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Tahini Sauce With Lemon and Garlic

Prep Time10 mins
Total Time10 mins
Author: Emily Clifton, Nerds with Knives (Adapted from Michael Solomonov)


  • 1 head garlic cloves separated but unpeeled (about 15- 20 cloves)
  • 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice from about 3 to 4 lemons (160ml)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin 4g
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom 2g
  • 1 cup tahini paste about 10oz, 300g
  • Cold water
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • A pinch of smoked paprika for garnish (optional)


  • Combine unpeeled garlic cloves and lemon juice in a blender. Pulse until a coarse puree is formed, about 10 to 15 short pulses. Pour mixture into a fine mesh strainer set over a large bowl. Press out as much liquid as you can with the back of a spoon, then discard solids.
  • Stir cumin, cardamom and tahini paste into the bowl with lemon-garlic juice. The mixture will seize and turn pasty. Add cold water, a few tablespoons at a time, stirring in between each addition, until a smooth, thick but pourable sauce forms. Season to taste with salt and garnish with a good pinch of smoked paprika, if desired. Sauce will last in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
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