Devon O'Brien

Pictured recipe: Cocoa-Chia Pudding with Raspberries

As a mason jar breakfast lover who often gets into ruts of eating the same thing every day, chia seed pudding is saving my life. So what is chia seed pudding anyway? It's ...

1. Crazy easy to make- just a mix of chia seeds and nut milk, soaked overnight to turn into a creamy pudding sort of like tapioca pudding, no cooking necessary.

2. Not actually pudding, despite its name. It's more reminiscent of a healthy parfait similar to fruit and yogurt or overnight oats (my breakfast go-tos, until now!).

3. A surprising mix of textures from the creamy chia pearls that offer a surprising crunch from the seed at the end.

4. Perfectly portable-just layer it up in a mason jar in the morning for a packable breakfast or snack for work.

Follow these simple steps to see just how easy it is to make delicious breakfast combos of your own.

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Pictured recipe: Blueberry Almond Chia Pudding

Step 1: Ch-ch-ch-chia!

You can't have chia pudding without chia seeds. One serving starts with just 2 tablespoons of seeds, so don't let the cost turn you away-that bag of chia will go far. Plus, this superfood packs in 3 more grams of fiber and 4 more grams of healthy omega-3 fats per serving than oatmeal.

Related: The Best Breakfast Foods for Weight Loss

Pictured recipe: Apple Cinnamon Chia Pudding

Step 2: Liquid

This is where the true beauty of chia pudding comes in-it fits into most diets. If you're vegan or dairy-free you can use nut milk, if you have a nut allergy you can use rice or soy milk and if you are a dairy-loving freak like me, you can use dairy milk and even a little bit of yogurt. Really 1/2 cup of any liquid should do the trick. Just be aware that some milks set up more than others due to varying protein and fat content, so add a little more or a little less milk to achieve the texture you like best. These are our favorites:

  • unsweetened almond milk
  • unsweetened coconut milk
  • unsweetened cashew milk

Pictured recipe: Chai Chia Pudding

Step 3: Flavor up!

If chia pudding becomes your new go-to grab-&-go breakfast, don't be afraid to get away from the same old, same old. It's so easy to add a little bit of sweet and spice to your milk and chia mixture for an ultra-flavorful pudding. Sweeten things up with just 2 teaspoons of the following:

  • pure maple syrup
  • honey
  • sugar
  • brown sugar
  • jam

To take the flavor punch to the next level, add up to 1 teaspoon of one of these boosters:

  • vanilla extract
  • almond extract
  • coconut extract
  • cocoa powder
  • ground cinnamon
  • ground cardamom

Stir this combo together in a bowl, then pop it in the fridge overnight. In as little as 8 hours, your chia pudding will be thick, creamy and ready for topping.

Pictured recipe: Mango Coconut Chia Pudding

Step 4: Top it off!

After soaking, chia seeds make a pudding with a dynamic creamy texture. Now, add some toppings to create even more delicious flavor and add heft for a satisfying breakfast or snack. Mix up the soaked mixture and layer it-in a jar (to take on the go!) or in a bowl-with chopped fruit, to sweeten up the mixture even more without extra added sugars, and a sprinkle of toasted chopped nuts for crunch and a little extra protein. Mix and match 1/2 cup of fruit, such as:

  • raspberries
  • blueberries
  • blackberries
  • sliced banana
  • diced apple
  • diced mango

And try 1 tablespoon of nuts, like these:

  • sliced almonds
  • chopped pistachios
  • chopped pecans
  • flaked coconut

Video: How to Make Chia Pudding 4 Ways

Related: The Only Overnight Oats Recipe You Need