Out of all super ancient grains (quinoa, chia, buckwheat, and amaranth), chia seeds are my favorite.
Their ease of use and nutritional profile makes them my go-to superfood for adding more nutrients to my dishes.
Just an ounce of chia (about 2 tbsp) provides 4.7g of complete protein (10% RDI) and 10g of fiber (40% RDI) (1).
In addition to fiber and protein, chia seeds are packed with omega 3s, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and antioxidants. Together, these super seeds are great for boosting energy, improving endurance, and even helping regulate digestion.
And unlike other grains, chia seeds can be eaten raw, soaked in juice, added to porridge, puddings, and baked goods. They can also be added to your smoothies, breakfasts, yogurt, and many other dishes.
Chia seeds also don't need to be grounded for your body to absorb their nutrients, making them even easier to incorporate into your daily diet.
While chia popularity continues to surge in the health community, if you've never heard of chia seeds before, here is a quick overview of this powerful food.
Chia seeds are a tiny edible seed that comes from the desert plant called Salvia Hispanica.
They are native to central and southern Mexico, and their popularity dates back to the Mayan and Aztec cultures. The word "Chia" means strength, and a legend has it that chia was used to boost energy in their cultures in times of a battle.
Just to see how packed they really are with essential nutrients, each ounce or 2 tbsp of chia offers:
- Twice more fiber than 1 cup of cooked quinoa
- Qualifies as a 'complete protein' offering all 9 essential amino acids.
- Rich in antioxidants
- Nearly as much magnesium as 4 cups of raw spinach
- More calcium than half a cup of milk
- As much potassium as a third of a small banana
- 120% more omega 3 in 3 oz of salmon
On top of chia's high nutrient density, chia seeds are versatile and can be added to anything from smoothies to pudding and salad to pastries.
But out of them all, my favorite one is chia seed pudding.
Chia seeds absorb up to 10 times their weight in water, which makes them perfect for this recipe. Although it's a pudding, I enjoy it as a healthy breakfast and sometimes as a mid-day energy boost snack.
There are many chia pudding recipes out there, but this is my go-to recipe I keep using over and over and over again.
It's easy, simple, and delicious.
Hope you give it a try and give yourself a nutritional punch that sparks up your energy level and ups your digestive health.
Chia Pudding with Fruits
Just to note, this pudding must sit overnight to thicken like overnight oats. You'll have to make this in advance if you are planning on having it as a breakfast.
Aside from that, it's easy and not much of cooking skills needed.
If you store them in a sealable container like a mason jar, it's a great on-the-go breakfast or snack that you can grab and run out the door with.
- 1 cup of almond milk or coconut milk
- 1 cup of plain fat-free Greek yogurt (optional) If you're a vegan, skip the yogurt, it will still be delicious.
- 2 tbsp. raw honey
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup of chia seeds
- 3/4 cup of fresh cut fruits (my favorites are berries, pineapples, raspberries, strawberries, and peach. Any of them work great as a topping.)
- 5 tsp. unsweet shredded coconut chips
1. In a small bowl, combine the first four ingredients (through the vanilla). Stir together until combined. Add the chia seeds and stir them thoroughly. Pour mixture into a mason jar and refrigerate overnight, or until it reaches the desired thickness. I usually leave it in the fridge overnight.
2. Sprinkle the fresh fruits and the shredded coconut chips on top. Enjoy!
Chia seeds are one of the best super ancient grains you can add to your diet to instantly boost your nutritional intake and health profile. They are a great source of much-needed nutrients such as fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, and some minerals essential for bone health including calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium.
Chia seeds are also flavorless and tiny, making them easy to add to many dishes and recipes. This chia pudding recipe is just one way to include this superfood to your diet.
Chia seeds have so many health benefits you don't want to pass up. So give this recipe a try. I promised you'll not be disappointed.
I'll love to hear about how your chia pudding came out and some of your favorite toppings. Please share with us in a comment below.