Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia!

I'm so intrigued by chia seeds!  The tiny, crunchy balls that become soft and gel-like after soaking in liquid are such a cool little food!  I have been buying them for a couple years now and add them to my oatmeal, smoothies, and homemade energy bars, but wanted another option. 

I found this recipe while looking for kid-friendly recipes and thought it looked yummy, so decided to try it.  It was really quick and easy to throw together.  After 3-4 hours in the refrigerator, the mixture started to thicken into a pudding-like consistency.  Over the course of the 4 hours, the chia seeds soften, yet still provide a textured feel in your mouth.  The vanilla flavor is subtle.  The recipe makes a lot.  Next time I will make a quarter of the recipe so none goes to waste.  Bottom line...my 18-month-old gave this recipe a thumbs up! 

Fun Facts about Chia:

  Chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants.  Because of the high antioxidant levels, the seeds don't deteriorate and can be stored for long periods of time without becoming rancid.  Chia's don't have to be ground up to make their nutrients available to the body.

Chia and Nutrition Facts:

  Chia seeds provide 11 grams of fiber in 1 Tablespoon (28 grams)!  One Tablespoon also provides 177mg of calcium, close to 20% of your daily calcium needs.  Chia's also provide phosphorus, manganese, and zinc.

Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding 

2 cups milk--I used whole milk for my 1 year old.  You can use any type of milk---cow, almond, rice, etc.

1/4 cup honey, maple syrup, or agave

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup chia seeds

Preparation:

1.  In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, honey and vanilla.  Add the chia seeds and stir to combine.

2.  Refrigerate 4 hours, whisking about every hour.

3.  Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Modifications: 

Consider embelishing your pudding with fruits such as a cup up mango, berries or chopped peaches.  Have fun experimenting with added flavors such as unsweetened cocoa powder, cinnamon, or peanut butter.

In Health and Happiness,

Kelly Harrington, MS, RD

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

kelly harrington, MS, RD

Recipe is compliments of:  http://weelicious.com/2013/04/08/chia-seed-pudding/

 

 

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