chia seeds

Blueberry Lemon Compote

Last week a friend of mine showed me a recipe for blueberry lemon quinoa. At the same time I had been experimenting with different homemade jams with chia seeds. Chia seeds are great for creating a jam consistency because they expand to up to 10 times their size when combined with liquid. So long story short, I was just playing around in the kitchen one morning and ended up with this delicious compote that came together in just about 10 minutes!

Ingredients
1/4 cup blueberries
juice of one lemon
1/2 tbsp chia seeds
lemon zest or lemon oil (optional)

Directions
1. Mash ripe blueberries with the back of a fork.
2. Add lemon juice, chia seeds, and zest.
3. Stir well to combine and let sit for at least 10 minutes to let the chia seeds expand and thicken the compote.
4. Enjoy over oats, breakfast quinoa, toast, pancakes, or just with a spoon!

Notes
*This is just for about 1 serving, feel free to double or triple the recipe. It will keep for about 2 weeks in the fridge in an airtight container.
*If you’d like a smoother consistency, you can blend the lemon juice and blueberries before adding the chia seeds. Personally, I liked it chunkier.

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Ch-ch-ch-chia…

Lately there’s been quite a lot of buzz around chia seeds in the health food community. They are mysterious, nutritious tiny seeds filled with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and protein that somehow absorb nearly ten times their weight in liquid to form a gel-like consistency. Personally, I love the texture, it’s not quite as solid as Jell-O, but more substantial than pure liquid. It adds thickness to smoothies and juices and can even be placed in water or coconut water for a refreshing post-workout drink. It only takes about 10 minutes for the gel to form in 8 oz of liquid. Some coconut chia water was a great way to end my almost 5 mile walk with Lilly today when we walked around and did shopping in 12th South in Nashville.IMG_3521

Another one of my favorite ways to use chia seeds is to make pudding. It’s a great breakfast, snack, or dessert! I love to make a big batch and store it in a mason jar to eat all week.

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IMG_3518Ingredients
makes 2-3 servings

2 cups almond milk
5-6 tbsp chia seeds (depending on how thick you want it)
Optional: cinnamon, vanilla extract (I bought an amazing one at Savory Spice in Franklin, agave (or your choice sweetener), protein powder (my favorite is Perfect Fit Vanilla)

Directions
1. Put all ingredients except the milk in a mason jar (or air-tight container).
2. Pour in milk and fill to the top.
3. Stir vigorously (you might want to do this in or near the sink because it might get messy).
4. Seal and store in the fridge overnight for the best consistency.
5. Top with fresh fruit, nuts, or extra cinnamon and enjoy!

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