This healthy chocolate chia pudding is a rich, chocolatey dessert made with almond milk. You’ll love how easy chocolate chia seed pudding is to make. This healthy dessert tastes even better with the right toppings, like vegan chocolate syrup, chopped nuts, granola, and fruit.
What You Need
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.
- Lemon — We’ll use both the zest and the juice of the lemon.
- Oats — I used rolled oats for this recipe, but you can substitute instant oats.
- Chia — We’ll add some ground chia seeds to create a thicker texture. You can use whole chia seeds; I just prefer ground because it creates a smoother finished texture.
- Syrup — I used maple syrup, but you can substitute agave nectar.
- Milk — We’ll use almond milk for the best overnight oats! Substitute your favorite plant-based milk.
- Yogurt — I love adding some plant-based yogurt (plain, unsweetened) for an even more tangy flavor.
- Protein Powder — I add some vanilla protein powder for increased flavor and nutrients. If your protein powder is not sweetened, you may want to add an extra teaspoon or two of sweetener.
- Cornstarch — We’ll use cornstarch to thicken the lemon curd topping.
- Turmeric — A pinch of turmeric makes that lemon curd sunny yellow.
- Cocoa powder
- Plant-based Milk — I use either unsweetened almond milk or soy milk.
- Chia seeds — I buy these in bulk along with other vegan products at Costco.
- Dates — I use Medjool dates, and I buy them at Costco too.
- Vanilla extract
How to Make Chocolate Chia Pudding
Wondering how to make chia seed pudding? You’ll be tickled pink to see how easy it is.
- Mix ingredients in a food processor bowl and pulse until smooth.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour or up to 8 hours. If you prefer a firmer pudding, refrigerate overnight.
- Serve with chopped dark chocolate chips, granola, or almond slivers.
If your dates are not soft, you can microwave them for about 15 to 30 seconds to soften them.
Smooth Chia Pudding
You’ll see in the photos that the chia seeds are still prevalent in this recipe. However, you can make this into a completely smooth chia pudding. Here’s how it works:
- Place all the ingredients together in a sealable container. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour or up to overnight. This softens the chia seeds which is what we want.
- Once the ingredients are adequately soaked, put them in a food processor or high-speed blender. Pulse until smooth and creamy, stopping to press down ingredients from the sides of the blender or food processor as necessary.
- If the ingredients are chilled enough, you can proceed to serve right away. Sometimes the processing can “heat up” the ingredients so you can transfer it to the fridge for a few minutes before serving.
Working with Chia Seeds
A few chia seeds won’t turn this into a delicious pudding. It takes a certain ratio of seeds to liquid to create the best pudding. Once you’ve gone full pudding, you’ll find that chia seed nirvana. And then you might become hooked, just like me.
The same is true when it comes to making chia eggs. Interestingly enough, chia is a great egg substitute. I use a chia egg often when making things like cookies.
Anyway, chia seeds turn out to have a lot of what’s healthy for us. I mean, it makes sense. Seeds are like Mother Earth’s gift to the world. There may be a few exceptions, but overall, seeds are a go when it comes to health.
Your Chia Questions Answered
If you’re curious about specifics on the chia seed, let’s get into it.
Are chia seeds healthy?
Chia seeds are a great source of many vitamins and nutrients, including Vitamin B1, which is an essential nutrient. It also is a great source of Vitamin B3 and Omega-3s which are essential fatty acids. And chia is a great source of other phytonutrients such as folate, calcium, iron, and more.
Is chia pudding good for weight loss?
Seeds are higher in calories than some foods. However, because chia seeds contain a lot of protein, fiber, and other healthy nutrients, they can help promote the feeling of fullness that is so important for weight loss.
Making Keto Chia Pudding
This recipe calls for using dates, which makes it an entirely plant-based dessert with no refined sugars. That means a single serving of this pudding has 287 calories.
However, if you switch out the dates for a zero-calorie sweetener like stevia or monk fruit, you end up with 185 calories and 5g net carbs per serving. That makes this a low-carb, keto-friendly dessert.
A low-carb cocoa chia pudding version is a great dessert option when you’re trying to get healthy.
Use these tips and tricks to make this overnight chocolate chia pudding perfect for you every single time:
- Add a teaspoon or two of coconut flakes for a chocolate coconut chia pudding
- If you don’t like the texture of the chia seeds, make a ground chia seed pudding by putting the mixture in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth
- Try mixing in some peanut butter with the cocoa
- Drop a scoop of Vegan Whipped Cream on top to dress it up
- This is also a paleo chia seed pudding because dates are found in nature
- Make a vanilla chia pudding by leaving out the cocoa powder and adding plant-based vanilla protein powder instead.
Add some flavors to make this reflect you. You can serve this raw chia pudding with something special like this Peanut Butter Granola or even some Blueberry Sauce to make this a special weekend party dessert.
Vegan Chocolate Chia Pudding
- Mix ingredients in a food processor bowl. Note: If your dates are not soft, be sure to microwave them for about 30 seconds to soften them. Pulse until the dates are smooth.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour or up to 8 hours. It will thicken more the longer it sits, so if you prefer a firmer pudding, refrigerate overnight.
- Sprinkle the top with chopped dark chocolate chips and almond slivers before serving. Add additional toppings if you'd like, such as granola or whipped cream.
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The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.