Learn how to prepare a simple chia seed pudding recipe and customize it to your taste! Chia seed puddings can be a healthy snack or breakfast packed with protein, fiber, and healthy fat, not to mention how incredibly easy it is to make.
About This Recipe
Preparing chia seed pudding is as simple as mixing your liquid of choice with chia seeds. When chia seeds are soaked in a liquid they take on a gel-like quality, transforming the liquid into a 'pudding' like a treat.
This process takes a couple of hours in the refrigerator for the chia seeds and liquid to become gelatinous, which is often why preparing chia seed puddings the night before is a great way to meal prep for breakfast or have a nutrient-dense snack on hand.
Why Are Chia Seeds So Nutritious?
Chia seeds come from a specifies of flowing plant in the mint family called Salvia Hispanica, native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala.
Historically coveted as an important crop for both the Aztecs and other Mesoamerican cultures, chia seeds are now grown commercially around the world from places like Australia, Bolivia, Peru, to the United States. They are often considered a superfood or functional food as these tiny seeds are nutrient-dense and consumed by health-conscious people for their various benefits.
Nutritionally, chia seeds are prized for having a high concentration of plant-based omega-3 fatty acid, specifically alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).
Increasing your intake of healthy dietary fats such as omega-3 fatty acids can help provide you long-lasting energy to fuel your body, while also aiding in the absorption of important fat-soluble nutrients (vitamins A, D, E, and K).
In reality, there isn't such a thing as "unhealthy food" or fat because no single food can make or break your health, as your health is an accumulation of all of your food and lifestyle choices. But choosing to include more "good" fats may help reduce your risk of chronic disease while eating too many other fats like trans fats could increase your risk (1).
Chia seeds contain a variety of other vitamins and minerals as well!
A 1 oz (28.35g, about 2 tablespoons) serving of chia seeds contains about (2,3):
- 138 calories
- 5 grams of protein
- 9 grams of fat
- 1 gram of net carbs
- 10 grams of dietary fiber
- Calcium: 18% Daily Value
- Magnesium: 23% Daily Value
- Manganese: 33% Daily value
Two tablespoons of chia seeds are also a good source of selenium, thiamin (B1), zinc, and niacin (B3) (2).
Are Chia Seeds Friendly To all Diet Styles?
Chia seeds are acceptable in pretty much every type of diet style out there. So whether you're:
Whatever you choose to call your diet you can enjoy this gluten-free and nutritious superfood. Chia seeds are also considered a "pseudo-grain" because they are seeds that come from a broad-leaf plant that is not a member of the grass family like wheat and corn.
Not sure what diet style may be best for you? Try out this meal plan quiz to help you identify what nutritional approach you may need based on your health goals:
"Superfood" or "functional food" are unregulated terms popularly used to refer to foods that may provide benefits beyond their nutritional value, like improving gut health or lowering blood pressure.
The Perfect Chia Seed Pudding Ratio
Most chia puddings contain 2 tablespoons of chia seeds per 1/2 cup of liquid or milk of choice. This equates to a gelatinous pudding similar to a thick smoothie.
Ultimately, the consistency of your chia seed pudding is up to you! If you enjoy a thicker pudding add 1/2 tablespoon more chia seeds until you have reached a consistency that you like.
In terms of preparing a simple chia seed pudding recipe you can follow this basic formula for 1 serving of chia pudding:
- 2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds
- 1/2 cup Base Liquid: This can be coconut milk, almond milk, dairy-based milk, hemp milk, flax milk, or your favorite milk alternative
The real fun with preparing a chia seed pudding is deciding what flavorings or additional ingredients you would like to use to create a customized flavor you enjoy. I am a big fan of customizing and experimenting with different herbs, fruits, spices, and flavors.
Typical mix-ins include:
- Fruit: You can blend in mixed berries, bananas, or use fruit purees in the base of your chia seed pudding to add nutrition and flavor.
