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Black Forest Chia Pudding

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Black Forest Chia Pudding is a thick and creamy vegan pudding made with wholesome chia seeds, cocoa, fresh cherry compote, and topped with whipped coconut cream.  An easy treat that can be enjoyed for breakfast, dessert, or any time in between!

Mini black forest chia pudding parfaits on a serving platter on a table

Black Forest Chia Pudding

This Black Forest Chia Seed Pudding is a result of an abundance of left-over cherries!  If you’re like me, you get super excited to see the small summer fruit in the grocery, and buy 3 bags because you think you need them … ugh.  Needless to say there has been a fair share of chia pudding, homemade jam, cherry smoothies, and cherry ice cream this summer!

So, I had to harken back to my most favorite cherry dessert – the Small Batch Black Forest Cupcakes – and recreate those lovelies into this healthi’ish treat!  But, to be totally honest, this chia seed pudding seemed like next in line after I made the Black Forest Overnight Oats … Now you know what goes on inside the mind of a food blogger … 🙂

But, these little chia seed pudding parfaits do not disappoint when it comes to the flavor of chocolate and cherry.

  • Homemade Fresh Cherry Compote – The cherry compote is vibrant, sweet, and the fresh cherries are the star of the show.
  • Thick and Creamy Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding – Think of creamy chocolate pudding, but a tad healthier.
  • Fluffy Whipped Coconut Cream – Black Forest Desserts always need a light and fluffy whipped cream topping!
Black forest chia seed pudding in small glasses arranged on a table

Key Ingredients and Notes

  • Fresh Cherries – I always recommend fresh when in season.  But, frozen cherries can also work.  
  • Lemon Juice – To brighten the cherry compote.
  • Chia Seeds – Any brand of chia seeds will work.  I always use organic black chia seeds because they are more prominent and the grocery.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – I like to use Dutch process cocoa because it isn’t as acidic as natural cocoa powder.  But either will work fine.
  • Carton Coconut Milk – Any milk or dairy-free milk will work!  I always use So Delicious unsweetened coconut milk.  It is super creamy and doesn’t have a pronounced flavor.
  • Maple Syrup – This is my sweetener of choice for chia pudding – especially to keep the pudding vegan.  Although you can substitute any sweetener you prefer.
  • Canned Coconut Milk – This canned coconut milk is for the Whipped Coconut Cream on top.  Similar to the recipe for Whipped Coconut Cream, except we are adding a little cinnamon for this recipe!
Single serving of chocolate chia pudding in a small glass on a black plate

Helpful Tips To Make Chia Pudding

  • Use any chia seed you prefer – I have only tried making chia seed pudding with organic black chia seeds.  Only because this is what is always in my grocery.  So, use whatever chia seeds that are easily accessible to you!
  • Keep it refined sugar free AND vegan with maple syrup – I like pure maple syrup because it adds a buttery caramel flavor which pairs nicely with the chocolate.
  • Allow for time to set in the refrigerator – Chia pudding needs time to chill in the refrigerator to allow the chia seeds to plump up and thicken.  I recommend at least 4 hours, and overnight is ideal.
  • Adjust pudding thickness to your preference – You can make a thicker chia pudding by adding more chia seeds.  Conversely, a thinner pudding can be made by adding more milk.  I recommend checking the pudding after it has chilled for at least 1 hour to see how the consistency is progressing.  
Row of three black forest chia pudding parfaits set on a table

Recipe FAQ’s

I prefer a looser/thicker chia pudding. How can I achieve this?

You can either add more/less chia seeds (start with 1/2 tablespoon), or adjust the milk (start with 1 tablespoon).

Do I really have to let the chia pudding refrigerate overnight?

That is my recommendation to ensure the chia seeds get fully hydrated and plump. However, you can check the pudding after about 4 hours to see if it has reached your desired consistency.

My chia pudding didn’t set up like pudding. What did I do wrong?

My thought is there was too much milk added, or you need to let the pudding sit in the refrigerator longer.

Do you have other flavors of chia seed pudding?

I sure do! Check out the Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding, Vanilla Chia Pudding, or Smooth Red Berry Chia Pudding.

Single serving of healthier chocolate pudding with fresh cherry on top

More Chia Seed Pudding Recipes

Did you enjoy these chocolate chia seed pudding parfaits? I’d love to hear from you! Please leave me a comment and star rating below so I can contiue to provide tasty, FREE recipes!

Row of three black forest chia pudding parfaits set on a table
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4.75 from 4 reviews

Black Forest Chia Pudding

Yield: 2 Servings
Black Forest Chia Pudding is a thick and creamy vegan pudding made with wholesome chia seeds, cocoa, fresh cherry compote, and topped with whipped coconut cream.  An easy treat that can be enjoyed for breakfast, dessert, or any time in between!
Prep20 minutes
Chill8 hours
Total8 hours 20 minutes

Equipment

  • 2 – Serving Glasses

Ingredients
 

Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

  • 5 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup coconut milk (or any milk of choice)
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup (or any sweetener of choice; sweeten to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cherry Compote

  • 1 cup fresh cherries, pitted and halved
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup (or any sweetener of choice)

Instructions

Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

  • In a small mixing bowl, add the cocoa powder, coconut milk, maple syrup, and vanilla. Stir to combine thoroughly.
    1 and 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, 1 cup coconut milk, 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Stir in the chia seeds. Cover and refrigerate the chia pudding at least 4 hours, overnight is ideal. Tip – You can control the consistency of the chia pudding by adding more or less milk. More milk for thinner pudding, less milk for thicker pudding.
    5 tablespoons chia seeds

Cherry Compote

  • In a small saucepan, add the cherries, lemon juice, and maple syrup.  Heat over medium-low heat until the cherries start to break up and their juices release.  About 5 to 10 minutes.  
    1 cup fresh cherries, pitted and halved, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • Transfer the cherry compote to bowl, cover, and refrigerate until ready to assemble the oats. Note – You can add extra fresh cherry halves to the compote to give it more texture.

Assemble the Pudding

  • Portion equal amounts of the Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding into your serving glasses.  Top with equal amounts of Cherry Compote, and finish with a dollop of whipped cream, chocolate shavings (optional), and a fresh cherry on top. Enjoy!  
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RECIPE NOTES

  • Chia Seeds – Black or white chia seeds will work for the pudding.  I use black chia seeds because they are easier to find.
  • Maple Syrup – You can use any sweetener of choice.
  • Serving Size – The parfait glasses used in the photos are about 4 ounces.  This recipe can easily be doubled.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Erin Cernich

NUTRITION ESTIMATES

Calories: 299kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Sodium: 8mg | Potassium: 389mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 61IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 278mg | Iron: 3mg
Nutrition information is calculated by a third-party and should only be considered an estimate and not a guarantee.
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I'm Erin and I'm all about desserts - and a little bit of butter!

I've tested, written, and photographed hundreds of recipes on my website. Here you'll find the tastiest small batch desserts - all homemade, all simple, and all for you! Click here to learn more about me!

4.75 from 4 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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