Food & Fitness

Experiments in Cooking: Hummus and Applesauce

Last weeks cooking adventure was with hummus. I’m a big fan of hummus but it took a while to search for the healthiest variation that I could find; much as I love olive oil, I wanted to find a recipe that wasn’t too oily. I believe that I found this one on Recipezaar. It wasn’t too difficult to make, has tons of flavour, and is also very healthy! I added an extra 3 tbsp of yogurt to make it more smooth and creamy, which I prefer. There’s a lot of garlic in this hummus so you might not want to go out on a date or something right after eating this. I like my hummus with lots of garlic but you could probably get away with 2 cloves if you prefer a less intense taste.


3 cloves of minced garlic

1/4 cup plain fat-free yogurt, plus 3 more tbsp (gives it a really creamy consistency)

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp olive oil

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp paprika

1/8 tsp pepper

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1. Rinse off the chickpeas really well, as usually they’ve got tons of sodium in the can along with them. Rinsing them off can get rid of a lot of that sodium.

2. Blend everything together in a food processor (I tried using a blender the first time and it was a very frustrating process that simply did not work).

3. Refrigerate and eat with veggies, pitas, or whatever else you like dipped in hummus! I am looking forward to having some of this hummus spread on one of my whole wheat tortillas with some canned tuna:)

And this weeks experiment? Applesauce! I use applesauce when I make my banana bread and pumpkin bread recipes, and pretty much any time that I can substitute applesauce for part of (or all) the butter and sugar in baking. I used the recipe taken from The Apple Cookbook (yes, I really do love apples enough to have a cookbook entirely devoted to them!), but there are plenty of applesauce recipes in lots of different cookbooks as well as all over the Internet.

To make my applesauce, I used 10 Braeburn apples (The Apple Cookbook suggests these as a good type of apple to use in making sauces- and you’ll definitely want to do your research before choosing any old apple. For instance, if you’ve ever tried baking McIntosh apples, you’ll realize that these apples just collapse on themselves and are very bad for trying to bake in the microwave with a bit of cinnamon and sugar. As I have learned many a time:)). Peel and core them, then cut them up into smaller chunks (ie. quarters), add 1 tbsp of water and some nutmeg, and let them simmer on the stove for about half an hour. Then put the softened apples in the food processor and blend until smooth! It makes about 5 cups of applesauce. I have yet to use my applesauce in baking but I will be sure to report back on my results.


Note the use of organic chickpeas:

I usually use a knife to chop up my garlic, but this time I decided to try my hand at using the garlic press. Every time I’ve used it in the past, I’ve been too weak to squeeze it and get the garlic out (not even kidding). Just look at what my super muscles can do now, thanks to boot camp!

A very crunchy sort of hummus, as per the result from the blender:

…and the smooth finished production after using the food processor:

Last but not least, the partially frozen applesauce (it’s been jammed into my freezer, hence the lopsided appearance… the tub was tilted as it started to freeze!):

Happy Monday, everyone!


  1. Gena

    I was going to try my hand at hummus, too! I’ve never heard of using yogurt, just olive oil, but I’ll give it a try one of these days. I also notice you didn’t use tahini in your hummus. I’ve tried it before without tahini and it was really bland. Any idea what makes the difference in your recipe?

  2. Randi

    I’m gonna try your hummus this week. I’ve made my own before, a way dumbed down, not as good version (just chickpeas, garlic and sesame seeds blended, no oil, no yogurt. Tastes good but texture isn’t great.) Thanks for sharing it!

  3. Sagan Morrow

    Gena- I think that the spices and large quantities of garlic is what makes it so flavourful. Maybe the lemon juice has something to do with it, too?

    Randi- Let me know how it turns out! It’s difficult to get a good texture… but the yogurt helps with that. And also put it through the food processor for a longer amount of time to get as many of the chunks and grainy bits out of it as possible!

  4. Charlotte

    I love homemade hummus! Although I’ve never tried putting yogurt in before. I’m def. going to do that next time! I’m with gena tho – can’t make mine without tahini:)

    Your applesauce looks fab!

  5. Crabby McSlacker

    At first I thought this post was going to be a recipe that COMBINED hummus and applesauce, and I was very curious as to how you were going to do that.

    Thanks for the hummus recipe, I’ll have to give it a try!

    Most recipes seem to call for lots of tahini, which I don’t like in large quantity, so I’m curious what it will taste like leaving it out altogether. We’ll see!

  6. Big Girl

    Funny, I was just finishing up some hummus when I came for a visit to your blog. Seriously. I totally heart hummus although I don’t make my own. The recipe seems easy enough so I’ll have to try it one of these days.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog, and for signing up for the Big Step Challenge. =)

  7. Sagan Morrow

    Charlotte- I’ve had hummus from the grocery stores and at restaurants, and I’m assuming they all had tahini in them but in comparison in doesn’t taste as though this recipe is missing anything.

    Crabby- hmmm… clearly I need to learn to rework my titles a little better. I’m thinking that a hummus-applesauce combo wouldn’t be so good:)

    MizFit- much blogging love! (also: I got the PB2 and its fantastic… soon to be a post about it!).

    Big Girl- thanks for the comment! Hummus is excellent and this recipe IS really easy.

  8. the Bag Lady

    Both of these sound fabulous! I love hummus, and have often thought about making some. Now I won’t have to search for a good recipe, ’cause yours sounds terrific!

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