Nutrition

Is Hummus Keto-Friendly? What You Need to Know

Is Hummus Keto-Friendly? What You Need to Know

Is hummus keto friendly? Truth is traditional chickpea hummus is not keto friendly. Don’t lose hope though because we’re going to discuss some delicious low carb alternatives that are perfect for keto. They’re equally nutritious and delicious as the traditional hummus.


SEE ALSO: Our keto diet plan guide for beginners.


What Is Hummus?

Hummus is a nutritious paste or spread that originates from the Middle East. It’s usually made with a blend of cooked mashed chickpeas, tahini, olive oil, spices, and lemon juice. The word “hummus” means chickpeas in Arabic.

Hummus is often eaten with bread, Indian bread, salads, dip for vegetables, and on its own.

Those who consume hummus have been found to have higher intakes of dietary fiber, polyunsaturated fatty acids, vitamins, folate, and essential minerals compared to those who don’t.

Since most Americans have been found to consume less than the recommended amount of daily dietary fiber, hummus is an excellent way for them to get a good nutritious boost. It’s also considered to be excellent food for vegans and vegetarians because it’s rich in vitamins, minerals, and protein.

Chickpeas are usually the main ingredient of hummus; however, there are also other flavors of hummus available at your supermarkets. You don’t even have to buy it, and it’s super quick and easy to make with just 3 or 4 ingredients blended.


homemade-creamy-hummus-with-olive-oil-and-pita-chips

Hummus Nutritional Facts

Four cups of traditional chickpea hummus per day are equivalent to 2 cups of legumes per week and 25 grams of dietary fiber [1].


Nutrients of hummus at a glance (100 g)

Protein: 7.9 g

Fat: 9.6 g

Carbs: 14.29 g

Fiber: 6 g

Calcium: 38 mg

Iron: 2.44 mg

Magnesium: 71 mg

Potassium: 228 mg

Sodium: 379 mg

Although hummus is a nutritious food, it’s important to note, however, that not all hummus is created equal. Much store-bought hummus can contain additives like vegetable oils which are known as trans fats.


Can I Have Hummus While on Keto?

The traditional, unprocessed hummus is rich in nutrients; however, it’s still a high carb food. One cup of homemade hummus has 49 grams of carbs. Sure you could say that you won’t eat it all in one go, but it’s not something we recommend risking because it is a delicious snack.

If you love the chickpea hummus too much and don’t want a keto friendly alternative, you can experiment with the cyclical ketogenic diet. CKD is a diet plan where you’d follow the ketogenic diet for five days a week and have a carb refeed period for two days. It’s recommended for athletes, and it merely means you will be in and out of ketosis every week.

Or, you could make delicious hummus using low carb and keto friendly ingredients such as cauliflower, artichokes, and avocado. You will still get the pasty consistency and taste of hummus from these ingredients, and the best part is that they won’t kick you out of ketosis.


artichoke-hummus-with-pita-chips-on-a-plate

Benefits of Hummus on Keto

Here are some benefits of keto friendly hummus ingredients like avocado, artichokes, and cauliflower.

Avocado

Avocado is a versatile and keto friendly food packed with healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. Speaking of minerals, avocados contain more potassium than bananas, which means they’re a great way to replenish lost potassium in your keto diet. It is also a rich source of antioxidants.

Another great benefit of avocado is that it can help improve your overall cholesterol profile [2].

Artichokes

In a 2000 study, 143 adult patients with high blood cholesterol received 1800 mg of artichoke extract or placebo a day for six weeks [3]. Results revealed that artichoke reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol by 22.9% while placebo only decreased by 6.3%. They also found out that artichoke extract was well tolerated and didn’t cause any adverse effects.

In another similar 2013 study, 96 overweight participants with high cholesterol were assigned to have either 250 mg/d of artichoke leaf extract or placebo for eight weeks [4]. Results revealed that artichoke decreased LDL cholesterol while simultaneously increasing HDL (good) cholesterol.

