Case Study: Hummus Production at BCH

25 June 2024

Author: Dave Tod, Sales Manager


Hummus is a creamy, smooth spread, traditionally enjoyed as a dip or accompaniment in Middle Eastern and North African Countries.

This product has become increasingly popular worldwide, thanks to its versatility and health benefits. This nutrious dip can be paired with vegetables, pitta bread, crackers and also on sandwiches. Today, Hummus can be found readily available across Europe, North America, Australasia and beyond. 

Made primarily from cooked chickpeas, oils, tahini, garlic and several other ingredients and flavours blended, this makes for an extremely side dish.


Previously it was only possible to produce a very smooth, high quality Hummus through a pre-soak of raw chickpeas for up to 8 hours, before cooking and cooling them for up to 4 hours. 

This method ensures that the hard outer cellulose cell structure found in chickpeas is sufficiently softened to enable a high-quality smooth hummus to be produced. However, in today’s food production industry, this process is not cost-effective or time saving.

BCH’s challenge was to provide an industrial solution for a fast and efficient method of cooking and cooling high volumes of chickpeas, to meet the increased demands from the food industry for higher throughputs.  

We also needed to make sure that damage to the chickpeas during the cooking and cooling process is minimal, ensuring product quality and optimising the final yield.

Benefits of the BCH Hummus Production Method


By adopting BCH’s rapid cooking and cooling method for chickpeas, it’s possible to bulk produce chickpeas easily and quickly with a minimal factory production space footprint.

The high water volumes normally associated with the traditional soaking method is minimised, and the cooked and cooled chickpeas can be stored chilled in advance, ready for immediate Hummus production.

With the BCH system it’s possible to cook whilst cooling, offering the manufacturer the potential of having a semi-continuous chickpea production method.

By integrating BCH’s advanced and proven Pressure Cooking and Vacuum Cooling processes with our state-of-the-art Optima Mixer, we provide manufacturers with a comprehensive solution for producing high-quality hummus.

Stage 1 


BCH Pressure Cooking and Vacuum Cooling System

Initial process ingredients:

Heating method:

Culinary Grade Steam Injection and Steam Jacket


  1. Add 80°C hot water to the cooker via automatic water flow meter
  2. Add clean, un-soaked chick peas using a bin hoist, agitating with slow-speed intermittent mixing, low pressure steam injection and jacket heating.
  3. Heat to 95°C, and enable pressurisation of the kettle.
  4. Raise and hold internal pressure at temperature for nominally 30 to 40 minutes (recipe dependant) using jacket only, then blow-down to release the pressure (under full automatic control).
  5. Sample to check cook quality (chick pea softness & skin condition).
  6. Add 15% cold quench water into the kettle via flow meter, to halt the cook process.
  7. Vacuum transfer the total batch (chickpeas with water) from cooker to cooler, and cool to 5°C under fully controlled vacuum conditions, using slow-speed intermittent agitation (fully automatic control).
  8. Nominal transfer & cooling time – approximately 35 to 40 minutes.
  9. Discharge cooler contents manually into perforated tote bins or mobile baskets to enable separation of excess water from the chickpeas.

Traditional Pre-soaking Time:   6-8 hours 

BCH Method – no pre-soaking required.

Traditional Method Cooking & Cooling time: 3-4 hours 

Loading, Cooking, Cooling and Discharge Time:  90-120 minutes 

7 batches can be cooked and cooled in this way during an 8-hour shift.

Time saved – 8-9 hours per batch.

Timings are approximate and recipe dependent

Stage 2 – Hummus Production Process

Equipment: BCH Optima mixer – cold mix with high speed agitation & cutting action

Typical ingredients:   

  1. Place chick peas & water in the Optima mixer and close the lid
  1. Start the top mixer and the bottom mounted blade chopper
  1. Run at full speed for approximately 2 to 4 minutes (4,500 pm). The run time is dependent upon the smoothness of Hummus that’s required.
  1. Add oil, garlic puree, tahini sauce, lemon juice, flavours & salt – run for a further 1 to 2 minutes.
  1. Sample, and discharge into tote bins by tipping the mixer bowl.

The next batch can be loaded into the mixer immediately after discharge has finished, enabling a rapid batch-on-batch continuous hummus production turn-around process, until the machine requires cleaning-down for flavour change, hygiene purposes etc. The mixer bowl can be jacketed to reduce any heating effect during the mixing process.

This continuous/batch method system allows far greater flexibility than continuous processing – it’s easy to clean down the Optima mixer between different product types, enabling the factory to change flavours and ingredients without stopping the cooking and cooling process.

The BCH Optima mixer system is available in a range of sizes, accommodating batch capacities from approximately 75kg to 450kgs. This versatile mixer is also ideal for producing a variety of dips, sauces, spreads and smooth pastes.


hummus production at BCHWith the BCH Cook/Cool and Optima Mixer, you can create a delicious and creamy hummus dip efficiently. This process saves time compared to traditional methods, ensures consistency across batches, reduces costs and improves energy efficiency – key priorities in food production.

You can contact us today to discover more about our Hummus Production Systems.