I first heard about chia pudding, where else, but among my colleagues, fellow students of naturopathic medicine and self-professed health nuts. Chia seeds are chock full of fibre and omega-3 fatty acids. When placed in water and left for a while their fibre begins to form a gel, creating a “pudding”. I love pudding, but there are few things less naturopathic than the traditional store-bought pudding cups. Here is a great way to get your fibre, omega-3’s and to quench your cravings for soft, comforting pudding.
Chia seeds have a plethora of health benefits, from stabilizing blood sugar, to promoting a healthy gastrointestinal tract, to supplying the body with antioxidants and brain-fueling omega-3, anti-inflammatory and heart-healthy fats. The newest in the “Superfood” world, these little seeds can be added to soups, smoothies, baked goods and breakfast cereals to increase the sugar-regulating fibre and lower the glycemic index of these foods, leaving you feeling fuller for longer. One of the best ways to eat them, however, is by creating a simple pudding.
Chia pudding makes a delicious, healthy snack, dessert or breakfast. It contains no grains and is low in carbohydrates and sugar but, of course that depends what you add to it.
Coconut Chia Pudding
Ingredients (per serving):
2 tbs chia seeds
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk (I used almond)
1/4 cup boiling water
1.5 tbs shredded coconut
2 tbs berries, either fresh berries, frozen or dried
Optional: for desserts you can add cocoa powder, chocolate flakes, honey to sweeten, other fruits and so on. Feel free to go nuts! (Or add nuts, if you want to increase the protein and fat content for a more balanced breakfast).
Add ingredients together in a small bowl. Stir and then let stand for at least 20 minutes so that the fibre in the seeds begin to form a gel. The longer you let the pudding stand, the more pudding-like and delicious it becomes, so for optimal pudding power, leave it to stand for 2 hours. You can also prepare it in a sealed container and bring it with you for a healthy snack as you go about your day.
This recipe got the thumbs up from my brother and dad who now make it virtually every day. It also makes a great snack that keeps you full and is allowed on most naturopathic diets, including the Hormone Diet. It makes a great substitute for boring old cereal, too!