This 10-minute tahini sauce recipe is so flavorful and easy to make. Simply mix a few ingredients in a bowl and serve!
You can make this tasty dip ahead of time, refrigerate it, and use it later. It's perfect with fresh-cut vegetables or as a topping to meat and chicken.
Growing up in Jerusalem, my favorite Middle Eastern dip was tahini, a thick and flavorful sauce made from ground sesame seeds, olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice.
It's very easy to make at home, and it keeps for several days in the fridge. I make a weekly batch, and we use it throughout the week.
You'll only need a few ingredients to make this recipe. The exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below. Here's an overview:
It contains salt, so when I use it, I add just ¼ teaspoon of salt instead of ½ teaspoon. If in doubt, start with less salt. You can taste the sauce when it's ready and decide if you want to add more salt.
Minced garlic: For the best flavor, mince it yourself instead of using garlic from a jar.
Kosher salt: If using fine salt, reduce the amount you use by half.
Olive oil: Extra-virgin has the best flavor; I highly recommend using it in this recipe.
Lemon juice: Freshly squeezed is best.
Water: To thin out the sauce to your desired consistency.
Chopped parsley: This is optional, but it adds a nice flavor in addition to color.
The recipe, as written here, is a classic one. An interesting variation is adding different spices to the basic sauce.
Additions that I tried and liked include a pinch of smoked paprika, ground cumin, or oregano. You can also add a pinch of cayenne pepper if you'd like the sauce to be spicy.
Tahini Sauce Instructions
It's incredibly easy to make this sauce from scratch! You simply mix the ingredients in a bowl by hand, then refrigerate. Scroll down to the recipe card for detailed instructions. Here's an overview of the steps:
Place the tahini, garlic, salt, olive oil, lemon juice, and water in a medium bowl.
Whisk with a hand whisk until smooth. If the sauce is too thick, add 1-2 tablespoons of water.
It should be smooth and creamy - this is the consistency you're after:
Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Stir again before serving, and add more water if needed. It's perfect with fresh-cut veggies!
Depending on how much water you add, you can make this sauce as thin or thick as you like.
A thick sauce is perfect as a dip for vegetables or crackers. A thin sauce can serve as a salad dressing, or you can drizzle it on top of meats or roasted vegetables.
Both are Middle Eastern spreads used to flavor meats, bread, and vegetables. Both are often served at the beginning of a meal as part of a meze platter - a collection of small plates containing various spreads, sauces, and salads.
The main difference is the main ingredient - chickpeas in hummus and sesame seeds in tahini.
No. Both sauces are used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cooking but are made of entirely different ingredients. Tzatziki's main ingredients are yogurt and cucumbers; tahini's main ingredient is ground sesame seeds.
It tastes nutty and pleasantly salty, with a bit of tang from the lemon juice and a hint of sharpness from the garlic. Its mouthfeel is lovely - it's very creamy, as you would expect from any nut butter.
Traditionally, tahini sauce is served as a topping for meat, falafel, or cooked vegetables.
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to a week.
Stir the sauce again before serving it; if it has thickened too much while refrigerated, stir in a bit of water.
I don't recommend freezing this sauce.
More Sauce and Dip Recipes
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Tahini Sauce Recipe
- Place the tahini, garlic, salt, olive oil, lemon juice, and water in a medium bowl. Whisk with a hand whisk until smooth.
- If the sauce is too thick, add 1-2 tablespoons of water. It should be smooth and creamy.
- If using, mix in the parsley with a rubber spatula.
- Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Stir again before serving, and add more water if the sauce has thickened in the fridge. Add a tablespoon at a time until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Traditionally, tahini sauce is served as a topping for meat, falafel, or cooked vegetables. It's also delicious with crackers, on top of hard-boiled eggs, or as a salad dressing. You can make it as thin or as thick as you like, depending on how much water you add. A thick sauce is perfect as a dip for vegetables or crackers. A thin one can serve as a salad dressing.
- You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to a week. Stir the sauce again before serving; if it has thickened too much, stir in a bit of water. I don't recommend freezing this sauce.