Chia seeds have become more useful in the kitchen these days. They are considered very healthy and have a lot of fiber and omega-three fatty acids, which are very good for human health.
The taste of these seeds is not so obvious, so many people use them in their food or even add them to water for added nutrients. Chia seed is also suitable for vegetarians. But what if you need to make a meal and you’ll need these seeds but you don’t have any, what do you do?
You can simply use other chia seed substitutes, such as flaxseed, psyllium husk, sesame seeds, quinoa, yogurt, banana, and eggs. These alternatives work well in many recipes that calls for chia seeds.
Best Chia Seed Substitutes
Sometimes, finding chia seed can be incredibly difficult, which is why you need suitable alternatives.
I will be providing you with a list of substitutes for chia seed you can use without affecting the recipe too much.
1. Sesame Seeds
These sesame seeds were used in baking a long time before people discovered the chia seeds, so if you can’t find the chia seeds around where you stay, you can try out the sesame seeds.
The amazing part about these seeds is that they can be found in many grocery stores and supermarkets, and they are way cheaper than chia seeds.
You can use the sesame seeds to season both your sweet and salty dish and for your stews, you can make a common paste, known as the tahini, from these seeds.
You should always note that the sesame seeds have a slightly stronger taste than the chia seeds, so you should be mindful of replacing them in your recipes like salads, stews, and granolas.
See Also: Best Substitutes for Sesame Oil
2. Psyllium Husk
The psyllium husk is one of the best ways to control your fiber intake, just like the chia seeds. It is common to buy your psyllium husks as supplements or powders or whole psyllium husks, as most people love adding them to their meals to prevent them from feeling less hungry.
As a substitute for chia seeds, the psyllium husks work well in smoothies due to their powdery nature. Since they are both almost tasteless, you wouldn’t notice too much difference in the taste, but they would provide many nutrients.
3. Flax Seed
Some recipes use chia seeds as a gelling agent to help the ingredients stick together. When using the chia seeds, you have to mix these seeds with water to create a sticky gel, and if this is what you need the chia seeds for, the flaxseeds will work just fine.
Flax seeds have a stronger gelling ability; most recipes call for one tablespoon of flax seeds mixed with three tablespoons of water to create a perfect gelling agent, but in the case of flax seeds, you use 2.5 tablespoons of water with a tablespoon of flaxseed to creates a perfect gelling agent.
An important thing to note when replacing flax seeds for chia seeds as gelling agents is that you should use ground flax seeds as you won’t be able to make gel from the whole ones.
You can also use bananas to create the chia gel I mentioned above, as funny as it sounds. Your mashed bananas can be a perfect option if you want to add some more natural sugar to your gel.
Instead of mixing your chia seeds with water, you can also use your mashed bananas to produce a great result.
So, if you end up using bananas instead of chia seeds, you can now add less sugar to your dish than the recipe calls for.
If you do not want to go through the stress of making gel with chia seeds, eggs are the best option.
The chia seeds were originally made as a substitute for eggs in cases of vegetarians, but that only means that they can also work vice versa.
So instead of mixing a tablespoon of chia seeds with water, you can add an egg instead and skip this stage. This substitute works well in cakes and desserts.
6. Oat Bran
Oat brans work well in meats and vegetable patties, and it is also a very cheap substitute to consider. Apart from the food mentioned above, you can use your oats in crackers, energy bars, and smoothies.
Oat bran contains gluten, so if you are gluten intolerant, you should choose from the other options mentioned above as this option is not suitable for you.
Quinoa is a seed that contains a lot of protein and can be used in vegetable patties and salads. The quinoa also works great in puddings, so you should be glad to hear that you can make your favorite chi pudding using the quinoa.
You can also use the same amount of quinoa with chia seeds, but you first have to boil the quinoa powder with water for about 15-20 minutes before adding it to the milk.
If none of these are working for you, you can now consider using your yogurt as it also works well as a substitute.
You can use either your original or plant-based diet as both would work excellently in the recipe, but I recommend using unsweetened yogurt.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can You Can Chia Seed Jam?
Yes, you can store your chia seeds in cans and jars, but since they are preserved with chia seeds instead of pectin and sugar, they do not preserve the same way other jams do.
Can I Replace Chia Seeds with Flax Seeds?
Yes, chia seeds can be used in place of flaxseed and vice versa. Even better than using one for the other is mixing them up together; they would make a perfect combination and can also be substituted for egg in some recipes.
Does Lemon Juice Thicken Jam?
Lemon juice can also work great in thickening jams. After preparing the fruits and cleaning up the jars, you can fill them up with your jam and lemon juice; get ready for a flavorful thick jam batch.
Can I Substitute Chia Seeds for Hemp Seeds?
Chia seed is a good substitute for hemp seeds, but one thing you should keep in mind is that if you place your hemp seeds with chia seed, your dish will lose that nuttiness, but if you aim to infuse a nutty flavor in your dish, it is advised that you go for the hemp seed instead.
Which is better, chia seeds or hemp seeds?
It is almost clear that the hemp seeds contain more protein while the chia seeds contain more fiber. They both have a decent amount of fats, but when it comes to omega 3, the chia seeds contain more while the hemp seeds are higher in omega six, which is found in poultry. So, whichever one you choose would work well for you.