In the vein of my purees 101 series, I wanted to introduce chickpea puree as a great food to introduce to your baby. But then I thought about it for a minute and realized how silly that sounds. So let’s move forward calling this recipe hummus for babies, although it is simple chickpeas pureed.
In our home, hummus and chickpeas are a staple in our refrigerator and pantry. We like to eat them plain, we like them on salads (especially in this simple greek salad). We like chickpeas in falafel smothered in hummus, we like them roasted with all sorts of spices.
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When I started giving my babies hummus, it felt like a natural extension of what we were eating.
I started thinking about why we liked chickpeas and hummus so much and came to two conclusions. I’m not sure what order these ideas came in, our if they are even separate thoughts, but here goes. For a long time, I was a vegetarian and chickpeas (and therefore hummus) are a great source of protein. They were a natural addition to my diet and have remained a part of it ever since.
Additionally, I spent time in Israel in high school and was introduced to “real” hummus and falafel (not to mention good pita and Marzipan rugelach, but that’s a story for another day). I have tried to recreate these foods and flavors at home ever since.
Chickpeas have been grown in Middle Eastern countries for thousands of years. In the recent past they have become more popular as have the other Middle Eastern foods. That’s a great thing in my opinion, since they taste good and are good for you.
What makes chickpeas so good for you?
Here are just a few reasons that chickpeas and therefore hummus for babies are so good for you.
- Great source of plant based protein
- Good source of vitamins and minerals
- High in fiber (the right kind to aid in your babies digestion)
- Have a relatively low glycemic index which helps regulate blood sugar
- They taste great and are super versatile (roasted, plain, pureed, on salads, in meatless meals, etc)
- Relatively inexpensive to buy and easy to prepare
What flavors go well with hummus for babies?
I think that because chickpeas have such a mild flavor, you can really play with what you pair them with. I like to think of other Middle Eastern/Meditteranean foods and flavors when I’m making my babies foods:
- Beets: The sweetness in beets pairs nicely with the chickpea and since we eat with our eyes, what baby doesn’t want to eat bright pink hummus?
- Feta: Just mix a small bit of feta into the pureed chickpeas for a bit of a salty bite. It’s a great way to introduce stronger cheeses to your little one.
- Zatar: A versatile spice blend that can be mixed in with hummus for babies. Read more about it here.
- Olives, roast pepper, roast garlic: Think of what flavors of hummus you see at the grocery and try to emulate them. I would start with these additions chopped up really small and using only a small quantity, but all of them would be delicious for your little one.
Want to take this puree to the next level? Post coming soon on how to make your own hummus for everyone.
Tips and Tricks
- Rinse your chickpeas well. You want to control the salt content in this puree, so be sure to rinse these well. I use a mesh strainer and let the water run over the chickpeas for a minute or two.
- This puree can be a bit thick. You can add water a tablespoon at a time if necessary to get it a consistency you like
- If your little guy is already eating sesame, feel free to add in a tablespoon of tahini to smooth things out and start getting closer to the real hummus flavor
Looking for other delicious purees? Check out a few of my favorites and my tips and tricks for making your own:
purees 101 - chickpeas (aka hummus for babies)
- 1 15 oz can of chickpeas drained and rinsed
- Rinse chickpeas under water in a mesh strainer
- Put chickpeas into blender
- Blend to desired consistency
Want to make this puree now? Are you missing some ingredients? Amazon Now can get them to you in a few hours, Instacart can get them to you today. Or add them to your Peapod grocery list and don’t be stuck with out them again!