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Overnight chia seed pudding is a healthy breakfast option that tastes like dessert but is full of plant-based protein, fiber, and omega-3 healthy fats. Plus, it's highly customizable!
If you ever find yourself in a food rut, especially when it comes to breakfast, you're definitely not alone. Sometimes the thought of eating another egg in any form can be nauseating. So what do you eat when the other usual suspects don't sound good either?
You make overnight chia seed pudding. Or you get even fancier and make matcha chia pudding.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- It's really easy to make. Seriously, it requires the bare minimum of effort because you hardly have to do anything (it'll do the work overnight while you sleep).
- It's incredibly versatile. Just switch out the toppings and flavorings to make it feel like you're not eating the same thing on repeat.
- You'll feel like a rebel eating dessert for breakfast, but it's actually nutrient-rich and filling.
- It's a great meal-prep option. Just make a double batch one time to enjoy throughout the week.
What Are Chia Seeds?
Chia seeds are tiny, oval-shaped seeds that are native to Mexico and Guatemala, and are black or white in color. They're chock full of fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, plant-based protein, and various vitamins and minerals making them a nutrition powerhouse.
What sets chia seeds apart from other seeds though is their ability to absorb liquid. When the seeds are mixed with a liquid, they plump up and form a gel-like texture.
This means they can be added to a variety of things such as jam (like my 10-minute blueberry chia jam) as well as added to baked goods, smoothies, oatmeal, pancakes, or used as a vegan egg substitute.
- Chia seeds - I used white chia seeds because I had them on hand, but black chia seeds also work great!
- Plant-based milk - whatever kind you enjoy.
- Sweetener - my favorite sweetener to use is maple syrup, coconut sugar, or infused-simple syrup.
- Vanilla extract - for flavoring, otherwise it's very bland.
- Optional add-ins - ground cinnamon, fresh fruit, cocoa powder, etc.
When it comes to the ratio of chia seeds to liquid, it's all about personal preference. Do you like a thick pudding texture or do you enjoy a thinner consistency?
Because chia seeds expand so much when added to a liquid, you'll need to use a higher ratio of liquid to chia seeds.
I typically stick to the ratio of 4 parts liquid to 1 part chia seeds (this would look something like 1 cup liquid + ¼ cup chia seeds). If you prefer a thinner consistency, just add more liquid (up to ¼ cup).
Something to make note of - depending on the type of milk you use, you may need to add more liquid. For example, canned coconut milk is much thicker than dairy-free milk in a carton. Just play with the ratios until you find your preferred consistency.
How to Make It
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the milk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract.
Add the chia seeds (and any other add-ins) and whisk until there are no clumps.
Tightly cover the bowl or transfer the mixture to two small jars with lids. Store in the fridge for at least 5 hours, but preferably overnight to allow the pudding to thicken.
Frequently Asked Questions
The key to good chia seed pudding is whisking. Using a spoon to stir it just won't cut it. The whisk is what really helps to distribute the chia seeds throughout the milk, otherwise, you get big clumps of seeds in your pudding.
Raw honey doesn't mix well in cold liquids and just settles at the bottom. Use it to drizzle as a topping instead of mixing it into the pudding itself.
Chia seed pudding can be a little bland on its own, so to get the best flavor and some contrasting textures, add toppings. I love the combination of fresh fruit and dukkah or granola, but the options are endless!
More Cooking Basics You'll Love
Overnight Chia Seed Pudding
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the milk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Add the chia seeds (and any other add-ins) and whisk until there are no clumps.
- Tightly cover the bowl or transfer the mixture to two small jars with lids. Store in the fridge for at least 5 hours, but preferably overnight to allow the pudding to thicken.
- Top with fresh fruit, yogurt, granola, compote, raw honey, etc.