This article is shared with permission from our friends at sarahbellum.org.
It may violate every rule in the unofficial nutritionist’s handbook, but I’m not a smoothie lover. There, I’ve said it, confession’s out. I love green juices and I certainly appreciate the convenience of a smoothie, especially when I’m super engaged in a project or caught up in meetings. But I also like sitting down to a plate of colour, texture, and aroma, and, you know, chewing. For this reason alone chia puddings were relegated to the back corner. Weren’t they just cleverly disguised smoothies? The last few weeks of recipe testing have proven me wrong.
The way I feel about chia seed pudding is probably not so surprising, coming from a nutritionist, but I they are actually hugely beneficial for your health. Chia seeds are near-miraculous; they’re high in omega-3 fatty acids, which boost brain health, facilitate nerve signaling and cell communication, ward off depression, enhance memory, and boost energy. Chia seeds also stabilize blood sugar and aid digestion — twin wins. They contain calcium, manganese, and phosphorous, as well as tryptophan, the runt of the amino acid family. Tryp has a difficult time crossing what is called the blood brain barrier and needs all of the help it can get. Chia seed puddings to the rescue.
This one uses a combination of frozen organic black cherries and raspberries, but you can use any berries or fruit that you like. Gooseberries (otherwise known as golden berries) would be delicious here for a tarter flavour profile, as would blackberries. I usually recommend lower sugar fruit in the morning, though bananas or grapes are solid options if you workout in the morning or are very active and require that extra hit of glucose.
You can also add chia seeds to:
Salads (green salads, coleslaw, root vegetable salads, etc.);
Sauces, to thicken them;
Plain full-fat yogurt, oatmeal, grain bowls, smoothies, and smoothie bowls;
To make “jams” (add to a bowl of macerated fruit);
To a glass of unsweetened coconut water or other liquids (chia seeds help to keep the body hydrated, which is why they’re so great for marathon runners)
Royal Chia Seed Pudding
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: None
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- ½ cup raspberries
- ½ cup black cherries
- ⅓ cup full-fat coconut milk (Native Forest is BPA-free)
- ½ scoop protein powder (optional)
- Water to thin, if needed
- Add half of the coconut milk called for to a blender and blend with half the protein powder, the raspberries, and 1 tbsp chia seed until combined. Pour into the bottom of a Mason jar or other vessel.
- Combine the remaining coconut milk, chia seed, protein powder, and black cherries and blend until combined. Add to the jar.
- Add toasted coconut, seeds, nuts, nut butter, extra berries to the top and eat. Lasts up to 2 days in the fridge.