Chia seeds are the seeds of a plant in the mint family that’s native to Mexico and Guatamala. They are a great natural energy booster because of their unique ratio of protein, healthy fats, and fiber. Chia seeds are the best plant source of Omega 3s, so vegetarian and vegan friends, please try them out!
Chia seeds can be stirred into drinks or sprinkled on top of raw or cooked dishes. They are similar to flax seeds with their versatility. You can even make pudding with them because they swell to 10 times their natural size once wet.
You can find them at your local grocery store in either the baking aisle near the flax seeds, or in the health food isle near the gluten free flours. This 2 pound bag we buy at Sam’s Club costs $10 which is the cheapest we’ve found it.
Chia seeds look like a cross between a poppy seed and a sesame seed. They have no flavor, are low in calories, and pack a serious nutritional punch! Anytime you sprinkle them on your food, they swell up in your stomach, making you get fuller faster. So they’re a great additive to on-the-go meals and snacks.
CHIA SEEDS CONTAIN:
Vitamin B1, B2, & B3
Some of the mightiest things come in small packages. (Like my baby sister. 🙂 Love you, April!)
HERE’S 10 OF OUR FAVORITE WAYS TO USE ‘EM:
1.) Sprinkled on top of toast and/or eggs (nutella toast, anyone?!?!)
2.) Ground into nut milk for cereal, coffee, tea, etc. (try a blend of almond/chia milk!)
3.) Pureed into smoothies (instant natural protein shake)
4.) Sprinkled on top of fruit salad (love the crunch!)
5.) Mixed into overnight oats
6.) Turn them into sprouts for use as a garnish on salads, stir fry, quinoa, etc.
7.) Sprinkled on top of salads or mixed into salad dressings
8.) In hummus, guacamole, or other favorite dips
9.) With crushed red pepper on top of cooked pizza
10.) With sesame seeds on top of stir fry
I taught a class on coconut oil at Nashville’s cancer support group a few weeks ago where I demonstrated how to make coconut chia seed energy bites. They are an excellent healthy dessert option for parties or just a great snack to have on hand for in between meals, after school, or long car rides. All you need is dates, chia seeds, coconut oil, and vanilla extract to make them. The last four ingredients are optional, but oh so delicious!
I hope you try them!!
COCONUT CHIA SEED ENERGY BITES
(c=cup, t=teaspoon, T=tablespoon)
Makes about 12 balls
12 large organic Medjool dates, pits removed and roughly chopped
½ c organic chia seeds
2 T organic unrefined coconut oil
½ t organic vanilla extract
Pinch organic cinnamon powder
1 T organic dark chocolate chips
1 T organic sugar free dried cranberries
2 T organic unsweetened dried shredded coconut
Pulse dates in food processor until they turn into a paste. Put in a large mixing bowl with remaining ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula until it turns into a thick dough. Put in freezer or refrigerator to slightly firm up dough so it can be handled. Roll into equal sized balls and eat immediately or refrigerate and serve later.
Note: These will sit on a buffet at room temperature just fine, but keep refrigerated until ready to use.
Thanks for tuning in to our live Facebook video this morning on 10 ways to eat chia seeds and check back to see what we’re going to be doing next Saturday at 10 am!