CookingLight diet CookingLight diet
Photo: Kelsey Hansen; Food Styling: Paige Grandjean; Prop Styling: Kashara Johnson

If you’re not making your own hummus from scratch, this is the one to buy.  

Brianna Riddock
May 21, 2018

There is no doubt that hummus is one of the most amazingly simple yet versatile dips out there. The pureed chickpea- and tahini-based spread is traditionally flavored with fresh lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, and salt. It’s also a good source of fiber and protein for relatively few calories—just two tablespoons can deliver up to two grams of each nutrient.

In the search for the best prepared hummus on the market, we visited three major grocery store chains, collecting eight brands of hummus for our team to sample. We kept it classic and gathered the original “plain” version of each brand. Although many forms of hummus—made by replacing the classic chickpeas with other vegetables/legumes and layering on alternative flavor profiles—have emerged in recent years, given that “hummus” literally translates to chickpeas in Arabic, we felt it best to remain a purist for the purposes of this taste test.

RELATED: 24 Healthy Ways to Cook With Hummus

MyRecipes’ assistant editor Sara Tane also whipped up a batch of her famous homemade hummus to serve as the control sample for the group. Side note—while we’re on the subject of homemade, if you decide to make your own hummus, you’re going to need to purchase a jar of tahini, and we’ve already determined that the best tahini paste available is made by Soom. (And, I’ll let you in on a secret—serving your hummus with raw onions is the one of the best hummus hacks ever.)

We’ll be honest, the homemade control batch was truly the standout star of the entire tasting. Point being, whenever you have a can of chickpeas on-hand at home, go ahead and make homemade hummus. However, if it’s one of those weeks when even five minutes saved with a grocery store convenience purchase can make a huge difference… no shame at all, but it’s best to shop knowledgeably. And while ingredients varied slightly, it’s safe to say that all of the “plain” varieties of hummus we tried were healthy choices. So without further ado, here’s our review of the hummus brands we tasted, kicking off with our top pick.

WATCH: How to Make Roasted Carrot and Chickpea Hummus

Roots ($3.99/ 8-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 60, Fat: 6g, Sat Fat: 0g, Sodium: 80mg, Carbohydrates: 6g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 2g

Roots was, by far, our favorite hummus. Aside from producing the as-close-to-homemade-as-you’re-ever-gonna-buy hummus, bonus points to Roots for their modern, well-designed packaging that’s easy to spot in the myriad of other dip options in the chilled, prepared food section of the grocery store. All of the spread’s ingredients are labeled front and center on the lid of the container for a transparent view of everything that’s inside.  

The Original Hummus variety is not perfectly smooth in texture, but the detectable pieces of chickpeas give the spread a homemade quality we really enjoy. In terms of texture, this is a full-bodied hummus that’s whipped into a delightfully fluffy product. The tahini flavoring is fully present, and not overpowering or bitter. However, some editors felt that this hummus could use just a touch more tanginess and acidity.

Cedar’s ($3.00/ 8-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 60, Fat: 4.5g, Sat Fat: 0.5g, Sodium: 115mg, Carbohydrates: 4g, Fiber: 1g, Protein: 2g

The Cedar’s brand “hommus” was our panel’s next favorite choice. As a brand, Cedar’s prides themselves on making hummus the “traditional” way, and they also source non-GMO and vine-dried garbanzo beans. Although the silky-smooth, light texture of the Original Hommus flavor was a contrast to the Root’s brand, it was truly delightful. In addition to the creamy hummus’ great consistency, it delivers a very well balanced flavor of toasty, savory richness and acidic brightness. 

Hope ($4.99/ 8-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 70, Fat: 4.5g, Sat Fat: 0g, Sodium: 125mg, Carbohydrates: 6g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 2g

Hope brand hummus, was a “like it, but don’t love it” situation for our team. The consistency was on the thin/watery side, which didn’t leave use terribly hopeful about the flavor. However, this brand’s original hummus did offer a very fresh, well-seasoned flavor with a strong garlicky presence that other brands couldn’t match. Another good thing going for this hummus is the brand’s eye-catching packaging—the bright yellow color scheme matches with clean, bold fonts.  

Trader Joe’s ($3.49/ 16-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 80, Fat: 4.5g, Sat Fat: 0g, Sodium: 135mg, Carbohydrates: 7g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 2g

We had high hopes for the Trader Joe’s version of hummus largely because most products from Trader Joe’s are typically amazing. However, we found their hummus to be fairly runny and thin. Regardless, TJ’s hummus did offer the more textured, homemade consistency that we liked in the Roots brand. Alas, the flavor was relatively bland and left us wanting for more tahini, more garlic and more seasoning. That said, of all the brands we tasted, TJ’s hummus delivers the best bang for your buck—their 16-ounce container has the best price per ounce.

Sabra ($2.99/ 10-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 70, Fat: 5g, Sat Fat: 1g, Sodium: 130mg, Carbohydrates: 4g, Fiber: 1g, Protein: 2g

Sabra is certainly one of the most well-known brands when it comes to hummus. It was the first of its kind on the U.S market and it remains a highly popular pick among consumers. However, given all of the relative newcomers on the hummus scene, especially after this tasting, the brand may have to watch its back given the flux of competition today.

We found Sabra to be just OK in the flavor department. It had a very creamy texture that everyone agreed was noteworthy, but the hummus was lacking any depth of flavor. We found ourselves wanting a fresher lemon flavor and richer nuttiness as we tasted this somewhat diluted tasting spread.

Engine 2 ($2.99/ 8-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 25, Fat: 1g, Sat Fat: 0g, Sodium; 50mg, Carbohydrates: 4g, Fiber: less than 1g, Protein: 1g

The Engine 2 brand was created by a former firefighter that focuses on a variety of plant-based products; and this backstory detail might be the most interesting thing about the hummus. It was, in short, not memorable. It lacked acidity and was bordering on too salty—odd, given that it was so low in sodium.

Lantana ($4.99/ 10-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 70, Fat: 4g, Sat Fat: 0g, Sodium: 110mg, Carbohydrates: 5g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 2g

Lantana is the only brand in this lineup that does not make their “hummus” from chickpeas. This wild card brand uses alt ingredients such as carrots, black beans, and edamame to create their creamy spreads. We grabbed a container of the original white bean hummus out of curiosity, just to see how it would compare to the traditional versions. In summation, we would not purchase this brand over the real-deal hummus. The flavor was overly tangy and it needed a punch more tahini; plus, the texture was less than desirable. However, if this was product was touted as a “bean dip,” rather than hummus, it might be a decent contender compared to other such dips. 

Simply Balanced ($2.99/ 8-ounce container)

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 70, Fat: 5g, Sat Fat: 0.5g, Sodium: 170mg, Carbohydrates: 5g, Fiber: 1g, Protein: 2g

Simply Balanced is a line of branded food products at Target, many of which I’ve found to be great. We noticed that they make hummus as well, so we grabbed a container. We regret doing so. This was unquestionably the least favorite of the bunch; in fact, it was the only hummus that every tester adamantly disliked. The hummus had a weird lingering metallic aftertaste, but it was also strangely sweet. If you happen to find yourself shopping for hummus at Target, in this case, we recommend you bypass the store brand.

This article originally appeared on MyRecipes.

You May Like