Every year, my cousins take a 3 or 4-week trip to Hawaii. Am I jealous? OBVIOUSLY. Who wouldn’t want to be tanning their faces off on postcard-worthy beaches, snorkeling in pristinely clear waters, paddleboarding with sea turtles, hiking to waterfalls, drinking pina coladas (and getting caught in the rain)?? Especially when the other alternative is being at home on the east coast and working IN THE POURING FREAKING RAIN AND DREARY WEATHER? Oh, or the other polar alternative, being hot AF and so muggy that when you get out of the air conditioning in your car your sunglasses immediately fog up? Fact. That happened to me this week.
Sorry, rant over.
Anyway. This chia pudding is my way of transporting my tastebuds to warmer weather, so I can daydream about lying on the beach and basically feeling the bagillions of freckles pop out of my face and my hair turn red, as always happens to me in the summer. Seriously. When I was little, the difference between the winter and summer was so extreme people thought I looked like Lindsay Lohan in the Parent Trap. Also, great movie. I wish I could still do that handshake.
Sidenote: I have a bone to pick with you, chia pudding. Yes, you’re great. I love the millions of combinations that can be made with you. I even love the slightly weird texture you have, like a pudding but with tiny little delicious seeds holding you together. BUT. I never feel even slightly full after eating chia pudding, because their ain’t no protein in this shiz. Just like smoothies, I need to add some staying power to these little babies. Solution: add some Vital Proteins collagen in there, for some gut-healing goodness and extra protein to keep you from getting hungry within 5 minutes of eating this gorgeous, delicious chia pudding!
So what makes this chia pudding Hawaiian, you ask? Well, aside from the obvious…the amazing TOPPINGS. Grilled pineapple makes it golden browned and delicious, macadamia nuts and toasted coconut transport your tastebuds to the islands, while coconut milk holds it all together. It’s slightly sweet on its own, but you can totally add in a little extra somethin-somethin to take that sweetness to the next level, like honey or coconut sugar.
- 1 ½ cups almond milk
- 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- 2 scoops Vital Proteins Collagen(20g)
- 2 large rings of pineapple (about ½ inch thick)
- ½ cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
- ⅓ cup macadamia nuts, chopped
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Optional sweetener: 1-2 Tbsp honey or coconut sugar
- Combine the chia seeds, almond milk, coconut milk, vital proteins collagen, vanilla, and optional sweetener in a large jar, and shake vigorously until combined. Refrigerate for at least an hour, or until it resembles a pudding texture. You can also leave it overnight.
- While the pudding is chilling, prepare your pineapple. I like to grill mine on medium heat for about 2-3 minutes per side, until light grill marks appear. Set aside to cool.**
- In a small skillet, toast the coconut and macadamia nuts on medium-low heat until they begin to lightly brown, about 5 minutes. Watch closely so the coconut doesn’t burn. Set aside to cool.
- Once the pudding has gelled and the toppings have cooled, assemble the puddings into four jars (or bowls). Start with a layer of the chia pudding, then about a tablespoon of macadamia nuts, coconut and some pineapple, then repeat for a second layer of each. Devour!
Thanks to my friends at Vital Proteins for sponsoring this post! All opinions (snarky or otherwise) are my own. Obviously.