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Chia Seed Tea

Yep, chia seeds as in ch-ch-ch-chia pets. They are incredibly nutritious…and oddly delightful. My friend Kipp encouraged me to post this recipe – it’s so simple that I hadn’t even considered sharing it. But if you’re not familiar with chia seed, this is a great way to get started with them.

Some things you might like to know about chia seeds:

They were a staple of the Aztec and Mayan diets and even had ceremonial significance, so when the Spanish arrived on the scene they banned chia plants as one way to control the indigenous peoples.

One tablespoon is only 60 calories and contains 16% of your daily fiber. It also has 150% of your Omega-3 and is higher in antioxidant activity than blueberries. (Nutrition facts from Spectrum brand – the one I recommend and you can find at Whole Foods for $6 to $8 per bag.)

Chia seeds are about the same size as poppy seeds and have the wonderfully weird property of absorbing liquid into little bubbles surrounding them, turning into tapioca-like balls. They don’t have much flavor on their own, a little bit nutty.

They will absorb most liquids (for some reason not the coconut water I tried last week…?) so you can make puddings with them, for example. They serve as a thickening agent in this wonderful vegan gravy. And you can sometimes find them in kombucha, etc.

But this tea is the way I use them most often because it’s so easy. Here’s the recipe:

  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 cup freshly brewed tea, any flavor you like

Let the tea cool so it’s not super-hot, and it’s best to whisk in the chia seeds for a minute so they don’t clump together but get evenly distributed.

This ratio of 1 tbsp to 1 cup yields a pretty thick viscosity, so adjust to your liking. I drink 2 cups for breakfast most morning, which is fairly filling. I’ll make a couple days’ worth at a time and refrigerate.

That’s it! Hope you enjoy, and please share any chia recipes you love so I can try new ways to use these crazy little seeds!