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Butterbean Hummus with Smoked Paprika Oil

Hummus, a dip usually made with chickpeas, is by far my favourite dip. When made correctly, it has such a full and punchy flavour worthy of even the fattest cat’s mezze. As we all know, chickpeas make a truly wonderful hummus. However, with variety being the spice of life, there isn’t any harm in substituting them for a slightly different ingredient. Straying beyond the realm of the humble pulse would prove a little foolish in this case, so there we shall remain. Indeed, butterbeans make a pretty favourable choice, since they possess a particularly smooth and creamy texture. As such, this take on the Middle Eastern classic is equally, if not more, palatable than its esteemed counterpart. The use of paprika to make infused oil may appear a little frivolous on the surface, but it is an integral part to this dish. Not only does it give the hummus a rather delectable streak of colour, it also completes its flavour profile with a smoky sweetness. As for the lack of tahini, this dip really doesn’t need it.

Good news, chaps; as you can see, a lovely little pestle and mortar has wended its way into my possession. It is my first and succeeds in making perfect fools of any and every seed it discovers in its gastronomic grasp. The fact it is small and perfectly formed is merely the proverbial icing on the cake. It was, of course, yet another charity shop acquisition; they appear to yield particularly desirable items in these parts. Indeed, three different bowls also joined my collection today, for the paltry price of £2. I feel rather lucky, like the chosen charity shop angel of the Welsh wilds.

Butterbean Hummus with Smoked Paprika Oil

Serves 4


• 400g tin of butterbeans

• 1 clove of garlic

• 1 heaped tsp of cumin seeds, gently toasted and ground

• 2-3 tbsp olive oil

• The juice of ½ a lemon

• Salt and pepper

• 1 tsp smoked paprika

• 2 tbsp rapeseed oil


1. Toast the cumin seeds over a gentle heat; be careful not to burn them. Grind the seeds. To make the hummus one need simply pop all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. However, it is best left with a little texture since dipping is the intention. To make the paprika oil, simply gently heat the rapeseed oil and paprika together for 2 minutes. Serve with a little of the oil drizzled over.

Cost: Most dishes which make use of pulses end up being incredibly cheap, this one is no exception. The entire bowl of hummus which this recipe yields should set one back no more than 60-70p. This is a far better option than buying a lower quality product from a shop.

141 replies on “Butterbean Hummus with Smoked Paprika Oil”

I love the idea of this dip, and love the name even better. Hummus is Arabic for “chickpeas”, so “butterbean hummus” sounds magical 🙂
Thanks for sharing.

oooo….I just love this recipe. I made a little gasping noise when the picture came up….is that wierd? Love…..I mean really love the smoked paprika oil. Thanks for sharing.

It looks great. However, coming from part of a Middle east that has the biggest cumin export have to say: Until now, I’d never considered combining cumin and paprika together. Worked well? I am tempted to try it now. thanks for sharing

Great finds! I love thrift shopping, but have yet to find a nice mortar and pestle… one day, though… one day.

I’d never thought to substitute the beans in hummus, but what a great idea – I do love hummus, so this is a must try!

Looks great Nick, that paprika oil will take it to a whole new level, perfect with some flatbreads.
Nice bowls, I love bowls like this with some real character, I found some nice ones from a local pottery recently.

Oh MY that looks good! But I was wondering……what do you suppose we call butter beans on this side of the world? I always thought butter beans were the yellow version of a green bean ( or string bean to some)?

What a great idea, sounds so simple and looks really tasty! I never could find smoked paprika, then I finally found some and haven’t run across any recipes that call for it in a long time, I think the paprika oil would be good on any number of things, nice!

hummus is my absolute favorite!! yours looks incredible.

PS: i also just wanted to let you know that if you subscribed to my blog @ wordpress.. i switched over and you can now subscribe to my RSS or get my recipes by email at my new site: – i am no longer with wordpress 🙂

Here in the SE U.S., butter beans are lima beans. I gather yours are more white in color. (Google didn’t really help me much.) Whatever … this looks wonderful!

I haven’t thought of butterbeans in years. My Grandmother was quite the butterbean connoisseur. I much prefer your use of those butterbeans. And then topped with that smoked paprika oil… what a fabulous little starter. Although I think I could have this hummus, some fresh bread and a glass of wine for dinner. 🙂

I love hummus as well–and experimenting with different types of beans and ingredients. Your butterbean hummus looks amazing. I really love the smoked paprika oil, what a creative addition!

Just found you on cityhippyfarmgirl and love your blog. Definitely going to try this recipe as I love hummus, and this is a little different. Also, I bought a large bag (very cheap) of smoked paprika from my local Indian shop and wasn’t sure what to do with it. Now I know.

Wow! This looks fantastic!!

I’ve had regular old chickpea hummus, of course (love it!), and our local celebrichef Hugh Acheson makes a delicious boiled peanut hummus (, which we’ve replicated at home with wonderful results.

Your butterbeans sound like a yummy variation, especially with the smoked paprika oil (wow!). And I’ll bet you could up the frugal factor of this recipe even more by starting with dried beans instead of canned….:)

Thanks! Peanut hummus sounds delicious. The oil worked so well, I highly recommend it. Yes, I was going to use dried, but ran out of town – I’m not sure they’d work quite so well either since they have to be boiled.

Love hummus. Adore butterbeans. And paprika. Shame my local supermarket has stopped selling cans of organic butterbeans, which were plump and tinged slightly pink – oh, so delicious.

Can’t for the life of me find a pestle & mortar in my local charity shops!

Very good recipe. The butter beans give it a very pleasant slightly creamy taste mixed with the paprika for a subtle touch of flavor was a brilliant touch! I did use Sesame oil instead of rapeseed which seemed to work since there is no tahini!

It’s just not fair.. I’m sitting at home with a bare cupboard.. I’ve read about your bread tonight (catching up on my blog reading) and now this lovely creamy hummus.. I’d really love to have just a little taste.. I also adore your little mortar and this means there will be lots of “mortar envy” taking over from “skillet envy”:D

I’ve recently tried a blackbean hummus, it was very nice. I had never imagined my favorite food could get better! I am definitely adding this to my to-do-list this week!

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