Tropical Chia Pudding (and homemade cashew milk)


I’ve been a fan of chia pudding for a while now– in fact I did a post on it several years ago–but I recently discovered an amazing secret to make this recipe fool-proof: mason jars. Before, ensuring that the chia seeds would absorb the milk evenly and not clump required constant vigilance, a wayward stirring technique with a fork, and crossing my fingers. By using a jar, you only need to mix the mixture once, and then shake the jar every once in a while. It also functions as a transportable and fun dish for the pudding.

In general, I like to keep it seasonal and local, so tropical fruit may seem a bit out of left field. But here’s my thought process: other than apples leftover from the fall, seasonal fruit in the winter is sparse. If I’m eating fruit, chances are it’s not local anyway, so why not enjoy some of the fruits I normally don’t buy during the summer, when my kitchen is overflowing with local fruit and berries?

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Tropical Chia Pudding

Makes two 1-cup servings
Servings 2 cups
Total Time 15 mins
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 2 cups homemade cashew milk, see recipe below or milk of your choice
  • 1/2 kiwi, diced
  • 3 strawberries, diced
  • 1/4 cup mango compote, see recipe below
  • sweetener of your choice, I used about a packet of stevia for one serving; my guess is that most people would want a teaspoon or two of honey, etc.

How to Cut a Kiwi:

  • Cut off ends so kiwi can stand up straight. With a knife (large or small), peel the kiwi in a smooth motion.
  • Lay the kiwi horizontally and slice into rounds. and then dice these rounds.

Make the Chia Pudding:

  • Put chia seeds and milk in a jar or tightly closed container. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds, then open and stir well with a fork. Put jar in fridge for several hours or overnight. If possible, shake again after an hour or two; although this step isn't necessary, it will help to prevent clumping. The pudding is ready when it's thick and the chia seeds have become larger, gray and soft.

Assemble & Eat:

  • Top pudding with fruit and eat immediately. The chia pudding will last about 3-4 days in the fridge; for the freshest flavor, top with the fruit right before you eat it.
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Homemade Cashew Milk

Since making nut milk last time on the blog, I’ve bought a nut milk bag. It’s made this process SO much easier. If you’re into nut milk at all, it’s a $8 well-spent (you can buy it right on Amazon).
Servings 4 cups
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • approximately 4 cups of water
  • 1-2 pitted dates
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch sea salt
  • pinch cinnamon
  • Soak cashews in water for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
  • Blend cashews with all remaining ingredients, but start with 3 cups of water. Check the consistency of the milk, and then add more water as needed. It’s much easier to add more water to thin out the milk, than to realize you added too much water.
  • Strain milk with a nut milk bag or with a cheesecloth and strainer. See my previous post on nut milk for detailed directions.
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Mango Compote

I practically lived off this mango compote during college- I was lucky enough that we served it at the cafe (okay lucky may be the wrong word, since I was the head chef of the cafe and created the menu!). I’d have this mango compote over greek yogurt as a snack every day. It’s so delicious.
Servings 1 cup
  • 1 1- pound bag frozen mango
  • sweetener to taste, I recommend about 1-2 tablespoons of agave or honey
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over low to medium heat. Stir frequently and cook until the mango has broken down a bit, about 30 minutes. The mixture will thicken as it cools.
  • Once the mixture is cool, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to nine days or in the freezer for up to two months.
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