I have just recently started to experiment with Chia seeds. I have seen mixed reviews in the real food world as to whether or not they are a good addition to the diet. Mark Sisson writes about them here, here, and here. Diane Sanfilippo writes about them here. I 100% agree that they should be viewed as an occasional treat IF you tolerate them well. If you are dealing with digestive upset, then avoid them! I am also wary of any claims that a food is a superfood. What does that even mean and who decided it? I do believe that there are foods that rank much higher in nutritional value then others (grass-fed liver verses a grocery store donut – anyone, anyone?), but don’t recommend buying into the superfood hype. With that said, one of the big claims surrounding Chia seeds is that they are a good source of Omega 3. They are high in ALA, which unfortunately, humans do not have the mechanism to efficiently convert to useable DHA/EPA. So please don’t rely on Chia (or Flax for that matter) to get your daily dose of Omega 3.
BUT, I wanted to experiment a little with Chia seeds because they do this crazy little transformation into gelatinous puff balls (think tapioca) when submerged in liquid. In this post, Food Renegade shows you how to make an egg substitute with Chia seeds – kinda cool. Alex and I seemed to tolerate the Chia seeds with no ill effects, so I may use them occasionally in future recipes.
Here’s the recipe for the pumpkin pudding and a great way to use up that homemade pumpkin puree!
Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding
- 2 cups pumpkin puree (homemade or canned)
- 1 cup full fat coconut milk (from the can, not coconut milk beverage in a carton)
- 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1/4 cup Chia seeds
What to do:
In a large mixing bowl, add all of the above ingredients except the Chia seeds. Whisk well to thoroughly combine. Once combined, stir in the Chia seeds and refrigerate. After a hour or two, stir the pudding again. If it is looking a little too thick for your liking, add a little more coconut milk or some water (just a few Tablespoons). Place back in the fridge for an hour or more (it will be good the next day too).
Serve with a dusting of cinnamon or chopped pecans!