Yesterday on my Starting From Soil Instagram I promised everyone my chocolate chia seed pudding recipe, so here it is! By the way if you are not following me on Insta yet you should be 😉 I love Chia seeds in general because of their cost efficiency. A small amount goes a long way and the shelf life is 4-5 years, plus, they are so versatile! You can throw them right into smoothies and jams, toss them in when making energy bars or cookies for added protein, and can be used as an egg replacement— along with flax— when baking. But one thing I would like to advise is, if you consume chia seeds unsoaked make sure to drink plenty of water. Chia seeds can absorb 10-12x their weight and can absorb that water from you during the digestion period. But I think it is safe to say we all probably need to drink a little more water anyway! But don’t let that turn you off, these seeds are a modern day super food! Chia seeds are derived from the Salvia Hispanica plant native to South America. They might be little, but are packed with antioxidants and loaded with fiber, protein, healthy fats (Omega 3), that is just to name a few of their benefits.
I have fallen in love with chia pudding lately because of all the fun preparations. You can dress it up with fruit and granola and eat it for breakfast or drizzle it with chocolate and enjoy it for dessert!
2 tablespoons of chia seeds
2 teaspoons raw cocao powder
4 heaping teaspoons of unsweetened shredded coconut
Dash of cinnamon
Dash of sea salt
1/8 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of maple syrup (if you like it sweet double this)
2 heaping teaspoons of almond butter
1 1/4 non dairy milk
Mix all ingredients up very well
Refrigerate over night
Enjoy! Don’t be scared to jazz this pudding up to your liking! I love adding bananas, strawberries and blueberries to it with more coconut flakes. I also love drizzling extra almond butter or maple syrup over the top!
This recipe fills up a 12 oz jar. It is enough for 2 breakfasts for me if I top it will fruit!
It is not too good to be true, I promise! My family loves soup, in fact, I could probably eat soup everyday, so this hack has really helped me in many ways… Saves me money, I have broth made from fresh organic ingredients with no preservatives and helps food waste and reduces trash.
All you need is a gallon sized freezer bag, preferably reusable. I got mine from Blue Avocado or a Tupperware you are willing to keep in your freezer to reuse will work just fine as well. Next, your vegetable scraps, stems and ends! Yup, that is it. Every time you are in the kitchen prepping your dinner take out your freezer bag and add your carrot peels, celery ends, onion and garlic skins, and herb stems to it then, put your bag back in the freezer until it is full. When you’re all full it is time to add soup to your weekly meal plan. Add the contents of your bag to a stock pot with about 10 cups of water with some salt & pepper maybe a bay leaf and a sprinkle of turmeric. Simmer for about an hour and let cool, strain out you vegetable scraps and you will have enough broth for a big pot of soup and then some! Leftover broth is good in the fridge for about a week, or you can choose to freeze your broth as well for future recipes, if you do this remember to leave room in your container for the broth to expand when it reaches its freezing point. Also, I may have only listed a couple vegetables to add to your freezer bag, those were just examples, don’t limit yourself! You can also add things like mushroom stems/ends or even insides of peppers, fennel tops. Really anything you think will maximize the flavor of your broth.
Side note: This life saver hack is not my own. This is a tip I got from my Thug Kitchen cookbook years back, and I feel it needs to be shared. If you are looking to introduce more plant based recipes into your diet this cook book is awesome and hilarious. The amount of money I saved on not having to purchase broth paid for the book in about 2 months (like I said we like soup)
Reusable gallon sized freezer bag
A teaspoon of Salt and Pepper
A bay leaf, a sprinkle turmeric and/or garlic powder if you have it
Collect enough vegetable ends, peels, stems to fill a gallon bag
My entire life I had been limiting myself to the florets of the broccoli, until one day about three years ago I was walking through Trader Joe’s and saw a bag of broccoli slaw. I stood there for a moment and just stared with a big, bright lightbulb floating over my head…I was thinking, “wow, I can make that myself!” I felt enlighten and foolish all at the same time. I realized how much food I had been wasting all these years.
