Hummus is one of those perfect baby and toddler foods—it's soft, versatile, and lasts for a while in the fridge. It's an excellent source of vegetarian protein and can be mixed up in just a few minutes. This easy hummus recipe, which packs in a cup of fresh carrots, takes it up a notch by tucking a veggie inside—but it has a smooth texture that your toddler will (hopefully!) enjoy.
Is safe for babies and toddlers to eat hummus?
While there is a small chance that a toddler may have an allergic reaction to the chickpeas or tahini (which is made from sesame seeds) in hummus, the vast majority of toddlers can safely enjoy the spread. I know one family who's son had a very serious reaction to sesame when he was a baby, which was thankfully treated swiftly. It was definitely a scary experience, but thankfully he's started to outgrow the allergy now.
If you're concerned about allergies to the ingredients in hummus or you know that your toddler has other food allergies, you can start by having the ingredients around your toddler, trying a very small, teensy amount, or making this hummus with white beans and Greek yogurt instead of the chickpeas and tahini. See the variations at the bottom of the recipe for details and talk it over with your pediatrician before starting.
Is hummus good for toddlers?
Hummus is a totally healthy food for toddlers! It has vegetarian protein from the beans and tahini, has a lot of fiber to help heart-health and to prevent constipation, and is a good vegan option. This easy hummus recipe has added Vitamin A from the carrots, as well as extra fiber. And a nice mellow flavor since the carrots balance the flavor of tahini and lemon.
Can you make hummus ahead?
This easy hummus recipe for toddlers can be made up to 5 days ahead and stored in the fridge. We like it for lunch on toast or bread or as a dip for whole grain crackers or veggies. It's also a nice spread for a turkey sandwich and you can thin it with lemon juice to make a salad dressing for an older kiddo or an adult.
Which beans are best for hummus?
You can use dried beans that you've cooked or canned beans for this recipe. As long as you cook dried beans thoroughly, there isn't much difference in the texture. Canned beans are of course more convenient if you decide to make hummus without much advance planning!
The carrots in this recipe blend in really well with the color of the chickpeas, making this both familiar looking and more nutritious. Plus, they add a slightly sweet flavor that kids typically love.
Easy Carrot Hummus
Taste the hummus and adjust for salt as needed. You may need more depending on whether or not you started with canned beans, and sometimes after the hummus sits in the fridge, it needs another sprinkle of salt. I don't include garlic here because it has a strong flavor that your toddler may not enjoy, but add in a clove if you'd like.
Makes about 2 cups
- 1 cup grated carrot
- 1 14.5 ounce can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
- 3 tablespoons tahini (or plain Greek yogurt if there's a nut-allergy)
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4-1/3 cup water
- Add the carrot to a bowl. Bring a pot or kettle of water to a boil, pour over carrot, and let sit for about 5 minutes to soften. Drain well, reserving about 1/4 cup of the liquid.
- Add all ingredients except the water to the bowl of a food processor. Process, adding a little reserved water a time to help create a smooth consistency. You may need to stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Serve immediately or store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Use white beans instead of chickpeas. You may not need as much water since white beans tend to be moister.
Use plain Greek yogurt instead of tahini.
Add 1 clove garlic to the blender to add another flavor.