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Pre-Peeled Chickpeas. A homemade hummus game-changer.

Peeled Chickpeas, Maureen Abood Market

The first time I went to the Symposium for Professional Food Writers at the Greenbrier, I walked into the grand dining room (think of the biggest chandelier you’ve ever seen, in green and black crystal) on the first night for dinner. The hostess took us, each one as we arrived, to the round tables of writers and an empty chair next to someone. Before I even took my seat I was saying hello to Sofia, an adorable, bright, funny and fun writer from New York.

Next thing you know, a lot of years (nine) have passed and thanks to all things Internet—we’ve still got it.

It was Sofia who ever so casually posted on Facebook about the peeled chickpeas she’s been using to make her hummus. I fell out of my chair directly to my knees, said a prayer of thanksgiving for Sofia and her brilliant mind, and started on the hunt.

Why? Perhaps you are like one of the people who has not yet encountered the thrill of the peeled chickpea for your homemade hummus (and homemade is best!). Who cares about peeled chickpeas? Clearly you have not (yet) tasted the stop-dead-in-your-tracks difference that is hummus made with peeled chickpeas.

Your hummus game–and I know you have one–has just changed, and I mean big, my friends.

The best hummus you can eat is, according to me and many others, ultra-smooth. For a long time I thought it must be the machinery the big companies use to get their hummus so perfectly smooth. I made a decent attempt at adding laban, yogurt, to my hummus to give it better texture. Then it became clear this was about the skins, which never puree fully, making the hummus coarser. Which some like, and to you I say: we better head to therapy together, because I don’t understand you.

The skins also impart a flavor, a hint of undesirable bitterness, that is far, far inferior to the addictive flavor of hummus made without skins.

The quest to figure out how to best loosen the skins from chickpeas is monumental. There’s this thread, this post and tons more like it. Because who wants to spend all that time standing at the sink popping the skins off of a ridiculously small amount of chickpeas? And who, really, is going to do it? Nobody but some poor lost souls like me.

Which is why I’m  so excited to share the holiest of Holy Grail, my own brand of dried peeled chickpeas. Here’s my gift to you today:

Buy them here.

The peeled garbanzos cook up in lots of water, big pot, in about 90 minutes. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a healthy simmer (uncovered). Keep checking and tasting as you go. Soft, creamy to the bite, with just a whisper of resistance, and they are done. Strain and you can reserve the cooking liquid for your hummus (it needs to be chilled). Now you’re ready to make your homemade hummus into the finest delight of your table. I can’t wait! I’m so happy for all of us!

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  1. Jim Albert on October 1, 2013 at 9:30 AM


    What a great find. I had a friend of my wife (Irish–Red/Strawberry blond–the real deal!) ask me about peeled chick peas and I was perplexed. I was proudly proclaiming the “real” way to make hummus, going through all the important ingredients and fundamentals (including banging the cheap blender with my palms, but no more thanks to vitamix or the “bullet” thingies). She was very patient with me and humbly asked me one simple question. “Do you peel the chick peas?” This was about 5 years ago, the question just dangled (haunted me) in my head for the entire 5 years.

    No way!! who’s peeling every chick pea (I was feeling very lazy) I am a visual person so your imagery Maureen was perfect. The only thing I could think was that it was what they had to do with the old mortar and pestle. This intrigued me b/c it could have been the “traditional way”, but I never tried it (but always wondered).

    Now we have this wonderful alternative. Thanks Maureen for offering this.

  2. Sofia Perez on October 1, 2013 at 10:25 AM

    I remember being so nervous that first night of the conference–just starting out the business, wondering if I’d click with anyone. Your smile and warmth put me instantly at ease. A friend for life, I knew, in seconds.

  3. Sofia Perez on October 1, 2013 at 10:27 AM

    And believe it or not, Maureen, but it’s been 10 years. It was March 2003 (so 10 1/2 years). Oy.

  4. Geri Conklin on October 1, 2013 at 10:39 AM

    OMG!!!!!! The memories of sitting at the counter as a kid and peeling (or popping) those pesky little chickpeas from their skins………..sheeeezz, but, ta da…….the best hummus ever unfolded before our eyes. My mother also used to mash the peas with a wooden mallet. I often think about how much more work it took her than today and so quickly it would be gone. It seemed there was never enough, ha, ha.

  5. Claire Tromeur on October 1, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    Hello Maureen,

    About chick peas, I soak them for 12 hours and freeze them; easy to peal after that even uncooked!

