7 Unexpectedly Delicious Chia Seed Recipes

It’s hard to look at a recipe board on Pinterest without being overwhelmed by a one trend: chia seeds. But what exactly are these seeds, and why are they so healthy?

Chia seeds are beneficial due to their richness in fiber, omega-3 fats, protein, vitamins and minerals. Fiber not only helps you have regular bowel movements, but it also helps control overeating. Omega-3 fats are fats you definitely don’t want to cut out—not only does your body need these, they also help to prevent and control some diseases. Protein is essential to many functions including growth and immunity.

Since chia seeds are so nutrient-dense, they pack an energy-boosting power. Aztec warriors apparently even ate chia seeds to give themselves energy; It was rumored that a spoonful of chia could sustain them for 24 hours. More recently, chia seeds have been a popular superfood. They have been linked to weight loss, cardiovascular health and other health benefits. Chia seeds have also become a versatile ingredient, as they can be added easily to classic recipes. Check out these delicious chia seed recipes if you're interested in incorporating them into your diet:

 

1. Vanilla Chia Pudding

 

This vanilla chia pudding is the perfect breakfast! Add your own personal flair by adding your favorite fruit and toppings.

Recipe from iFOODreal

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup almond milk, unsweetened (vanilla)
  • 2-3 teaspoons maple syrup or honey
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tablespoons chia seeds
  • Nuts, berries, fruit, coconut flakes for topping

Instructions:

  1. Add all ingredients (except the toppings) to a Mason jar or any container with a tight lid.
  2. Shake or stir the container.
  3. Refrigerate for at least six hours or overnight.
  4. When ready to eat, stir and top with favorite toppings.

 

2. Chia Seed Smoothie Bowl

 

You can’t beat health and Nutella in one recipe, but you can definitely swap out the flavors here!

Recipe from Eating by Elaine

Ingredients:

  • 6 large medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/4 cup hazelnuts
  • 1/4 blanched slivered almonds
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons hazelnut butter
  • 2 tablespoons hemp seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup frozen riced cauliflower
  • 1 cup unsweetened hazelnut milk
  • ice cubes

Instructions:

  1. Blend dates, hazelnuts, slivered almonds, cacao powder, vanilla, hazelnut butter, hemp seeds, chia seeds, pinch of salt, frozen riced cauliflower and hazelnut milk.
  2. Add a cup of ice and blend, then a second cup of ice and blend. To thicken it, add more frozen cauliflower or another cup of ice. 
  3. Pour into two bowls and top with your favorite toppings. 

 

3. Chia Peanut Butter Protein Balls

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

🍋 Lemon, Chia and Coconut Bliss Balls 🥥 Serves 5 Ingredients: * 25g vanilla vegan protein powder * 20g almond meal * 25g desiccated coconut * 5g chia seeds * 40g 100% natural cashew butter * 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract * 1 tsp. (5ml) liquid stevia * 1/2 lemon, juice and zest * 1 tbsp. (20ml) filtered water Directions 1. Add protein powder, almond meal, 20g of the coconut and chia seeds to a bowl and mix well. 2. Add in cashew butter, vanilla extract, stevia, lemon juice and zest and water and using your hands, mix well until you form a dough. 3. Add remaining coconut to a plate. 4. Divide mixture into 5 portions and roll into balls. Roll in the plate of coconut until all sides are coated. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving. 5. Serve 1 ball as a snack and refrigerate remaining balls. Nutrition (per serve): Calories: 132 cal Protein: 6.5g Fat: 9.7g Carbs: 3.3g ##f45challenge #f45training #f45challengefood #f45 #f458weekchallenge #f45playoffs #f45meals #f45challengemeals #f45vegan #f45veganchallenge #veganf45 #veganf45challenge #f45vegansnacks #f45snacks #f45proteinballs #lemonproteinballs #lemonblissballs #chiablissballs #coconutprotein #coconutproteinballs #coconutblissballs #coconutballs #lemonchiaballs #chiaballs #chiaproteinballs #coconutchiaproteinballs #veganprotein #veganproteinballs #veganblissballs #lemoncoconutballs #veganproteinballs

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These chia peanut butter balls taste like dessert but are actually an excellent source of protein. Eat these after a workout to avoid sore muscles the next morning! You can substitute the vegan protein powder for your protein powder of choice. The chunky peanut butter can also be replaced with smooth peanut butter.

