Chia pudding may be the easiest make ahead breakfast I’ve encountered. Add your liquid of choice – almond milk, a light smoothie, 100% fruit juice, traditional milk – to a proportionate amount of chia seeds, leave it in the fridge overnight, and it’s ready in the morning, when you can add any accoutrement you like.
We seem to be in the midst of a rainy/wintry-mix season here in New York, and hearing the jumbo droplets pelting our windows upon waking up has so far made me pull up the covers. On days like this and for countless other reasons, it’s nice to have breakfast half done before my feet even hit the floor. When the mercury drops a few more degrees, it’ll be full-on oatmeal season, and I’ll cover make aheads for that too.
I’ll admit that I was a little hesitant to try chia pudding, because let’s be honest, chia seeds can look slimy. When I see the chia seed drinks near the checkout in Whole Foods, I recall swimming as a kid and screaming and writhing when a giant blob of slimy seaweed would sneak up on me. But once I tried an actual chia pudding version, not the chia drink version, I was pleasantly surprised. The texture is more like oatmeal, but with a satisfying crunch when biting down on the seeds. Then I started to encounter more and more recipes for the pudding, and finally tried making it myself. Besides being a great make ahead option, chia seed pudding (via the seeds themselves) brings you omega 3 fatty acids, which are important for brain and skin health, fiber for digestive health, calcium for teeth and bones, and the lesser known (at least based on what I’ve been exposed about chia seeds so far) phosphorus, which ultimately helps with cell and tissue growth and repair.
– Fill a liquid measuring cup to two cups. In this case, I used unsweetened almond milk.
– Add four tablespoons chia seeds.
– Stir well to incorporate, cover, and place in fridge overnight.
The seeds will absorb the liquid and take on a thick consistency, creating the pudding base. Here they are this morning/the next day:
What I did to create this breakfast was make a raspberry jam of sorts, also via very easy overnight prep.
– A cup frozen raspberries
– A generous squeeze of lemon
– Covered and left overnight in the fridge
In the morning, the raspberries smoosh easily under back of a spoon. I filled this glass mug 1/3 of the way with chia pudding, then added the raspberry mixture plus half a banana, then covered filled the remaining space with more pudding and topped with Grape Nuts and a few slivered almonds. This assembly takes maybe one minute longer than simply adding all additions on top of the pudding in a bowl, which can look pretty too. I think I just wanted to make the cozy pudding mug for today!
Add what ever fruit, spread, nuts or topping you like. Since the pudding has a thick consistency – everything will sit on top of it and you can create loads of presentation options.
I hope you’ll try it and enjoy!