    I never found peeled ones here – Switzerland – didn’t even know it existed …..

    Love them anyway !

    Love your letters too

    • Maureen Abood on October 1, 2013 at 4:46 PM

      Wow, great idea–I will try it, thanks Claire!

  6. Rebecca Hachem on October 1, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    I spent 2 hours peeling my chick peas and thought it was worth it, but I only did it once!
    Thank you for the generous gift.

  7. Antonia Allegra on October 1, 2013 at 11:22 AM

    What an extraordinary outcome of your attendance at the Symposium for Professional Food Writers at The Greenbrier, Maureen! I love the lasting friendship with Sophia, the peeled chickpeas and, of course, your writing! I’ll check Italian food shops re the peeled garbanzos. We include them in many dishes.

    • Michael Ganz on October 1, 2013 at 4:34 PM

      Believe it or not, I had a meeting today with a couple of Turkish businessmen. They took me to
      a Mediterranean restaurant and I am sure the hummus was made without “skins”… I noticed the difference right away. Very creamy and smooth — I wondered… how did they do this?

      By coincidence, I came home to find this article in my email of all topics.

      You’re looking great Maureen! Beautiful! Love your new photo.

      Hope you are well…


      • Maureen Abood on October 1, 2013 at 4:47 PM

        Thank you thank you Michael!

  8. Sharon on October 7, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    OMG. When I learned to make hummus oh so many years ago from my Sitto and Umtee (Aunt) they first boiled the chick peas then proceeded to pop the skins off. Years later when I continued to follow their example most of my friends thought it was a waste of time and convinced me it didn’t make a difference. I can’t tell you how excited I was to read this article. Hurray! I am going to make it today and take the skins off. I want my friends to taste the difference.

    Thank you for this article

  9. Roger Toomey on October 11, 2013 at 10:57 PM

    Have you tried cooking them in a pressure cooker? That’s what my Mom did. I don’t really know why or what the advantage was but that’s the way it was done/

    • Maureen Abood on October 14, 2013 at 7:12 AM

      Roger, I haven’t tried this myself but I have heard it yields good results!

  10. mimi on October 24, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    Great tip! I live in Royal Oak, so I have plenty of choices for restaurants with deliciously smooth hummus, but it’s great to know this for when I decide to make my own. I had wondered how the restaurants managed to get their hummus so smooth, and I think this must be it.

  11. John on February 2, 2014 at 8:55 AM

    The chickpeas in the bag look fresh….well, not dried anyway. Are they dried?

    • Maureen Abood on February 3, 2014 at 12:50 PM

      Hi John–yes, they are dried, pre-peeled chickpeas–but they are par-cooked, so they aren’t treated as regular dried beans. They’re just cooked for about 90 minutes or so.

  12. Angela on September 15, 2014 at 8:16 PM

    Hi, i actually just tried to purchase these but afraid the link doesn’t work. Has the site shut down? I am dying to buy some so any assistance from you would be fabulous.


    • Maureen Abood on September 18, 2014 at 2:33 PM

      Seems that site did close down, but see the link for a new spot (and here).

  13. Corinne Horsch on September 22, 2014 at 2:17 PM


    I was reading through your post about the peeled chick peas and had the same problem that Angela had (post from September 15, 2014). I was able to add them to my cart but when I selected paypal, there was an error. I tried to contact the company but the e-mail was immediately returned to me. Not sure what else I should be doing.


    • Maureen Abood on September 26, 2014 at 9:00 AM

      Corinne–I’m sorry for the trouble ordering the peeled chickpeas. I will have another source for everyone shortly!

  14. Ashley Rosen on December 5, 2014 at 12:42 PM

    Hello! I found your article as a was searching for hulled chickpeas. I work at a restaurant and we are trying to get hummus going, but to shell THAT MANY garbanzo beans when I’m just one person was impossible (believe me, we tried) so you can imagine I was doubly disappointed when both links didn’t work. However, in a quirk of fate, I clicked the Google ad at the bottom of the search page. Lo and behold, I give you, shelled chickpeas!

    • Maureen Abood on January 12, 2015 at 8:24 AM

      Hi Ashley–and thank you for this! I tested these chickpeas and found them to have skins on! Curious how they’ve worked out for you.

  15. Janna on February 14, 2015 at 4:19 PM

    Some people, and websites, incorrectly used “shelled” to mean “with the shells on,” or in this case, the skins. I believe that website meant to advertise these chickpeas as with the skin, as compared to what they would probably call “unshelled” chickpeas.

