6 Recipes Making Dessert Healthier with Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are chock-full of amazing nutritional benefits. It’s an unprocessed, whole grain food containing healthy omega-3 fatty acids, carbohydrates, protein, fiber, antioxidants, and calcium, according to Web MD. This magical heart healthy food is also really versatile, making it easy to incorporate into your everyday life. But if you’re tired of sprinkling it on your cereals, sauces, and veggies, it may be time to sweeten things up a bit. Here are 6 delicious desserts that incorporate chia seeds, creating a healthier, nutritional treat. Go ahead and help yourself to that second slice of cake!
1. Chia Seed Pudding
To get you in the chia seed spirit, here is a Food Network recipe that is easy, healthy, and tasty. The recipe yields 4 servings and is filled with nutritious ingredients, including chia seeds, fruit, almonds, and Greek yogurt.
- 1 cup vanilla-flavored unsweetened almond milk
- 1 cup plain low-fat (2 percent) Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup (preferably grade B), plus 4 teaspoons for serving
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Kosher salt
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- 1 pint strawberries, hulled and chopped
- ¼ cup sliced almonds, toasted
Directions: In a medium bowl, gently whisk the almond milk, yogurt, 2 tablespoons maple syrup, the vanilla, and ⅛ teaspoon salt until just blended. Whisk in the chia seeds; let stand 30 minutes. Stir to distribute the seeds if they have settled. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The next day, in a medium bowl, toss the berries with the remaining 4 teaspoons maple syrup. Mix in the almonds. Spoon the pudding into 4 bowls or glasses; mound the berry mixture on top and serve.
2. Lemon and Chia Seed Yogurt Cakes
Creamy Greek yogurt, chia seeds, and lemon zest create a decadent and healthy dessert. Food & Wine‘s recipe, which yields 12 servings, is the perfect way to indulge guilt-free.
- ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1 ½ tablespoons of finely grated lemon zest
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Candied Lemon Slices and Syrup
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 2 lemons, sliced ⅛-inch thick, seeds removed
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 3 to 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line one cupcake pan with 1 dozen cupcake liners. Combine the yogurt, chia seeds, and zest in a small bowl and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. With an electric mixer on high speed, beat the butter and granulated sugar in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Stir in the vanilla extract and then add the eggs in one at a time, beating well with each addition. Reduce the speed to low; beat in the dry ingredients in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of the chia yogurt mixture.
Pour the batter evenly into the prepared cake liners and smooth the tops of each with an offset spatula. Bake until a cake tester comes out clean, about 20 minutes. If the tops begin to brown towards the final minutes in baking, tent the cupcake pan loosely with a large strip of tin foil. To make the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice together, adjusting with more lemon juice if consistency is too thick. Pour the glaze over the cakes, letting it drip down the sides. Let them set, garnish each cupcake with one candied lemon slice and a sprinkling of chia seeds.
Meanwhile, make the candied lemon slices and syrup. In a medium saucepan, combine the granulated sugar and the water and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add the lemon slices and simmer gently over medium-low heat for about 8 minutes until slices are moderately opaque, lightly stirring every other minute or so. Turn off the heat and transfer slices to a sheet of waxed paper. Stir in the lemon juice to taste. Once the cakes are out of the oven, use a wooden skewer to poke a few holes in the tops and slowly pour the syrup individually over each cupcake. Transfer them to a wire rack to cool. To make the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice together, adjusting with more lemon juice if consistency is too thick. Pour the glaze over the cakes letting it drip down the sides. Let them set, garnish each cupcake with one candied lemon slice and a sprinkling of chia seeds.
3. Chocolate Chip Chia Cupcakes
The Dr. Oz Show has created a delicious chocolate chip cupcake recipe that allows you to enjoy a sweet treat filled with good-for-you ingredients. Some of the antioxidant-rich ingredients include coconut flour, dark chocolate, and chia seeds.
