Roasted Red Pepper and Black Bean Dip

Just like with soup, I’ve found that there are endless combinations of ingredients that you can blend together to form a solid, irresistible dip. With soup, you’ve got your fundamental elements, which can vary to some degree, but will persistently be added for key flavor – i.e., garlic, onions, and celery. Same goes for spreads and dips.

I nearly always start out with a couple cloves of fresh garlic in the food processor (although not much more because raw garlic is pungent). Then I add a bean to create the bulk, making for a nice protein-centered base. Chickpeas, for a traditional hummus, black beans for a color-changer, white beans for a delicate or Italian spread, etc. etc.  Then I go for tahini, or olive oil, or sometimes even peanut butter to create the rich, much needed creamy element of the dip. From there, I’ll decide on the spices, and then add one or two herbs to freshen things up.

Then, I simply let the magic of the food processor take over and do the work. Creating a dip/spread is really a simple process that leaves a lot of room for creativity.

The one below is not too wild, drawing from many of the same spices used in hummus. Feel free to go out on a limb and add in some of your own spices…Maybe those ones hidden in the back of the cupboard that don’t get many opportunities to shine. If you want a safe route, or simply a recipe to follow so you can unwind, stick with the spices below that will guarantee a delicious spread. (Although, I will make you choose between using cilantro and parsley.) If you do decide to venture out onto your own route, trust me, you can’t go too wrong. Just start with a small dosage of whatever herb/spice you’re experimenting with and go from there.

Roasted Red Pepper and Black Bean Dip


  • -2 small-medium cloves garlic, about 1 tsp.
  • -1-15oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • -1/2 cup jarred roasted red peppers, drained
  • -2 Tbsp. sesame tahini
  • -1/2 tsp. cumin
  • -1/4 tsp. cayenne (plus an extra pinch if you tend to like things on the spicier side)
  • -1/2 tsp. salt
  • -1/4 cup parsley or cilantro
  • -Sliced veggies, crackers, or pita


  1. Process garlic in food processor. Add remaining ingredients, excluding parsley. Process until smooth.
  2. Add parsley, and pulse until combined. Serve with crudites, crackers, or pita.

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  • Reply
    The Candid RD
    April 26, 2012 at 5:43 am

    We did a latina dinner last night with a group of latina women. We made asaparagus/avocado guacamole and raw/plus cooked ceviche. It was AWESOME, but next time I may have them make this recipe!

  • Reply
    April 26, 2012 at 7:08 am

    I totally agree! I have a plan forming for a delicious dip myself. This one looks utterly delicious – fantastic!

  • Reply
    Hannah (BitterSweet)
    April 26, 2012 at 7:30 am

    Sounds like an excellent change of pace for me! As much as I love chickpeas, I feel like I need some other beans in my life, but it’s hard to move away from hummus. This should fill the void quite nicely. 🙂

  • Reply
    Nicole, RD
    April 27, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    I adore dips! I bet this would be great as a spread on sandwiches or quesadillas 🙂

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