Chia seeds are no longer a luxury treat, but instead, they seem to be a necessity most people keep on hand for a variety of purposes. Whether you use them to get your daily fiber or omega 3s, chia seeds provide a large amount of nutrition for such small, tasteless seeds. But let’s be honest –– even those of us who can’t imagine life without chia get a wee bit tired of the usual ways to consume the tiny (but mighty) little seeds. I mean, a girl can only take so much chia pudding (as delicious as it may be) and  gelatinous smoothies before she starts to get bored. Wouldn’t you agree?

Don’t give up on chia just yet though – consider some other ways to use chia seeds in your recipes that perhaps you haven’t thought of yet. Chia seeds can be added to anything, so the sky’s the limit on how you want to use them. Try out some of these ideas and let me know if you have any creative ideas yourself!

1. Add Them to Hummus

Most hummus recipes contain tahini, chickpeas, some type of healthy oil, and perhaps some salt and seasonings. Why not add some extra fiber, omega 3s, calcium, magnesium, B vitamins and iron to your hummus with chia seeds? Chia seeds will help thicken hummus and also give it an incredible texture without altering the taste. Try out a tablespoon or two in this Spicy Sweet Potato Hummus or this Oil-Free Kale Endamame Hummus.

2. To Breakfast Cereal

Whether you’re a quinoa breakfast person or an oatmeal breakfast person, chia seeds can easily be added to whichever morning dish you prefer. I personally love how chia seeds help fluff up oatmeal and I enjoy their chewy texture mixed with the creaminess of the oats.  They can be added before cooking or after, but if you want more texture and nutrients, I suggest stirring them in after you cook your breakfast cereal and letting them sit for a couple minutes to soak up properly.  Try them in this fun Purple Monster Vegan Oatmeal for a bright and cheerful start to your day or even in this Vegan Pomegranate Quinoa Porridge. 

3. To A Dinner Dish

Most people  don’t think to add chia seeds to their dinner recipes, but I find the extra calcium helps me sleep so I like to consume them during the evening for a good night’s rest.  This doesn’t only help fill you up so you won’t crave sweets all night but it also ensures regularity and can help your muscles recovery overnight due to the omega 3’s and iron that chia contains. Try adding some to this delicious Zen Lentil and Quinoa Kitchari, some Very Vegan Mac and Cheese, or to this Vegan Mushroom and Asparagus Risotto.

4. To a Veggie Burger

Since chia seeds act as a natural binding agent, they’re especially great to add to veggie burgers. No matter what other ingredients you use, chia seeds will help your burgers retain their texture and they’ll add extra crunch and nutrition. They would be great tin some Mini Quinoa-Chickpea Cakes, Baked Broccoli Burgers, or in a hearty Eggplant Burger.  Feel free to add them to a homemade burger bun recipe to replace the usual sesame seeds on top too.

5. To Pancakes

Pancakes are such a versatile recipe. You can truly add almost anything to them and they’ll taste fantastic first thing in the morning. If you’re looking for some extra crunch and heartiness to add to your pancakes, throw a couple tablespoons of chia in the batter. If you’re feeling really creative, you can even make a homemade jam for your pancakes with some chia seeds too.  Some great pancake recipes you can add chia seeds to include:  Vegan Pumpkin Pie Pancakes,  Vegan Banana Berry Pancakes, Mocha Spice Vegan Pancakes, and basic Fruit Pancakes. Or for a more savory breakfast to shake things up, add some chia to these awesome Tomato, Chive and Chickpea Pancakes. 

Don’t seclude chia seeds to superfood smoothies and chia pudding alone. While they’re awesome in both of those dishes, chia seeds deserve a bit more creativity, don’t you think? What’s your favorite way to use chia seeds?

Image source: Vegan Pumpkin Pie Pancakes