Chia Seeds: Life Changing Recipes

Chia seeds are basically the reigning champion of health foods - no health cafe, juice bar or health blog is complete without a chia seed pudding, and they’re practically a breakfast staple nowadays - toast and cereal are so 2012. But chia seeds aren’t just a one trick wonder. They can be used in so many other recipes too - their ability to soak up liquid to form a gloopy gel makes them the ideal egg replacement for vegan baking for example. 

We may have also got slightly excited recently over finding 1kg bags of chia seeds… so with an abundance of chia seeds, and whirring minds as to the endless possibilities ahead, we set to a littlekitchen experimenting to see what else these little seeds of wonder could offer. The outcome? Crunchy clusters of oil free granola, super thick shakes that you would never believe were ice-cream free and a cake so moist and delicious we may have ate the whole thing in one weekend. We knew there was good reason they’re classified as a superfood. 

And because we completely understand that recipes this good (and healthy) shouldn’t be kept a secret, you can find them all below. If you happen to make the cake and not eat it all within 2 days then hats off to you. 


LEMON + CHIA SEED LOAF

Gluten free, Dairy free, Refined sugar free 

The addition of chia seeds instead of what would traditionally be poppy seeds in this cake leads to a much more moist texture the due to them slightly expanding when mixed with the wet ingredients  - because of this, this cake does have quite a short shelf life though, we just couldn't tell you how long because ours only lasted one day (we would guess no more than 2-3 days is not refrigerated). 

INGREDIENTS

-1 1/2 cups almond meal

-1/2 cup oat flour

-1/2 tsp baking soda

-1/2 cup coconut sugar

- 3 tbsp chia seeds 

- lemon zest from one whole lemon

- 2 eggs

- 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted

- 1 cup coconut yoghurt 

- the juice of 1 lemon 

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to 190C and grease a loaf tin with coconut oil 

2. Combine the almond flour, oat flour, baking soda, coconut sugar, chia seeds and lemon zest in a bowl 

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, coconut oil, coconut yoghurt and lemon juice 

4. Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined (try not to over stir) 

5. Spoon the mixture into the greased loaf tin and cook for 40-45 minutes

6. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for at least an hour before removing from the tin  

7. For the best flavour, leave to rest overnight before serving 


CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT THICK SHAKE

Gluten free, Dairy free, Refined sugar free

The addition of chia seeds to this smoothie makes it so thick and creamy, without the addition of ice-cream or even fruit such as banana - making it a great low-sugar option!  

INGREDIENTS

- 1/4 cup hazelnuts, soaked overnight 

- 1 tbsp cacao powder

- 1/2 cup water 

- 1/4 cup almond milk 

- 1 heaped tbsp chia seeds

- 1 tbsp maple syrup

- 5 ice cubes 

METHOD

1. The night before, just pop your hazelnuts in a container of water and leave to soak in the fridge overnight to make them easier to blend (and digest) 

2. Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend until completely mixed 

3. Serve! 


CHAI + CRANBERRY CHIA GRANOLA

Gluten free, Dairy free, Refined sugar free, Oil free

The chia seeds when combined with the water in this recipe act as the bonding agent for the granola, rather than having to add large amounts of sweetener and oil, making it the perfect, healthy granola option! 

INGREDIENTS

- 1/2 cup oats

- 1/4 cup linseed

- 1/4 cup chopped mixed nuts

- 3 tbsp chia seeds

- 1/4 cup cranberries

- 1/2 tsp ginger

- 1/2 tsp turmeric

- 1/2 tsp all spice

- 1/2 tsp nutmeg

- 1/2 tsp cinnamon

- pinch of salt

- 2 tbsp maple syrup (more if you prefer a sweeter granola) 

- 1 heaped tbsp tahini

- 1/4 cup water 

METHOD

1. Combine the oats, linseed, chopped nuts, chia seeds, goji berries, salt and spices in a bowl 

2. Add the maple syrup and water and stir until a wet cookie-dough type mixture forms

3. Spoon onto a baking tray, separate into small clusters and bake at 200C for 20 minutes 

4. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes before serving