Recipe | Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding
The most challenging thing about working on my cookbook so far has been the photography. I love taking and editing pictures, but I am the worst when it comes to staging them. My biggest issue is that I don’t plan on my props in advance, so when my food is finished, I’m frantically rifling through cabinets and drawers for dishes and linens. And then later when I’m about to publish a post, I realize that I used the same napkin and dish together the week before (here and here). Or even worse, that I staged two photos almost exactly the same way. (I’m way too embarrassed to link to those, but feel free to look through my archives and find them. It’s like a scavenger hunt, but the prize is my humiliation.)

Props for Photo Shoot
When I collaborated on the big vegetarian Thanksgiving menu with Rikki Snyder, she tweeted a photo of some props with post-it notes on them to indicate which recipes she planned to use them with for the shoot. Genius! So I’m stealing her idea to help me eliminate the whole last minute scramble. And then to make sure I don’t use the same linens or plates too many times, I’m keeping track of that in a spreadsheet.

My other issue when it comes to staging is that I completely lack the ability to suspend disbelief. This is why I am no fun at movies. I’m always the one who’s all, “There’s no way you could get superpowers from radiation.” I even look at movie posters and think, “What are they standing there smiling for?” (I am the worst. See? No fun.) When we had to watch West Side Story in junior high, my brain just about exploded. Dancing, singing gangs?! So when I see a photo with a beautiful tarnished spoon, I wonder, “Are they really going to eat dessert with that dirty looking spoon?”

And when I see a jar of blueberry jam that’s overflowing onto a tea towel, I think, “That stain will never come off. That tea towel is ruined!”

And when there’s a mess of flour all over a table, I think, “Who’s going to clean that up?”

And when a piece of fruit is on a beat up piece of barn wood with paint flaking off, I think, “Those paint chips must be full of lead.”

Chia Seeds
The thing is, I love photos like that. Those are my favorite photos! But when it comes to creating scenes like that myself, I just can’t bring myself to do it. I am so practical that art just doesn’t come naturally to me. And when I try to artfully spill ingredients, I feel like it looks like I’ve tried to artfully spill ingredients. I want it to look effortless, but instead it looks effortful. And do you know what a pain it was to scoop up these chia seeds and get them back in the bag?!

This is a lot tougher to tackle than organizing my props in advance, but I’m working on it.

Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding
So what does this have to do with Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding? Nothing, really. But do you really want to read a 5 paragraph post about pudding? (Okay, maybe you don’t want to read a 5 paragraph post about my photo issues either. Fine! You win!) I’ve been making the Chia Seed Pudding recipe from Averie Cooks for a while now and while I love the texture of chia seeds in pudding, I know it’s a little off-putting for some people. Solution? Blend the heck out of the pudding! When you puree chia seed pudding, it’s smooth and creamy, just like traditional pudding. I also added cinnamon and cayenne because why not? It worked for my breakfast shake and it works really well in this pudding too.

Bonus: you can totally have this chia seed pudding for breakfast. Breakfast pudding! We’ll live like kings!

Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

Yield: 2 servings

Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

A rich, creamy dairy-free pudding made with chia seeds.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 c. chia seeds
  • 1 c. unsweetened almond (or other non-dairy) milk
  • 2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup (I used Grade B)
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • pinch of cayenne (optional)

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 8 hours. Transfer mixture to a high-powered blender and blend until completely smooth. If pudding is warm from blending, return to refrigerator until chilled. (Alternately, you can just stir the pudding and eat it without blending.)

Notes

This pudding is thick, almost like a mousse. If you've blended your pudding and decide you want it a little thinner, add some extra milk. Be sure to blend the pudding until completely smooth--if you don't, it will be gritty! A high-powered blender like the Vitamix works best. Any sweetener you like will work in this, and if 1 tablespoon isn't sweet enough, feel free to add more.

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Kiersten Frase

About Kiersten

Kiersten is the founder and head writer of Oh My Veggies. She lives just outside of Raleigh with her husband and their 4 wonky-eyed rescue cats.   Read more from Kiersten →

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Comments

  1. says

    Wow this is delicious! I love the thick mousse texture. I didn’t add cayenne but I might next time.

    Has anyone given this to their kids? I don’t have any kids but I think this would make a great natural alternative to store bought pudding. Would be fun to put into a child’s lunchbox in snack sized containers!

  2. Laura says

    I laughed through this entire post! I totally relate to being too practical for my own good. :) I just found your awesome blog yesterday and have already pinned, like, a jzillion of your recipes. Most look so easy. I’m newly vegan, and this will be the first vegan dessert recipe I ever make. I have everything needed in my house right now! Thanks for a wonderful blog. I’ll be back to let you know how this dessert was for me.

    • Kiersten Frase says

      I hope you like it! If you don’t have a high speed blender, you can skip the blending part. :) Then it’s kind of like tapioca pudding. Oh, and thanks for the pins!

  3. denisa says

    Hi, I am really glad I came across your blog! I am a newbie in vegetarian/vegan field and I am really looking forward to doable recipes.
    Thank you

  4. says

    haha this is great! I can totally relate to running around the kitchen and dirtying multiple bowls only to use the same one as last time :) This looks like a great recipe and can’t wait to give it a try. yum!

    Kate

  5. Amanda says

    FYI – for anyone who tries this and thinks its’ going to look like the picture ….a nice, smooth consistency – it wont. UNLESS you have a Vitamix – I don’t and started with the food processor, then the blender, then the hand blender – nothing…just little bits of chia seeds which is not what I was going for.

    • Kiersten Frase says

      I haven’t tried it with ground chia seeds myself, so I can’t say for sure. I think it would depend on how finely ground they are. If they’re very finely ground, it should work just fine. If not, the pudding might be a little gritty.

  6. says

    I used a Nutribullet. It came out slightly gritty, but not too bad. It was a little more like a smoothie, so I drank it with a straw. We just roll with those sorta things around here.

    It all started last night when I decided to see what chia seeds soaked in almond milk would look and taste like. After examining the results this morning, I decided to find a recipe on Pinterest to further the experiment. Your recipe sounded interesting and yummy, and I guesstimated that I’d used about that much chia seeds and that much almond milk. All in all, the experiment worked nicely, with some tweaking (lots more maple syrup and a little more almond milk.)

    I tried it with the cayenne. I might have added a little more than a pinch… ^_^

  7. says

    OMG, I just run into this post (and your beautiful blog) on Pinterest. I started reading this and I felt like I had written this in my dream or something. It exact description of me, not preparing the stages, running around the kitchen to find just right spoon or plate, and then be so hesitant to spread food all over the table etc… Wow I’m not alone, and thanks for sharing that!

    Oh and I just made chia pudding the other day. I also “effortlessly” sprinkled chia seeds on the table for pictures, then vacuumed everything, thinking what a waste! Haha

    • Kiersten Frase says

      Nope, you are definitely not alone! :) I always admire the photos with ingredients artfully spilled all over the table, but I can’t bear to throw things away, so I never do it!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      I just blend it until it’s smooth–I start it at the lowest speed and slowly work my way up to high. It won’t separate; I’ve kept it for a day and it will thicken a little, but it’s fine other than that.

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