June 4, 2012

Chia Seed Pudding

 Chia seeds are all the rage right now, and I've been reading all about them. The first time I ever heard the word chia was in those chia pet commercials I watched as a kid: Ch-ch-ch-chia! Who'da thunk those seeds were for more than just growing grass-hair on a terra cotta sheep?! Low and behold, they are, and they are really really good for you. Chia seeds are considered a superfood by food experts. They have been around for a long time and were eaten by the people of the Incan, Aztec, and Mayan cultures. They are a complete protein and are very easy to digest because they are gluten-free (a great option for those with celiac disease). Not only are they healthy, but they are very filling with few calories so they are great for people who are trying to lose weight. Chia seeds give you energy while keeping your blood sugar stable. Oh, and did I mention that chia seed recipes are quite delicious?!

According to www.rawreform.com, here are some awesome facts about chia seeds.

Chia seeds contain:

  • 2 times the protein of any other seed or grain
  • 5 times the calcium of milk, plus boron which is a trace mineral that
    helps transfer calcium into your bones
  • 2 times the amount of potassium as bananas
  • 3 times the reported antioxidant strength of blueberries
  • 3 times more iron than spinach
  • copious amounts of omega 3 and omega 6, which are essential fatty acids

  • Check out this great webpage I found for more information about the wondrous chia seed.

     So here is my go-to chia seed recipe. It is a delicious pudding recipe that is easy to make. I love having this for breakfast or for an afternoon snack. It is so filling and tasty.

    You Will Need:
    • 1 cup of plain rice milk (or your preferred milk substitute)
    • 5 dates or more if you want a thicker pudding, pitted and quartered (I like medjool dates)
    • 1/2 teaspoon or less of pure vanilla extract
    • 2 big shakes of cinnamon
    • 1 small shake of ground nutmeg
    • 1 small shake of ground ginger
    • 1/4 cup raw chia seeds
    Pour all of the ingredients into a blender, except for the chia seeds. Blend on the highest setting for about 1 minute, or until completely smooth. Meanwhile pour chia seeds into a small bowl or container. Pour the milk/date mixture into the chia seed bowl and combine well. Put the chia seed mixture into the fridge. It takes about ten minutes for the chia seeds to absorb the liquid and turn into a pudding-like consistancy, but I usually make it the night before and let it sit over night and have it for breakfast in the morning. The longer they absorb, the more nutrients you will get from the chia seeds. 

    The milk/date mixture that you blend also makes for a nice dessert sauce to pour over vegan vanilla ice cream or vegan cheesecake!