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10 ways to use chia seeds in foods

Published: Thursday, June 5, 2014 11:01 a.m. CST • Updated: Friday, June 6, 2014 11:47 a.m. CST

Chia seeds are all the rage these days and with good reason. These seeds are a powerhouse of nutrition. Four grams of fiber are found in every tablespoon of chia seeds.

Fiber may be beneficial in blood glucose control, weight management, digestive health, cancer prevention and heart health.

Most of us think of fish when we hear omega-3 fats; however, chia seeds are also a very good source of these fats.

Omega-3 fats are good fats and may be important to brain health as well as heart health. Besides being a source of fiber and omega-3 fats, chia is a good source of antioxidants.

The next time you are looking to include chia in a meal, look no further than this list of 10 great ideas. Here are 10 great ways to use chia:

• Smoothies or Yogurt - Add 1 tablespoon of chia to your favorite smoothie or yogurt

• Pudding - Make a delicious pudding using chia and milk or milk alternative

• Baked Goods - Add some chia to the recipe

• Egg Substitute - Soak 1 tablespoon of chia seeds with 1/4 cup of water to replace 1 egg in a recipe

• Grilling Meats - Add chia seeds to BBQ sauce to thicken

• Breading - Mix chia seeds with panko or breadcrumbs to add fiber

• Pancakes and Waffles - Add chia seeds to the mix

• Soups - Chia seeds make an excellent thickener for soups

• Hot cereals - Top your favorite hot cereal or make a refrigerator oatmeal

• Tomato Juice - Add to tomato or vegetable juice to boost the fiber

Triple Berry

Chia Pudding

1 cup unsweetened almond-coconut milk beverage, such as Almond Breeze

2 tablespoons chia seeds

3/4 cup fresh blueberries, blackberries and raspberries

5 to 6 drops liquid stevia or sugar or honey to taste

Combine the almond-coconut milk with the chia seeds and fruit in a glass jar with a lid. Cover and shake well; set aside for 15 minutes. Give it another good shake. Refrigerate overnight or at least 5 to 6 hours. Serves two.

Nutrition facts per serving: 110 calories, 5g fat, 65mg sodium, 16g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 9g sugar, 3g protein.

Fruity Refrigerator Oatmeal

1/2 cup old-fashioned oats

1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

1/2 cup skim milk

1 tablespoon chia seeds

1/2 cup fresh or frozen fruit

Add oats, yogurt, milk and chia seeds to a pint-sized Mason jar or 2-cup storage container with plastic lid.  Stir ingredients together. Top with fruit.

Cover and let stand in refrigerator overnight. Serve cold. Serves one.

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