- ½ cup coconut flour
- ½ cup coconut palm sugar
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips, chopped
- 2 eggs (free-range, organic), beaten (room temperature)
- ½ cup coconut oil
- ¼ cup water
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a tiny bit of coconut oil in slots in muffin pan or place cupcake wrappers in pan. Mix ¼ cup water with one tablespoon of chia seeds. Let sit for 10 to 20 minutes, until it forms a “gel.” In the meantime, mix dry ingredients in a bowl (coconut palm sugar, coconut flour, chocolate chips, and 1 tablespoon chia seeds). In a separate bowl, mix wet ingredients (eggs, coconut oil, and vanilla extract). Combine all ingredients and mix. Pour mixture into muffin pan until each is approx ¾ full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool. Top with some extra chocolate chips.
4. Chocolate Chia Cookies
There is nothing better than a fresh batch of warm, gooey cookies. This Salted Crown recipe is absolute dessert perfection. Not only is it good for you, but each cookie is filled with rich chocolaty flavor.
- 1 chia egg (1 tablespoon chia seeds + 2 ½ tablespoons water; mix and let set for 5 minutes to activate)
- 1 cup blonde coconut sugar
- 1 cup White Chocolate Wonderful Peanut Butter
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips (for vegan cookies, use cacao nibs or vegan chocolate chips)
- 1 teaspoon ground flaxseeds
- Splash of vanilla coconut milk (optional)
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a small bowl, make your chia “egg” and let it set. In a mixer, add the coconut sugar, peanut butter, flaxseeds, baking soda, and chia “egg.” Mix well. If mixture is too dry, add a splash of coconut milk or your preferred milk and mix well. Add in the chocolate chips and mix until combined well. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and place scoopfuls of batter onto it. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
5. Fresh Blackberry Oat Bars
Recreating Happiness brings you a dessert filled with blackberries, minimal butter, and sweet seasonings. This rich recipe uses fresh fruit and chia seeds to make the jam, creating a bar that’s oozing with flavor. The recipe yields 12 servings.
- 12 ounces fresh blackberries
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- 2-4 tablespoons sugar
- ½ cup brown rice flour
- ½ cup gluten free oats
- ½ cup almond flour
- ⅓ cup potato starch
- ⅓ cup sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅓ cup butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
Directions: In saucepan, use a potato masher to mash the blackberries almost completely, leaving small chunks if you like. Stir in chia seeds and 2-4 tablespoons sugar to taste. Allow to rest for 20 minutes. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Boil gently and stir 3-5 minutes until it has thickened slightly. Set aside to cool. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile in medium bowl, combine brown rice flour, oats, almond flour, potato starch, ⅓ cup sugar, salt, baking soda, xanthan gum, and cinnamon. Stir in melted butter and vanilla. The mixture will be slightly crumbly.
Line an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with parchment paper, letting it hang over the sides. Press a bit over half of the oat mixture into the bottom of the baking dish. Spread the blackberry “jam” over the top. Then sprinkle on the remaining oat mixture. This does not need to be pressed down at all. Bake in 375 degrees Fahrenheit oven 45-55 minutes until top is lightly golden brown. Allow to cool completely then remove by grabbing the sides of the parchment paper and pulling the entire thing out. Cut into bars and enjoy!
6. Thick and Creamy Chocolate Pistachio Chia Shake
Chia seeds will be your new go-to ingredient after indulging in Half Baked Harvest’s shake recipe. Bananas, dates, almond milk, yogurt, and cocoa powder create a creamy dessert delight. This recipe yields 2 servings.
- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk, plus more to thin if desired
- 2 tablespoons black chia seeds
- 3 whole medjool dates, pitted
- ⅓ cup roasted and shelled pistachios, plus more for topping
- 3 frozen medium and very ripe bananas, peeled and sliced
- 2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt or use coconut milk yogurt for a vegan option
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions: In a small bowl, mix together the milk and chia seeds. Let this sit for 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, add the pistachios and dates to the bowl of a food processor or high powered blender. Blend until the mixture becomes finely chopped and almost butter-like, scraping down the side as you go. You want to get it as smooth as possible. In the blender, add the chia seeds and milk mixture, the frozen banana chunks, cocoa powder, Greek yogurt, and vanilla extract. Blend until thick, creamy, and smooth, about 3-4 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the blender as needed. If the shake is too thick add more milk to your liking.