Coconut Matcha Chia Pudding

A new year has dawned, carrying with it optimistic aspirations and a hopeful outlook. For the first time in a long time, I feel like I can breathe. The future carries a rosy tint; the months ahead no longer feel so heavy and intimidating. As a third year teacher, I am finally in a place where I no longer need to spend each evening lesson planning and writing exams. After the past several years of spending what feels like all my time and energy trying to stay afloat, this change feels as if an enormous burden has been lifted off my shoulders.

My time is finally, finally becoming my own.

Heading into this year, I intend to work on a work-life balance. After so many years of the scale tipping heavily in the work direction, I allowed life to take precedence the past few months. I was greedy with my personal time, devouring books and television shows by the series, relishing being unplugged in the evenings. The freedom was seductive. I faded from here during those months, certain you'd be able to forgive the brief absences once I could reason them.

The work-life balance will need continual adjustments, but with one heavy weight removed, it feels possible for the scale to even out.

Among wishes of a dedicated exercise routine and not leaving dishes in the sink to "soak," eating more greens often nears the top of my resolution list. With the color spot on, I believe that this matcha pudding also qualifies as a green. After delighting in the pairing of green tea and coconut in this iced latte, it was time to bring the flavors together again in another form. The pudding itself uses only a bowl and whisk, making it nearly effortless to bring together.

Go ahead, eat more "greens."


Coconut Matcha Chia Pudding is simple to make and visually striking. The matcha pudding is thickened with chia seeds and topped with a coconut whipped cream mixed with shredded coconut. The sweet, creamy nature of the coconut contrasts well against the earthy flavor of the green tea. The pudding and whipped cream balance each other beautifullyβ€”one should not be served without the other.

Matcha is powdered green tea and can be found at most tea shops and health food stores.

One Year Ago: Chocolate Sugar Cookies and Coconut Almond Quinoa
Two Years Ago: Almond Date Banana Smoothie 
Three Years Ago: Chocolate (DF) Ice Cream, Peanut Butter Banana OatmealRaspberry White Chocolate Scones, and Lemon Poppy Seed Rolls
Four Years Ago: Candy Cane Popcorn, Chocolate Clementine CupcakesPeppermint Hot Chocolate, Green Tea Coconut Ice Cream, Chocolate Lavender Cupcakes, and Sugar Cookies
Five Years Ago: Gingerbread Cheesecake, Peppermint Ice Cream, Banana Muffins, Vanilla Pear MilkSalted Caramels, and Chocolate Salted Caramel Cookies

Coconut Matcha Chia Pudding

Yields four 1/2-cup servings

14.5 ounces (1 can or 428 mL) canned coconut milk
1 1/2 teaspoons matcha powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 tablespoons maple syrup (to taste)
1/4 cup (50 grams) chia seeds
1 recipe Coconut Whipped Cream
1/3 cup (30 grams) shredded coconut

In a food processor or blender, blend together the canned coconut milk, matcha powder, vanilla, and maple syrup. Transfer to a medium bowl and whisk in chia seeds. Cover and refrigerate for one hour. Then whisk the pudding once and return it to the refrigerator to set overnight.

 Before serving, stir shredded coconut into coconut whipped cream. Set aside.

Divide pudding evenly between serving containers. Top with a generous amount of whipped cream and serve.

Vanilla Chia Pudding

Vanilla Chia Pudding

Vanilla Chia Pudding

Growing up, I was fascinated by Chia Pets. These terracotta figurines, in which chia seeds are sprouted and grown to resemble fur, were the star of many Saturday morning cartoon commercials. The catchphrase "Ch-ch-ch-chia!" quickly became ingrained in my mind as well as my toddler sister, who spouted the slogan in her giggly high-pitched voice.

After the initial craze died down, my grandmother unexpectedly bought me a Chia Pet for Christmas. It was an Elmer Fudd, with grooves to grow chia hair, which I found deeply ironic since the cartoon character is completely bald. Nevertheless, I was excited about my new toy. I followed the necessary steps, spread the seeds around his head and waited. Nothing happened. My chia seeds, no matter how much I willed them, simply would not sprout.

My Elmer Fudd was determined to stay true to character.

Vanilla Chia Pudding Vanilla Chia Pudding

Many years later, while wandering through the food section of a department store, I stumbled across a bag of chia seeds. As this was before the health food trend set in, the thought of eating the seeds instead of growing them on pottery struck me as odd. I wanted to buy the bag simply out of curiosity, but the seeds never made it into my cart. I often thought of them afterwards, wishing they had made that journey, simultaneously wondering how I would have incorporated them into my cooking.

That passing concern became a real question when a bag of chia seeds finally found itself on my kitchen counter last weekend. After doing a bit of recipe searching, I settled on making a simple pudding.

Vanilla Chia Pudding

Chia seeds have several unique properties which set them apart. Firstly, chia seeds do not seem to have a flavor, not even a subtle one, which makes them easy to mix into other foods, such as smoothies or morning cereals. They are also packed with nutrition, including high levels of fiber and protein, which makes them a healthy choice and can help keep you feeling full longer. Lastly, and most unusual, chia seeds can absorb ten times their weight (or more) in water. When the seeds are mixed into a liquid, they will absorb it, creating a gel.

I used this last characteristic to my advantage. To make this pudding, I mixed the seeds into milk and simply let the mixture set. There is no heat, no additional thickening agents, or cooking required. In many ways, this may be one of the easiest dishes I have ever created.

Vanilla Chia Pudding

Vanilla Chia Pudding has a bright vanilla flavor with a texture resembling a tapioca or rice pudding. Chia seeds are simply mixed into your favorite milk and left overnight to gelβ€”the process couldn't be any simpler. This pudding is healthy enough for a morning breakfast and sinful enough for an after dinner dessert. Serve with fresh berries for color and a swirl of maple syrup for a sweet taste. Chia seeds are available in the health food section of the grocery store (or in specialty health food stores).

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