I dare you to resist the delicious charms of my Paleo, vegan, Whole30-friendly, bean-free beet hummus. In fact, I DOUBLE-DARE you. (And if you say “PHYSICAL CHALLENGE,” I will salute your knowledge of 20-year-old Nickelodeon game shows, and then ask that you tackle this recipe while avoiding the pink slime that I’ll tell you about in a second.)

A bowl of paleo beet hummus on a plate with sliced carrots and cucumbers.

But, this isn’t hummus!

I know, I know—I don’t use chickpeas in this recipe. Instead I use soaked cashews as a substitute because chickpeas aren’t paleo or Whole30 approved. I recognize that to the true term of hummus (which means “chickpeas” in Arabic) this recipe isn’t it. By calling my recipe beet hummus, I don’t mean any disrespect to the original recipe, instead, this is just my paleo version. Much like how I call cauliflower rice “rice,” this is beet “hummus.”

Use fresh beets!

I know—some of you hate beets. Maybe you grew up eating canned beets, and you’re haunted by the blandly muddy taste and disturbingly mushy texture of the iridescent glop that came out of those cans. I understand. I hate canned beets, too.

But fresh beets are a whole ’nother story. Not only are they packed with essential nutrients and antioxidants, they’re earthy and sweet—like nature’s candy. Don’t believe me? Head to the market and look for deeply-colored, firm-skinned beets with leaves still attached. Take them home, and make a batch of my Marinated Roasted Beets or Instant Pot Beets. Taste them. And if your picky kids remain unconvinced, whip up this Beet Hummus recipe! Sometimes, the best way to get your loved ones to eat more vegetables is to tempt them with a vibrant and bright fuchsia plant-based creamy dip!

One thing to keep in mind: Although you might be tempted to use packaged, pre-cooked beets for this recipe, DON’T DO IT. I tested this recipe several times with plastic-sealed, already-cooked beets (which I love to toss into salads and directly into my mouth), but ended up with results that—while delicious—look like pink slime. (I suspect it’s because these beets are a lighter colored variety than the fresh beets you can buy at the market.) And no one want to eat pink slime. Not even millennials who are obsessed with the color.

Packaged beets in a food processor end up with an undesirable pink color.

Moral of the story: When it comes to food, shortcuts can sometimes lead to pink slime.

In life and in the kitchen, there are times when you just need to do things the right way. When you take the time to cook your own beets, either in the oven or pressure-steamed in an Instant Pot, you’ll be rewarded with a drop-dead-gorgeous technicolor dip that’ll have you dipping veggies in, well, more veggies. Sure, your fingertips and cutting board will be stained for a while—but you can just tell people that you’re a super-cool pink-obsessed millennial, and you’re starting a new trend.

Someone mixing beets in a food processor.

Need to cut down the cook and prep time for this Beet Hummus?

For those of you pressed for time, note that there are two rate-limiting steps in this recipe:

  1. Soaking the cashews. You can soak the raw cashews in 2 cups of warm water mixed with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice for 2 to 4 hours OR do a quick soak of 10 to 20 minutes in boiling water; and
  2. Cooking the beets. It takes 30 minutes to pressure-steam the beets in an Instant Pot or about 90 minutes to roast them in the oven.

But once these steps are done, the rest can be done in no time flat. Ready to make a Paleo-friendly bean-free beet hummus with me?

Time to make Beet Hummus!

Makes 2 cups

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup (70 g) raw unsalted cashews, soaked and drained (see note above)
  • 3 medium raw beets, about 2 inches in diameter or 1½ cups (200g) cooked, peeled, and roughly chopped beets
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil and additional for drizzling
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1½ teaspoons Diamond Crystal brand kosher salt
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • Freshly cracked black pepper

Equipment:

Method:

If you haven’t already, soak your cashews according to one of the two methods mentioned above. Then, rinse and drain them.

Pouring water in a bowl with cashews to soak them.

Next, cook your beets! Either roast them in the oven by following these instructions

Step by step visual instructions on how to roast beets in the oven.

…or pressure-steam them for 15 minutes under high pressure in an Instant Pot (see recipe here).

Step by step visual instructions on how to cook beets in the Instant Pot.

Once your beets have cooled to room temperature, trim, peel, and cut them into 1-inch pieces. Measure out 1½ cups of the chopped beets and set them aside.

Someone slicing and peeling roasted beets for beet hummus.

Grab your soaked and drained cashews and dump them in a food processor or blender.

Adding the soaked cashews to a food processor.

Toss in the beets…

A close up of the beets and soaked cashews in a food processor.

…and add the lemon juice, olive oil…

Someone adding lemon juice and olive oil to a food processor for paleo beet hummus.

…tahini, salt, minced garlic, and freshly ground black pepper.