Recipe from Vegan Family Recipes

Ingredients:

  • 6 dates
  • 1 scoop natural raw vegan protein powder
  • 4 tablespoons crunchy and natural peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons chia seeds (ground)

Instructions:

  1. Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor.
  2. Roll into 10 tablespoon-sized balls.
  3. Store in refrigerator.

 

4. Lemon Chia Seed Muffins

 

These lemon chia seed muffins are perfect for fans of poppy-seed muffins. The chia seeds give these sweet and tart treats an extra boost of fiber, protein and omega-3 fatty acids!

Recipe from Something Swanky

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 package lemon flavored instant pudding mix

Instructions:

  1. Cream together the butter, sugar, eggs and lemon extract or zest until creamy.
  2. Mix in remaining ingredients until smooth.
  3. Distribute batter evenly among muffin tin cups (about 15).
  4. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes.

 

5. Banana Chia Bread

 

This moist banana chia bread makes the perfect snack or breakfast! Add a tablespoon of cinnamon to the dough if you’re looking for some more flavor.

Recipe from Savy Naturalista

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg (room temperature)
  • 2 tablespoons whipped butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup chia seeds
  • 2 large bananas (smashed)
  • 1/2 cup almond milk

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a medium loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, mix butter, egg, banana and sugar.
  3. In a medium bowl, add flour, salt, baking powder and mix until combined.
  4. Slowly add flour mixture and milk to wet ingredients, alternating until incorporated.
  5. Fold in chia seeds.
  6. Place batter in loaf pan and place in the oven for 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

 

6. Mango Chia Popsicles

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Esme Forbes (@es.aja.me) on

 

These mango chia popsicles are the perfect sweet but healthy treat. With three ingredients, they’re also easy to make! The only hard part of this recipe is having the patience to wait until the pops are frozen before digging in.

Recipe from Jelly Toast

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups mango, chopped (about two large mangos)
  • 10 ounces coconut water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chia seeds

Instructions:

  1. Place mango and coconut water into blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Stir in chia seeds.
  3. Pour mixture into 10 3-ounce popsicle molds and place a wooden stick into each.
  4. Freeze until frozen (at least six hours).

 

7. Chia Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

#oatmealchiacookies #freshfromtheoven #cleaneatingfavs #allilubinfitness #cleaneating #healthycookies

A post shared by Alli Lubin (@allilubin) on

 

These chia oatmeal cookies are the perfect breakfast or snack. Made with no added sugar, dairy or eggs, they are great for those with many dietary restrictions and can easily be made gluten free when made with gluten-free oats!

Recipe from Eating Bird Food

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup chopped dates
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chunks or carob chips
  • 1 tablespoon creamy almond butter
  • Large pinch of cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the chia seeds and almond milk and let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes, or until the chia seeds have created a nice, gel-like consistency.
  3. Pour the chia seed gel into a medium-sized mixing bowl and add in the mashed bananas, oats, coconut, almond butter and cinnamon until well combined.
  4. Gently stir in the dates and chocolate chunks.
  5. Scoop out dough (about 1-2 tablespoons worth) onto a baking stone or a greased cookie sheet and use a fork to press the dough down a little to make more of a cookie shape. You should get about 15 cookies.
  6. Place in oven and bake for 17 to 20 minutes, or until the bottom of the cookies have browned a tiny bit.

 

These recipes aren’t just healthy—they’re also delicious! Check out the health section of your grocery store and grab a pack of chia seeds. With all of the benefits, it’s worth giving one (or two, or all) of these chia seed recipes a try!