It’s time we high tail it back to the basics and learn how to make superfood, super delicious, super awesome-for-breakfast-OR-dessert chia seed pudding (in three easy steps!).
Lately, I’ve noticed a chia seed revival around the internet. When I posted my first chia seed pudding a couple of years ago, I thought I was very late to the chia performance, but as it turns out, good food is timeless. Although I’ve posted several chia seed recipes, I figured we’d put this train on slow mo and go waaaay back to the basics…you know, to really drive home how easy this super healthy pudding is.
For those of us whose sweet tooth dictates our 98% of our day-to-day behavior, naturally sweet and healthy treats like chia seed pudding are the saving grace of our minds, bodies, and souls.
Fun Facts About Chia Seeds:
- Full of antioxidants
- Full of Fiber
- Contain protein
- Contain calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium
- Full of Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Absorb 10 times their weight in liquid
- When soaked, chia seeds form a thick gel (pudding) with a texture similar to tapioca
- Can be used as a replacement for eggs in vegan cooking
- Gluten Free & Paleo-Friendly
With all those fun facts stated, there’s recent research that suggests all those nutrients wrapped up in chia seeds actually stay trapped inside chia seeds…like your body can’t put them to good use. Chia seeds contain phytate, which is an antinutrient that hinders the absorption of minerals, and the gel that forms around chia seeds when they come in contact with liquid actually makes them near impossible to digest.
Does this sell you on chia seed pudding? Regardless of the nutrition debate, chia seed pudding is a healthier option than a pudding made using dairy milk, egg yolks, and cane sugar. And hot damn, it tastes good!
In order to make chia seed pudding, you need three basic ingredients:
1.) Milk: Any type you like, such as coconut, almond, soy, cow’s, goat’s, hemp, cashew, etc.
2.) Chia Seeds: White or black chia seeds work! And you only need a small amount to make a ton of pudding.
3.) Sweetener: Liquid natural sweeteners are the easiest to work with for chia pudding. Pure maple syrup, agave, and honey taste great! Note: if you use honey, you may need to heat it slightly so that it incorporates into the pudding without clumping up.
In addition to the above ingredients, you need a sealable container with an air-tight lid. I like using a big mason jar.
Without further ado, here’s how to make chia seed pudding in 3 easy steps:
Step 1: Pour
Grab a jar and pour your milk and sweetener of choice into it, along with your chia seeds. I like adding the liquids first, because if you add the chia seeds first, they’ll clump up at the bottom of the jar and will be harder to mix. I use 2-½ cups of liquid (almond milk and coconut milk are my favorite), ½ cup of chia seeds, and 3-ish tablespoons of pure maple syrup or agave.
Step 2: Shake
Seal that jar tightly and shake it like a polaroid picture. Shake it like a shake weight. Shake it off, T. Swift. I mean, just shake the thing vigorously.
Step 3: Refrigerate
Place your jar in the refrigerator overnight. The longer you let the pudding sit, the thicker and creamier it will be, and the softer the chia seeds will be. While you can enjoy the pudding after a few hours, I think it’s best to wait at least 12 hours.
Bonus Step: Devour!
Now comes the fun part! Once your pudding has set up, you can enjoy it in so many different ways!
Here are some serving ideas:
Fresh raw fruit: Bananas and blueberries are my favorite because they’re easy to find any time of year, and they’re hard to beat flavor-wise. I also love getting a little tropical when mangoes and pineapples are in season. Check out my Coconut Chia Seed Pudding with mango for example!
Raw nuts and seeds: While chia seed pudding already has wonderful poppy texture, I love adding raw nuts. Check out my Maple Walnut Chia Seed Pudding for example.
Cooked fruit: stewed spiced apples are delicious with chia pudding
Chocolate: For chocolate chia seed pudding, you’ll need to take an extra step by heating the milk with cacao powder. If you don’t heat the cacao powder with milk first, it will only clump up and won’t become chocolate-y goodness. Check out my Vegan Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding for example!
Nut butters: similar to adding chocolate to your chia recipe, you’ll need to heat any nut butters (such as almond, cashew, peanut, etc) with the milk so that it gets incorporated into the pudding without clumpage. Unless you want clumpage, which would be delicious, too.
Booze: Making a boozy syrup such as the cinnamon bourbon syrup from my Banana Walnut Waffles post will make an insanely flavorful ah-dult treat. Simply follow the instructions for the boozy syrup from that post and add desired amount to your pudding.
Cooked fruit: As you know, I love adding stewed/cooked fruit to my pancakes. You can do the same with chia seed pudding! How about some warm spiced apples? Follow the instructions for the spiced apples from my Apple Cinnamon Pancakes post.
Sky’s the limit!
Shake up some chia seed pudding tonight and have it for breakfast AND dessert tomorrow!
The proof is in the pudding. <- Couldn’t help myself.
How to Make Legit Chia Seed Pudding in 3 Easy Steps
Add the almond milk and pure maple syrup to a large sealable jar. Pour in the chia seeds. Seal the jar tightly, and shake vigorously until ingredients are well-combined.
Place jar in the refrigerator overnight (or at least 4 hours).
Serve chia seed pudding with fresh fruit and nuts
*I use Silk or Almond Breeze almond milk, which also contains gums, which help thicken the pudding. If you're using a milk (such as homemade nut milk or cow's milk) that does not contain gums, lower the measurement to 1-2/3 cups. You can always increase the amount of milk if the pudding turns out too thick.
**You can use any liquid sweetener to sweeten your chia seed pudding, such as pure maple syrup, honey, coconut palm syrup, etc.