Handy Tip 2: Using Chia Seeds to thicken Stews and Casseroles

This handy tip replaces the need to use flour as a thickener in stews and casseroles.

Chia Seeds pre-soaked in 225ml of water are used instead.  It’s a tip Georgina, from my local health shop, in Blackrock gave me.

Chia Seeds

Georgina also let me know that along with being used as a thickener chia seeds have the added benefits of being packed with fibre, protein, omega 3 and lots more good stuff .

Georgina suggested soaking the seeds in 225ml of water overnight and the next morning you wil have a jelly-like mixture.  Add to your stock or water to be added to stews, casseroles and the like.

However as I was in a rush instead of soaking overnight I used just 225ml of boiled water and let them soak for 2 hours.  They did turn into jelly-like mixture and did give a thickness to the stew I was making.
So great to replace flour and also you get the extra nutrients.


8 fl oz or 225 ml of water
1 tablespoon Chia Seeds

Place in a jug and soak overnight.

By then the seeds will have turned into a gel-like consistency.

It is then ready to add to your stock or water before adding to your stews or casseroles.

If you are in a rush my quick method will be a handy substitute but the overnight is better.


Categories: Uncategorized


Home cook, Irish food blogger and live a plant-based lifestyle. I also co-own of www.herbicarni.com with my hubs where you'll find online courses, vegan chocolates and lots more to help a transition to a plant-based diet or live with someone who is a carnivore.


Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

4 Comments on “Handy Tip 2: Using Chia Seeds to thicken Stews and Casseroles”

  1. September 24, 2011 at 2:39 pm #

    What a great idea! Thanks for posting about it. I don’t want to use flour (I’m gluten-free) and I don’t like the taste of cornstarch as a thickener. However, you do have to be careful when using chia if you’re watching your weight. In addition to all its good stuff, it’s high in fat. I did a post about it at http://foodrefashionista.wordpress.com/2011/06/10/to-chia-or-not-to-chia-this-is-the-seednut-question/
    Hugs, Claire

    • September 25, 2011 at 8:38 pm #

      Hi Claire, thanks for sharing your tips, appreciate it as you never know who else will benefit from your sharing. You’ve certainly packed a wealth of info into your site to help those on weight watcher diets. Congrats it’s looks amazing.

      My own approach is on healthy, wholesome and natural recipes that cater for my intolerances with good fats just being a part of that process.

      When I come across handy tips that have helped me I share them on my blog so others may find them useful. One of the greatest difficulties I had last year, when I became very ill with the dairy intolerance, was trying to source info and recipes to help me. I ended up making up my own and became determined to share what I learnt so others in a similar situation may benefit and get back to having fun with food again. I suppose what I’m trying to say that in my opinion it’s all about balancing your intake and eating what’s right for you. One major thing I’ve learnt through all this is that when I look back on the diet I had, as varied as I thought it was, it was a hell of a lot more restricted than my so called present restrictive diet and I’m healthier. I’m sure you find avoiding wheat and dairy has only opened more nutritious and tastier options than you could’ve imagine? Would you agree?

  2. January 9, 2012 at 11:31 pm #

    Hi Marian, you won’t believe this but I just discovered that you answered my comment…some 4 months later! I didn’t know then that you could click a notify box for follow-up comments. Live and learn. Actually I’m thrilled with my diet after a year of experimenting. I have a terrible sweet tooth but have given up any processed food with sugar in it (for example, caramel rice cakes)…for diet reasons but also because I’ve discovered interesting and more nutritious alternatives. Just this holiday, we were at a party and the host had dates with goat cheese among many other inedible (for me) foods. I discovered that I loved the dates. Now I have a couple chopped up into yogurt. It’s delicious and satisfies that dratted tooth 🙂 All that to say, I certainly do agree. And sorry it took so longer to answer!

    • January 10, 2012 at 7:31 am #

      Hi Claire, great to hear from you. No worries about delay, I’m find new and easier ways of doing things on the web every day – in fairness the old design was the most user friendly, couldn’t wait to change it. Yep I can believe that the goats cheese and dates were WOW alright. I’m working on a lot of cakes over the few months for a book I’m writing and although some will have sugar (no way around it, though I am trying to replace as much of the sugar as it possible in those particular ones) there will be a good few with agave syrup and the like. No doubt you’ll see it when it’s out.Happy New Year and let’s keep in touch Marian

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: