Author: Lisa Childs
Category: Breakfast Recipes
Published Date: September 14, 2022
Updated Date: January 12, 2023
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Coconut chia pudding is one of my favorite low-carb desserts, breakfasts, or snack. Paired with velvety mango chunks, rich coconut milk, and sugar-free vanilla syrup, this coconut chia pudding is my healthier version of Mango Sticky Rice that is gluten, dairy, and sugar free.
LOW-CARB CHIA PUDDING
In this recipe for Coconut Chia Pudding, I wanted to capitalize on chia’s low-carb benefits and its smooth, tapioca-like texture to make a low-carb pudding.
I was actually in the mood for Instant Pot Mango Sticky Rice, but I didn’t want to do the work or have the carbs.
This recipe is a no-cooking required, mix-and-wait delicious treat!
I’ve found that it can be difficult to find a low-carb dessert that really satisfies my cravings — but this one hits the mark!
Please keep in mind that while the coconut chia pudding is low carb, adding fruits such as mango does add quite a bit of carbs.
My vision for this recipe is a healthier version of Mango Sticky Rice (swapping chia for rice).
The sugar-free sweetener eliminates many of the carbs that come with traditional sweeteners, and canned coconut milk is also quite low in carbs.
Mangos do come with a fair number of carbs, so this mango chia pudding isn’t quite keto, but it’s perfect for those looking to indulge in a sweet treat without the refined sugars.
WHAT ARE CHIA SEEDS?
Chia seeds are exactly what they sound like: seeds. And as is typical of seeds, they’re nutritional powerhouses.
And chia seeds are arguably at the top of the pack — Harvard, the Cleveland Clinic, Healthline, WebMD, and the U.S. News & World Report are only a few of the leading names to endorse chia seeds as one of the best seeds to incorporate into your diet.
Ancient and modern cultures alike have recognized their nutritional value: these little seeds are a complete protein, with all nine essential amino acids.
And that’s not all — they’re also the single highest plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acids.
On top of that, they pack a hefty punch of protein, fiber, zinc, and copper all into a single serving.
Because almost all of their carbs come from fiber, chia seeds are also quite low in net carbs — making them ideal for keto or low-carb diets: one ounce has only one gram of net carbs!
Looking for keto recipes? Check out my Keto Broccoli Salad and dedicated Keto Chia Pudding.
MORE PUDDING (AND PUDDING-LIKE) TREATS
- Keto Chia Pudding
- Healthy Overnight Oats
- Instant Pot Brown Sugar Breakfast Quinoa
- Instant Pot Oatmeal, 5 Ways
- 2-Layer Pumpkin Yogurt (Noosa-inspired)
- Instant Pot Pumpkin Rice Pudding
- Dairy-Free Coconut Rice Pudding
- Instant Pot Vanilla Bean Rice Pudding
- Instant Pot Bread Pudding with Butter Rum Sauce
A NO SUGAR ADDED DESSERT
While this pudding is low-carb, I figured — why not make it low sugar as well?
While I completed my 75 hard journey, I made the decision to cut out processed sugar entirely. I allowed non-sugar sweeteners and natural sugars, but that was it.
To keep this chia seed pudding recipe low in both carbs and sugar, I use a liquid, sugar-free sweetener.
The luscious mango chunks aren’t low carb, but they’re bursting with vibrant flavor and natural sweetness. I don’t miss the refined sugar at all!
To stay within the realm of natural sugars, you can also sweeten with honey, maple syrup or agave. Bear in mind, however, that these options are not low carb.
And if you would like to use sugar, sweetened condensed milk, simple syrup, or another variety of sweetener, feel free to use substitutions!
Those will certainly work — it’s not strictly necessary to make this as a low sugar dessert.
Cream of coconut is another great way to add sweetness while really intensifying the chia seed pudding’s coconut flavor.
GLUTEN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE PUDDING
Chia seeds are naturally gluten free, making this a perfect gluten-free dessert.
And if you make the recipe as I did, with coconut milk instead of traditional milk, it’s also completely dairy free.
The only way to add dairy to this recipe would be to swap out the coconut milk for a sweetened condensed milk, regular milk, or other dairy-based product.
However, at which point, you’d lose much of the wonderful coconuttyness of the original recipe and end up with just mango chia pudding!
INGREDIENTS FOR THE PERFECT CHIA PUDDING
To make this coconut mango chia pudding, you’ll need:
- 1 can coconut milk
- ½ cup chia seeds
- 2 tablespoons sugar-free vanilla syrup
- 2 mangoes, cut into cubes
Feel free to use any milk — cow, almond, oat, etc. — to make this chia pudding recipe, but note that if you want coconut chia pudding, it helps to use coconut milk!
