My toddler and I are addicted to this delicious chia pudding by Urban Remedy. It’s called the “Chia Parfait,” and it costs $7 because this is the Bay Area, and a cup of rehydrated seeds with 4 raspberries on top costs $7 here.
After spending $14 on puddings that my 2-year-old and I literally inhaled in 30 seconds, it dawned on me that I really needed to learn how to make my own pudding for $2.
Chia, as it turns out, has a ton of health benefits that are especially relevant for pregnant and nursing moms. It’s very high in dietary fiber (pregnancy constipation is the WORST), contains essential fatty acids for developing your baby’s brain, and is an awesome source of calcium. Calcium is especially essential in the third trimester, as the baby’s skeleton hardens. If you aren’t getting enough calcium in your diet, the baby will start leaching it from your bones. Because pregnancy is, in fact, kind of a horror movie taking place in your body.
Anyway, I was all-in on this chia pudding thing, especially since it was so unexpectedly toddler-friendly. So of course, I scrutinized the label of the $7 Urban Remedy version I wanted to copy:
The first thing that jumped out at me was the 17 grams of sugar. That is WAY too much sugar, in my humble opinion. Since the parfait contains a scant 4 raspberries on top, my guess is that almost all of that sugar is added sugar. You’re only supposed to have 25 grams (or about 6 teaspoons) of added sugar per day, meaning this parfait would meet over 65% of that threshold. I thought I could definitely do better.
Next, I researched chia pudding recipes online (this one was a good starting point, though it had more sweetener than I liked) and saw what other people were doing (including Urban Remedy’s own recipe for a fancier parfait, which required a gel starter, and thus was more labor intensive than what I was willing to do). After a couple of attempts, here’s what I came up with.
$7 Hipster Chia Pudding Recipe
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cashew milk
- 1 teaspoon coconut sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract or flavoring (alcohol-free preferred*)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (a bit less if using Vietnamese cinnamon)
- Dash of sea salt
- 3 tablespoons chia seeds
- Generous handful of raspberries, blueberries, and/or sliced strawberries
*I personally don’t like the taste of uncooked vanilla extract because of the alcohol aftertaste, so recommend using an alcohol-free version if you can find it. Or, if you’re feeling really fancy, using real vanilla bean (but that likely would push each serving to more than $2, which was my personal budget).
1. Pour milk into a jar (8oz capacity or greater).
2. Add coconut sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and sea salt, and stir with a fork until the sugar is pretty well dissolved.
3. Add chia seeds, and stir with fork.
4. Wait 2 minutes.
5. Stir again until chia seeds are well distributed and there are no visible clumps sticking to the sides or bottom of the jar. This is VERY IMPORTANT, so take your time. No one likes a clumpy pudding.
6. Refrigerate overnight, or at least 4 hours.
7. Top with berries and serve! Feel great about life, and hopeful for future bowel movements.
These will stay good for 5 days in the fridge. I make a batch of 5-6 jars at a time, and they last for maybe 2 days, max, because everyone in my house is a food monster.
TLDR; This chia pudding recipe is REALLY healthy.
You can make it even healthier by omitting the coconut sugar, and relying only on the berries for sweetness. I like my pudding with just a touch of sweetness, and found that 1 teaspoon of sugar was exactly enough. This recipe has 5 grams of sugar compared to 17 grams in the Urban Remedy version.
A single serving is 225 calories, and contains 58% of your daily calcium needs, 66% of your daily fiber, 38% of your daily iron, and 10 grams of protein.