Chia seeds are IN! People are no longer just growing verdant pets, but blending these heart-healthy seeds into smoothies, sprinkling them on salads & soups and transforming the raw seeds into a porridge-like breakfast or snack option (That’s what SBA did!). However, if you do not want to work with the raw seeds and cook them, not to worry. They are finding their ways into drinks, chocolate, food bars and even cookies! Dole actually chose chia as the first ingredient it would promote in its new Nutrition Plus line of products, which aim to provide a functional benefit to consumers (NY Times).
Historically, chia (meaning “strength” in the language of the Mayans) seeds were used as an ancient performance enhancer. Aztecs supposedly used these tiny powerhouses as supplements to help with running because envoys could run all day from the energy benefits of these small seeds. Even more compelling, chia seeds were considered medicinal and prized more than gold due to their incredible health enhancing properties (Natural News).
Olympic strength? Mythical healing properties?
We’re into it. So, we tried it.
Chia Pudding Recipe
1/2 cup Almond Milk (original flavor)
2 tbs chia seeds
1/8 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp of salt
1/2 tbs of agave nectar
Directions: Mix the seeds, almond milk, salt and vanilla extract in a small serving bowl. Let stand for 60 minutes, mixing every 20 minutes or so. Once the mixture has a pudding like consistency, you can eat right away or refrigerate overnight. Mix in the nectar right before serving. You can also top with nuts or fresh fruit for added flavor.
Sam: I thought the pudding was like a healthy version of tapioca pudding. It had the same texture as tapioca pudding, but was a little less sweet. Chia seeds alone are sort of bland and earthy tasting. If you want to eat them you’ll definitely need to mix them with something else (food or drink). All-in-all I was pleasantly surprised withhow good they tasted. If they’re actually as healthy as everyone says they are I’d recommend trying them.
Ryan: Sometimes life surprises us. The Chia trend is “in” enough that my girlfriend and I were discussing it the night before the seeds showed up in the SBA kitchen — I assumed it was my destiny to try them. The pudding was awesome. It tasted great. I guess I’m a believer. I’ll be digging out an old Chia Pet from the attic and making dessert this week.
Shana: The recipe was really tasty. I would choose it over pudding if given the choice.
Steve: I was a little nervous about trying the pudding right off the bat – the appetite appeal was kind of freaking me out. I sucked it up, tried it and was pleasantly surprised by the strong vanilla taste and pudding consistency. However, the vanilla taste only lasted for the initial bite, the remainder had an earthier aftertaste with a strange almost slimy seeds feel. All in all I wasn’t jumping up and down, but if it were offered again…I’d snag a bite.