DIY Pantry

How to make tahini at home – a step by step guide

26th February 2018

Quick, easy and inexpensive, here’s an incredibly simple recipe for making tahini at home so you’ll never be in a hummus shortage situation again.

You’re moments away from your own homemade tahini. Photo: Natale Towell.

The backbone essential to any good hummus, tahini is a sesame seed paste that is great to have in your store cupboard. Like any nut butter, it lasts for ages, tastes great slathered on toast, blitzed into smoothies, whisked into a dressing or baked into sweet nutty biscuits. In the Middle East, tahini is mixed with date syrup and drizzled onto bread for a quick sweet treat. In a similar vein, you can loosen it with water until spoonable, add salt, a bit of garlic and lemon juice and drizzle that onto bread too. All delicious!

For now, though, you need just two ingredients: sesame seeds and a neutral-flavoured oil, like light olive oil or groundnut oil.

When you’ve got 10 minutes to spare, this is how you make it.


You’ll need a frying pan, a food processor and a sterilised jar to store your tahini in.

5 easy steps to homemade tahini

Step 1

Photo: Natale Towell

Place at least 100g of sesame seeds in a dry frying pan. Any less will make it difficult to blitz in your food processor later. Toast over a medium-high heat, stirring and shaking the pan often. Watch they don’t burn: a bitter seed will give you bitter tahini.

Step 2

Photo: Natale Towell

Tip into a food processor and blitz to a rough paste.

Step 3

Photo: Natale Towell

With the processor still running, add a drizzle of neutral-flavoured oil, such as light olive oil or groundnut oil.

Step 4

Photo: Nat Towell

Keep going, adding small drizzles of the oil until it starts to become a looser, smoother paste – as a rough guide, 2 tablespoons per 100g of seeds works about right. The more oil, the looser the texture and the more diluted the flavour, so try to strike a balance, adding small amounts of oil until it’s just smooth enough.

Step 5

Photo: Nat Towell

When you’ve hit your just smooth enough consistency, store in a jar and keep in the fridge or at room temperature.

And that’s it! Beyond homemade hummus, be sure to try it as an alternative to nut butter to spread on toast or thrown it into brownies and cakes for a savoury edge.

Caught the DIY pantry bug? Learn how to make a stunning apple cider vinegar, an easy mayonnaise, gut-friendly kombucha, a go-to paneer cheese or creamy yoghurt at home.

Try our homemade hummus recipe and keep your eyes peeled for a step-by-step coming soon to our DIY Pantry series.

Want to buy before you try? Discover tahini at

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