Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Lori's Snickerdoodle Chia Pudding (Dairy-free)

Yesterday was a good day for me.  I started out working on a post for another blog I write along with my husband, Chuck.  (The post is not up, yet, because Chuck is adding to it.)  Then, I took Moriah to see Alice in Wonderland.  She has been waiting to see it for such a long time.  She really enjoyed her time with Mommy, and the movie was great, too.  I rested for awhile after getting back home (Eating movie theater popcorn and drinking soda does not agree with me.) then I heated up some leftover Taco Soup, added some cooked long grain brown rice and tortilla chips, and voila!  Dinner was served.  Then Elijah and I headed out to go shopping for baseball stuff.  He needed cleats, a new water bottle, and some other things.  (I am thinking of stopping at Wegman's today to pick up some coconut water, the best sports drink around, so he will have something good to drink after practice tonight.)

When I got home with Elijah last night, I decided to try making some pudding.  I have been working on pudding recipes for a few days, trying to come up with the absolutely perfect dairy-free chocolate pudding recipe ever.  I am still working on it, but I have had enough chocolate pudding for now and thought something else might be refreshing.  I have been following a recipe blog the last few months, and I noticed that the blog's owner, Averie, does a lot of dairy-free pudding recipes of her own that look quite interesting.  I had heard chia seeds were very good for you and purchased some back in January.  One of my goals for this year was to try cooking with them.  They have been sitting in my cabinet for months, waiting to be tried.  (I said they look interesting, not exactly appetizing.)

However, I kept reading peoples' reviews of Averie's puddings and decided I just had to try my own.  Thus, my Snickerdoodle Chia Pudding recipe was born.  It's very similar to Averie's basic recipe, but I used honey and cinnamon.  My family loves cinnamon, so this was really refreshing to us.  I don't normally share recipes so soon after trying them, however my picky boys both tried my pudding and absolutely loved it, asking for some more in the morning.  I decided to make everyone their own bowl of it for this morning.  Pudding for breakfast?  Maybe...if it's chia pudding!

Lori's Snickerdoodle Chia Pudding
2 Tbs. chia seeds
1/2 c. sweetened vanilla almond milk*
1 Tbs. honey, to taste
vanilla flavored stevia, to taste
1/2 t. vanilla
1/4 - 1/2 t. cinnamon, to taste (1/2 t. was too much for kiddos' tastes.  They prefer closer to 1/4 t, though 
                  I liked 1/2 t.)

Mix all of the ingredients together using a whisk to incorporate everything completely.  Let it sit for 1/2 hour on your counter, then stir it again, cover, and put it in your fridge to finish thickening up and get cold.

*Sometimes I add an extra tablespoon or two of almond milk.  It provides a "softer set" pudding than this recipe normally makes.  You can use unsweetened almond milk and then just use vanilla stevia to sweeten, if you desire.  Also, to make this raw you can substitute any homemade nut milk you would like.

You can eat the pudding after 1/2 hour on your counter, but it will thicken even more if you give it some more time in your fridge.  I ate my first batch about 1 1/2 hours after mixing it up.  This recipe is for 1 person.  I bought some of those little Pyrex bowls with the plastic lids just for the purpose of making individual pudding cups for everyone, since making pudding seems to be my thing right now.  They're perfect.

I didn't have any stevia for this recipe (I accidentally left it at my sister's house last month.), so I made it with  honey.  It was great.  I will be picking up some more vanilla-flavored stevia today, so when I make this pudding in the future, I will use 1 Tbs. honey, 1/4 - 1/2 t. cinnamon, and some vanilla stevia to sweeten it even a little bit more.  Then it will be perfect for us.  If you don't have stevia, you can just use honey and maybe add a little more than what the recipe calls for, according to your taste.

Click here and here for some more information on chia seeds and some extra recipes.

So what about you?  Do you have a favorite flavor for pudding?  A favorite dairy-free pudding recipe to share?


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