Tahini Paste (Tahina)

5 from 3 votes

This Easy Homemade Tahini Paste (Tahina) uses just two ingredients. Make a big batch and refrigerate it for up to a month, or freeze it for 3-4 months (vegan, gluten-free).

Homemade Tahini paste kept in a bowl.
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About Tahini Paste

Tahini Paste (Tahina, Tahini Sauce) is a very popular Middle Eastern condiment made with just two ingredients: White Sesame Seeds and Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Some people also add salt to their recipe, but I am not a fan.

Tahini Sauce has a rich, nutty flavor and a creamy texture.

Although Tahini Paste is easily available in the market these days, making your own tahini at home has many benefits.

  1. Homemade is much more economical than the store-bought one.
  2. It is free of any preservatives and artificial colors.
  3. It tastes much fresher and delicious.
  4. Made using the best ingredients.

This homemade Tahini recipe is vegan and gluten-free too. You can easily double or triple the recipe and freeze it for later use.

It also makes for a great food gifting option.

Just like this paste, I also make a few other sauces and pastes at home that are super easy, very economical, and much better than the store-bought ones. Some of my favorites are Thai Green Curry Paste, Asian Red Chili Paste, and Golden Paste.

Ginger Paste and Schezwan Sauce are also a must-try at home.

Ingredients

Tahini paste ingredients.

Sesame Seeds – Use hulled white sesame seeds, as unhulled seeds could give the Tahini a slightly bitter taste.

Hulled sesame seeds have had their outer husk removed, resulting in a cream-colored seed with a mild flavor. On the other hand, unhulled sesame seeds retain their outer layer, providing higher fiber content.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil – Extra virgin olive oil gives this paste a rich Mediterranean flavor. Make sure to use the best quality olive oil.

You can replace extra virgin olive oil with avocado oil, sesame oil, grapeseed oil, or any neutral oil such as canola oil.

Optional – You can add a pinch of salt to the recipe. If you are making tahini for desserts, skip adding it.

You can also add a little maple syrup to give it a slightly sweet flavor.

How To Make Tahini Paste

Toast The Sesame Seeds

Add 1 cup of hulled white sesame seeds to a wide, dry skillet and toast them on medium-low heat until they are slightly browned, fragrant, and crisp (3-5 minutes), stirring continuously.

Do not over-toast the seeds; otherwise, the tahini will become darker.

Note – Toasting the seeds makes them crisp and easier to blend, giving them a nuttier flavor and reducing bitterness.

Tip – It is important to toast the seeds on low heat to ensure they are toasted from inside, ensuring maximum flavor.

Sesame seeds roasting in a pan.

Transfer the toasted seeds to a baking sheet or large plate and cool completely.

Toasted sesame seeds transferred on a plate.

Make The Tahini

Add the toasted sesame seeds to the bowl of a small food processor and process to make a crumbly paste (40-60 seconds).

Cooled sesame seeds added to a small food processor.
Crumbly powder made.

Add 4 tablespoons of the oil and process for 2 to 3 minutes, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides of the food processor a few times.

Oli added to the processor.
Processed for a few minutes.

Check the tahini’s consistency. It should be smooth, not gritty, and should be pourable.

You may need to process for another minute or add a few additional tablespoons of oil. I added 2 tbsp.

Some more oil added to the processor.

Store the creamy tahini in a clean and dry airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a month.

Ready tahini paste.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a substitute for Tahini?

You can replace it with nut butter, such as almond butter, cashew butter, natural peanut butter, sunflower seed butter, etc. The taste won’t be the same, but the way it reacts in a recipe will be similar, and you will not have to change the procedure.

Can I make tahini without adding oil?

Most commercial tahini is made with pure ground sesame seeds; no oil is added to the paste. The sesame seeds are fresh, and special extraction machines make the paste. When made at home, most of us do not have access to these special machines, and we make the tahini using either a high-speed blender or a food processor. If we do not add oil while blending, we will get a powder of soggy sesame seeds instead of smooth, flowy tahini. So add a little oil and get the exact texture of the store-bought bottle.

Usage Ideas

Tahina is a very versatile paste that is used to make hummus recipes. I often use it to make my Savory Pumpkin Hummus, Roasted Sweet Potato Hummus, Pumpkin Pie Dessert Hummus, Edamame Hummus, or Black Bean Hummus.

Apart from being an important ingredient of hummus, tahini paste is also used in baking. Think tahini brownies, tahini cheesecake, cookies, tahini granola bars, or tahini chocolate babka.

It is also used to make other popular Middle Eastern dips, such as Tahini Pekmez, Mutabal, and Baba Ganoush.

You can also make salad dressings or serve it with Falafel.

It can also be tossed with noodles and drizzled on roasted veggies and grilled meats.

Tahini can be used as a spread on bread or crackers or added to soups and stews for extra flavor.

Storage Suggestions

Tahini paste can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a month.

Remember to label the container with the date of preparation. Homemade tahini is preservative-free, so tracking its shelf life is essential.

If you made a large batch and won’t be able to use it within a month, consider freezing it. Transfer it to small freezer-safe containers and freeze it for up to 3 months. I like to store ¼ cup portions to take out just one portion, thaw it, and use it in my recipes.

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This Easy Homemade Tahini Paste (Tahina) uses just two ingredients. It is much more economical and way better than store-bought. Make a big batch and refrigerate it for up to a month, or freeze it for 3-4 months (vegan, gluten-free).
5 from 3 votes

Easy Homemade Tahini Paste Recipe

This Easy Homemade Tahini Paste (Tahina) is made using just 2 ingredients. Make a big batch and refrigerate it for up to a month or freeze for 3-4 months.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 15 tablespoons

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup white sesame seeds (hulled)
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil (plus some more if required, I had to add 2 tbsp extra)
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Instructions 

Toast The Sesame Seeds

  • Add sesame seeds to a wide dry pan and toast them on medium-low heat until they are slightly browned, fragrant and crisp (3-5 minutes). Stir continuously while toasting.
  • Do not over-toast the seeds otherwise, the tahini will become darker in color.
  • Tip – It is important to toast the seeds on low heat to ensure they are toasted from inside ensuring maximum flavor.
  • Transfer the toasted seeds to a baking sheet or large plate and cool completely.

Make The Tahini

  • Add the toasted sesame seeds to the bowl of a small food processor and process to make a crumbly paste (40-60 seconds).
  • Add oil and process for 2 to 3 minutes, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides of the food processor a few times.
  • Check the tahini’s consistency. It should be smooth, not gritty, and should be pourable. You may need to process for another minute or add a few additional tablespoons of oil.
  • Store the tahini in a clean and dry glass jar for up to a month in the refrigerator.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

You can add a pinch of salt to the recipe. If you are making tahini for desserts, skip adding it. You can add a little maple syrup to give it a slightly sweet flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 89kcal, Carbohydrates: 2g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Sodium: 1mg, Potassium: 47mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 1IU, Calcium: 98mg, Iron: 1mg
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