How Long to Soak Chia Seeds in Water, Almond or Coconut Milk

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How long to soak chia seeds in water, coconut milk or almond milk
How long should you soak chia seeds in water, coconut milk, or almond milk?
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Chia seeds are very good for you and so nutritious.  Our family has been eating them for some time now.  But we rarely eat them dry. (You can learn more about chia seeds at The Ultimate Guide to Chia Seeds)

Usually, we will soak the chia seeds first in either water, coconut milk, or almond milk before eating them.  If you choose to soak your chia seeds, this post will teach you how long to soak chia seeds in water, almond milk, or coconut milk before eating them.

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Table of Contents

  1. Do You Have to Soak Chia Seeds?
  2. How Long to Soak Chia Seeds Before Eating
  3. Do You Soak Chia Seeds in Hot or Cold Water?
  4. How Do You Soak Chia Seeds Overnight?
    1. Soak Chia Seeds Ratio
  5. How Much Chia Seeds Should You Eat a Day?
  6. How Long to Soak Chia Seeds in Yogurt?
  7. Chia Seed Pudding
  8. How Long to Soak Chia Seeds for Pudding?
  9. How Long Do Soaked Chia Seeds Last?
  10. How to Eat Chia Seeds for Weight Loss
  11. How to Soak Chia Seeds for Smoothies
  12. Final Thoughts on How Long to Soak Chia Seeds
      1. Video Resources

Do You Have to Soak Chia Seeds?

Chia Seeds have tons of nutritional benefits.  Chia seeds are very high in antioxidants, plant-based Omega-3s, plant-based protein, and healthy fiber.  These benefits are available whether you choose to eat them dry or soaked. (See Chia Seeds Benefits – For Health, Skin & Hair)

Soaked Chia Seeds in Glass
Soaking chia seeds has some benefits to eating them raw

(I answer this question in more detail at Do You Need to Soak Chia Seeds Before Eating?)

Chia seeds can be a little annoying to eat if you don’t soak them first though.  This is because the chia seeds can get stuck in between the teeth. 

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They do this because they absorb water, and as soon as they touch an area in the mouth and get moist, they tend to stick there for a little while.  However, if you soak them first, the chia seeds will turn into a gel.  This gel is much easier to eat and will not stick to the mouth or teeth.

Also, a benefit of soaking them is that they will help to hydrate you better.  Chia seeds absorb lots of water, well beyond their own weight.  By soaking them first, they will be full of water, and that water will get into your body, helping to hydrate you.

Finally, some believe that soaking chia seeds will help them to be digested more easily by the body.  This is because it’s believed to start the germination process, since they are seeds, and also to remove any phytic acid from them.  Seeds in water begin to sprout, and it’s believed that by starting this process, it makes it easier for the body to digest the chia seeds and get nutrients from them during the process.

See also  Chia Seed Recipes

I have not seen anything that proves this in a study or scientifically though.

How Long to Soak Chia Seeds Before Eating

On the question of how long to soak chia seeds in water or almond or coconut milk before eating, I think the best thing to do is to soak chia seeds overnight.  This will give them plenty of time to fully absorb the water and turn into a gel, removing any clumps.

If you don’t have much time, you can soak chia seeds in as little as 15-20 minutes.  But, I don’t think this is the best because it will tend to still leave clumps.  But, by this time, it will have started to already form a chia seed gel.  Watch the short video I made following this, and you can see what I mean.

A happy medium would be to let them soak for at least a couple of hours if you are not able to soak them overnight.

Do You Soak Chia Seeds in Hot or Cold Water?

You can soak chia seeds in either hot or cold water, it really doesn’t matter.  (I answer this question in greater detail at Can I Soak Chia Seeds in Hot Water, Warm Water or Cold Water?)

You can also soak them in milk, and preferably a plant-based milk for a healthier choice.  If you do soak them in water, just make sure that it is clean and sanitized water, since you will be eating the water with the chia seeds.

How Do You Soak Chia Seeds Overnight?

Chia seeds after being soaked overnight
Chia seeds after being soaked overnight

To soak chia seeds overnight in water or almond milk before eating, here is what I will usually do.

I have a very large coffee mug, but you can also use a bowl or container.  I fill the coffee mug about 1/4 of the way full with chia seeds. 

Then I fill the mug with either water, soy, or almond milk until it reaches the top.  Then I stir it with a spoon and let it sit for about 15 minutes.  I’ll come back and stir it again.

At that point, you can put it into the refrigerator and let it sit overnight.  It should be ready by the morning.

How to Soak Chia Seeds Overnight Video

Soak Chia Seeds Ratio

As far as the ratio of chia seeds to water used is, it’s about a 1:4 ratio.  So, 1 part chia seeds to 4 parts of water.  So, if I add 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, the amount of water I would use would be 4 tablespoons. 

But I’ve also seen a 1:6 ratio used.  Really it might depend on your preference and how thick you like it to be.  I tend to like it a little bit on the thicker side.

Experiment and see what ratio you prefer.  You can make it less thick by adding more water or less chia seeds.  You can check out the other post on How to Soak Chia Seeds in Water Before Eating for more info.

I’ve also heard of some putting chia seeds in a mason jar with the liquid and shaking the jar with a top on it.  After waiting about 15 minutes, you can shake it again and then put it in the fridge for storage.  This is an alternative to having to stir with a spoon.

