Chia seeds are a great addition to your diet and are packed with nutrients. They make an incredibly healthy and often unnoticeable addition to many foods. It is versatile and has been used for many years for strength, endurance and revered for its nutritive qualities. If you aren’t aware about this healthy seed’s health benefits, check our previous article here. If you have already read our previous article, here are some great ways for you to include chia seeds in your diet:
.They can be eaten raw. (They have a nice nutty flavor.)
.They can be soaked in fruit juice (in Mexico, they call it ‘chia fresca’).
.They’re perfect in porridges and puddings.
.They act as a good egg replacer in baking recipes. The outer layer of chia seeds swells when mixed with liquids to form a gel. This can used in place of eggs to lower cholesterol and increase the nutrient content. To make the chia- egg replacement, mix 1 tablespoon of chia seeds with 3 tablespoons of water and let sit for 15 minutes.
.Use ground chia as a thickener for soups, smoothies or juices. The fiber in the seeds binds with water to form a gel, so the seeds add texture to your food while boosting its nutritional value.
.Ground chia also adds nutrition to breakfast cereals, like oatmeal. Unlike flax seeds, which offer superior nutritional benefits when consumed after grinding, ground chia offers identical benefits to whole chia seeds.
So while you can certainly enjoy ground chia seeds in a range of recipes, feel free to use intact seeds as well.
Recipes with Chia Seeds
1. Chia Gel (9 to 1 ratio)
.Put water in a sealable plastic container and slowly pour seed into water while briskly mixing with a wire whisk. This process will avoid any clumping of the seed.
.Wait a couple of minutes, whisk again and let stand for 5 to 10 minutes.
.Whisk again before using or storing in refrigerator (Gel will keep up to 2 weeks).
You can add the gel mix to jams, jellies, hot or cold cereals, yogurts, mustard, catsup, tartar sauce or BBQ sauce. Top your favorite bread dough before baking with Chia gel (reduce the water ration to 8 parts water to 1 part chia seed) for added shelf life.
2. Chia Water
1/2 cup lime juice
1 cup sugar
10 cups water
1/2 cup Chia Seeds
Pour lime juice and sugar into the water and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add the chia seeds to the above ingredients. Shake or stir vigorously. Garnish with sage spring. Serve in tall glasses over ice.
3. Chia Smoothie
2.5 tbsp Chia Seeds .16 ounces water or lemonade
.Grind 2.5 tablespoons of Chia seed.
.Pour 16 ounces of water in a blender at low speed. For a great alternatives, try using lemonade instead of water.
.Mix chia seeds in while blender is on low speed.
.Blend for 10 seconds. You can add other items to the mix such as fresh bananas, strawberries, or raspberries. You can even add super food powders such as Acai
.Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes as the chia will absorb the liquid and thicken up into a gel like substance. Enjoy chilled.
4. Chocolate Truffle with Chia Seed
1 Cup Raw walnuts unsoaked
1/2 Cup Pitted dates
1/4 Cup Coconut water
4 Tbs. Raw carob
1/2 Tbs. Chia seeds
.Blend the walnuts and dates in a food processor until reaching a smooth texture.
.Mix in the carob, coconut water and chia seeds.
.Form dough into small balls and chill before serving.
5. Easy Chia Hummus
1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans (rinse and drained)
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp lemon zest
2 tbsp gelled chia seeds
First, purée the chickpeas until smooth. Then, add all the other ingredients and purée again until smooth. Your hummus is now complete and ready to be spread on pitas, tortillas, crackers, to be used as a vegetable or chip dip, and even to replace mayo in sandwiches.
6. Chia Pudding with Maca
2 tsp Chia Seeds
1 scoop Organic Maca Powder
1 tbsp Almond Butter
2 ounces almond or soy milk
.Grind Chia seeds and chop strawberries.
.Mix all ingredients in a bowl. You can control the thickness of the pudding by adding more or less almond or soy milk.
Recipes credit: Nuts.com, Livingfoods.com and mensfitness.com