Healthy Strawberry Jam
Strawberry Chia Jam is my latest obsession. The rosy hue of the strawberries are delightful. I am making this almost every week. The versatility of this fruit spread is boundless. Spread it on toast over your nut butter of choice. Dollop over your coconut yogurt parfait. Dribble some over your steel-cut oatmeal. Drizzle onto your favorite vegan waffles or pancakes. Slather on top off your vegan shortcakes. The possibilities are endless! This strawberry chia jam is a nice alternative to the sugar laden jelly or jam you buy in the grocery store.
Fresh or Frozen Strawberries
I used fresh strawberries from the farmer’s market for this recipe but you can also use frozen strawberries. Here’s a tip: if you have any strawberries in your fridge that are not being eaten up quickly you can wash, dry and then cut off the green stems, cut the strawberry in half and place on a baking tray and into the freezer. Once they are firm you can take them off the tray and store in a freezer bag to enjoy later for smoothies and this delicious chia jam. Frozen strawberries if stored properly will maintain best quality for about 12 months.
Chia Seed — Superfood
This recipe calls for four ingredients: strawberries, chia seeds, lemon juice and date syrup or date paste. Chia seeds are ubiquitous in most everything now. If you have not had the pleasure of eating this superfood you are in for a treat. This little seed delivers huge amounts of nutrients in a few calories. They are also loaded with antioxidants, fiber and protein. The fiber content in this little seed will keep you full for a while and adds a nice crunchy texture to your dishes. When you add chia seeds to liquid they expand and become more gelatinous and this is what makes this chia jam more viscous and jellylike.
Chia Jam Recipe
Place the cut strawberries and lemon juice into a sauce pan and simmer over medium heat until the strawberries start to soften and break down this usually takes about 3-5 minutes. Keep stirring the pot and once the strawberries are soft enough you can mash the strawberries with a potato masher.
I like using my Le Creuset cast iron saucepan. It takes a little while to heat up but once it is warm it keeps the heat really well. My husband and I received this as a wedding present, as part of a set and I love them! When the strawberries are broken down and smashed you should have a saucy strawberry syrupy mixture. Add the chia seeds and date syrup or paste at this point, mix to combine and turn off the heat.
You can mix it a bit more then let it cool. Once it’s cool enough to touch place the jam into a mason jar or this cute Weck jar for storage or any glass container. Let the chia jam continue to cool down in the fridge. As it cools the mixture will thicken and become more jammy. It should have a nice sticky, gooey texture. The strawberry fruit taste is very prominent in this jam. The awesome thing is this chia jam is healthy but it is also really, really good! You can adjust how sweet you want it by adding more date syrup/paste into the mixture to taste. This strawberry chia jam is especially good on toast like I have here on this “Seeduction” bread from Whole Foods. Check the ingredient list though, when originally purchased honey was not listed but it seems there may be some packages with honey. Some other possible bread alternatives (without honey) include Rudi’s spelt bread or Rudi’s spelt muffins. Also, sprinkled on top, are chocolate covered chia seeds. Yes, that is a thing, it’s so yummy.
If strawberries are not your “jam” (sorry could not resist) you can also use other berries (blackberries, blueberries, raspberries) or other fruit like peaches, plums, nectarines. Just know that the plums or peaches may be a little bit more runny because of the water content. You may want to add more chia seeds to make it more viscous. Make this today you won’t regret it.
- 2 cups strawberries
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 1.5 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp date syrup or paste
- Add two cups of roughly chopped strawberries and the lemon juice into a sauce pan over medium heat and heat through 3-5 minutes.
- Once the strawberries start to soften, mash the strawberries with a potato masher or fork till smooth but still chunky consistency.
- Add chia seeds and date past or date syrup and mix well till well combined. Turn off heat.
- Let the jam cool for about 10 minutes then place into a mason jar or container, once completely cool place in the fridge. As it cools the jam will start to firm up a bit.