Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Cha-cha-cha Chia Jam

I can't wait to share this with you. If you have spent much time on Pinterest in the past few months you have seen a ton of Chia Pudding recipes. I admit I got sucked in. I bought a bag of Chia Seeds and gave it a try. Fail. OK tried again. Fail. One more time. Nope. To be fair, one attempt was was sort of edible but nothing I would incorporate into my life on purpose.

So I had this opened bag of chia seeds in the pantry and after a little Internet search I saw you could also make Chia Jam. All the recipes I found used sugar and I wanted to make a sugar free substitute version... I thought well what's the worst that can happen... it might be an inedible fail... been there, done that...but holy moly... this Chia Jam is actually a WIN! It's sooo flippin' good. I can't wait to experiment with other flavors and fruit combos.

sugarfree weightloss surgery bariatric cooking menus diabetes diabetic healthy sugarfree gastric bypass blog

About Chia Seeds: Cha-cha-cha Chia. Yes, those seeds you used to smear on pottery shapes and grow grassy hair. I know... you are thinking "Michelle, why would I want to eat those?" Well... yeah I'm not sure I had the answer till I made this jam. Chia is an edible seed (salvia hispanica) grown in Mexico that dates back to the Mayan and Aztec cultures. "Chia" means strength and folklore claims they used the tiny seeds as an energy booster. This actually does make sense because they contain a lot of good nutrients... omega-3s, protein, fiber, antioxidants, calcium. The hipsters on Pinterest claim they help you lose weight but the science is iffy on that one. The little seeds swell and suck up liquid big time so the idea I guess is they make you feel fuller. I'm not sure about all of that... I just saw enough pins on Pinterest about that damn Chia Pudding I gave in and bought some. Perhaps one day I will love one of my attempts at that pudding enough to share it but I doubt I'll want to use up my chia seeds in any other way then making this yummy jam!

sugarfree weightloss surgery bariatric cooking menus diabetes diabetic healthy sugarfree gastric bypass blog

Shelly's Berry Good Chia Jam

1 cup Berries (fresh or frozen, if using frozen defrost)
3 Tablespoons Sugar Free Raspberry Torani Syrup
2 1/2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds

sugarfree weightloss surgery bariatric cooking menus diabetes diabetic healthy sugarfree gastric bypass blog

In a small nonstick pot cook the berries (I used fresh raspberries and frozen, defrosted wild Maine blueberries) and syrup over low to medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring and smooshing (is that a word?) the berries till mixture just begins to bubble and the berries have softened.

sugarfree weightloss surgery bariatric cooking menus diabetes diabetic healthy gastric bypass blog

Add the chia seeds. I got mine at Trader Joe's but I put an online link above in the recipe in case you can't find them. Try a health food type store if your local supermarket doesn't carry. Cook and stir about 10 minutes, it will thicken (and thicken more as it cools.)

sugarfree weightloss surgery bariatric cooking menus diabetes diabetic healthy gastric bypass blog

Remove from heat. I poured it into a jelly jar and let it cool on the counter then put the lid on and store it in the fridge for up to a week. You'll eat it long before the week is up.

sugarfree weightloss surgery bariatric cooking menus diabetes diabetic healthy sugarfree gastric bypass blog

It's a great no sugar added topping for Greek yogurt, ricotta or cottage cheese, ricotta pancakes, smeared on a slice of protein cake or a protein muffin, as a protein ice cream topping, stirred in oatmeal (a spoon of powdered peanut butter and a spoon of this jam = PB&J heaven) Pictured above you'll see 4 of my most recent breakfasts.

OK I have to share something that made me giggle because I'm a goober and things like this strike me funny... I'm writing this blog entry with my Spotify 80's music playlist playing in the background and Tears for Fears "Sowing the Seeds of Love" is on ;)

More Eggface Breakfast Ideas

post signature


Anonymous said...

This sounds amazing!

-Denise H.

Anderia Lopez said...

I loved that you used the word goober! Brings back memories of someone special and my happiest days. I can't wait to try this!

Anonymous said...

Love Chia seeds! We will definitely be making this jam for our flax meal muffins in the mornings.

We buy organic Chia at both Costco and SAMs Wholesale. They both sell the same brand, though the bag at SAMs is half the size and slightly more expensive per ounce than at Costco.

And yes, the Chia pudding is great! Just make sure you leave it overnight to set up. We put about a tablespoons of sugar free pudding mix in ours to vary the flavor some. Will love to see your variation on it.


KariLove said...

I also have tried Chia pudding, and the texture really grossed me out. Just can't do it. However...I came across a blog one time that the blogger also had an issue with the texture of Chia pudding and tried something that worked! She ground the seeds up in a coffee grinder BEFORE stirring it into the liquid to make pudding, and it still thickened up nicely! was much more tolerable texture-wise.

I personally haven't tried it yet, but I plan to. She just measured the amount the recipe called for and then ground it in a coffee/spice grinder.

Angie Lingo said...

Chia seeds of Love!!😂 Sounds delicious!!

Dave Pollard said...

Wow, great post on chia seeds. Also a chia pudding fan; we shifted from our B-fast smoothy to chia pudding. I think it tastes great, love the way it thickens stuff up. Can't wait to try your recipe.
Tough love, Dave

Anonymous said...

Sewing the seeds of love. LOL. Reminds me of when I was at the dentist and I heard Comfortably Numb on the radio.

Michelle "Shelly" said...

Perfect LOL!

Kathy L said...

Hi Shelly, I love your blog. I was wondering if you had a reciepe for vanilla protein donuts?

Michelle "Shelly" said...

Thank you :)

You know the problem with Vanilla Donuts is that the other ingredients aren't white so whenever I have made them they weren't quite vanilla anymore... I do have some almond flour right now which is very pale... I'll mess with it this weekend :) (almond flour = blanched almonds ground versus almond meal = almonds with skins on) so it should be less muddy in the final product. Will let you know!

Cynthia M. (NY) said...

You inspired me as I have never had success with chia pudding either. I used Strawberries, (I had like 6 cups) cooked it down with 1/4c lemon juice and stevia and Swerve to taste. Then added 6 TBSP Chia, let it boil 1 minute and then let it sit for 20 minutes or so. Got 4 - 1 cup jars. Going to eat one and freeze the rest. I have made regular jam and this is so much easier... as well as regular jam you can't really make it sugar free...

Diann said...

Shelley, I decided to give a pudding recipe a try. 1C almond milk, 1 scoop *Big Train chai protein powder, 1/4 C chia seeds. Place in jar and shake it up, refrigerate several hours. Topped with SF whipped cream and freshly-grated nutmeg. It was SO delish and couldn't be easier to make! Maybe give chia pudding another chance? I'm going to try banana protein and chocolate protein chia pudding next. :-)