Adding tahini, salt, garlic, and black pepper to a food processor to make beet hummus.

Pulse a few times to combine. Scrape down the sides if necessary.

All the ingredients for beet hummus in a food processor before and after.

Then, blitz until you get a smooth, hummus-like consistency.

Close up of the ingredients for beet hummus blended together in a food processor.

Taste for seasoning and adjust with additional salt, pepper, and lemon juice if needed. Drizzle with additional extra virgin oil, too!

A bowl of paleo beet hummus in a plate with sliced carrots and cucumbers.

Serve the dip with your favorite raw and steamed veggies! The dip will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.


Looking for more recipe ideas? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPhone and iPad app, and in my cookbooks, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2013), Ready or Not! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2017), and Nom Nom Paleo: Let’s Go! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2021).


PRINTER-FRIENDLY RECIPE CARD

Beet Hummus (Whole30, Vegan)

4.80 from 5 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time2 hours 20 minutes
Servings 8 1/4 cup
I dare you to resist the delicious charms of my Paleo, vegan, Whole30-friendly, bean-free beet hummus. Even your kids will be tempted to eat their veggies!

Ingredients  

  • ½ cup 70 g raw unsalted cashews, soaked and drained (see note above)
  • 3 medium raw beets about 2 inches in diameter or 1½ cups (200g) cooked, peeled, and roughly chopped beets
  • cup fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup  extra virgin olive oil and additional for drizzling
  • 2 tablespoons  tahini
  • teaspoons  Diamond Crystal brand kosher salt
  • 1 medium garlic clove minced
  • Freshly cracked black pepper

Instructions 

  • If you haven’t already, soak your cashews according to one of the two methods: soak the raw cashews in 2 cups of warm water mixed with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice for 2 to 4 hours OR do a quick soak of 10 to 20 minutes in boiling water. Then, rinse and drain them.
  • Next, cook your beets! Either roast them in the oven by following these instructions or pressure-steam them for 15 minutes under high pressure in an Instant Pot (see recipe here).
  • Once your beets have cooled to room temperature, trim, peel, and cut them into 1-inch pieces. Measure out 1½ cups of the chopped beets and set them aside.
  • Grab your soaked and drained cashews and dump them in a food processor or blender.
  • Toss in the beets and add the lemon juice, olive oil, tahini, salt, minced garlic, and freshly ground black pepper.
  • Pulse a few times to combine. Scrape down the sides if necessary.
  • Then, blitz until you get a smooth, hummus-like consistency.
  • Taste for seasoning and adjust with additional salt, pepper, and lemon juice if needed. Drizzle with additional extra virgin oil, too!
  • Serve the dip with your favorite raw and steamed veggies! The dip will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Video

Notes

For those of you pressed for time, note that there are two rate-limiting steps in this recipe:
  1. Soaking the cashews. You can soak the cup of raw cashews in 2 cups of warm water mixed with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice for 2 to 4 hours OR do a quick soak of 10 to 20 minutes in boiling water; and
  2. Cooking the beets. It takes 30 minutes to pressure-steam the beets in an Instant Pot or about 90 minutes to roast them in the oven.

Nutrition

Calories: 148kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 13g | Fiber: 1g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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30 Comments

  1. I’ve been pulling beets for a week, now. (I planted two rows with a month in between the plantings to extend the spring season.) I just made a batch to take to an Independence Day celebration. I’m bringing blue corn chips and some sour cream for a red, white, and blue snack!

    1. I’m gonna chance the light pink color because I have the I love beets prepackaged beets already. I’ll report back with an update

  2. No doubt, This recipe looks so delicious in those beautiful pictures!!! Love all those super healthy ingredients!!!

  3. If I use your recipe for cooking the beets, do I add the balsamic and olive oil as well, before making the hummus, or do I leave that step out for the hummus? TIA

  4. This looks great! Question, if using the boiling method, do you pour boiling water over the cashews and let them sit like that, or do you add cashews to boiling water and boil them for 15 minutes? And if the latter, do you still add the salt and vinegar? Thanks!

  5. You didn’t lie. I LIKE IT!! I hate beets. They taste like a mouthful of dirt to me. I followed the recipe as is and I have to say, it’s pretty good. Hard to get used to eating purple but I like it. Thanks for creating such a healthy dip for snacking. I’ll be making this again and I might even try eating a beet in different recipe.

  6. I followed the recipe, but used Morton Kosher salt instead of Diamond Crystal brand. It ended up WAY too salty and I threw it out😞
    If not using Diamond Crystal brand, what amount of salt should I use?

    1. Morton kosher salt amount is about 1/2 of Diamond Crystal kosher salt! Also, saltiness is very subjective—always season to taste.