If you haven't quite gotten the hint yet, I'm big on simple recipes. But being simple surely doesn't mean lacking in nutritional quality, texture, or flavor. Though this pudding can be whipped up in a cinch, it is amazingly packed with high quality super foods that will leave your body feeling radiant and bursting with energy! Short on time and want to feed your body plant-based goodness? This pudding is for you.
Let's take a look at the ingredient list:
Chia Seeds: These are the tiny little black seeds you'll find inundating most supermarket shelves these days. Although they sort of resemble poppy seeds, don't get them confused as these buggers are way more beneficial for the body! Chia seeds were actually first used by the ancient Aztecs, Incans, and Maya, as they consumed them mixed with water as an energy gel to carry them on for hours of traveling. Chia actually is the Maya word for "strength," which I'd say sounds pretty legit, as these seeds are a vegan source of protein, fiber, iron, antioxidants, and contain more omega-3 fatty acids than salmon! A 3 Tbsp serving of chia seeds provides you with 6g protein and 9g (almost 30% of your daily value) of fiber.
Coconut Milk: Not to be confused with coconut water, coconut milk is thicker, with (surprise!) a more milky consistency. Although coconuts contain significant amounts of fat, they contain what's called medium chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs). One particular MCFA is lauric acid, which is converted in the body into a highly beneficial compound called monolaurin, an antiviral and antibacterial that destroys a wide variety of disease causing organisms. MCFAs are also quickly metabolized into energy within our liver, so its thought that this type of fat is more easily absorbed by the body and less likely to be stored as that dreaded 'muffin top.' Keep in mind that it is still a fat, so choosing 'light' coconut milk may be your best option! Bonus: its totally vegan and lactose-free.
Almond Milk: My most favorite type of milk. If you haven't gotten on the band-wagon yet, now's the time. Almond milk is an amazing alternative to cow's milk, as it is allergen-friendly, vegan, low calorie, and heart healthy. Almond milk provides you with 50% daily value of Vitamin E to keep your skin glowing, and you won't be missing your calcium & Vitamin D, as the store-bought versions are always fortified. My favorite is unsweetened vanilla.
Raspberries: antioxidant filled, anti-cancer food. Raspberries are a good source of Vitamin C and contain other anti-inflammatory phytonutrients to help protect us against disease. They are also a great source of fiber (1 cup has 8g!)
**Note** I recommend making the pudding and raspberry jam at least a few hours before consuming, or the night before. This will give the chia seeds time to swell (there's that fiber working!) and create the pudding-like consistency.
3 Tbsp chia seeds
1/2 C. light coconut milk
1/2 C. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1/3 C. frozen organic raspberries (or ripe, fresh berries)
1/2 tsp raw local honey
dash of cinnamon, optional
Measure out the chia seeds and place in mason jar or another sealable container. Pour the light coconut milk and almond milk into the jar, and stir until well mixed. Place the lid on, and set in the fridge for at least 15-30 minutes. You'll want to come back to it once and give it another stir, as the chia seeds tend to clump up in the beginning once they start to swell.
For the raspberry filling, de-thaw and measure out the frozen organic raspberries (you may also use fresh if available, just make sure they are really ripe!) and place in another jar. Drizzle honey on top, and stir together.
In a few hours or the next day (perfect for breakfast), the pudding will be good to go! Now comes the fun part. Feel free to get creative with your toppings. I typically drizzle the homemade raspberry jam on top, and then spinkle granola or other nuts/seeds, fruit, and spices to the top. Perfect combo for my pecan almond granola recipe! ;)
Hope you all enjoy!