A Trio of Chia Seed Jams {Strawberry, Blackberry & Peach}

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Hey there everyone!  We finished our third round of fruit picking for the year a week ago, but I have been trying to utilize all of the beautiful seasonal pickings all summer long.  A really easy way to use some of the lovely berries and peaches is to make them into a quick jam.

So many of the store-bought options have lots of sugar or non-vegan ingredients.  Making a homemade version solves both of those problems!  There are many different recipes for chia jams out there, because it is just so simple to make and adds the nutritional boost from the healthy fatty acids and fiber in the chia seeds.  Luckily chia seeds have become quite readily available at most stores (at least here in the United States).

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The chia seeds help the mixture gel together a bit, though it may not have the exact texture of some of the jams you may have grown up eating.  I actually really like a chunky jam, so I don’t mind the little soft seeds scatter throughout the mixture.  I also don’t like using refined sugar, so dates are a great way to add a bit of sweetness without detracting from the nutritional profile of the final product or the natural flavor of the in-season fruit.

We have been so lucky to have access to fresh berries and peaches straight from the bush or tree!  My boyfriend is a good sport for coming along with me for sweaty picking excursions, and I’m sure he’ll be game to join in on the next one.  Perhaps one more peach visit before the season ends… 😉

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Blackberry Cardamom Chia Jam

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 2-3 pitted dates, finely chopped (use more if you like a sweeter result or if your berries are quite tart)
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

Strawberry Cinnamon Chia Jam

  • 2 cups halved fresh or frozen strawberries
  • 2-3 pitted dates, finely chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground Ceylon cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

Peach Ginger Chia Jam

  • 2 1/2 cups chopped & pitted peaches (I didn’t peel, but you can if you like)
  • 2-3 pitted dates, finely chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

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The method is the same for any version.  Add everything except the chia seeds to a medium saucepan.  Bring just to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer on low for 15-20 minutes.  My peaches were a little under-ripe, so I did cook them for closer to 30 minutes.  Really ripe peaches will break down quicker.  Stir occasionally and remove from heat once the fruit is broken down and the liquid is starting to thicken.

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Use a potato masher if you want a chunkier jam (of feel free to blend for a smoother version), and mash the berries or peaches to break up any whole pieces left after cooking.  Stir in your chia seeds while the fruit mixture is still warm, then let cool in the pan until the seeds have gelled up and your jam has thickened.  If it is still a little too loose, then add a few teaspoons extra of chia seeds to get to the right consistency.  Once cool enough, transfer to a jar and put in the refrigerator.  Should keep for a week or two–if it lasts that long!

I originally shared the berry versions on my Steemit account here: https://steemit.com/vegan/@plantstoplanks/best-of-berry-season-blackberry-cardamom-chia-jam-and-strawberry-cinnamon-chia-jam

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Author: plantstoplanks

Personal trainer, nutrition and wellness consultant, plant-based cook, avid runner and book-lover. :)

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