Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Chia Seeds... not just to grow your chia pet anymore.

I got some ground chia seeds from my friend Emily, and made some chocolate coconut milk chia seed pudding a few months back.  Then, I told my inlaws about chia seeds when we were visiting over Christmas vacation.... and I got a fabulous recipe sent to me by my mother in law that uses chia seeds.  Yay chia seeds.... they're not just to grow a chia pet anymore.  Seriously, who knew? 

So, you have all probably heard how good flax seeds are for health... well chia seeds just may be better!  It is higher in Omega 3's than flax seeds, high in antioxidants, and unlike flax seeds, they don't have to be ground to be used by the body.  They are high in fiber, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, niacin, and zinc.  When added to water, chia gels... this not only makes for a good thickener (makes an EASY addition to pudding, I made chocolate chia seed pudding a few months ago from a recipe and from some ground chia seed that my friend, and food guru, Emily gave me).  Additionally, this gel-ing is said to slow down the process of the digestive enzymes breaking up carbs and converting them to sugar.  

As I said, I got this recipe from my mother in law, who I believe got it from my sister in law.  I love Lara bars, but they're pricey, so I think this is a pretty good alternative!  They are ridiculously easy to make (like pretty much everything I make).  The hardest part is finding some of the ingredients (okay, just the chia seeds).  Can I just say.... I love the Wedge!  Best co-op ever.

Makes 8 bars

1 1/2 cups pitted dates
1/3 cup raw unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup whole chia seeds
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 cup raw slivered almonds or raw shelled pistachios (I used pistachios because I was out of almonds... I would use soaked and dried out almonds to neutralize the phytic acid, but whatever floats your boat)

Place pitted dates in bowl of food processor; puree until thick paste forms. Add cocoa powder, chia seeds, and vanilla and almond extracts. Pulse until all ingredients are combined. Add almonds; pulse until nuts are finely chopped and well distributed through date mixture.
Spread large sheet of wax paper on work surface, and dust with oat flour, if using. Transfer date mixture to wax paper, and use paper to press mixture into 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Wrap tightly, and chill overnight.
Unwrap block and cut into 8 bars. Rewrap each bar in wax paper.

My camera won't take a good picture of them.  *cry*  Oh well, they're yummy, go make them!


  1. Hey we just made these tonight except we had to use chopped dates with sugar on them because even though I can find chia I cannot find pitted dates (we don't have a cub down here). The kids love them and I think if I didn't stop whim brian would ahve eatted them all! Have you found any more recipies using them I was thinking about adding some to my bread tomorrow, I usually add the thick rolled oats and flax seed.

  2. OH we rolled them into balls instead of bars made for a nice little treat to pop in your mouth