5 Healthy & Easy Chia-Seed Recipes To Commit To Memory

Photo: Courtesy of Kitchen Konfidence.
This post was originally published on December 10, 2014, but it has been updated with an additional chia-seed recipe.
Chia seeds are definitely having a moment — actually, more like a never-ending moment. If we had to choose one healthy and energizing staple that can carry us through even the hardest of days, these little seeds would certainly get the crown.
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Whether you're vegan, vegetarian, Paleo, or none of the above, these powerful super-seeds ought to be a staple in your healthy-living arsenal — if they're not already. And, if you're not much of a chef (I'm far from being one), not to worry; whipping up a snack with chia seeds can be as simple as just adding water. Still not convinced? Click on for five of our favorite, ridiculously easy and next-level delicious ways to use this star superfood week after week.
Photo: Courtesy of Kitchen Konfidence.
Chia seeds and fresh strawberries go together like PB & J — except better. Whip this one up for breakfast, dessert, or anything in between.
Ingredients:
For the chia pudding:
3 tbsp black chia seeds
3/4 cup almond milk (or any other milk)
1/4 cup heavy cream (or more almond milk)
1 tsp runny honey, plus more to taste
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
Zest of 1 lemon
Small pinch of kosher salt
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For the stewed rhubarb:
3/4 lb rhubarb (about 3 stalks), trimmed and sliced into 3/4-inch pieces
1/3 cup vanilla sugar (or regular sugar), plus more to taste
1/3 cup water
Squeeze of lemon
For the macerated strawberries:
1 cup finely chopped strawberries (from 6 to 8 hulled strawberries)
2 tbsp vanilla sugar (or regular sugar)
Squeeze of lemon
Instructions:
1. Add chia seeds, almond milk, cream, honey, vanilla, lemon zest, and kosher salt to a medium bowl, whisking to combine. Whisk two more times within a 10-minute period, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and transfer to the refrigerator. Let sit overnight (for up to two days).
2. Meanwhile, make stewed rhubarb and macerated strawberries. Add rhubarb, vanilla sugar, and water to a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer until rhubarb is tender but not completely falling apart (8 to 10 minutes). You’ll want to stir occasionally, but be gentle when you do. Once the rhubarb is cooked, gently stir in a squeeze of lemon, then taste for sweetness. If you find the mixture to be a bit on the tart side, stir in a little extra sugar. There should be a good balance of sweet and tart. Let mixture cool completely, then store covered in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it.
3. Add finely chopped strawberries to a small bowl with the vanilla sugar and lemon, stirring to combine. Let sit for 30 minutes, then store covered in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it.
4. To serve, whisk the chia seed-almond milk mixture to break up any lumps. Taste for sweetness, and add more honey if needed. Add 2 to 3 spoonfuls of the stewed rhubarb to small jar or bowl. Top with half of the chia pudding mixture, then finish with a layer of macerated strawberries. Repeat with another small jar or bowl. You will have a little extra stewed rhubarb and macerated strawberries. Strawberry-Rhubarb Chia Cups can be enjoyed immediately or stored in the refrigerator for up to two days.
Photo: Courtesy of Food52.
Sweet, spice, and everything nice — this twist on chia pudding combines some unexpected ingredients for an explosion of healthy deliciousness with each and every spoonful.
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Ingredients:
1/2 cup chia seeds
2 1/2 cups almond milk (or rice, soy, or light coconut milk)
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 1/2 tsp ground cardamom spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup maple syrup or agave syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
Instructions:
1. Blend milk, blueberries, cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla, and syrup together in a blender on high until smooth. Pour blueberry mixture over chia seeds, and stir thoroughly with a whisk or fork.
2. Let rest for five minutes, and stir again. Then, 10 minutes later, stir again. Refrigerate, and let sit overnight.
3. In the morning, give it a stir and check texture. If it’s too thick, simply add more almond milk; the texture should be similar to that of tapioca pudding. Serve and enjoy.
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Photo: Courtesy of Crunchy Radish.
Aside from pudding, chia seeds can also make a pretty mean jam. Have it with oatmeal or whole grain toast to take your breakfast to the next level.
Ingredients
1 lb strawberries, washed, hulled, and quartered
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 tbsp chia seeds
Instructions
Place the strawberries and maple syrup into a saucepan over medium heat. Once the berries begin to soften, mash the fruit with a potato masher or the back of a fork. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer until liquefied — approximately 10 minutes. Mix in the chia seeds and cook for one minute more. Remove from heat and let jam cool. The chia seeds will thicken the berry mixture into a jam-like consistency. Transfer to a jar and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
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This is a fantastic substitute for conventional, store-bought jam that is typically laden with sugar and preservatives. Add this version to oatmeal, or have it on whole grain toast with almond or peanut butter.
Photo: Courtesy of Food52.
This one's not just your average loaf of bread. Chia seeds come together with loads of other grains and goodies in this versatile, gluten-free, and generally life-changing recipe.
Ingredients
1 cup sunflower seed kernels (not in the shell)
1/2 cup flax seeds
1/2 cup hazelnuts or almonds
1 1/2 cups rolled oats (be sure to by gluten-free oats if you're going GF)
2 tbsp chia seeds
4 tbsp psyllium seed husks (3 tablespoons if using psyllium husk powder)
1 tsp fine grain sea salt (add 1/2 tsp if using coarse salt)
1 tbsp maple syrup (for sugar-free diets, use a pinch of stevia)
3 tbsp melted coconut oil or ghee
1 1/2 cups water
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Instructions
1. In a flexible, silicon loaf pan, or a standard loaf pan lined with parchment, combine all dry ingredients, stirring well. Whisk maple syrup, oil, and water together in a measuring cup. Add this to the dry ingredients and mix until everything is completely soaked and dough becomes very thick. (If the dough is too thick to stir, add one or two teaspoons of water until the dough is manageable.) Smooth out the top with the back of a spoon. Let sit out on the counter for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight. When the dough is ready it should retain its shape even when you pull the sides of the loaf pan away from it or lift the parchment.
2. Preheat oven to 350° F.
3. Place loaf pan in the oven on the middle rack, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove bread from loaf pan, place it upside down directly on the rack and bake for another 30 to 40 minutes. Bread is done when it sounds hollow when tapped. Let cool completely before slicing.
4. Store bread in a tightly sealed container for up to five days. This freezes well, too — just slice before freezing for quick and easy toast!
Photo: Courtesy of Joy The Baker.
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Peanut butter fans, this one's for you. In fact, you can throw chia into any of your favorite smoothies and shakes for a healthy boost of omegas and extra thickness. Best breakfast ever, or best breakfast ever?
Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
makes 2 small or 1 large smoothie
Ingredients
1 banana, mashed or cut into chunks (frozen bananas will create a colder smoothie)
1/2 cup yogurt (I used vanilla goat yogurt)
1/4 cup all-natural peanut butter
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Big pinch freshly grated nutmeg
2 tbsp chia seeds (optional)
1 1/2 cups cold almond milk
Instructions
Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Serve immediately. It’s that easy!
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