Also using cow’s milk would no longer make this recipe vegan.
You can use light coconut milk or full-fat coconut milk, depending on your health goals. Full-fat coconut milk will lend a richer flavor.
The syrup I use is the Torani Sugar Free Vanilla syrup like those used for coffees or Italian cream sodas.
HOW TO MAKE COCONUT MANGO CHIA PUDDING
Coconut milk chia pudding has to be one of the easiest recipes of all time.
Just be sure to make everything at least an hour ahead of time so that the gelatinous texture has time to fully set up.
To make the coconut pudding, mix all of the ingredients together and let everything stand five minutes, then mix again to help distribute the chia seeds and avoid lumps.
Refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.
If, after letting the chia pudding sit for at least an hour, the pudding is too thick for your taste, thin it with milk or water until it reaches your desired consistency.
To serve, scoop some of the chia pudding into a cup or bowl and top with fruit. This will make 4 servings doing it this way.
To make two, larger servings, alternate layers of chia pudding and cubed mango. Garnish with shredded coconut if desired!
VARIATIONS ON COCONUT MANGO CHIA PUDDING
Obviously, I chose to make this delicious coconut milk chia pudding with mango — however, it’d taste great with all kinds of other fruits!
Feel free to get creative and swap out mango for different fruits.
I recommend pairing with papaya, peaches, berries, pineapple, or any other tropical fruit that pairs well with coconut.
Let me know in the comments what variations you like!
- Expect different consistencies. I have tested this recipe using different brands and varieties of canned coconut milk. Depending on the brand, some coconut milks will have more fat or coconut cream in them, making them thicker. You may adjust the consistency of your chia pudding using more milk or water to your taste.
- Shake the coconut milk. When coconut milk in the can is cool, the fat separates and rises to the top. This can create a cap of coconut cream at the top of the can. I always shake my cans of coconut milk before using it to help break up and redistribute the cream.
- Warm up your coconut milk. Some coconut milks will be extremely thick coming out of the can if it was stored somewhere cold. I recommend warming up the coconut milk in a microwave-safe container until it is a more liquid consistency before mixing with the chia seeds.
- Experiment with coconut emulsion and syrup. If you like a more coconutty flavor, I recommend adding one teaspoon of coconut emulsion or syrup to the chia pudding. Emulsions are essentially higher quality flavorings that capture a purer flavor than traditional extracts.
HOW TO STORE COCONUT MANGO CHIA PUDDING
Chia pudding lasts for about one week in the refrigerator, tightly wrapped or in an airtight container.
You may also freeze individual portions of chia pudding and thaw them overnight before serving.
My favorite containers are the Rubbermaid Brilliance containers. Wow, those things are amazing!
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Coconut Chia Pudding
- 1 can coconut milk 13.6 oz or 2 cups
- 1/2 cup chia seeds
- 2 tablespoons sugar free vanilla syrup this is a drink syrup like those commonly used for coffee or Italian sodas
- 2 mangos or other fruit cut into cubes
- milk/milk substitute or water to thin if necessary
- In a medium bowl, mix together coconut milk, chia seeds, and syrup. Let stand 5 minutes, then mix again to help redistribute the chia seeds and avoid lumps.
- Refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight. If the pudding is too thick for your taste, thin with milk until you reach your desired consistency before serving.
- Serve the chia pudding in a cup or bowl, and top with mangoes or fruit of your choice.
PRODUCTS WE LOVE
- The coconut chia pudding without fruit is low in carbs. Adding mangoes and other fruits adds additional sugars and therefore would make this treat higher carb. In comparison to mango sticky rice, this dessert has much less total sugars and carbs.
- I have tested this recipe using different brands and varieties of canned coconut milk. Depending on the brands, some coconut milks have more fat or coconut cream in them, making them thicker. You may adjust the consistency of your chia pudding using milk or water to your taste.
- Some coconut milks will be extremely thick coming out of the can if it was stored somewhere cold. I recommend sharking the can and warming up the coconut milk in a microwave safe container until it is a more liquid consistency before mixing with the chia seeds.
- I use a liquid sugar free sweetener in this recipe to keep it low in carbs and sugar. If you would like to use sugar, sweetened condensed milk, simple syrup, or another variety of sweetener, feel free to use substitutions (but it will no longer be low sugar/carbs)
- We love this paired with mango, but it would also taste great with papaya, peaches, berries, pineapple, or other tropical fruits that pair well with coconut.
- If you like a more coconutty flavor, I recommend adding 1 teaspoon of coconut emulsion or syrup to the chia pudding.
- Chia pudding lasts for about one week in the refrigerator, tightly wrapped or in an airtight container. You may also freeze individual portions of chia pudding and thaw it overnight before serving.
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