I had another recipe planned to share with you this week. But strawberries are everywhere now, sweet, juicy and delicious. And I couldn’t allow another week to pass by without celebrating them, especially once I made this pudding for breakfast and decided it was too good not to share.
If you're a fan of my Smashed Blackberry Chia Pudding or the Chocolate Hemp Chia Pudding, you'll love this springtime version. It has all the characteristics we crave in a breakfast as we welcome in spring and start shedding our winter-induced habits; it's creamy, light but filling, and bursting with the bright, happy flavors of strawberry, vanilla, and lemon. The fresh strawberry flavor permeates every bite. I blend together strawberries, vanilla, coconut yogurt, a date, and almond milk to make a strawberry milk (this stuff is good enough to drink on its own!) that is then mixed with the chia seeds. I love using coconut yogurt for the "cream". (And yes, this really does taste like a delicious strawberry shortcake!) And because chia seeds are such digestive superstars, I prefer not to pair them with dairy, which is not always as friendly to our digestion. But if you can't find coconut yogurt, see recipe notes below for alternatives.
Creating Good Habits that Stick: Anticipate Your Needs
So much of the work I do as a Health Coach is centered around habit formation - helping clients create new habits that stick. I work with well-intentioned women who have a vision for the healthy diet and lifestyle they'd like to lead. But they want support turning their intentions into actions, habits, and a nourishing lifestyle. One helpful step we take together is anticipating their needs. If you know you generally have rushed weekday mornings or no time to prepare healthy snacks once the week gets started, why not prep ahead on the weekend? Instead of getting stuck wishing you had something other than that coffee shop muffin or office candy basket, slot in time on your calendar (literally, schedule it in!) to prep a few things in advance that you can grab last minute as you head out the door. This chia pudding is a perfect solution. You can even double or quadruple the recipe and store in individual glass jars to get you through several days.
This pudding has been a bright spot in my day, reminding me spring is here even when the cold, rainy days settle back in. I hope it becomes a bright spot in your day soon too!
Strawberry Shortcake Chia Pudding
Serves 1 light breakfast, 2 light snacks, or 2-3 desserts*
Notes: If you can't find coconut yogurt and you want to keep this vegan, leave it out and substitute coconut milk for the plant milk to bring in more richness. Otherwise if you eat dairy, natural Greek yogurt should work. I haven't tried it, but you might need to adjust the sweetness since it's much tangier than coconut yogurt.
- 4 Tbsp. chia seeds
- 6-8 strawberries, depending on size (plus more for topping)
- 3/4 cup (180 ml) almond milk (or other plant milk)
- 1-2 soft dates, pitted (or 1/2 Tbsp. maple syrup)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract (or paste/powder)
- 2 Tbsp. coconut yogurt (plus more for topping)
- Squeeze of lemon
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- Toppings: Chopped strawberries + coconut yogurt
- The night before, assemble the pudding. Add chia seeds to a glass jar or bowl. Set aside. Add strawberries and next six ingredients (through salt) to a blender and blend until smooth. Taste and adjust sweetness if needed.
- Pour strawberry milk into jar with chia seeds and stir well, making sure to break up any clumps of chia seeds. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- In the morning remove from the fridge in advance to take the chill off. Top with more chopped strawberries and a dollop of coconut yogurt.
*Dessert option: To make this extra special, and to mimic strawberry shortcake even more, consider crumbling over crushed amaretti cookies or a coconut and cashew granola. Yum!