I find it interesting that although chia seeds (salvia hispanica) have been around for centuries, I only discovered them about 10 years ago. These tiny seeds that are incredibly rich in nutrients have been a staple in the Aztec and Maya diets for hundreds of years. They are now very popular all over the world. Chia seeds can be eaten as is and do not have to be ground. This makes them easily incorporated into many recipes and make a delicious tasting chocolate strawberry chia pudding.
Who remembers the jingle “ch-ch-ch-chia” from the 1980’s popular commercial? These small clay plants that sprouted grass-like fur were once the rage.
Fast forward to the present day and these same seeds that are often referred to as a “superfood” are now being sold online and in health stores everywhere. Who would have guessed?
A Complete Protein Source and so much more
Chia seeds are one of the highest sources of plant-based proteins. They are not only a complete protein source (including all the essential amino acids), but they are rich in fibre, heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and calcium.
Chia can easily be added to anything, and may also be used as a thickener as they absorb up to 10 times their weight in liquid.
Chia means strength
These edible seeds with a mild nutty flavour were known to be used as energy boosters by the Aztec and Maya cultures before long runs or going into battle.
They are no doubt a nutritious addition to your diet. They have more omega 3’s than salmon, more calcium than milk, and more antioxidants than blueberries. If you have never tried chia pudding before, this simple and yummy chocolate strawberry recipe is where to start!
Troubleshooting: Why is chia pudding not setting?
You might have heard people asking “Why is my chia pudding runny? Why didn’t my chia pudding set?”
The way that chia pudding thickens is the fibre on the outside of each seed absorbs water and fluffs up into a gel. If your seeds fall to the bottom and clump together, the liquid layer on top won’t be absorbed well.
Simply give your chia a quick stir from time to time as it is thickening, until all the seeds are suspended evenly in the liquid. 4 hours minimum, but overnight is ideal, to allow the seeds to fully absorb the liquid.
Chia Seeds Blended
Chia seed easily absorbed and digested without being ground (unlike many other seeds, including flax), However, If you prefer a smoother consistency for your pudding, the recipe may be mixed in a blender before chilling.
Mealtime conversation starters
“Girl, it looks so pretty to me
Like it always did
Oh, like the Spanish City to me
When we were kids”
~Dire Straits, Tunnel of Love
There is a time in everyone’s life that they just want to know that they look nice. A compliment not only makes a person feel good, but it also lets them know that you see, accept and honor them for who they are.
So the lyrics to Tunnel of Love started playing in my head, but I was singing my own misheard lyrics. Rather than, “Girl, it looks so pretty to me”, I was singing, “Girl, YOU look so pretty to me”. Totally different meaning.
By asking this question, let the conversation start by letting another person know you appreciate them. Take notice of the people around you. What do you notice?
Give a sincere compliment. One that shows you are paying attention. Be specific.
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Chia Pudding: Chocolate Strawberry Recipe
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- 2 cups soy milk [*see notes]
- ½ cup chia seeds
- 3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 12 strawberries 6 sliced, reserve 6 for garnish [*see notes]
- Add all ingredients except berries to a bowl
- Whisk together and let sit for 15 minutes, until the mixture changes into a soft gel [**see notes]
- Whisk again and place in the fridge overnight (or for 4 hours). [***see notes]
- Mix well again
- Layer the strawberry slices on the bottom of each serving dish
- Spoon in pudding mixture
- Garnish the top with the rest of the berries and enjoy!
*Any fruit may be used in this recipe
*Any milk may be used in this recipe **Recipe may be mixed in a blender for a smooth consistency ***If you notice that your seeds have fallen to the bottom during the thickening process, give the mixture another quick stir and allow to continue to set. Is chia pudding gluten free? Chia seeds are naturally gluten free, and this recipe is also vegan. Who Can’t Eat Chia Seeds: Though uncommon, chia seed allergies are possible. Please be aware of food allergies, especially to mint, sesame, or mustard seeds. Chia seeds are known to help reduce blood sugar and high blood pressure, so consult your health care provider if you are on medication for hypertension, diabetes, or blood thinners.
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Health Puzzle Master Lisa Bernier is a nutrition coach who helps you understand your nutrition puzzle pieces. With her inspiring approach to mindfulness, she helps women take the right steps to improve their health and fitness by guiding them through holistic eating, movement, and lifestyle changes.
Find other articles written by Lisa on her coach profile. She believes that each woman has a puzzle to solve to achieve their goals. Let Lisa help you find the missing pieces to bring your life into balance, find your fit, and become the best version of yourself.