This is the best chickpea fatteh recipe and I stand by that. Fattet hummus, as we call it in Arabic, is a beloved Middle Eastern breakfast dish that combines crunchy, creamy, and savory elements layered into one perfect bowl. You get crispy pita chips, flavorful chickpeas, creamy yogurt, and toasted nuts in every glorious bite. This recipe is so quick and easy to make, plus it's high in protein and vegetarian.
My favorite memories in Lebanon include spending the weekend with my family in the north and stopping by a breakfast place that served my favorite fatteh ever. It was my mission to replicate it at home here in the US.
The word "fatteh" comes from the Arabic word "fatt" which means to break up into small pieces or crumbs. It's the same root word in fattoush, which also has crunchy, broken up pieces of pita bread. And "hummus" means chickpeas in Arabic, so this is why we call it fattet hummus.
Fatteh is a very common breakfast and brunch dish in the Levantine region, particularly Lebanon and Syria. It is often part of a larger spread of chickpea based recipes such as creamy hummus, hummus with spiced meat, as well as balila.
- Cooked chickpeas: They should be super tender and creamy. It's best to cook dried chickpeas from scratch, but you could also use canned. You will also need a little bit of the aquafaba (chickpea liquid).
- Pita bread: For the best crispy results, use the super thin Lebanese pita bread. If you have older, stale pita bread, this is the perfect time to use it.
- Yogurt: A natural, whole milk yogurt will have the best flavor and consistency for this dish.
- Fresh garlic: It's used for both the chickpea layer and the yogurt layer.
- Tahini: It adds richness and a subtle nutty flavor, but you can skip it if you don't have it.
- Lemon juice: It adds additional tanginess to the yogurt.
- Seasoning: Ground cumin for the chickpeas and salt for all the fatteh layers.
- Olive oil: It's used to make the toasted pita chips. Traditionally, the pita bread is fried, which you could still do if you prefer.
- Ghee: It is used to toast the nuts and pour on top of the fatteh.
- Pine nuts: This is the traditional nut of choice and is absolutely delicious, but considering its cost, feel free to substitute with sliced almonds and/or cashews.
See recipe card for ingredient quantities and directions.
Step by Step Instructions
Check out these step by step photos and instructions on how to make this traditional chickpea fatteh recipe to help you replicate it at home!
Step 1: Prepare the pita chips layer. Separate the pita bread and cut into 1 inch strips, then cut the strips into squares. Toss them with olive oil and salt, spread them on a baking sheet, and place them in a 400°F oven for about 8 minutes, tossing halfway through, until deeply golden and crispy.
If you want a totally traditional and richer fatteh, heat up a couple inches of neutral oil in a pot and fry the pita bread whole and then break into pieces, or cut it up and fry it until golden.
Step 2: Prepare the chickpeas layer. Place the tender, cooked chickpeas in a saucepan with some aquafaba (chickpea liquid), crushed garlic, ground cumin, and salt. Bring it to a simmer over medium-low for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, then set aside.
If using canned chickpeas, you will need to simmer them for 20 minutes to make them more tender for this recipe.
Step 3: Prepare the yogurt layer. Place the yogurt in a medium bowl, and whisk it until it's very smooth. Then add in the crushed garlic, tahini, lemon juice, and salt. Whisk together until fully combined and set aside.
Step 4: Prepare the pine nut topping. Place ghee and pine nuts in a fry pan over medium heat. As the ghee melts, stir the pine nuts so they're coated in the melted ghee. You want to toast the pine nuts until they are a deep golden color.
Once they start going from pale to golden, keep a close eye on them because they can quickly burn. It should take about 5 to 6 minutes from start to finish. Also keep in mind that they will darken a little more even after you take them off the heat.
Step 5: Assemble the fattet hummus. Timing is essential here! While the pine nuts are frying in the beginning stage, quickly begin assembling the fatteh in a shallow bowl. You could do one large platter or split everything evenly into individual servings, depending on how you want to serve it.
First, layer the toasted pita chips, then top them with a layer of chickpeas with some of their broth, then pour the yogurt mixture all over the top. Optionally, you can sprinkle some Aleppo pepper on the yogurt layer for a little heat.
Step 6: Top with the sizzling pine nuts. Once the pine nuts are golden brown, pour them along with all the hot, melted ghee on top of the fatteh. It will sizzle beautifully and smell amazing. Be careful not to burn yourself when pouring the hot ghee!
Look at that beautiful sizzle caught in action! Now all that's left to do is to dig in. I like to eat fatteh asap while the pita chips still have some crunchiness to them and the yogurt is slightly warm from the sizzling ghee.
Some people like their pita chip layer soggier and will purposefully add extra broth before layering the yogurt. It's still delicious that way too, but I definitely prefer the crunch, so you do you!
It's a lot of chickpeas - I know. But in Lebanon, they will serve a whole spread of those chickpea dishes with tons of fresh vegetables, herbs, and olives. Of course, you'll need fresh pita bread to scoop up all the deliciousness. A hot cup of black tea infused with fresh mint completes this Middle Eastern breakfast!
