From baking to cooking, Chia seeds are used in a variety of dishes. Learn about seven close substitutes for Chia seeds in this article.
Chia seeds have gained popularity in the health industry because of their nutritional benefits and rich vitamin content. They can be a fantastic addition to oatmeal, smoothies, fruit bowls, and yogurt. However, it’s worth noting that there are several alternatives to chia seeds that you might not be aware of.
Chia seeds are widely recognized as a “superfood” because they are packed with fiber and serve as an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids. This makes them particularly beneficial for individuals following a plant-based diet or those seeking to incorporate healthier plant-based foods into their daily cooking and baking routines.
It’s important to note that all of the chia seed substitutes mentioned in this article are vegan and offer similar healthful fats and proteins.
Close Alternatives for Chia Seeds
Here is a list of the close substitutes for chia seeds that are easily available in the supermarket.
Chia seeds are commonly used as a binding agent in vegan recipes in place of eggs. It is usually used with water as it forms a sticky gel that is used in many baking recipes. The best thing about flaxseed is that it can be used in the same way.
Flaxseeds are the best alternatives to chia seeds that you can use in your recipes. However, when using flaxseed in recipes, make sure to use less water. As a general rule of thumb when it comes to chia seeds, you need three tablespoons of water for one tablespoon of chia seeds. In the case of flaxseed, reduce the water to two and a half tablespoons.
Unlike chia seeds, you will also need to grind flaxseed for achieving a gel-like consistency.
2. Psyllium Husks
Psyllium Husks have a nutty flavor and can be used in place of chia seeds in recipes. It is full of fiber and is usually used in baking goods like bread, cakes, etc. Because of their high fiber content, Psyllium Husks can keep you full between meals.
This substitute for chia seeds is popular in smoothies and can be used in a powder form as well. If you are replacing chia seeds with psyllium husks, it’s better to use them in the husk form.
3. Hemp Hearts
Hemp Hearts are a perfect alternative to chia seeds. If you don’t like the taste of chia seeds, hemp hearts are a great substitute. The best part is that they can be used in the recipes in a one-to-one ratio.
Hemp hearts offer numerous health advantages, such as being rich in protein, and fiber, and it contains all nine essential amino acids. Therefore, even if you already have chia seeds in your pantry, we suggest incorporating hemp hearts into your diet as well for the added benefits.
4. Oat Bran
When it comes to recipes like patties, crackers, energy bars, and smoothies, oat bran serves as an excellent alternative to chia seeds. It possesses binding properties and is abundant in fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals.
In addition to being more affordable than chia seeds, oat bran adds a robust and nutty flavor to any dish it is used in. It is particularly effective when incorporated into puddings and baked goods.
Oat bran is high in fiber and it contains zero cholesterol. Compared to oatmeal, it is a better source of protein and iron.
Despite popular belief, Quinoa is a seed and not a grain. The superfood is rich in protein and is a good substitute for chia seeds. Quinoa can be used in baked goods and even sweet dishes like chia pudding. It is used in a one-to-one ratio when replacing chia seeds.
However, keep in mind that if you are planning to use quinoa in recipes, make sure to cook it in water for 15-20 minutes.
6. Mashed Bananas
If you want to substitute chia seeds in a sweet dish or dessert, mashed bananas work great. Not only bananas are cheap, but also easily available in the markets. It also adds natural sweetness to your desserts.
When it comes to substitution, you need 1/4 cup of mashed banana for one chia egg. This can be used in bread, cakes, cupcakes, muffins, and pudding.
Yogurt is a popular egg replacer in baking recipes like muffins, cakes, and bread. You can use yogurt, or plant-based yogurt in place of chia seeds. The good thing about yogurt is that you don’t need to keep it overnight in recipes to achieve the desired creamy texture.
Both dairy-based and plant-based yogurts can be utilized as substitutes for chia seeds, yielding similar outcomes. However, if your intention is to incorporate them into overnight oats instead of chia seeds, it is advisable to opt for unflavored yogurt.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can I use instead of chia seeds in overnight oats?
Flaxseed is the most commonly used substitute for chia seeds in overnight oats, oatmeal, and baking. It is a wonderful plant-based egg substitute.
Are chia seeds important for overnight oats?
Because of their high fiber content, adding chia seeds to your overnight oats will make it creamier and thicker. It will also keep you fuller for longer.
Can you eat chia seeds unsoaked?
Yes, you can eat chia seeds unsoaked, but eating them soaked is recommended because its easier to digest.