Sweet Cherry Chia Pudding (Paleo, Whole30)
Sweet cherries are the star of the show in this easy and scrumptious protein-packed, creamy and decadent cherry chia pudding! Blending the chia seeds takes your run of the mill chia pudding and turns it into this luscious, smooth, and crave-able chia pudding that is unbeatable! Breakfast has never been so easy, delicious, or nutritious! Top it off with some crunchy raw cacao nibs, fresh, juicy cherries, and unsweetened coconut, and you’ll think you’re having dessert over a nutrient-packed breakfast or snack!
Why Chia Seeds are So Good For You!
Chia seeds are the black or white seeds from the Salvia hispanica plant that belongs to the mint family. Since this is a desert plant, chia seeds are to believed to have originated from Central America and was an essential part of the ancient Aztec diet.
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine): A water soluble vitamin that is essential in glucose metabolism and supports health heart and nervous system function.
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): Converts carbohydrates to adenosine triphosphate (ATP) which supports energy production .
- Vitamin B3 (niacin): Essential in healthy metabolism, supports healthy cholesterol and blood pressure .
- Vitamin B9 (folate): Essential vitamin that supports healthy metabolism, and is key in breaking down homocysteine, and amino acid that is harmful in high concentrations .
- Vitamin C: Powerful antioxidant found in many fruits and vegetables that helps to neutralize free radicals and reduce oxidative stress.
- Vitamin E: This essential fat-soluble vitamin is a powerful antioxidant that plays a role in reducing oxidative stress by neutralizing free radicals that may result in illness or disease. Vitamin E is essential in vision health, skin health, and reproductive health .
- Calcium: The most abundant mineral in the body and is essential in heart health, muscle function and support strong bones and teeth.
- Copper: Essential mineral in the formation of red blood cells and in supporting cardiovascular health and immune function .
- Iron: Iron is an essential mineral that your body needs and in plants we have non-heme iron. Non-heme iron is more difficult for our bodies to absorb , so pairing it with vitamin C rich foods, such as a homemade jam increases the absorption of the non-heme iron in our diets.
- Magnesium: The fourth most abundant mineral in the body, it support healthy nerve functions, healthy blood pressure, and detoxification.
- Manganese: Essential mineral in supporting blood sugar regulation, glucose metabolism, and supporting healthy brain and nerve function .
- Phosphorus: Essential in bone and teeth formation, the creation of ATP, metabolic pathways, and growth and repair of tissues .
- Potassium: An essential electrolyte necessary in nervous system function, metabolism, hydration, and in regulating your heartbeat.
- Zinc: Essential in digestion, thyroid health, and a healthy immune system.
- Alpha linoleic acid (ALA: also known as Omega-3): An essential fatty acid due to our body’s inability to create it. It plays a vital role in our body’s anti-inflammatory pathways and is an excellent whole food source of EPA and DHA.
- Oleic acid (Omega-9): A monounsaturated fatty acid that is essential in cell membrane health, mineral transportation, is a source of cellular energy, is antimicrobial and supports brain function .
- Chlorogenic acid: An antioxidant that supports healthy blood pressure.
- Caffeic acid: A type of polyphenol that has anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and antiviral properties.
- Myricetin: A plant flavonoid that is considered a strong antioxidant and has anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, and anticancer properties.
- Quercetin: an antioxidant that reduces oxidation, fight inflammation, and supports a healthy immune system . Onions are also rich in organic sulphur compounds (this is what gives it its strong and pungent odor) which supports healthy cholesterol.,
- Kaempferol: A polyphenol antioxidant that has shown to fight cancer, reduce inflammation, and reduce oxidative stress .
- Adding chia seeds will increase your intake of both soluble and insoluble fiber keeping your gut and digestive tract healthy!
Why Balance your Macros
Eating meals and snacks that have balanced macros is important as it provides the necessary nutrients the body needs, and keeps blood sugars regulated to keep your blood glucose levels from spiking and crashing. Eating meals or snacks that are heavy in carbohydrates (CHO) but lack sufficient fat and protein can cause blood sugar dysregulation and lead to chronic symptoms and possible disease.
- Symptoms of blood sugar dysregulation include: fatigue, craving sugar and caffeine, irritability, brain fog, depression/anxiety, hangry, confusion, weakness, shakiness, hormonal imbalance, insomnia, morning grogginess, and more.
Eating a balance of macros at meals and snacks is beneficial in:
- Energy: Each macronutrient provides energy: CHO offer quick energy, fats provide long-lasting energy, and protein can be used as a source of energy as needed. Eating balanced meals supports consistent energy all day without the “sugar crashes.”
- Metabolism: Each macronutrient has specific roles in the body’s metabolic processes: fats are essential for absorbing fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K) and hormone production. CHO’s are the brain and body’s preferred energy source, and protein builds, repairs, supports digestion and immune response .
- Appetite and Satiety: A balance of protein, fats, and carbohydrates can help with hunger and satiety: protein and fats, can make you feel fuller for longer, while the fiber in CHO’s have been shown to influence the production of GLP-1 .
- Gut Health: The soluble fiber found in fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes, supports gut health by promoting healthy transit and nourishing the microbiome.
- Mood: CHO’s, especially those from whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, are beneficial for brain function and mood regulation. Fatty acids like omega-3s play a role in cognitive function and mental health.
- Hormones: Fats are necessary in the synthesis of steroid hormones (sex hormones) and proteins are essential in the production of peptide hormones (insulin,oxytocin).
Sweet Cherry Chia Pudding (Paleo, Whole30)
- 2 cups Dairy-Free Milk
- 1/2 cup Organic Chia Seeds
- 1 Tbsp - ¼ cup Pure Raw Honey or Pure Maple Syrup*
- 1 cup Fresh Cherries pitted
- 1/2 cup Fresh Cherries chopped
- 2-4 Scoops Collagen Protein Powder *
- ¼ tsp Fine Real Salt
- 1-2 Tbsp Cacao Nibs opt
- Fresh Cherries opt
- Unsweetened Flaked Coconut opt
- Raw Pumpkin Seeds opt
- Pure Raw Honey or Pure Maple Syrup opt
- In a high speed bender add the plant milk, cherries, lemon juice, honey, salt and chia seeds.
- Blend on medium speed for 60-90 seconds until smooth.
- Add the chopped cherries to the bottom of 4-6 clean 8-12 ounce mason jars.
- Transfer the cherry chia pudding to the jars, cover and refrigerate 4-hours to overnight.
- Top with unsweetened flaked coconut, cacao nibs, fresh chopped cherries and a drizzle of honey!
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Q: Do the chia seeds need to be blended to make cherry chia pudding?
A: No, I do prefer to make my chia pudding by blending the seeds, but you can make the cherry base and stir the seeds in instead.
Q: How long with chocolate cherry chia pudding last?
A: Stored in the refrigerator, enjoy within 3-5 days.
Q: Can I use frozen cherries to make cherry chia pudding?
A: Yes, just be sure they are pitted and defrosted first!
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I am a holistic nutritionist with an auto-immune disorder, a love of cooking, and a passion for holistic health.
Sharing what I make and eat with all of you…in hopes that you find inspiration here to fuel your body and feel your best with nutrient dense whole foods and clean eating.