Category Archives: No Added Sugar

Easy Chia Jam

Easy Chia Jam

Chia jam so easy you need just ten minutes and two ingredients. It makes a nutrient-dense, flavorful addition to parfaits, oatmeal, toast, and more!

a mason jar of ruby red raspberry chia jam

Homemade jam sounds kinda daunting, and chia jam just sounds…weird. And still daunting. But it absolutely is such a low-maintenance recipe – even your kids can help! In fact, I’d recommend you do involve your kids! Let them explore different fruit pairings to see how different fruits taste together (we liked grape and blueberry together a lot!). Show them a real life science experiment of chia seeds absorbing liquid from juicy smashed fruit and creating a thicker jam! And have fun with it – you never know, having fun with a simple recipe like this may make them more inclined to have fun trying their chia jam creations in different ways!

a small stainless steel pot of raspberry chia pudding

What is it?

Chia jam is a jam where fruit is thickened through chia seeds instead of lots of sugar or pectin. Chia seeds “gel” and can absorb over 10x their body weight in liquid. This is because of the high soluble fiber content of chia seeds and because chia seeds’ outer shell is hydrophilic, so water can be drawn in and absorbed.

toast with raspberry jam with a mason jar of jam in the background

How do you make chia jam?

The essential ingredients you need are chia seeds and fruit. Fresh or frozen fruit both work fine.

Heat your fruit until it’s kind of juicy and bubbling a little, take it off the heat, stir in chia seeds, and let sit for five minutes to cool and thicken.

Depending on the fruit used, you may find that it doesn’t need any added sweetener (like a ripe mango or sweet strawberries), or you may want to add a little drizzle of honey (or other sweetener of your choice). We added a little honey to our raspberry chia jam since raspberries are a little more tart, and it was definitely the favorite of the family! Don’t stress too much about the added sugar though – it is still SIGNIFICANTLY less added sugar per serving that traditional jams and jellies.

You also can add other flavoring agents. Think like a little lemon with strawberries, powdered ginger with pineapple, or vanilla extract with blueberries. Some chia jam recipes call for an automatic addition of lemon juice, but I just personally don’t find it’s often needed and my family usually prefers it without. Just play around with it to see what works for you!

purple, red, and yellow chia jams next to a yogurt parfait and toast

How long does it take to make?

Ten to fifteen minutes. Seriously – that’s it! Just heat your fruit a few minutes until it’s starting to get a little bubbly (starting with frozen fruit will take a few extra minutes). Once you stir in the chia seeds, you just need to wait another few minutes as it cools and thickens to a beautiful jam-like consistency.

What fruits can I use?

Chia jam can be made with absolutely any fruits you want! I’d imagine even fruit and veggie combos, too (i.e. an orange carrot chia jam with orange segments and carrot juice).

Some of our favorites:

  • Peach Mango: 1 cup sliced peaches, 1 cup cubed mango, 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • Strawberry: 2 cups strawberries, 2 tbsp chia seeds, 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • Raspberry: 2 cups raspberries, 2 tbsp chia seeds, 1-2 tbsp honey
  • Blueberry: 2 cups blueberries, 2 tbsp chia seeds, 1 tsp lemon juice

Note: you can either mash soft fruits with a fork or potato masher, or you can even blend and puree the fruits first.

overhead shot of 3 jars of chia jam in red, yellow, and purple

Ways to Use

Chia jam is pretty versatile! Try it:

  • On toast
  • On yogurt parfaits
  • In sandwiches
  • In homemade oatmeal jam bars
  • Over oatmeal
  • As a sweet “glaze” baked over fish or chicken

One batch only makes about a cup and lasts around a week in the refrigerator. If you’re not going to use it all before it spoils, try freezing it in an ice cube tray. Then you can just thaw and use one serving at a time (plus this is a great way to cool down too-hot-oatmeal even faster!).

yogurt parfait with raspberries, granola, and raspberry chia jam in a white and teal spotted rustic bowl.

More Easy Sauce & Condiment Recipes:

Check out these other easy and delicious ways to add flavor and nutrients to your meals:

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a mason jar of ruby red raspberry chia jam

Easy Chia Jam

Course: Sauce
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 38 kcal
Author: Lindsey Janeiro, RDN, LDN

Chia jam so easy you need just ten minutes and two ingredients. It makes a nutrient-dense, flavorful addition to parfaits, oatmeal, toast, and more!

free from: wheat/ gluten, soy, dairy, egg, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts

Print

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen fruit
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (optional)
  • 1-2 tbsp honey or other sweetener (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat fruit in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until juices have been released and fruit can be easily mashed with a fork or masher. This will take about five minutes.

  2. Mash fruit to desired consistency. If you prefer a smoother consistency, you can even puree.

  3. Stir in chia seeds and any additional optional ingredients (lemon juice, honey, or even other flavors like spices or extracts).

  4. Let the chia seeds gel and a jam-like consistency to form as the chia jam cools. This will take about 5 minutes.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition information is for an approximate 2 tbsp serving of chia jam made with raspberries and 1 tbsp honey. Nutrition information will vary based on fruits and sweeteners used.

See blog post text for information on freezing leftovers and specific fruit combination ideas.

Nutrition Facts
Easy Chia Jam
Amount Per Serving
Calories 38 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 1mg0%
Potassium 58mg2%
Carbohydrates 7g2%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 10IU0%
Vitamin C 8mg10%
Calcium 26mg3%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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