Pudding: It’s what’s for breakfast! [Peek Into Kelly’s Kitchen]
You know the scene. Mornings are rushed. You’re trying to get a dozen things accomplished while waking kids and getting them dressed, fed and out the door. In all the chaos, it’s easy to set nutrition aside and pour a bowl of glow-in-the-dark marshmallow cereal for breakfast. As parents, we know this isn’t the best way to fuel their young bodies and brains. But sometimes we go into survival mode and forget the importance of a nutritious breakfast.
I’m not judging. I’ve been there. What if I told you that there was a way to get them to eat better breakfasts that wouldn’t take a lot of time on a busy morning? And, what if I told you that they’d think something good for them was a real treat? What if I told you they’d actually help you prepare it?
Okay, parents, if you’re feeling light headed at the possibilities, please sit down! Let me tell you about the magic of overnight refrigerator chia-oatmeal pudding. This stuff is super-easy to prepare. You put four ingredients in a mason jar in the evening and let your refrigerator do the work. In the morning, you have a “cooked” cereal your kids will love.
Remember the Chia Pet? These clay heads that sprouted grass-like hair were all the rage of my childhood. Fast-forward a few decades and the seeds from the same chia plant are now considered a superfood. Chia is an edible seed that contains healthy omega-3 fatty acids, carbohydrates, protein, fiber, antioxidants, and calcium.
The mild, nutty flavor of chia seeds makes them easy to add to foods and drinks. We’ve added them to hot cereals, rice sided dishes and made a variety of smoothies and puddings with them. When soaked in a liquid, they take on a gel-like consistency, which makes them perfect for puddings like the breakfast one I’m sharing with you today.
Start ‘em young
Even young kiddos can help prepare the pudding by measuring ingredients and, of course, shaking it up. The secret here is a tight fitting lid. Secure the lids before they shake so you don’t have a chia pudding explosion in your kitchen!
Basic Chilled Chia Pudding
(makes one serving)
In a 16 ounce jar, add:
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1 Tbsp. chia seeds
2 tsp. maple syrup or honey
2/3 cup milk (almond milk works, too)
Cover tightly and shake vigorously to combine well.
In the morning, shake it once more and pour into a bowl or let your kids eat it right from the jar. It’s one less dish to wash that way. Eat as is or add toppings and stir-ins. For a kid-friendly PB&J pudding, stir in a spoonful each of peanut butter (or favorite nut butter) and jam. Top with berries and enjoy.
Mmmm…morning made YOUR way!
You don’t have to stop with PB&J. Feel free to experiment with other flavors and textures. It’s simple and the options are endless. Once the basic pudding is made, each family member can customize their chia pudding to suit their own taste buds.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Monkey Madness: stir in honey, peanut butter and bananas.
Tropical Delight: replace milk with 3/4 light coconut milk and top with coconut shreds and your favorite tropical fruit. Fresh mango chunks are delightful!
Dark & Delicious: stir in mini dark chocolate chips, raspberries and vanilla extract.
Brownie Batter: stir in 1-2 teaspoons cocoa powder and some chocolate-hazelnut spread. Top with chopped nuts.
Until next time, shake up your breakfast routine and have a fantastic week!
This is a guest blog written by Kelly Radi.
Kelly is a former BLEND employee and current BLEND advocate who is passionate about food and nutrition. Professionally, she is a public speaker, freelance writer and author of Out to Sea: A Parents’ Survival Guide to the Freshman Voyage. Kelly lives in Sartell where she is often spotted at Coborn’s scouring the shelves in search of the best NuVal scores. You can reach Kelly at firstname.lastname@example.org.