Cauliflower

Cauliflower is another nutritious, low carb food, and you can use it in a variety of ways such as cauliflower rice and low carb pizza. In a 2017 study, ten healthy adults were fed a high or low cauliflower diet for two weeks [5]. Results revealed that high consumption of cauliflower might be potentially beneficial to gastrointestinal health because it decreased sulfate-reducing bacteria.

And now here are some overall benefits of consuming keto hummus:

Fat boost

If you’ve ever googled how to eat more fats on the ketogenic diet, keto friendly hummus like avocado one, for instance, is a great way to get a quick boost of healthy fats.

Satiety

Consuming healthy fats can make you feel satiated and help you avoid the temptations to overeat or cheat [6]. Hummus is a rich source of fat and protein. A tablespoon of hummus can make a big difference to your late night cravings or when you feel the need to eat something at work.

Versatile

Hummus is so versatile, and you can eat it with almost anything or on its own as a snack. Some ways you can eat hummus are:

  • As a side dish or dip for your cooked meat.
  • As a dip for keto veggies.
  • Perfect for your low carb bread and rottis.
  • The perfect filling for low carb or lettuce sandwiches

Electrolytes boost

The keto diet, as you may have heard, is diuretic, which means you’ll be losing a lot of electrolytes via urine and sweat. Losing an abnormal amount of electrolytes can cause symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, muscle weakness, cramps, and brain fog.

Another reason why you may experience similar symptoms is due to the sudden withdrawal from carbohydrates.

The good news is that keto flu symptoms can be prevented and treated with the help of natural keto friendly food sources like pickles, salt water, and bone broth. Another best source to get your dose of electrolytes would be keto hummus because hummus generally contains a lot of potassium, sodium, and magnesium.


avocado-hummus-in-bowl-on-wooden-table-top-view

Sample Hummus Meals

Cauliflower hummus with grilled chicken or fish

This looks and tastes almost like the real thing, says, Melissa, the author of this low carb hummus recipe. As stated earlier, hummus is versatile and can be paired with almost anything. You can eat this cauliflower hummus with grilled chicken or use it as a dip for your celery sticks.

It also looks and tastes like an upgraded low carb mashed potatoes. So it may also be eaten instead of mashed potatoes.

Avocado hummus low carb sandwich

Avocado is another versatile keto food that you can use to make anything from salad dips, keto ice cream, to low carb hummus. Here’s a delicious avocado hummus recipe you can use to spice up your regular avocado toast, plain bread, or use as a dip.

Hummus deviled eggs

Mix the yolks of boiled eggs with keto friendly hummus and scoop some back into the eggs. It’s that simple. It will be a nutritious snack full of protein, fats, vitamins, and minerals to cure your cravings.


Takeaways

Hummus is a nutritious paste or spread that’s usually made with chickpeas, spices, sesame seed paste, olive oil, and lemon juice. It originates from the Middle East and can be used in a variety of ways such as on toast, as a dip, and instead of mashed potatoes.

Consuming traditional chickpea hummus is a bad idea for the keto diet because it’s high carb. A great alternative for hummus lovers is that you can make low carb keto friendly hummus using avocado, cauliflower, artichokes, and almonds.

You’re also better off making your homemade hummus because it’s quick and easy to make, doesn’t have vegetable oils and other additives like store bought hummus.

References

  1. Wallace TC, Murray R, Zelman KM. The Nutritional Value and Health Benefits of Chickpeas and Hummus. 2016 November - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5188421/
  2. Alvizouri-Muñoz M et al. Effects of avocado as a source of monounsaturated fatty acids on plasma lipid levels. 1992 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1308699
  3. Englisch W et al. Efficacy of Artichoke dry extract in patients with hyperlipoproteinemia. 2000 March - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10758778
  4. Rondanelli M et al. Beneficial effects of artichoke leaf extract supplementation on increasing HDL-cholesterol in subjects with primary mild hypercholesterolaemia: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. 2013 February - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22746542
  5. Kellingray L et al. Consumption of a diet rich in Brassica vegetables is associated with a reduced abundance of sulphate‐reducing bacteria: A randomised crossover study 2017 April - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5600105/
  6. Fat Detection. Taste, Texture, and Post Ingestive Effects. Samra RA. Chapter 15: Fats and Satiety. 2010 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK53550/

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