You no longer have to find a substitute for chickpeas in your paleo hummus. Contrary to early Paleo dogma, it appears that our ancestors did in fact consume legumes. Dr. Stephan Guyenet cleared this up in an article he wrote titled Beans, Lentils and the Paleo Diet in November 2013.

From Dr. Guyenet’s article:

“compelling evidence comes from the analysis of Neanderthal tooth plaque, which contains recognizable evidence of plant food consumption”

“Our data show that Neanderthals in both environments included a spectrum of plant foods in their diets, including grass seeds (Triticeae cf. Hordeum), dates (Phoenix), legumes (Faboideae), plant underground storage organs, and other yet-unidentified plants, and that several of the consumed plants had been cooked”

“Humans are thought to have eaten a more diverse diet than Neanderthals in the Upper Paleolithic, and one that relied more on small game and plant resources than the Neanderthal diet”


Paleo dieters can now enjoy traditional hummus and reap the health benefits of this tasty dish


Preparing Chickpeas For Paleo Hummus

It is very important that legumes be prepared properly and I recommend that you make your hummus from scratch to ensure it is done properly.

You cannot expect that commercial processors will take the time to soak legumes for 24 hours and change the water half-way through. Nor are they likely to change the water half-way through the cooking process.

This might seem like a lot of work, but hummus freezes very well and if you make a large batch and freeze it in several small containers, you will find it’s not a lot of work for something you get to snack on for two to four weeks.


Paleo Hummus – Ingredients List


(A 2lb bag of dry chickpeas will make 3 to 4 batches in your food processor)

Ingredients for each processor batch

  • 3 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 3 large cloves of garlic
  • ½ cup tahini paste
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin

How To Make Paleo Hummus

1. Empty 2 lb bag of dry chickpeas in a large pot and cover with about 3 inches of fresh water. Let soak for about 12 hours, drain and cover with more fresh water and let soak for another 12 hours.

2. Drain off the water and rinse the chickpeas well. Fill the pot with enough fresh water to cover the chickpeas with at least 2 to 3 inches of water and cook the chickpeas for about 1 hour.

3. Drain and rinse the chickpeas well. Cover with more fresh water and continue to cook for another ½ to 1 ½ hours until tender. They should mash easily with a fork. Keep about 2 cups of the liquid when you drain off the chickpeas the final time.

4. When the chickpeas are tender, drain and set aside.

5. Add the tahini, lemon juice and garlic to a food processor and run until smooth and well mixed.

6. Add the chickpeas, salt, paprika and cumin and pulse to break up the chickpeas.

7. Set your food processor on continuous and drizzle the olive oil to the mix until all the olive oil has been added. Taste and adjust the spices if needed.

8. If the mixture is still a bit too thick, drizzle in some of the liquid that was retained from the chickpeas until you get a nice, smooth texture. Remember, the mixture will thicken a bit once it’s been refrigerated.

9. Scoop the hummus mixture into a few well sealed containers that are freezer safe.


Repeat for the 2nd and 3rd batch until you’ve used up all the cooked chickpeas.


Paleo Hummus And Your Health

Chickpeas are rich in protein and fiber. Protein is satiating and fiber reduces the glycemic effect of foods and it is good for the colon. Hummus and vegetables make a healthy snack and it’s a good choice for anyone who is trying to lose weight.

I recommend you make hummus in big batches like this because it freezes very well and you will always have something on hand to eat. Carrots, celery, radishes and other vegetables can be cleaned ahead of time and they keep very well in bags in the fridge.

Half the battle when you are trying to lose weight is to make sure you have good healthy food available so you don’t end up reaching for unhealthy snack foods when hunger strikes.