Best Beet Hummus

Beet Hummus in bowl with spoon

Some of the very best ideas for preparing fruits and vegetables come from talking to the folks behind the food: the farmers. And why not? These people know their produce better than anyone and are likely up to their ears in whatever they’re growing. Leave it up to the green thumbs to figure out the best way to cook it.

Healthy Beet Hummus

Today’s recipe for beet hummus, for example, was inspired by a farmer selling his own version at the Half Moon Bay Farmer’s Market. It made a dynamite little canapé for a summer barbecue when spread on cucumber slices and topped with fresh goat cheese. Light and flavorful, the hummus was an across-the-board hit with grown ups as well as kids (who seemed dazzled by its vibrant color).

cucumber with beet hummus and goat cheese

The Perfect Light Bite

I’d forgotten about the beet hummus until a few weeks ago when I was asked to bring an appetizer for a potluck party. I decided to try my hand at mimicking what I’d bought from the farmer. This recipe, a combination of beets, almonds, garlic, and lemon juice, is a pretty close, and very tasty approximation. Plus, it’s light enough so that it won’t spoil pre-dinner appetites. The colorful mixture can also double as a savory dip along with whole grain pita chips or as a spread for sandwiches.

beet Hummus in bowl with spoon

How to Make Beet Hummus

You begin by scrubbing and then boiling the beets in plenty of water until very tender. Once cooked and cool enough to handle, you can easily slip off the outside skins with your fingers. Watch as your fingers go pink under the touch of a beet with its bright, antioxidant-rich juices; be careful not to stain your clothing. After that it’s a matter of blending the beets with almonds, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt until smooth. 

Easy Beet Hummus 

If you want a short cut, the pre-cooked beets sold in vacuum sealed pouches in the produce section of some markets aren’t a bad way to go. The size of the beets in those packages vary, so do your best to figure out the equivalent to two large beets.


What to do with Beet Greens

The recipe uses only the colorful root of the vegetable, but don’t toss out those beet greens. Wash thoroughly, chop roughly (stems and all), run them through a salad spinner, and keep in a sealed bag in the fridge. You’ll have healthy greens at the ready to add to soups, pastas, sautés, stews, and even juices and smoothies, over the next couple of days. They are nourishing too and would be a shame to discard.


Best Beet Hummus

Earthy, brightly colored, naturally sweet beets transform into a flavorful dip or spread with the addition of almonds, garlic, and lemon. Spooned over cucumber slices, crackers, or set out along with pita chips, it makes a light and tasty pre-dinner nibble.
Course Appetizer
Prep Time 20 minutes
Author Katie Morford


  • 2 large beets
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons water (use beet cooking water, if desired)
  • 1/3 cup roasted almonds
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (plus more as needed)
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (plus more as needed)
  • Optional serving idea: chilled English cucumber slices and fresh goat cheese


  1. Trim off the beet greens and save for another use. Scrub the beets well and put into a medium pot covered by several inches of water. Set over high heat and bring to a boil. Drop the heat a touch until the beets cook at a medium boil until tender enough that you can easily slide a paring knife into the center. You don't want any "crunch" to your beets. The time will vary depending on how big the beets are and how rapid the boil. Use a slotted spoon to remove the beets from the cooking water (don't toss the water, you will need it).

  2. When the beets are cool enough to touch, use your hands to slip the skins off of them, discard. Beet juice stains, so watch your clothing. It helps to do this step under running water to avoid staining your hands. .

  3. Cut the beets into quarters and put into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add 1 tablespoon water, the almonds, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt. Turn on the processor and let it run until the beets turn into a fine puree. If it seems too thick, add another tablespoon or 2 of water and puree again. Taste it and add more salt and lemon if needed.

  4. To serve for an appetizer, spoon about 1 1/2 teaspoons of Beet Hummus onto a slice of chilled, unpeeled, English cucumber. Top with a dot of fresh goat cheese.



04.30.2012 at7:17 AM #


Fantastic recipe! For sure I will give it a try and will share this recipe!

04.30.2012 at7:25 AM #


Beautiful indeed! Thanks for this, can’t wait to try it!

04.30.2012 at7:25 AM #


I love the look of this salad being a beet fan, I would be in heaven eantig it. I also love raspberry vinaigrette and well, Brie, is out-of-this-world too. It’s always good to come here and see a new recipe. I hope that you’ll be doing more cooking since fall is here and hopefully, your temperatures will be dropping!I hope the air quality there is improving too.

04.30.2012 at1:04 PM #

Protein Powder Nutrition Kylie

Nice … I’ll try this … I would add some onion slices … Olive oil calls for a couple of slices of red onion 🙂

04.30.2012 at1:04 PM #

Katie Morford

Onion slies would make a pretty addition as well. Thanks for that.

04.30.2012 at1:29 PM #


Lovely recipe, Katie. Mine is a bit similar but I take a more Lebanese slant with pomegranate molasses and a pinch of cumin and cinnamon, served with homemade wholewheat pitta chips. Love the cucumber idea – nice and ‘contrasty’

04.30.2012 at1:29 PM #

Katie Morford

Thanks Kellie. I’m crazy for pomegranate molasses so will try it your way next time.

05.03.2012 at6:37 PM #



I just whipped this stuff up with some gorgeous beets from our CSA box. DELISH. One of the prettiest, most nutrition-packed things I think I’ve ever made. And the best part, our suddenly-picky 17-month-old Camille was licking it off my fingers!
Wonderful, thanks!!!!

05.03.2012 at6:37 PM #

Katie Morford

Camille with beet-juice stained cheeks sounds pretty cute!

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09.16.2022 at10:41 AM #

Pam Hochman

I’m making this right now – Bringing this and the sweet potato hummus to a potluck tonight. Can’t wait to try!

One suggestion for you on this, and all recipes, especially given your shortcut idea for using pre-cooked beets, is to offer an ounce recommendation. Being told 2 large beets isn’t as helpful as being told approx X oz, would be. Especially given the nuts are given as a specific measure, it would be nice to be consistent and also make sure the recipe is balanced.

That said, I know this is an older recipe, so perhaps you now write them with ounce suggestions included as well…

Thanks for this and all your ideas!


09.16.2022 at10:41 AM #

Katie Morford

I agree and have been meaning to work on this recipe, both to give ounces and I’d also like to offer the option to make it with pre-cooked beets (like they sell at Trader Joe’s). Will get to this at some point 🙂

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