Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Caramelized Onion Hummus Appetizer

Caramelized onions are like candy to me. My mother feels the same way and stirs them into her omelets and decorates sandwiches and salads with them. Sometimes when I visit her I just bring along a container of freshly caramelized onions and she receives it like normal people would a box of chocolates. I get it.

In mid December, the last weekend before we left for Germany for the holidays, we had a small get together at our house in Pennsylvania where I served appetizers and drinks. I still had some ingredients leftover from Thanksgiving including a large ziplock full of sweet onions cut into pieces.

Not really knowing where I was going with these onions, I instinctually threw them into a large frying pan to caramelize thinking the idea would come to me. It did.

I always have hummus ingredients on hand for any last minute visitors. 

Using chick peas and tahini, it was a snap to create this savory, flavorful appetizer. Thankfully, it was a big hit with my friends, who are not even caramelized onion freaks like me. I doubled the recipe below, served 6 people and still had some left over to send home with a guest.

Caramelized Onion Hummus

  • 2 large sweet onions chopped into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • pinch or 2 of white granulated sugar to taste
  • 1 can of chick peas
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder plus more for sprinkling
  • kosher salt to taste

  • In a large frying pan melt the butter and two tablespoons of the oil together over medium heat.
  • Place the onions in the pan and coat them with the butter and oil with a wooden spoon stirring occasionally. 
  • When onions become transparent, lower the heat and cook until golden brown, still stirring occasionally. 
  • Add sugar to taste.
  • When onions have become golden - dark brown, remove from heat and set aside. 
  • If you are using chick peas from a can, I recommend you remove the outer transparent layer from each chick pea. This can take some time. Place the chick peas in a colander and run them under cold water. When they have been thoroughly rinsed, rub the chick peas with your hands. the outer layer should come right off. Transfer the naked chick peas to a separate bowl. Again, this may take some time but it's worth it in the long run as your hummus will be smoother and creamier.
  • Place the rest of the olive oil, chick peas, garlic, tahini  and onion powder in a food processor and blend until smooth.
  • If you like your hummus more smooth than chunky, add extra tahini and/or oil a bit at a time.
  • Add salt and give it another go in the FP.
  • Set aside some caramelized onions for garnish. Mix in the rest by hand into the hummus.
  • Place the hummus in serving dish and drizzle with more olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt and some more onion powder if you wish. Garnish with caramelized onions.


  1. What a great new flavor for hummus - I must add this to my current hummus line-up!!


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