Both the Florets and the stalks have equal amounts of vitamin C, potassium, B vitamins, calcium and iron. The stalks actually being a little bit higher in fiber, stated on the University of Berkeley’s wellness site. But both having a tad bit different consistencies. Towards the end of the stalk, it seems to get a little bit tougher and stringier, so I always just cut a little bit off the bottom before hand.
I have two favorite ways to prepare the stalks. One way is to throw it in my food processor and pulse into smaller pieces to make broccoli rice. You can even toss some cauliflower in there and make a rice blend. The other is to shred the stalks to throw in a salad or slaw.
(left) Broccoli rice (right) Broccoli slaw
Check my next blog post for a this fresh and delicious broccoli slaw recipe!
Golden milk is such a soothing way to start or finish your day. This creamy beverage is enjoyed warm and made with beneficial spices. Turmeric, being the golden in the milk is a cancer fighter, anti-inflammatory and anti depressant. Cinnamon, has a high source of antioxidants, fights infections, viruses, and helps ward off common allergies. Nutmeg, boosts digestive health and helps with indigestion relief. It has been used in ancient Chinese medicine for a number of years as a pain reliever and sleep aid. Lastly, raw honey (leave out if you are vegan) is antibacterial, anti fungal, antiseptic, helps with sore throat, and irritation. There are many more benefits where that came from but I thought I would spare you a little and just get to this health bomb of a drink already…
In a small saucepan, slowly warm up your non-dairy milk, preferably coconut or almond. Stir in the turmeric, cinnamon, nutmeg and honey. If vegan opt for either unsweetened or add maple syrup. Whisk all ingredients together on low heat until warm enough to your liking, pour and enjoy. This recipe serves one.
Who doesn’t like chips? I don’t know a single person that does not love them. Unfortunately most brands of chips are unhealthy and let’s be honest here, you are paying for a lot of air in that bag. So lets talk about healthy, cheap, and delicious chips.
I made a stew that called for peeled sweet and russet potatoes. So, I peeled my potatoes and made my stew. But I was not going to throw out my peels, no way! The skin of the potato has more nutrients than the interior itself and is loaded with fiber and potassium. This recipe is a simple, awesome snack time treat and is almost free because you were probably going to throw your skins out anyway. This little trick helps reduce food waste and since these chips aren’t coming from a bag, you’ll be saving space in your trash can.
Rinse, then dry your skins, drizzle with a little bit of avocado or coconut oil, sprinkle with sea salt and bake on 400 for 15-20 mins depending on your preference of crispness. You can even get adventurous if you like and sprinkle some cumin or paprika for extra flavor.
Lets start the day off right with this banana, almond, spirulina shake! This is one of my favorites, being that it is delicious and filling. I personally feel so much better replacing breakfast with a smoothie, juice, or shake the morning after having a big or filling dinner. By replacing breakfast with a shake you are lessening the demands on your digestive system and allowing your body to continue to breakdown last nights food rather than immediately giving it a new job.
In this shake I will be using homemade almond milk, just 3 ingredients that I will supply a recipe for later this week, so keep your eye out! You can use any almond milk though, unsweetened recommended. Along with a handful of almonds, 1 banana, drop of vanilla, pinch of salt, dash of nutmeg and cinnamon and lastly spirulina and 4 ice cubes.
The banana gives this shake a creamy texture and the almonds are loaded with healthy unsaturated fats and high quality protein to keep you full until lunchtime. But the real star ingredient here with many benefits is the spirulina! Adding this to your smoothies and shakes will give you that extra energy boost to get you through the day, help detoxify heavy metals, aids in weight loss among many other things like being rich in vitamins, minerals and protein. But lets get to that shake!
1 cup almond milk
1 handful of almonds
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg
Dash of salt
1 teaspoon of spirulina
4 to 5 ice cubes
This makes a little over 2 cups and organic ingredients are always recommended. If you want to learn more about spirulina I will add a link below.