Smoothies & Drinks

How to Make Cha Cha Cha Chiata! {Or Chia Pudding, FRESH Start style!}

So I have to confess...

I really thought all the hoopla about Chia Seeds was maybe just another "health food fad" ... but then I kept reading about the energy that people were getting from this miracle seed! And since that was something I so desperately needed to increase in my life, I decided to give this tiny little seed a chance in my diet! Oh boy, am I glad I did!

Energy increase, anyone?

Yes, Chia Seeds increase your energy, and I'm living proof!

But don't ask me, let's look at the long-time use of this miracle seed in other cultures to see how it works!

  • Chia seeds grow natively in South America, since as early as 3500 B.C.

  • They were eaten by the Aztecs and Mayans and used as energy-sources for them, as well as a property of some medicines!

  • Modern day chia seeds are now grown in other parts of the world, including US and Australia!

  • Only 2 Tablespoons of chia seeds produces 11 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein and 9 grams of healthy fat!

  • This same amount also gives your body 30% of it's necessary magnesium and manganese (2 minerals we're often deficient in!)

  • 2 Tbsp of these seeds also delivers 18% of your body's daily need for calcium!

Have I convinced you of the powerhouse these little seeds are?

I was convinced! Now to try them for myself...

I wanted to use chia seeds simply - but found that putting them in my smoothie BEFORE blending just created a texture to the whole smoothie that I was not loving! (I'm texture sensitive, so that's a big deal to me! Anyone know what I mean?) So now, sometimes I add into the smoothie AFTER I've blended it up!

My favorite way to get my daily Chia Seeds though, is by making Chia pudding (or in our case, Cha Cha Cha Chiata!)

I've seen plenty of recipes for Chia Pudding, but again, because of my "texture sensitivities" I found that I didn't really enjoy it made  that thick. So I've created one I absolutely love and look forward to "drinking" as a powerful addition to my energy-meals daily!

{We call it "Chiata" because my Latino hubby says this drink reminds him of his "horchata," a popular drink in his culture! Only this "chata" has chia - hence the new name CHIATA!}

jar of chiata.jpg

Here's how to make it FRESH Start style!

Cha Cha Cha Chiata

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chilled almond or coconut milk (or any other unsweetened plant-based milk)

  • 1.5 to 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds (if you want thicker consistency, add a little more)

  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract (or just eye it and drizzle)

  • 1/2 tsp pure maple syrup (try it first without and only add if you need extra sweetness)

  • quick shake of ground cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Using a small mason jar, shake all ingredients together for a minute or two. Then place in fridge and enjoy within a few minutes or hours later.

  2. The chia seeds will swell up, absorbing the liquid and become easily ingested either by using a spoon or drinking straight from the jar.

I dare you to replace one of your current choices for energy drink in the morning or afternoon with this delicious chiata from ingredients you can find anywhere! You'll never miss the ups and downs of the other drink, but will truly enjoy the steady, ongoing energy you get from this drink!

Did you like this recipe? Get plenty more right here!

Then let us know how YOU make YOUR Chiata in the comments below!

Sweet Green Smoothie Recipe

This smoothie recipe is close to my heart as a crunchy mama, because it's the first smoothie recipe I could get my uber-picky 9-year-old daughter (now 13!) to eat and actually enjoy.  She swears by it to all her friends now, and loves the fact that she is getting a serving of veggie in every glass (but can’t taste it!)

Here’s how to make it:

Ingredients

  • 1 to 1.5 cups baby spinach

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

  • 5-6 ice cubes

  • 3 ounces low-sugar Vanilla Greek yogurt (1/2 small container)

  • 1/2 green apple, peeled and cored

  • 1/2 banana

  • 1/4 cup water (or to taste)

  • Drizzle of honey (if needed for sweetness)

Instructions

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend them on high until smooth (usually about 1-2 full minutes in a regular blender). Serve with a dallop of canned whipped cream on top for a fun extra to this healthy and nutritious smoothie!

Easy to make, no added sugar, and protein-rich for a quick, healthy breakfast option.  You just can’t go wrong with this family-friendly smoothie recipe!  

Weight loss tip: Drink down 8-12 ounces of this smoothie at mealtime for a fabulous weight loss meal replacement that keeps you feeling satisfied.

Got picky eaters in your house like me? Try this healthy green smoothie with them, then let us know...did they like it? You can post here in the comments or over in our free FRESH Start Online Community on Facebook.

If you liked this recipe, we think you'll enjoy these as well:

Berry Nutty Smoothie (Our signature smoothie)

Healthy Homemade Pizza

Berry Nutty Smoothie

I have discovered how to have real, lasting (non-crash-and-burn) ENERGY in the morning - and it's with my Berry Nutty Smoothie!  Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my cup of coffee, too...so of course I was THRILLED to find that coffee, made "right" has powerful benefits! (Did I just say coffee has BENEFITS? Yes! More on that in another post soon!) 

This smoothie is full of vitamin, mineral and energy-increasing benefits! It is the answer for morning POWER...raise your hand if that sounds like something you could use!

It is like drinking your vitamins every morning! Only takes about 3-5 minutes to whip up and enjoy...oh, and even my picky kids love it!

Smoothies have been around a long time,

so this idea of a liquid breakfast is nothing new.  There are many variations of healthy shakes - many brands, powders, and formulas to choose from out there. But so many of those are loaded with sugar, additives, coloring, etc...why not go FRESH instead? It's too easy! Like so many of my busy-bee clients, I used to struggle with getting a good breakfast eaten before the busy day started...so this easy, quick smoothie has solved that problem!

Are you ready for more energy in your mornings without the “help” of sugar or caffeine? 

Here you go!

Berry Nutty Smoothie

Ingredients

smoothie step 1.jpg

1/2 cup plain or low-sugar Greek yogurt
1 cup unsweetened almond, coconut, rice, or soy milk
1 Tbsp ground flaxseed (start with less for first couple smoothies)
1/2 cup fresh or frozen berries such as strawberries, cherries, or blueberries
1 banana for creamier, sweeter smoothie
1 Tbsp Coconut Oil or other Nut Butter
5-6 cubes ICE (If berries aren’t frozen)
1/2 cup water, or more if desired
OPTIONAL but RECOMMENDED: add in 1-2 handfuls FRESH baby spinach or kale

Instructions

  1. Blend at high speed until ingredients are smooth. (Add water or milk as needed to achieve desired consistency!)

  2. Makes 2 – 3 smoothies

This snack also makes a great meal replacement, afternoon snack, or dessert when that sweet tooth starts calling!  FULL of protein, natural energy and detoxifying ingredients, this smoothie is more than a non-guilty pleasure - it's GREAT for your health!

smoothie Jov.jpg

Squirt a little whipped cream over the top for a beautiful and delicious splurge.  We often serve it up in wine glasses, just to feel pampered!

Are smoothies new to you? Or something you've been including in your healthy habits all along? Would love to hear from you in the comments below! Oh and be sure to JOIN THE CONVERSATION in our FREE community! We talk smoothies, FRESH food and healthy habits DAILY over there!