Chia pudding gets a flavor, health and caffeine boost with the addition of matcha powder. Then it’s topped with greek yogurt, persimmon slices, pomegranate seeds, and chocolate covered cacao nibs to make it extra special!
Chia seeds are so interesting. Recently, there was a big hype about chia seeds because of their health benefits. People were blending them into smoothies, adding them to their water, incorporating them into savory dishes, and even just eating them straight. If you’ve never had chia seeds, they’re tiny little black seeds (kind of resemble poppy seeds) but have a very unique characteristic of being able to absorb a ton of liquid – up to 10+ times their weight or something like that. If you soak these seeds in some kind of liquid, they’ll form a gelatinous coating, creating a gel-like consistency/texture. People started to take advantage of this quality by making chia “pudding.” The basic concept is to soak some chia seeds in some sort of milk and flavoring. This chia pudding in no way tastes like or feels like those pudding cups you used to have in your brown paper bags as a kid, so don’t expect that. However, it makes a tasty and fun way to consume these little nutritious seeds. It’s a great option for breakfast or a quick snack, and what makes it even better is that it’s incredibly easy to prepare, and you can do it the night before!
What’s great about chia pudding is that you have a lot of freedom in terms of how you want to make it. You can easily make it vegan by using non-dairy milk, you can add all sorts of different flavoring/spices into the pudding itself, and you can add endless combinations of toppings. Basically you can go crazy with this and discover fun ways to upgrade the basics. For my chia pudding, I decided to keep it pretty simple by adding matcha powder. Matcha powder has its own slew of health benefits, which is great, but it also tastes incredible and gives you a little energy boost too. Plus, look at the wonderful color you get from it!
For my toppings, I chose to use greek yogurt, persimmons, pomegranate seeds and chocolate covered cacao nibs (which are amazing, by the way).
GREEK YOGURT. I add greek yogurt to whatever I can because it’s so good for you, and because I buy the Costco size container of it. You can add a dollop on top of the chia pudding, or you can just mix it into the pudding itself. Totally up to you.
PERSIMMONS are such a nostalgic fruit for me. In Korean, they’re called “gam,” and there are actually several different types of persimmons. But, in my world there are only 2 varieties: “hard gam” and “soft gam.” Apparently their proper names are fuyu and hachiya persimmons, respectively, but they will always be classified as hard and soft to me. Growing up, we had 2 persimmon trees in our back yard (one of each). When they were ready, we’d all go out there, harvest them, and indulge in the abundance of persimmons. They seriously taste like candy! My grandparents also seemingly always had boxes of persimmons on their balcony. When I asked why they were out there, my grandma would explain that she’s ripening them to perfection. I never questioned her again, because her persimmons were, in fact, always perfectly ripe. I topped my chia pudding with a couple slices of hard gam (or fuyu persimmon), which added such a wonderful flavor and sweetness (and extra points for presentation).
POMEGRANATE SEEDS are basically little fruit jewels. They taste amazing, they look great, they’re amazing for your health…sometimes I wonder why we don’t just dump pomegranate seeds on everything we eat. Then when I try to get all those little pomegranate seeds out, I remember why. There are all sorts of tips and tricks on how to most effectively harvest your pomegranate seeds. I’ve found the easiest way is to cut the fruit in half (cut it horizontally, NOT through the “belly button” – this makes a difference. See picture) hold it cut side down over a big bowl, then continuously hit it with a wooden spoon until all the little gems are out. It may get a little messy because the juice can splatter, but it’s worth it! The addition of pomegranate seeds adds a lovely sweet and tart note plus a perfectly complementary crunchy aspect.
With the holidays just around the corner (I’m talking Thanksgiving AND Christmas – yes, I’m already excited about Christmas…don’t judge), goodness know we’ll all be indulging a little. I truly believe it’s good for us to indulge a little and eat the delicious foods that we want. Don’t deprive yourself or have a grumpy holiday season because you’re on a diet or something. Eat what you want, but in moderation – take care of your body but enjoy yourself. This matcha chia pudding is perfect for when you want to eat something to make you feel a little less guilty about eating that third serving of stuffing (my favorite!!)
Sorry for all the pictures- it was just too pretty! Enjoy this dish, enjoy the holidays, be grateful and happy, and eat absolutely scrumptious foods! Hugs & kisses and all my best wishes!
- 4 tbsp chia seeds
- 1-1/4 cup milk, non-dairy for vegan option
- 1 tbsp honey (alternative sweetener for vegan option)
- 1 tbsp matcha powder
- Toppings (suggestions: pomegranate seeds, persimmon, greek yogurt, chocolate covered cacao nibs)
- Mix chia seeds, milk, honey and matcha powder. Divide into individual serving dishes. Place in refrigerator for 1 hour, or overnight if possible.
- Finish with desired toppings* (See note).
- *You can top this chia pudding with whatever you'd like. For the greek yogurt, you can add a dollop on top, or you can mix it into the pudding if you'd like.