Some foods inspire an instant an intense reaction. No one “kind of likes” chia seeds. With chia seeds, and certainly chia drinks like the Synergy or Mama Chia drink, the love/hate reaction is instantaneous. My camp describes these drinks as “refreshing” and “delicious.” The other camp might choose words like “slimy” and “disgusting.” Chia seeds are slimy in liquid, but that doesn’t put me off them in the slightest. If you land solidly in the “slimy” and “disgusting” camp, then this is NOT the dessert for you. Might I point you towards my mini molten chocolate cakes instead?
Chia seeds have been touted as a superfood by a variety of sources. I make no health claims about why you should or shouldn’t be eating them. Rather, I love the chia seeds in this recipe because of their ability to create a thick pudding-like texture without any cooking. This past week I’ve been mixing up this chocolate coconut chia pudding when I get home from work and popping it in the fridge. Come the post-dinner chocolate craving, and I have an answer already waiting for me. Chocolate and coconut is one of my favorite combinations, and topped with some shredded coconut and a strawberry or two, the pudding is pretty as well as chocolate-y. A pretty dessert fills an entirely different need than a handful of chocolate chips. (though sometimes the chocolate chips are just the thing)
Chocolate Coconut Chia Pudding (inspired by a chia pudding recipe in the May/June 2012 issue of VegNews)
A simple dessert for one. You could make this with chocolate almond or soy milk and remove the cocoa, or make it with coconut milk for an extra hit of coconut flavor. This dessert is both vegan and gluten-free.
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tablespoon cocoa
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar
- shredded sweetened coconut for garnish
- strawberries for garnish
- In a small bowl (the bowl you plan to eat the pudding out of), mix together the almond milk and cocoa until you’ve made chocolate almond milk.
- Add the chia seeds and coconut extra and stir so the chia seeds are well mixed in.
- Add the agave nectar and stir to mix it in. If you use a sweetened almond milk, you may not need the agave nectar. Taste after stirring and adjust the level of sweetness to your preference.
- Place the bowl in the fridge for at least an hour prior to serving. The pudding will firm up more with longer times in the fridge.
- When ready to serve, garnish with shredded coconut and strawberries and serve.
I’m excited about the possible variations on this dessert. Blending strawberries and almond milk in a blender before adding the chia seeds should give a lovely pink dessert. I also have plans for a banana version topped with a peanut butter sauce. With hands on time of just 5 minutes you really can’t go wrong!