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How To Soak Chia Seeds: Tips, Storage, Fun Facts, And More

Are you here to learn how to soak chia seeds? We have some nifty tips, ratios, and steps for you to learn about how to soak chia for using it in puddings, baked goods, and more!

Chia seeds are the edible seeds of Salvia hispanica, a flowering plant in the mint family.

They’re considered an essential food of the Aztec and Mayan diets in the early 13th century.

Today chia seeds are often added to smoothies, oatmeal, and other breakfast favorites.

You can purchase chia seeds in the grocery store and they’re often next to flaxseed and hemp seed in the cereals or you can find them in the health foods aisle.

There are many ways to prepare chia seeds.

If you haven’t heard of this before, check out our recipes for chocolate peanut butter chia pudding and strawberry chia pudding before. It thickens pudding without eggs!

And guess what? They’re incredibly delicious!

The nice jelly texture of soaked chia is a blank canvas for peanut butter, cocoa powder, and sweet strawberries.  

But the most common way to eat the seeds is by soaking them in liquid.

Soaking chia seeds will maximize their full potential and result in becoming like gelatin— squishy, jelly-like, and a little chewy in texture.

So how exactly do you soak chia seeds?

Table Of Contents

How To Soak Chia Seeds

  • Soak 1 teaspoon of dry chia seeds in ½ c of lukewarm water or nut milk. 
  • Let sit for 10 minutes to two hours, until the seeds appear jelly-like and have soaked up most of the liquid.
  • Use in recipes for chia seed pudding, as a vegan egg-substitute in baked goods, and more.

Tips for How To Soak Chia Seeds:

Before you start your soaking spree, you need to plan everything out first. 

Pick what liquid you’re using to soak the seeds and how are you going to use them after.

You can soak your chia seeds in water or nut milk. By doing this, you’ll be one step closer to breakfast.

But remember, in case there’s not enough liquid, it’s likely to happen that you may not achieve that gel-like consistency. 

The chart below has tips for chia-to-liquid ratio:

Looser gelThicker gel
Chia pudding / Chia gelFor every cup of liquid, use one tablespoon of chia seeds.For every cup of liquid, use two tablespoons of chia seeds.

Another thing to keep in mind is that chia seeds don’t have a noticeable flavor on their own. 

Chia creates a blank slate so you can add all your own favorite flavors without competing with the taste of chia.

In water

The final product when you let your chia seeds soak for 10 minutes is a little gel. 

After soaking for two hours, they are ready to be used as an egg replacement.

Overnight, and you have an ideal supplement that even helps with hydration.

How do you want it—runny or thick?

However, I highly suggest using the 2:1 chia seeds in water ratio, meaning for every two tablespoons of chia seeds, you need to use one cup of water. 

Here’s how to soak chia seeds in water: 

Tools needed:

    • 2 T of chia seeds
    • 1 c. of water
    • Whisk
    • Bowl
    • Airtight container, for storing

Instructions:

    1. Put the chia seeds in a bowl then pour the water. 
    2. Stir the mixture using a small whisk and let it sit between 10 minutes to two hours. 
    3. Transfer the soaked chia seeds to an airtight container and store them in the fridge for up to three days.

In nut milk

If you want to take your chia pudding to the next level, then replacing the water with nut milk should do the trick.

The milk makes a creamy base so your pudding will end up even more luscious.

The same goes as mixing chia seeds with water, this method follows the 1:4 ratio for thicker consistency of the pudding. Here’s how to do it: 

Tools needed:

    • 2 T chia seeds
    • 1 c nondairy milk (almond milk, cashew milk, or oat milk)
    • Whisk
    • Bowl
    • Airtight container

Instructions:

    1. Put the chia seeds in a bowl then pour in the nut milk. 
    2. Combine the chia seeds and milk mixture using a whisk. 
    3. Let it sit for between 20 minutes to two hours. 
    4. Transfer the mixture to an airtight container and store it in the fridge. 
    5. Shake (making sure the lid is tight) or stir to break up clumps.

Pro tip: Make your creamy chia pudding more exciting: try garnishing with berries, maple syrup, sliced bananas, and shredded apple right before serving.

For tropical vibes, try mango, pineapple, or kiwi.

How long do chia seeds need to be soaked?

The longer time your chia seeds are soaked in liquid, the more hydrated and jelly-like they become. 

The ideal time to soak your chia seeds in water or nut milk is between 20 minutes to two hours. 

You can also soak the mixture overnight for a softer and creamier texture, and work better as an egg substitute.

Do you have to soak chia seeds in hot or cold water?

Chia seeds can be soaked in cold or hot water, just make sure they are kept cold after they’ve set up to gel, since adding moisture makes a nice home for bacteria to grow.

How to use soaked chia seed

Now that you successfully soaked your chia seeds, let’s proceed to the fun part—adding to your favorite recipe! 

The most common way to use soaked chia seeds is in desserts and breakfast. 

Here are creative ways to use soaked chia seeds:

Can you eat chia seeds without soaking them?

Yes, you can eat chia seeds without soaking them.

While some sources say that eating chia seeds dry can be harmful, a teaspoon into yogurt, oatmeal, or baked goods without soaking them first should be fine.

How to store soaked chia seeds

When you successfully soak chia seeds, they can stay fresh for up to three days, only if you store them properly.

Soaked chia seeds need to be stored in the refrigerator so they stay fresh. 

The quality of the food will deteriorate over time so it’s best to consume or use your soaked chia seeds within three days. 

Here’s how to store soaked chia seeds: 

Tools needed:

  • Soaked chia seeds
  • Airtight container
  • Refrigerator

Instructions:

  1. Transfer soaked chia seeds to an airtight container. 
  2. Then store the mixture in the refrigerator.
  3. Eat soaked chia seeds within three days. 

Pro tip: When storing the soaked chia seeds in the refrigerator, keep the mixture tightly sealed in an airtight container to protect it from odor and taste transfer.

How long will soaked chia seeds last

The storage condition and storage methods affect the shelf life of your soaked chia seeds. 

As mentioned, chia seeds soaking in the liquid for a couple of minutes or hours and stored in the fridge can last for up to three days or so. 

It’s best to transfer soaking chia seeds into an airtight container so they don’t absorb odors from the fridge.

The bottom line

A top benefit of soaking chia seeds is enjoying them at their full potential as a superfood. This also makes them easier to digest as well as becoming nicely jelly-like and chewy in texture. 

You master the art of soaking the seeds, you’ll be able to enjoy them by adding them into smoothies, parfaits, and oatmeal!  

Fun Fact: The chia seeds that came on the foodie scene and have been so wildly popular are the same ones that are used to grow the “hair” on Chia Pets, a fun tchotchke since the late 70s!

How To Soak Chia Seeds

How To Soak Chia Seeds

Learn the best way to soak chia seeds using one of our reliable methods.

Ingredients

  • 2 T of chia seeds
  • 1 c of water
  • Whisk
  • Bowl
  • Airtight container, for storing

Instructions

  1. Put the chia seeds in a glass bowl then pour in the water. 
  2. Stir the mixture using a whisk and let it sit for between 20 minutes to two hours. 
  3. Transfer the soaked chia seeds to an airtight container and store them in the fridge for up to three days.

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