Excuse me, but I must ask you what you are drinking? I’ve never seen anything like it before!
Those are the kinds of questions a girl gets asked when she’s toting this drink to a spin class. You get stares, sideways looks, and nervous smiles. The people out there are curious and they need to know that you aren’t drinking little black bugs. They need to be able to sleep at night. For goodness sake, tell them what you are drinking so they can get back to their workout!
So I tell them with a big smile, Chia bugs. Then there’s an awkward pause and even more confusion.
Ok, ok, it’s actually a healthy beverage called Chia Fresca which has been a popular drink in Mexico and Central America for many years. I’m sure many of you have heard of it before or even made it yourself. It’s made up of water, chia seeds, lemon or lime juice, and sweetener.
When chia seeds are soaked in water a gelatinous coating forms around the seed very similar to a tomato seed. This makes it very easy to swallow so the seeds don’t get stuck in your throat. Chia Fresca probably isn’t for people with texture issues (cough, cough husband), but I’ll leave that up to your discretion. I recently brought it back into my life to get a boost of Omega-3 fatty acids in my diet. It’s so much more fun than drinking plain water! Plus, it’s a total conversation starter much like bringing a Green Monster into the work place. I know you’ve been there. Well, why not bring Chia Fresca and show them just how crazy you can really be?
Here’s a quick refresher on chia seeds:
- Chia seeds are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, even more so than flax seed
- Chia seeds do not need to be ground to be absorbed by the body and they can be stored for long periods of time without going rancid
- They help with hydration due to their ability to absorb up to 9-10 times their weight in water
- Chia seeds also contain fibre, protein, calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, and zinc among many other nutrients
- Chia seeds like to get stuck in your teeth. You were warned.
Chia Fresca is said to boost energy levels too. I’m not really sure if it boosts my energy or not, but I sure feel happy and hydrated when I drink it. When I have some on hand, I like to pair it with coconut water for a natural potassium boost after a tough workout, but water is just fine too.
Edited to add: Some of you were asking me about the thickness of this drink so I thought I would add a few words on this. I wouldn’t say it has a smoothie-like texture, but it’s more like a water consistency just with a whole slew of gel-y seeds in it. Does that make any sense? You just have to try it for yourself. My guess is you will either love it or hate it.
Yield: 2 cups
- 2 cups water or coconut water
- 1.5 tbsp chia seeds
- 1/2 tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice, or to taste
- Sweetener, to taste (I like 1/2 tbsp maple syrup)
1. Add chia and water into a jar or glass and stir very well to combine. Let sit for 10 minutes to allow the chia seeds to swell up. I like to use a jar with a lid so I can shake it up really well and break up the clumps of chia.
2. Add lime or lemon juice and sweetener to taste. Stir (or shake) well to combine and enjoy!
For nutritional info, see here.
Note: Chia seeds will sink and collect at the bottom of the glass quickly. Give it a good stir as needed.
Wishing you a very happy (and hydrated) weekend!!