This banana chia pudding is a sweet and creamy treat you can eat anytime but I love it for breakfast. It’s also a good way to use up your ripe bananas without having to make banana bread.
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What you’ll need and variations
To make this chia pudding you’ll need bananas, chia, coconut milk, oat milk, cinnamon, and vanilla extract. I also give some options for the oat milk, coconut milk, and honey.
You can use the very ripe bananas you have sitting on your kitchen counter or you can use bananas that are still a little green.
A benefit of using ripe bananas means you’ll get a natural sweetness and may not need to add an extra sweetener. You will also get a stronger banana flavor.
Green bananas will have resistant starch and that could offer an extra gut health benefit. The downside is the banana flavor won’t be as strong and you may need to add more honey.
Chia seeds have a lot of soluble fiber and when you add a liquid to the seeds they will swell up. This is what makes the recipe a pudding consistency.
Soluble fiber is great for your gut because it helps to make your poop softer and easy to pass. It also helps with your heart health as soluble fiber can play a role with managing your blood sugar and cholesterol.
Oat milk has a creamy texture and taste profile which helps make this banana chia pudding feel decadent.
No oat milk, no problem. You can easily substitute any milk (animal or plant-based) you have on hand.
Using a touch of canned coconut milk will give you a more creamy texture to your pudding. The leftover coconut milk can be added to smoothies and/or you can freeze coconut milk in ice cubes for later use.
Canned coconut milk is higher in fat. You can swap out the canned coconut milk completely and just use oat milk.
Cinnamon gives extra flavor to your pudding plus adds variety to your diet.
You can’t have banana pudding without a little vanilla. If you want a stronger vanilla flavor you can add more extract.
Honey is my go-to liquid sweetener and you may need to adjust the amount based on how ripe your bananas are.
You can also sub the honey for another liquid sweetener like maple syrup.
Protein Powder (optional)
Adding protein can make this more of a solid breakfast and a nice way to practice eating with intention which is part of The Mindful Gut® approach.
I’ve added a scoop of collagen peptides (this one is my fave) to this recipe and it mixes in well but you could use any protein powder you enjoy.
How to make
This recipe whips up fast. You’ll only need 5 minutes to prep. Your wait time is overnight but you can also enjoy it after 4 hours.
I like to have chia pudding as my breakfast so I will use the overnight method but if you want it as a snack your pudding can also be ready in a couple of hours.
The classic way to make chia pudding is to let it sit overnight. This gives the maximum amount of time for the chia seeds to soak up the liquid. The longer you let it stand the thicker your chia pudding will be.
After 4 hours
Your chia pudding will be set after four hours so you don’t necessarily need to let it soak overnight. Four hours is enough time for the chia seeds to soak up the liquid and gel to form your pudding.
Are bananas good for the gut?
Bananas can be prebiotic but this is found in green bananas. Does this mean a yellow or brownish banana isn’t good for you? No. The riper the banana the more simple sugars it will have which means your digestive system will process it quickly.
For our recipe we are pairing a sweeter banana with a big fiber food, the chia seeds. By adding fiber it will help you stay fuller longer (something that a very ripe banana on its own wouldn’t do). You can even bump up the staying power by adding a scoop of your fave protein powder.
What happens if you eat chia seeds every day?
Chia seeds have a lot of fiber and if you don’t eat a lot of fiber I would caution against eating chia pudding every day. Your gut needs time to get used to larger amounts of fiber otherwise you may experience digestive problems like bloating or constipation.
Experiment with chia pudding every other couple of days to get your gut acclimated to the fiber. Also, you don’t want to rely solely on chia as your fiber source so eating it every other couple of days allows you the opportunity to add more variety to your diet.
What toppings can I add to banana chia pudding?
Toppings can add a whole other flavor layer to your chia pudding. Banana pairs well with nut butter, like peanut or almond butter, or you add extra banana slices on top. For an extra decadent pudding, you can top it with some coconut whipped cream.
Other recipes you’ll love
Banana Chia Pudding
- 1 banana
- 3/4 cup oat milk or milk of choice
- 1/2 tsp honey
- 4 tbsp chia seed
- 1 tbsp coconut cream see note
- 1 tbsp coconut milk, canned
- 1/4 tsp vanilla
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- Add the banana and honey to your mason jar. Mash up the banana until it's very soft.
- Add the remainder of the ingredients to your banana mixture.
- Mix well until all the chia seeds are incorporated into the entire mix. You can also close the jar and give it a good shake to help it all mix together.
- Refrigerate the chia pudding for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Amanda is a pizza loving registered dietitian nutritionist specializing in mindfulness and gut health. She quickly realized that gut health goes beyond the gut; it is also about honoring our gut feelings. She is the creator of The Mindful Gut™ which uses science and strategy to help people improve their gut health.