When making a hummus one of the key factors seems to be removal of chickpea white skins.

Are there any tips on how can I effectively peel the skins off in an efficient way?

  • 3
    You peel them? I've never done that for hummus.. Commented Sep 9, 2010 at 1:26
  • 2
    @Brendan sure, it ends up being much smoother, lots of effort though Commented Sep 9, 2010 at 8:14
  • Is there advantage in eating without peeling ? [ nutriton factor ] Commented Nov 23, 2017 at 10:08

9 Answers 9


You can also try doing it in a bowlful of water; the skins will float to the surface when they come loose.

  • 1
    Is this done with fully cooked beans, or partly cooked? Commented Aug 27, 2010 at 14:03
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    I've done it with fully cooked, but I guess it might be a little easier if you did it with nearly-done, then put them back in to finish cooking. Commented Aug 28, 2010 at 3:24
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    Yerp the easiest way I found to date was part cooking, rinsing in cold water, agitating the skins and then skimming off the mess. Commented Aug 28, 2010 at 8:54

Peeling chickpeas will give you a creamier texture, but won't have much of an effect on taste.

The most efficient way I know of peeling them is to rub small handfuls in the palm of your hands. It will still take some time to work through them, but it's far more efficient than using your fingertips.

One other possibility is to use a product similar to Oxo's silicon garlic peeler. It's a tube in which you can place garlic and roll around until the cloves are peeled. I have one and it works amazingly well. I suspect it would be great for chickpeas too.


the ABSOLUTE BEST WAY, is to cook them only half the time (the dried ones and drained 24 hours), half the time would be 20-25 minutes... take them out after 25 minutes, put a tablespoon of baking soda on an ounce (420 grams), stir the soda in well. Than put them on a very hot flat pan over the fire for 2-3 minutes. The skin will just stick to the pan. Than put the chickpeas back to boil for 20 more minutes. It'll take about 90-95% of the skins without peeling them one by one.

  • That a good trick, I think a lot depends on the type of chickpeas in play, the Israeli sites for making humous seem to recommend a similar technique. Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 21:35
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    tried it. sure softened the skins but did not stick to my cast iron/remove any faster than hand peeling. And left a distinct alkaline taste. not worth it.
    – Pat Sommer
    Commented Feb 21, 2018 at 19:47

I rolled the chickpea between two tea towels and used a rolling pin. Rolled the chickpeas wich loosen the skin then place the chickpeas into a bowl with water and let gravity lifed the skins up to the top. I washed the peas. There you are chickpeas without water easy.

  • Just wanted to point out it floats to the top because the skin has less density than the water. It has nothing to do with gravity.
    – Jay
    Commented Jul 8, 2013 at 16:40
  • 2
    Technically, it's gravity pulling harder on the water than on the same volume of skins that causes them to float. You're both correct! :-)
    – Erik P.
    Commented Jul 11, 2013 at 13:26
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    @Jay: it’s absolutely because of gravity! It is indeed because the skins are less dense than water — but similarly, the fact an apple falls is because it’s more dense than air. The falling/rising, in either case, comes from the combination of gravity and the density difference. Fun fact: because of this connection, an old name for density is “specific gravity”.
    – PLL
    Commented Nov 4, 2013 at 20:43

I bought a Vintage Foley Food Mill set with the red handles on eBay...

It's great for mashed potatoes, crushing crackers, baby food, and separating the skins off of garbanzo beans for hummus.

Food mill set


If you have a hand mill, you can run chickpeas through it on a very course setting. That'll crack the peas and dislodge the skin. Skins can then be quickly removed by sieving or shaking. Be cautious when milling though. Chickpeas can be very hard, too hard for a mill that's set for too fine a product.


You could pass the chickpeas through a food mill.

Pureeing something while holding tough parts back is what these things are designed for.


I shell on a regular basis. Dead simple:

  • Boil dried peas for twenty minutes.
  • Cool under cold water.
  • Rub the peas between the hands and float off the skins.
  • Five rinses and the peas are completely skinned.

It takes less than five minutes for a liter.
Then cook the chickpeas for about one hours at a gently boil to soften for tempeh making.

Pictures: Removing husks from Chickpeas


It has never even occurred to me to try skinning chickpeas. What's the benefit? I pressure-cook them (without soaking) for ~55 minutes—4 parts water per part of beans, with a little salt—let them cool somewhat, and put them in the food processor. The hummus comes out delightfully smooth and creamy. What's not to like?

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