it is very tender. While that is cooling take down your food processor and mince the garlic. Add the olive oil, nut butter, spices and lemon juice and mix some more. Add the cauliflower and puree till a smooth paste. Add some more olive oil if you need to get this lovely paste. Spread the hummus in a lovely platter in swirly patterns. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with more paprika and serve with veggies.


  1. says

    This looks awesome, bookmarking to try after I return from vacation.

    Franky, cauliflour masquerading as rice fails to impress, but indeed I have no tastebud cravings for rice. I do, for hummus. I’ll give this a gander, thanks!

  2. MegsE says

    Oh this looks amazing! I’ve been missing hummus so much since going Paleo! Cannot wait to try this!! Thank you so much!!

  3. almondjoy says

    thank you so much! This recipe is delicious! The texture was perfect, and I used tahini instead of the nut butter. Love the spice combo!

  4. Sarah says

    I tried this recipe after I saw it on Pinterest. I do not follow a Paleo diet, but instead strive for a dairy-free, grain-free, soy-free, corn free, mostly vegetarian diet. This was scrumptious! I used sunflower seed butter instead (tahini and almond butter can be pricey), and it tasted fantastic! I like my foods spicy, so I add hot sauce or cajun spices to taste before eating. Thanks for the great recipe!

  5. Samantha Lushtak says

    This recipe was awesome! My husband and I love garlic so we threw in the maximum amount recommended (10 cloves). I think I’ll need to cut it back to 8. I think if I had heated the garlic a little to take out some of the bite it would have been a bit better. Needless to say it made about 4 cups and it was gone in a matter of hours between the two of us. MMMM garlic breath. Oh, and this tastes EXACTLY like hummus. I was shocked.

    • ziabaki says

      I think it rocks too! Thanks for coming over and telling me. Always appreciate feedback! 10 cloves of garlic! Whoa! Go girl!

  6. Tere says

    This is really close to my hummus recipe. The only difference is that I add just a hint of cayenne pepper. Gives it just a little kick. I am excited to try this out tonight!

  7. Yasmina says

    In Lebanon we make different types of ‘hummous’ that are also really tasty and can go paleo. My favourite is actually beetroot hummous (same principle: steamed vegetable + lemon + garlic + tahini / nut butter + olive oil). It’s amazing with celery sticks to keep it paleo. My grandfather enjoyed zucchini hummus a lot (jokingly called it ‘mama ghanouj’ as the wife and partner to ‘baba ghanjouj’ made with eggplant). Note that you need to still grill the zucchini for this one to get the smokey flavour. Finally, to switch it up from the regular hummous, I sometimes make ‘hummous beiruti’ which basically adds chopped parsley and tomatoes (and dried mint if you have any). It’s really amazing how far you can go with this basic combination!


  1. […] The steam from your head of cauliflower till it is very soft. While it is cooling take down your food processor and chop garlic. Add olive oil, nut butter, spices and lemon juice and mix even more. Add the cauliflower and mashed till smooth paste. Add a few more olive oil, if you need to get this lovely paste. Spread the hummus a lovely plateau in the profiles of swelling. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with paprika more and serve with vegetables. refering: http://cavewomancafe.wordpress.com/2011/03/29/ode-to-hummus/. […]

  2. […] Make dips and dressings available. Dips are magical in their ability to win over reluctant lunch eaters! Here are a few ideas::: Read your labels and try straight mustard or mustard horseradish for dipping steak or chicken pieces.:: For veggies, try combining coconut cream or sour cream with a bit of tamari (wheat free soy sauce) or coconut aminos and a little onion powder – this makes an onion dip!:: Almond butter is a great dip for apple slices or celery sticks.:: Tahini dressing could be a nice change of pace, or even try a cauliflower hummus. […]

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