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Don’t get us wrong. We could happily eat hummus straight out of the tub with nothing more than a box of crackers or some toasted pita chips. But our favorite creamy dip can actually be used for so much more than a quick afternoon snack. In fact, we think that it deserves to be the star of the show. Here, nine delicious ideas for what to eat with hummus that go beyond the same-old, same-old. 

RELATED: 17 Meals You Can Make with a Can of Chickpeas

bowl of hummus
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First up: What is hummus?

You always have a tub hanging out in the back of your fridge. But did you know that it’s actually ridiculously easy to make this buttery spread yourself? In its most basic form, this Middle Eastern and Mediterranean staple is just chickpeas (cooked and mashed) mixed with tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic. But you can get creative by adding more ingredients to change the flavor profile. Spicy avocado hummus, anyone? Or why not try sweet potato hummus? Once you’ve whipped up your dip of choice (or grabbed some more from the grocery store), then all you need to do is decide how to enjoy it. We’re here to help.

Hummus spread on a sandwich
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1. Spread it on a sandwich

Making lunch? Swap not-so-great-for-you butter or mayo for healthy, protein-packed hummus instead. We especially love adding a layer on whole-grain bread and then topping it with crunchy veggies (like cucumber, peppers and tomatoes) and some salad. The hummus helps keep everything in place while adding a velvety texture to your sammie. Or give your usual avocado toast a fancy upgrade by smearing a thin layer of hummus on first and then adding our favorite green fruit. Breakfast of champions, coming right up.

Brownies made with hummus
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2. Bake with it 

If you’ve been limiting your hummus consumption to savory dishes only, you have no idea what you’ve been missing. This delicious dip’s earthiness actually works surprisingly well in baked goods and desserts, especially in chocolate recipes. Try subbing hummus for some of the fat in your favorite brownie recipe (just a few tablespoons should do it, don’t go crazy). The chickpea spread will help the brownies retain their moisture while adding a hint of umami to the finished dish. Or why not try this spiced hummus cake with vanilla yogurt frosting? (Just make sure to use plain hummus, OK?)

crudite platter with hummus

3. Use it as a dip

You knew this one already, right? Not so fast. Crackers and carrot sticks are great, but don’t limit yourself to the standard (read: boring) vessels for dipping. Get creative and make hummus the centerpiece of a gorgeous crudités platter filled with ingredients that guests can actually get excited about. Think: fried asparagus, crispy endives, shaved radishes, crunchy sugar snaps and sweet potato chips. Drizzle some extra-virgin olive oil on top of your dip, add a sprinkle of pumpkin seeds and a dash of paprika and your guests won’t know what hit them.

Quinoa salad with hummus
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4. Make it into a salad dressing

You always add chickpeas to your go-to bowl of kale, so you already know that the flavor combo works. What doesn’t work, however, is drenching your salad in olive oil and dealing with soggy leaves as a result. The fix? Swap your usual dressing for hummus. Just add a tablespoon or two on top of your plate and dip your fork into it as you go. It’s delicious, creamy and guaranteed to be soggy-free.

Hummus dip fruit platter
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5. Team it with fruit

Remember what we said about hummus and dessert? The same rule applies here. Make hummus the centerpiece of your fruit plate and add some sliced apples, dates and dried apricots for dipping. There’s something about the sweet and savory combo that just works. Or if you want to get really crazy, whip up a batch of chocolate hummus made with chickpeas, tahini, cocoa powder, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Serve with strawberries, apples and pretzels.

Humms pasta bowl
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6. Add it to spaghetti

Step up your pasta game by adding a dollop of hummus to a pot of pasta. It creates the same, rich consistency of an alfredo or carbonara but without using heavy cream. (Trust us on this one.) Cook your noodles according to the package instructions and then add a dollop of hummus into the pan. Add a little bit of water or olive oil to thin out the sauce and achieve the right consistency. Top with plenty of Parm, freshly ground black pepper and some parsley. You’ve just found your new weeknight dinner go-to.

Salad bowl with hummus
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7. Make a veggie bowl

Steamed or grilled vegetables on their own can be a little, well…boring. But add in a scoop of brown rice or quinoa, some fresh salad leaves and a mound of hummus and that dull lunch just turned into a party. (OK, not quite, but it’s a definite improvement.)

Hummus spread on pita with vegetables
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8. Sub it for pizza sauce 

Relax, we’re not suggesting you add hummus to your pepperoni and cheese. Instead, create a Mediterranean-style flatbread by toasting a couple of pitas, smearing on some hummus and topping them with fresh vegetables, olives and arugula. It’s like pizza and a mezze platter had a delicious baby.

hummus deviled eggs
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9. Deviled Eggs

You already know that shaking up your deviled egg game can lead to delicious results (case in point: these avocado deviled eggs). And the best part? It’s so easy. Just hard-boil a couple of eggs, scoop out the yolks and mash them with a few tablespoons of hummus and a drizzle of olive oil. Pipe the mixture back into the eggs and sprinkle with some paprika. Instant upgrade.

RELATED: 9 Easy Pizza Recipes That Will Impress Anyone

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