How Much Chia Seeds Should You Eat a Day?

I usually eat about two tablespoons of chia seeds every day in the morning.  I think that at least one tablespoon is needed to get the health benefits from chia seeds.  I recommend for most people to aim for 2-3 tablespoons per day.

See also  Ground Chia Seeds vs. Whole - Which is Better?

(However, this number is different based on your goals and eating habits. See the post How Much Chia Seeds Per Day Should You Eat? to learn more about this!)

I would be cautious about going too much over this number.  The only reason why is that chia seeds are loaded with fiber. 

They have probably more fiber than any other food I’ve seen.  While this makes them very good for you, because fiber is very good for us, it could be a lot of fiber to handle.  Especially if you aren’t used to eating a lot of fiber.

Two and a half tablespoons of dry chia seeds have 37% of our daily recommended intake of fiber.  That’s a lot!  So, you don’t want to overdo it and eat too much.

How Long to Soak Chia Seeds in Yogurt?

The time for soaking chia seeds in yogurt is the same amount of time.  But we recommend something dairy-free instead for better health. 

If you soak chia seeds in a plant-based milk such as almond, soy, or coconut milk, it will make a chia seed pudding.  This can be a great dessert option!  Or something you can use in place of yogurt. 

You can also add a little bit of honey or maple syrup to it as well as fruit or other flavorings.  Chia seed pudding follows the very healthy whole foods plant-based diet and chia pudding can be healthy for you.

Chia Seed Pudding

Chia seed pudding can be a wonderful and delicious alternative to either yogurt or traditional pudding.  And, it is much healthier since it packs all the health benefits of chia seeds!

Chia Seed Pudding
Chia Seed Pudding

Chia Seed Pudding is basically chia seeds mixed in a plant-based milk, with usually honey or maple syrup added.  You can add other flavors from there as well, such as strawberries or chocolate, depending on what flavor pudding you like.

Here’s a simple 2 ingredient chia pudding.

Or, here’s a chia seed pudding recipe with a couple more ingredients.

Also, see What Do Chia Seeds Taste Like? How to Make them Taste Good for more about chia seeds taste.

How Long to Soak Chia Seeds for Pudding?

For soaking the chia seeds in the pudding, the time guidelines are the same as soaking them in water or milk.  Ideally, you would want to let them soak for a couple hours at least, the best being overnight.

How Long Do Soaked Chia Seeds Last?

Soaked chia seeds should be put in the refrigerator.  In the refrigerator, they should last safely at least 5 days.  Some people have reported having chia seeds last a week or much longer.  But since they are so easy to make, I would not push this and go longer than five days.  Really, you should just make chia seeds to last for a couple of days.

(Learn more at How Long Do Chia Seeds Last in Water?)

You can easily make a new batch when you need to.  Also, I’ve seen it recommended to cover them, although we didn’t use to do this, and everything was always fine.  But now to be safer, I will cover them usually.  Also, make sure to always observe them and make sure everything looks normal before consuming.

See also  Do You Need to Soak Chia Seeds Before Eating?

For more information on how long chia seeds last in general, see How Long Do Chia Seeds Last?

How to Eat Chia Seeds for Weight Loss

Chia seeds might help with weight loss since they have tons of fiber.  Fiber helps you to feel full in your stomach for much longer after eating.  Also, fiber increases the rate at which your body burns calories when it’s digesting food.  That’s why the Vegan diet was better at weight loss in a recent study.

Chia seeds have also been shown to be effective for weight loss as well. One of the main reasons might be due to all the fiber they provide. Also, there might be beneficial changes to the microbiome leading to some long-term weight loss.

I discuss this and how to eat chia seeds for weight loss in How to Use Chia Seeds to Lose Weight.

I would try to eat them at breakfast to help you feel full longer throughout the day.  Also, chia seeds tend to go very well with breakfast items such as oatmeal.  Some people even use chia seeds to make overnight oats with chia seeds. (Here’s my Chia Seed Breakfast Bowl recipe)

Also, if you are doing a second serving later on in the day, you could try drinking chia seed water during the day.  Here is a popular chia seed water recipe.

Learn more at How to Use Chia Seeds for Weight Loss. You can also find more chia seed recipes at Chia Seed Recipes.

How to Soak Chia Seeds for Smoothies

You can soak chia seeds the regular way, and then add them to smoothies as you make them.  Or you can add the dry chia seeds to the smoothie as you make it and allow it time for the chia seeds to absorb the liquid before you drink it.  Here’s a recipe for a green chia smoothie, that uses dry chia seeds.

In a blender, put in 2 cups of spinach, 1.5 cups of water, 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, 1 cup of strawberries, a peeled orange, and a cup of frozen blueberries.

Since the chia seeds will be in the liquid from the water, they should naturally become soaked chia seeds.  I would recommend allowing at least 15 minutes after making the smoothie before drinking, to allow the chia seeds time to become soaked.

Final Thoughts on How Long to Soak Chia Seeds

If you are looking for how long to soak chia seeds, I think it’s best to soak them overnight.  This can be done in either water, almond milk, soy milk, or coconut milk.  This should give you a nice consistency by the next day.

If you are short on time, it’s best to let them soak for a couple of hours.  But, it’s possible to have them only soak for 15-20 minutes, and they will already start to form a gel.  But, it will be slightly clumpy still.

Video Resources

How Long to Soak Chia Seeds in Water or Milk Video

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