By Elizabeth Karmel, Associated Press
Everyone I know is looking for a quick breakfast that is loaded with healthy ingredients and great taste. A few years ago, when the chia seed became popular for something besides the “Chia Pet,” I started to experiment with them.
Chia seeds are tiny little powerhouses of fiber, protein and Omega-3 fatty acids that become swollen and gelatinous when you add them to liquid.
I made lots of different “pudding” concoctions, and my favorite is this Pumpkin Chia Breakfast Pudding. Pumpkin is low in calories and loaded with vitamins and fiber. More importantly, it tastes great, especially with the addition of our much-loved pumpkin spice mixture of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves. I make this pudding with hazelnut milk and vanilla Greek yogurt, making it a high-protein dish. If you can’t find hazelnut milk, you can use any unsweetened nut milk. The extra yogurt gives the pudding added body so it doesn’t taste watery. It’s sweetened with maple syrup, the perfect pairing for the pumpkin and spices.
Serve the pumpkin pudding with your favorite fresh fruit, crunchy green pumpkin seeds and a drizzle of maple syrup for a happy awakening.
PUMPKIN CHIA BREAKFAST PUDDING
Start to finish: 5 minutes
1 cup hazelnut or other unsweetened nut milk
1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
¼ cup maple syrup
1 cup chia seeds
1/2 15-ounce can of Farmer’s Market organic pumpkin pie mix with all the spices or 8-ounce of pumpkin puree and 1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice.
Mix all ingredients well. Refrigerate in a closed container overnight. Will keep in the refrigerator for a week.
Placed ½ cup of pudding in a bowl. Garnish as desired with a dollop of yogurt, a tablespoon of pumpkin seeds for crunch, a drizzle of maple syrup and your favorite fruit for serving.
Nutrition information per serving: 190 calories; 103 calories from fat; 11 g fat (2 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 3 mg cholesterol; 119 mg sodium; 19 g carbohydrate; 13 g fiber; 5 g sugar; 9 g protein.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Elizabeth Karmel is a barbecue and Southern foods expert. She is the chef and pit master at online retailer CarolinaCueToGo.com and the author of three books, including “Taming the Flame.”