Tahini Recipes and
Anti-Nutrients in Sesame Seeds

Tahini recipes will usually call for hulled sesame seeds to make this Middle Eastern tahini paste or tahini butter. 

Unhulled sesame seeds are thought to have double the nutrition of hulled, but will come with too many anti-nutrients and a bitter taste.

Unhulled sesame seeds contain a high amount of oxalic acid and phytic acid which are anti-nutrients that block mineral absorption and will cause much digestive distress. 

Buying hulled sesame seeds and toasting the hulled sesame seeds is probably your best bet to removing a good amount of the anti-nutrients found in sesame seeds. 

Lightly toasting sesame seeds also seems to bring out the flavor in sesame seeds.

Sesame Seed Nutrition

Sesame seeds are an excellent source of copper and calcium.  They are also a good source of phosphorus, magnesium, iron, and zinc.

These seeds also have a decent amount of B vitamins and selenium.

Sesame seeds come in many colors - ivory, yellow, brown, black, and red.  The darker seeds are said to be more bitter and sometimes are dyed.

Hulled sesame seeds will have less anti-nutrients like oxalic acid and phytic acid compared to unhulled seeds. 

And hulled sesame seeds will make a less bitter tasting tahini.

Sesame seeds with the hulls removed are called hulled sesame seeds and will contain almost 1/2 the amount of nutrients compared to unhulled sesame seeds, but will contain less anti-nutrients.

Hulled sesame seeds will create a lighter in color and more fluid tahini paste.  Unhulled seeds will create a thick paste that looks more like peanut butter in color.

Tahini Recipes
- Toasted Tahini Seeds

Toast your hulled sesame seeds on a very dry and not too hot skillet until lightly toasted. 

This will help to remove even more of the anti-nutrients and give your tahini recipes a delicious flavor.  Do not overcook!


  • 1 cup of Toasted Hulled Sesame Seeds
  • Just under 1/4 cup of Cold-Pressed Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil


  1. Add toasted sesame seeds to a high speed blender with the oil - blend to incorporate.
  2. In a moment, shut off the machine and scrap down the sides of the blender - then turn machine back on.
  3. Blend until completely smooth in texture (1 to 2 minutes).  Use immediately or store in an airtight glass jar in your fridge for a few weeks.

Tahini Recipes
- Raw Tahini

You can make a raw tahini paste by not toasting your sesame seeds and using raw sesame seeds.


  • 1 Quart of Raw Hulled Organic Sesame Seeds (will make about 2 cups of tahini paste)


  1. Blend in a Vitamix using your tamper to push seeds down while blending.
  2. Start on low speed and gradually turn up to a higher speed - be sure not to overheat your seeds.
  3. Stop blending when the desired consistency of your tahini paste is reached.  Store in fridge.

You may also want to take it one step further and soak your raw hulled sesame seeds and low temperature dry them before blending them into a tahini paste.

Here is a guide to soaking seeds.

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