I know I keep referring to fatteh as a breakfast food, but what's stopping you from having it for lunch or dinner? It certainly hasn't stopped me! It's filling, nutritious, and so easy to prepare. I really hope you try it soon!
Substitutions and Variations
This authentic chickpea fatteh recipe is naturally vegetarian. I recommend you don't make any changes to this recipe because it is divine as it is. But if you must...
- Gluten-free: Use thin, gluten-free pita if available, or omit the bread to experience the rest of the dish.
- Tahini: If you don't like tahini, simply omit it.
- Ghee: This or clarified butter is the best option. But you can use regular butter or olive oil instead if needed.
Tips To Make The Best Fatteh
- Cook dried chickpeas from scratch. This results in creamier, more flavorful chickpeas. Check out my guide on how to cook chickpeas.
- Let the yogurt come to room temperature. You don't want the yogurt to cool down the rest of the ingredients too much, so if possible, leave it out for about an hour before using it.
- Use thin pita bread. Don't use the thick, fluffy pita bread often found at stores. Thinner pita bread makes for delicately crisp pita chips - perfect for fattet hummus.
- Season every layer. Salting every single layer of this dish results in the best, most delicious fatteh ever.
- Assemble immediately before serving. You can prepare all the components of fatteh ahead of time, but don't layer all the ingredients until you're ready to serve so it doesn't get soggy.
Frequently Asked Questions
I have a complete guide with several methods on how to cook chickpeas, so be sure to check it out!
Yes, but you will need to simmer them on the stove for about 20 minutes until they get tender and creamy.
I recommend simmering the chickpeas in their own liquid, which is called aquafaba, because it will make them more flavorful than simmering them in water. If you are concerned about the sodium content, I recommend buying low sodium canned chickpeas. Otherwise, feel free to rinse them before simmering them with the garlic and cumin in a little bit of water.
You can prepare the pita chips, chickpeas, and yogurt mixture ahead of time and store everything separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator up to 5 days. The toasted pita chips can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container up to one week. The day you want to make the fatteh, reheat the chickpeas until warm, and let the yogurt come to room temperature or warm it very gently. You will need to toast the nuts in ghee just before serving. Do not assemble the fatteh ahead of time.
Since the base layer of fatteh is crunchy pita chips, leftovers don't keep well because it gets very soggy. But technically if you have leftovers of already assembled fatteh, you can store them in the fridge up to 5 days but it won't be the same.
🧂 A Note About Salt
Each and every recipe on this blog is tested using Diamond Crystal kosher salt. By volume, this particular kind of kosher salt has about half the amount of sodium compared to table salt. In other words, if you are using table salt and following any recipe on this blog, you should use HALF the amount of salt stated in the recipe and adjust to your taste. You cannot simply use them interchangeably without adjusting the amount, otherwise your dish will be too salty compared to the recipe tested with Diamond Crystal kosher salt. This applies even if you are using a different brand of kosher salt.
Please note this recipe is not sponsored. This is simply the type of salt I prefer to use. If you'd like to take a deep dive into salt (and more), I highly recommend reading the book Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat, or read this helpful post by 177 Milk Street.
Other breakfast recipes to try
If you tried this recipe, I'd love to know how it turned out for you! Leave a star rating & review below, and make sure to tag me on Instagram with a photo or video of your creation!
Chickpea Fatteh (Fattet Hummus)
- 2 loaves thin pita bread, about 2 cups of cut up squares
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas, or one 15 oz can *see note*
- ¼ cup aquafaba (chickpea broth)
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons ghee, or clarified butter
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts, raw (can sub with sliced almonds or cashews)
- Aleppo pepper, optional
- Fresh chopped parsley, optional
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Separate the pita bread layers and cut into about 1 inch squares. Toss with olive oil and salt, spread on a baking sheet, and toast for about 8 minutes, tossing halfway through. Remove them from the oven when they are a deep golden brown and set aside.
- Place the cooked chickpeas in a saucepan with the aquafaba, garlic, cumin, and salt. Bring it to a simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the yogurt on its own until it is smooth and there are no more lumps. Add the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and salt, and whisk again until fully combined.
- Place a fry pan over medium heat with the ghee and pine nuts. Stir frequently and keep an eye on them. You have about 5 minutes to assemble the fatteh bowl before the pine nuts brown.
- While the pine nuts are frying, quickly assemble the fatteh. Place a layer of pita chips on the bottom of a shallow bowl, then top with the chickpeas and their broth. Pour the yogurt mixture over the chickpeas. Sprinkle with Aleppo pepper if desired.
- Once the pine nuts are a deep golden brown, immediately take the pan off the heat and pour the pine nuts with the hot melted ghee all over the fatteh. It will sizzle, so be careful not to burn yourself.
- Garnish with fresh parsley if desired and serve immediately while the pita chips are still a little crunchy and the fatteh is warm.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and may vary.