Pomegranate Cherry Chia Pudding is the easiest #CrazyHealthy snack with POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice. It's entirely fruit-sweetened, dairy-free, and a delicious take on chia pudding. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by POM Wonderful and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.
Yup, another #CrazyHealthy POM Wonderful recipe! Yesterday's Pomegranate Lentil Butternut Salad was so delicious and such a hit that I had to come back with a little more pomegranate antioxidant action for ya! In yesterday's post we chatted a little about some of the key nutritional benefits of pomegranate juice. One of the points I mentioned was the following:
- POM Wonderful 100% Juice is powered by antioxidants. The pomegranate is whole-pressed, meaning a unique blend of polyphenol antioxidants from two whole pomegranates - including its fruit, pith and rind - is found in each 8 oz bottle.
I wanted to talk a little more about antioxidants today. See, I think sometimes the term "antioxidant" gets thrown around a bit, where a lot of people say it and it sounds important and healthy, but most of us don't actually know what it means and why it's important.
We're gonna take it waaayyyy back to middle school science class. Remember learning about atoms with protons and neutrons in the center and electrons floating around outside? And how a molecule is formed when two or more atoms come together?
Okay, so molecules want to be stable, and in order to be stable they have to have the right number of electrons. Sometimes a molecule loses an electron when it's not supposed to. When that happens, a free radical can form.
Free radicals are unstable, electrically charged, and can react with other molecules in your cells (like your DNA) and change them. Sometimes they even create a snowball effect, where one free radical can damage other molecules, and those damaged molecules can become free radicals themselves.
Sounds distressing, right?
These damaging free radicals are formed when a molecule has lost an electron. Antioxidants are molecules that donate an electron to free radicals, which essentially stabilizes that molecule. Basically, the free radical threat is neutralized.
Okay, now before we get carried away, I do want to note that much of nutrition and metabolism (and life!) isn't black and white. See, even though free radicals get a bad rep for being the bad boys of the molecular world, they actually are quite purposeful. Free radicals (more technically speaking, reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species) are a natural product of cell metabolism and may function to signal rapid cell growth and survival, even destroying dangerous bacteria.
The problem is when free radicals and antioxidants get out of balance. Without adequate antioxidants to keep things balanced, excessive free radicals can lead to a state of oxidative stress. Prolonged oxidative stress can lead to different disease states, like cardiovascular disease and some types of cancer.
Definitely makes you want to have these antioxidant archer dudes on your side, right? 😉
To help keep free radicals and antioxidants in balance, I'm a big fan of focusing on a variety of nutrient-rich foods in my diet, like POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice that's loaded with antioxidants.
This Pomegranate Cherry Chia Pudding makes the PERFECT antioxidant-rich snack.
- It uses POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice
- The flavors of the pomegranate juice pair well with another antioxidant-laden fruit: cherries!
- There are no added sugars in this chia pudding, as all of the sweetness comes from the pomegranate juice and cherries.
- Chia seeds pair well with pomegranate juice for a snack, because chia seeds add fiber, protein, and fats (many of which are heart-healthy Omega-3s), adding some macronutrient balance to your Pomegranate Cherry Chia Pudding.
- It's delicious!
I love using 100% pomegranate juice as the liquid in this Pomegranate Cherry Chia Pudding. Many of you guys have reached out to me about food allergies and sensitivities you have (as many of my clients do, as well!) and this is an excellent dairy-free and nut-free alternative compared to using milk/ milk substitutes.
If you make your own Pomegranate Cherry Chia Pudding, be sure to share a pic on social media (like the NTF Facebook Page and Instagram), tagging myself (@nutritiontofit) and POM Wonderful (@pomwonderful) with the hashtag #CrazyHealthy! Be well!
Pomegranate Cherry Chia Pudding
- ⅔ c. frozen cherries thawed
- 1 c. Pom Wonderful 100% pomegranate juice
- ⅓ c. chia seeds
- optional garnish: cherries and pomegranate seeds
- In a blender, blend cherries and pomegranate juice on high about 30-60 seconds, or until the cherries have been pulverized into the pomegranate juice.
- Pour pomegranate cherry juice blend into an airtight storage container.
- Add chia seeds and stir until evenly combined.
- Refrigerate pomegranate cherry chia pudding overnight, or at least 4-5 hours. The chia seeds will absorb the juice and the end result should be a thick, pudding-like texture.
- Can store in the airtight container in the fridge up to 3-4 days.