- Dried Herbs and Spices: lavender, chamomile, and rose make wonderful additions to chia seed pudding. You can also explore using dried mint, cardamon, cinnamon, nutmeg, and turmeric as well!
- Functional Food Powders: These include dried powders from foods like acai berries, spirulina, reishi, or Chaga mushrooms.
- Protein Powders: Bump up the protein in your chia seed pudding and also help thicken the pudding without using too many chia seeds. Start off with blending 1/2 scoop of any flavor protein powder you like into your base liquid.
- Additional Nuts and Seeds: Nut-butters such as peanut butter or almond butter, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, or pecans.
You can also top your finished chia seed pudding with any of the above ingredients as well along with coconut flakes, cocoa nibs, and granola!
How to Prepare Your Chia Pudding RecipePrep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 0 min
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen
- 1/2 scoop protein powder of choice (2-3 tablespoons)
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon coconut flakes
- 1/4 cup fresh blueberries or strawberries
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Meal prep containers or bowls
- Small whisk or spoon
Step 1: Measure Ingredients and Prepare Containers
Gather all of the ingredients needed for your chia seed pudding including any extra toppings or ingredients.
For this recipe, you'll blend your berries, protein powder, lemon zest, vanilla, and optional stevia with coconut milk in a blender until smooth.
If you are using protein powder, berries, or any other ingredients to flavor your liquid, blend them in a blender as well to ensure everything blends well and you don't get any chunks in your pudding.
Step 2: Combine Chia Seeds with Liquid and Flavorings
Pour the berry mixture into the chia seeds and stir with a whisk or fork until the chia seeds are evenly distributed.
Once you have combined your chia seeds with your base liquid, cover and store in the fridge for at least 2 hours until thickened or 8 hours overnight. Be sure to stir your pudding occasionally during this process as the chia seeds tend to settle to the bottom of your base liquid isn't very thick. This also prevents clumps of seeds from forming at the bottom or sides of the container!
Then top with your favorite toppings like fresh fruit, granola, or coconut flakes and your chia seed pudding is ready to eat! You don’t have to add toppings, but it can add a ton of extra flavor, just be careful not to overdo it because a lot of extra toppings will alter the nutritional content.
Serving and Storing Chia Seed Pudding
You can make a large batch of chia seed pudding in a larger container but will have to stir it occasionally during the thickening process to ensure the chia seeds are distributed evenly.
Alternatively, you'll want to combine your chia seeds with your base liquid in whatever container you plan on eating your chia seed putting out of. This could be meal prep containers, glass jars, mason jars, or whatever container you have on hand.
Chia seed pudding has a long shelf life and will typically stay fresh for up to a week in the fridge.
Chia Seed Pudding Variations
There really is no limit to the creative flavors you can combine when preparing a chia seed pudding recipe, here are some of our favorites with measurements for 1 basic recipe of pudding using 2 tablespoons of chia seeds and 1/2 cup liquid.
- Chocolate Chia Pudding: 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1-2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon maple, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- Banana Peanut Butter Chia Seed Pudding: 1/2 banana, 1 tablespoon peanut butter, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- Blueberry Lavander: 1/2 cup blueberries, 1 teaspoon lavender, 1 teaspoon honey
Preparing This Recipe For Your Weekly Meal Prep?
Spending a little more time tailoring your nutrition to your lifestyle is ultimately self-care and choosing to be more conscious about your diet is one way to show yourself some love while conquering your health goals.
We are here to support you in your journey and provide tools and tips!
- How to Meal Prep in 7 Simple Steps
- 20 High Protein Snacks that Aren't Peanut Butter
- Meal Prep for Weight Loss Toolkit
- Meal Prep for Weight Gain Toolkit
- Meal Prep on a Budget
Need help sticking to a low-carb diet? Whether you are struggling with meal prepping your food or just not sure if you are counting carbs correctly, we’ve got you covered.
Our expert chefs and dietitians have curated delicious low-carb meals to take all the frustration out of dieting so you can focus on you!