Vegan Product Crush of the Week: Chia Pod Non-Dairy Pudding
So today I headed to the supermarket with a goal - I wanted dessert. I want a decadent, creamy, sweet dessert. But I didn't want the calories or the fat. I didn't want the sugar or the guilt of knowing that by wanting that aforementioned decadent, creamy, sweet dessert, I would be setting all my dieting progress back. (I had already been doing that by slacking off on my workouts!) I almost walked away with yet another box of mint chocolate chip Tofutti Cuties until I saw these - The Chia Company's Chia Pod puddings.
What's Chia Pudding?
If you're not familiar with chia puddings, they are a staple indulgence for anyone on a 'clean eating' diet. They are made with chia seeds, a 'powerseed' loaded with Omega-3s, fiber, antioxidants, and protein. They have also been proven to aid metabolic health and lowering blood markers, which is integral for the prevention or treatment of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Chia seeds can be purchased at most supermarkets and are an easy ingredient to add to smoothies, oatmeals, and other quick meals. But personally, I love them the most as a pudding.
When chia seeds are exposed to moisture for enough time (in this case, coconut milk), they form a jelly outer layer that helps take what might have been a very dense fruit smoothie and turn it into a pudding treat you can eat with a spoon. So essentially what you're eating is a vegan, raw, 100% natural dessert - with 25% of your daily value of dietary fiber!
Why Chia Pod?
I love Chia Pod because it comes in flavors you wouldn't expect from any other pudding brand you might find in the store. It's available in Banana (my personal favorite), Blueberry, Vanilla Bean, Mango, Strawberry, Lemon + Date (next on my 'To Try' List), Dark Cacao, and Coffee Bean. (Take that, Snack Packs!)
It is also packaged in a way where you can easily take it with you to school, work, or the gym. The container is a durable plastic, and the lid holds a convenient little red spoon! (Don't you wish everything that required a spoon came with one? Hunting around campus for a spoon for my usual yogurt between classes is such a pain in the butt.)
The ingredients are also SO simple! For example, the banana pudding is made from bananas, chia seeds, and coconut milk. It's naturally vegan, naturally gluten free, and in each 6-ounce package, there's 3 whole grams of Omega-3s. (Do you know how hard it is to get 3 grams of Omega-3s into your diet naturally? You usually have to take supplements for that much nutrition!)
In short, okay, maybe this product might be easy to make at home. In fact, if you truly want to take a stab at it, I'll probably post my favorite chia seed pudding recipes at a later date and time. However, if you're like me, and you're always on the go and kind of sick of having to prepare EVERYTHING if you want to eat healthy, give yourself a break and buy a Chia Pod. In fact, here's the store locator. Knock yourselves out.