Happy Valentine’s Day!
In honour of today’s Hallmark holiday, and carrying on this week’s theme of self love and self care, I figured a little sweet treat was in order. Not just any sweet treat though – a versatile one that’s make-aheadable, portable, and healthy enough to eat for breakfast, as a snack, or as dessert. We like versatility, right?
Chia pudding certainly isn’t anything new, but just like smoothies, the combinations are endless and you can tailor them for any functional health need or occasion. Lately I’ve found myself recommending this particular recipe to a lot to my friends and clients who are trying to cut back on sugar, as well as those that have digestive issues. Here’s 5 reasons why:
1. Chia seeds are a fantastic source of fiber
They’ll help keep your digestive system working nicely, and the healthy omega-3 fats inside provide some extra lubrication along the colon. That means… well, you know what that means.
2. Chia’s combo of protein, fat and fiber makes them awesome for satiation
All 3 of these things require more time for our bodies to digest. That means if you enjoy chia pudding at breakfast or for a mid-morning snack, you won’t be ravenous 2 hours later.
3. Chia puddings (if you make them like this) are low in sugar
A basic chia pudding is a dessert you can enjoy as part of a low-sugar eating style, like my Sugar Detox program (which is coming soon!) If you’re used to higher amounts of sweetness through added sugars like honey, maple syrup or powdered versions, you can gradually reduce the amount you add as your palate becomes more sensitive. There’s so much flavour from the nut butter, coconut and berries – I promise you won’t even miss it.
4. Coconut and almonds also provide fiber
That means more of those digestion benefits I mentioned above. The vitamin E found in almonds has the bonus perk of being a fantastic beauty booster, and all these healthy fat sources help to keep the layers of skin beneath the surface hydrated. That means a smoother, more even appearance from the outside. You heard it here, folks: Skip the botox – just eat chia pudding!
5. Raspberries are very low in sugar compared to other fruits, and high in antioxidants
That means you’ll protect your cells from inflammation and damage caused by free radicals. The berries lend natural sweetness to these puddings, and when I’ve made them for myself in the past, I don’t feel a need for any maple syrup or stevia. I also think the raspberry-almond combo is delicious, and I think you will too!
Low in sugar and packed with blood sugar balancing healthy fats and fibre, this simple Raspberry Almond Coconut Chia Pudding is a light and refreshing dessert or snack.
- 1/3 cup chia seeds
- 2 cups unsweetened coconut milk beverage
- 2 tbsp shredded unsweetened coconut (not mandatory, but it will enhance the coconut flavour)
- 1 tbsp maple syrup (optional, to sweeten – stevia could also be used if you prefer)
- 2 tsp almond butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch of sea salt
- toppings: fresh raspberries and flaked almonds
- Toss all ingredients except the toppings into your blender and blend until completely smooth.
- Option 1: Pour the mixture into a big glass bowl. Refrigerate for 8-10 hours, then layer in small glasses or jars with raspberries and almonds.
- Option 2: Portion the pudding out between small mason jars. Set them in the fridge to thicken for 8-10 hours. Garnish the top of each with fresh raspberries and almonds.
If you prefer not to blend your chia pudding and instead keep the seeds whole, you can still make this recipe with the quantities listed. I’d recommend thoroughly mixing the chia pudding in a big glass bowl, then doing it again after the pudding has had about 15 minutes to set. Runny almond butter would be best to use as it should mix more evenly.