This Chia Protein Pudding is a delicious treat packed with 32 grams of protein, the perfect make-ahead breakfast or snack!
Hello friends! This recipe was originally published over nine years ago! I’m so happy to give it a facelift today. The old recipe was created with a protein powder company that literally doesn’t even exist anymore, and the pictures were awesome iPhone photos. I wanted to refresh this recipe while it’s still hot outside (which in Arizona will likely be another three months) because chia pudding is one of my favorite breakfast or snack options when I’m sick of oatmeal or smoothies but don’t want something hot (because it’s too hot outside.)
I feel like chia seeds were a massive trend for a while a few years ago but have kind of lost their spot in the limelight. That’s unfortunate because chia seed consumption aids in gut health, hormone health, heart health, and blood sugar management. Chia seeds are a regular part of my seed cycling protocol for hormone health. And a great way to reach the recommended 25 grams of fiber a day minimum I often recommend for my GI MAP clients trying to work to improve their gut health. I love this recipe because it also packs a protein punch, helping you stay full and satiated while eating delicious healthy “pudding.” However, if you aren’t a fan of protein powder in recipes you may want to try my Butterfinger chia pudding or my dark chocolate sun butter chia pudding. But if you try this, enjoy, and let me know what you think!
How to Make Chia Protein Pudding
*Note this section is a visual how-to section. The full printable recipe card is at the bottom of the post!
There are two versions to this recipe, vanilla, and chocolate. But, honestly, the process is the exact same. Combine your ingredients, let the chia seeds absorb the liquid creating the pudding texture overnight, then adjust the texture and flavor as needed. Here is the thing, I’m going to say this here and in the swaps and subs section. The taste of this recipe (and texture) will very likely depend on how much you like the flavor of the protein powder you chose. I tested this with whey protein, but I’ve also used vegan protein before. Either will work, but again, it really depends on how much you like the flavor of your protein powder. I’ve never met a vegan protein I really loved, so that plays a role in the outcome of recipes using vegan protein powder for me. This is no exception! More about protein powder choices in the swaps and subs section below.
Swaps and Substitutions
- Protein Powder – the taste of your protein powder will make or break this recipe! Chose one you really like. I know people will ask what I use, but to be honest, I use the protein powder that comes in my Smoothiebox. It’s smoothiebox branded, but I love the taste of the whey and tolerate the taste of the vegan (since I’m currently nursing yet another dairy-free baby.) Since I know, someone will ask. Personally, I prefer a protein powder that is like a whey isolate or similar. I used to exclusively buy grass-fed protein powder, but now I think that’s kind of a waste of money since the main benefit to grass-fed is healthier fats, which there are none of in a protein powder. Limited ingredients, all-natural sweeteners like stevia or monk fruit, no artificial and no sugar alcohols. I don’t love for them to have a bunch of enzymes or superfood powders added to them. Protein powders will have varying degrees of thickeners added to them. The more in the protein powder, the less xanthan gum you’ll need in this recipe. There are a million protein powders out there. My preference is the simpler, the better. But, honestly, you have to keep trying them to find one you really like.
- Vanilla Unsweetened Almond Milk – use real milk, any other dairy milk alternative, or water here. Really any liquid will do. Whole milk or coconut milk would boost the calories but also make it creamier.
- Chia Seeds – don’t omit!
- Stevia – optional, but you could also sub a tablespoon of maple syrup if you don’t like stevia. This will change the nutrition facts, though.
- Xanthan Gum – optional, depending on the amount of thickeners (if any) in your protein shake. If you want a thicker consistency when it comes out of the fridge, then you can add some xanthan gum. If you are happy with the consistency when it comes out of the fridge, then you can skip this!
How to Store and Freeze Chia Pudding
Store: Store in the refrigerator for up to five days.
Freeze: Freeze chia seed pudding in single servings in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Defrost under refrigeration overnight. If it doesn’t defrost all the way, take it out of the fridge and leave it on the counter for 10-15 minutes.
More Protein-Packed Recipes
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Mug Cake
- Chocolate Protein Cake
- Protein Powder Pancakes
- Protein Powder Waffles
- Homemade Protein Bars
- Vegan Chocolate Protein Brownies
Chia Protein Pudding
Vanilla Chia Protein Pudding
- Combine all ingredients except xanthan gum in a blender bottle and shake well to combine. (Alternatively, whisk all ingredients until well combined.) Refrigerate for 12-24 hours. When ready to eat, mix in xanthan gum until desired consistency is achieved.