  16. Dee on March 10, 2015 at 11:26 AM

    Hi, just wondering if you ever tried or considered trying Chana Dal. It’s Indian and it is actually dried hulled (that is peeled) and split chick peas!!! You can buy a bag of this stuff in any Indian or specialty market, plus I’ve found it online (Amazon). I’ve made hummus with it and can not taste any difference. Definitely a game changer.

    • Maureen Abood on March 13, 2015 at 6:08 AM

      Hi Dee–great thought and yes, I’ve tried Chana Dal, which are smaller and have what I found to be a bit of a different flavor. Glad you are enjoying and making smoooooth hummus!

  17. Gigi on March 12, 2015 at 6:19 PM

    The link doesn’t work. 🙁

    • Maureen Abood on March 13, 2015 at 6:09 AM

      Hi Gigi–please stay tuned–I will have the chickpeas available to you here soon!

  18. shirley on April 16, 2015 at 11:30 PM

    please supply a link to order skinned chick peas

    I live in British Columbia Canada and have been searching for these, thanks

    • Maureen Abood on April 17, 2015 at 6:08 AM

      Hi Shirley! I’m selling the chickpeas at Maureen Abood Market, just launched and not shipping to Canada just yet, but soon–please stay tuned!

  19. Rina on April 17, 2015 at 9:54 PM

    YAY!!!!!!! I’m so excited for your online store!!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!!!! XOXOXO

  20. Yas on September 28, 2015 at 12:44 PM

    Despite having a possibly grainy hummus, would leaving the skins on be more nutritious? Or is the nutritional difference negligible?

    • Maureen Abood on September 30, 2015 at 10:22 AM

      Perhaps more nutritional value with the skins, as with most fruits and vegetables, but it isn’t such a trade off that I’d stop removing the skins!

  21. Heather T on March 10, 2016 at 11:07 PM

    Life saver! I HATE chickpeas because of the skin on them, never could eat them, but NEED to to be a healthier vegan! This is a game changer!

  22. Maureen Doran on August 31, 2016 at 10:55 AM

    Would like to order thes, where?

  23. Sharon on July 21, 2017 at 6:46 AM

    Can I use peeled chicpeas to make falafel? And if so do i soak them. Aren’t canned chicpeas peeled already? I thought the soaking was to make them softer not just to help remove the skins.

    • Maureen Abood on July 21, 2017 at 9:22 AM

      You sure can Sharon–it’s just that peeled chickpeas don’t lend anything special to falafel the way they do hummus. Standard dry chickpeas are soaked for falafel (see my recipe here). Also: canned chickpeas are not peeled!

  24. Valerie on August 29, 2017 at 7:20 PM

    Your website is so lovely and informative! I’ve made hummus from scratch twice now and it’s surprisingly easy, and your peeling chickpeas tip makes a HUGE difference! So, if I use peeled dry chickpeas, do I omit the overnight soaking? It would be *so* convenient to skip that step!

  25. Karen on October 20, 2017 at 9:17 AM

    This may be sacrilegious, but I tried using the peeled chickpeas and it did not come out. Is there any brand of canned peeled chickpeas you recommend? I know it may not be as good, but hopefully will be good enough. Thanks.

    • Maureen Abood on October 20, 2017 at 11:39 AM

      Hi Karen! What didn’t work for you? Love to help since there might be a simple fix or answer to what went wrong for you. I’ve never seen the peeled chickpeas canned/cooked!

  26. Iris Mathewson-Shah on March 28, 2020 at 6:28 PM

    How can I buy pre peeled chick peas from you?
    Iris Mathewson-Shah

    • Maureen Abood on March 30, 2020 at 10:45 AM

      Hi Iris, you can purchase the chickpeas at here!

  27. Iswari on November 7, 2020 at 5:02 PM

    Do you know how to cook peeled chickpeas in an Instant Pot? I tried once before and way overcooked them…

    • Maureen Abood on November 12, 2020 at 8:54 AM

      I don’t use the instant pot for these because they do get so mushed. But I’ll keep testing and see what I can come up with!

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Maureen Abood in the kitchen

I'm so glad you're here! You'll find among these pages the fresh and classic Lebanese recipes we can't get enough of! My mission is to share my tried + true recipes -- and to help our Lebanese food-loving community keep these culinary traditions alive and on the table. What recipes are you looking for? Let me know!

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