Mediterranean Monday: Chia Pudding

Hi Friends!

Can you believe July is almost over?! This summer has flown by! I’m down to just a couple of weeks before my boys come home for the school year, which begins August 16th. The week before that they have their orientations. This summer has been a wild one, and I’m getting ready to cap it off with a trip to Chicago to visit a couple of friends this weekend. It will be like my one last hoorah before mom duty and college classes begin again, and my free time vanishes.

Do you know what my favorite thing about cooking dinner is? The glass of wine that comes along with it! I drink a glass of red wine most every evening while I’m making dinner, while also watching my guilty pleasure – The Young & The Restless. Yeah, yeah…I’m a junkie since childhood! You can thank my grandparents for that one, since they watched it (and still do) religiously every single day while I was growing up. Since I spent every day of my summers there…well, you get where I’m going with this.

Anyhow, that nightly glass of wine comes with one pitfall – it makes me crave sweets! I will never understand this, but it happens every single time I drink wine. I’ve grown very accustomed to fighting sugar cravings because it’s become an almost daily part of my life. I occasionally have to give in and find something healthy to kill that sweet tooth. Sometimes I eat fruit or unsweetened applesauce. Sometimes I’ll munch on a tablespoon of chocolate chips. If I’ve been eating super healthy for a few days I’ll treat myself to a chocolate mug cake. Other times, I fall back to a sweet, yet sugar free, treat – Chia Pudding.

Basic Chia Pudding is the easiest thing in the world to make and requires just three ingredients – chia seeds, almond milk, and stevia. It’s crazy-high in calcium, protein and fiber, and it’s very versatile. You can add berries to it to make it into a parfait. You can use vanilla and cinnamon to flavor it like a cinnamon roll. You can add some pumpkin and cinnamon for a pumpkin pie-like treat. My personal favorite? Chocolate, of course! And that is exactly what I made tonight for my after dinner sweet treat. So without further adieu…here is the recipe:

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 1/2 Cup Almond Milk
  • 1 Packet Stevia Sweetener
  • 1/2 Tbsp Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 1/4 Tsp Vanilla

Directions

  1. Pour chia seeds into a vintage pudding cup (or a small bowl, but vintage glassware is way more fun!).
  2. Add the stevia packet and cocoa powder, then toss a bit to disperse evenly.
  3. Pour in the almond milk and the vanilla, then stir well to combine.
  4. Place in the refrigerator for 10 minutes, then stir. The chia seeds will gel and start to clump together, so you will need to stir them up and separate the clumps.
  5. Continue to refrigerate for at least another 10 minutes, for a minimum of 20 minutes before serving. Two hours is even better if you can wait that long!
  6. Optional – top with shredded coconut before serving! I would have done this tonight had I not been out.

I’m eating my chia pudding right now while writing this to you, and I’m feeling the sugar craving fading already. Happy snacking!

Love,
Loren

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