Overnight Chia Porridge {soaked for better digestion and nutrition; dairy-free; Paleo, GAPS}

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Most folks don’t know that chia seeds are high in phytic acid. There is an easy solution, that reaps a great reward! Overnight oats are currently popular because all the work is done the night before and yields a ready-to-go breakfast. But if we’re already letting something sit out overnight, why not SOAK it to reduce phytic acid??Β  SO easy! This overnight chia porridge effortlessly soaks chia seeds in the very same creamy, dairy-free milk (with a little-something-special added) that you’ll enjoy come breakfast-time, for better digestion and nutrition! Read more here about which seeds need to be soaked and why.

This is great!! ~ Overnight Chia Porridge {soaked for better digestion and nutrition!; dairy-free} #chiaporridge #chia #overnight #soaked #overnightchia #overnightbreakfast #porridge #dairyfree #breakfast #paleo #gapsdiet #gapsbreakfast #paleosnack #snack #gapsdietsnack #digestion


The reason soaked nuts and seeds digest better is the same reason they’re more nutritious after being soaked: the dormant seeds or nuts are waking up! The defense mechanisms (the phytic acid that protects a plant) are converting; the plant is sprouting. It was asleep, but now it’s a living thing with more nutrition! You don’t have to see the sprout. Enzymatically the seed or nut has changed. Your body can now break it down easily and utilize its nutrients.

What is *Phytic Acid?

What is phytic acid? It’s a naturally occurring plant compound that interferes with mineral absorption, so it makes our foods less nutritious. However, soaking is a first stage of fermentation that reduces phytic acid. Phytic acid reduction is important for digestion, absorption of nutrients and thyroid function.

Chia Seed Nutrition

Once soaked, chia seeds are more the super-food they’re touted to be: high in carbs, fiber, protein, minerals, good fats. Chia seeds even contain antioxidant andΒ anti-inflammatory plant compounds.

You can double this recipe, which is what I’ve been doing! That way my always-hungry-family has a ready-to-go and easy snack that’s high in nutrition and low in sweetener. High in protein and complex carbs! I even add Paleo protein powder (here’s the vanilla I buy; here’s the chocolate I buy) or collagen (find it here) to mine! You can leave the porridge out overnight in jars or in one big ceramic bowl, covered. SO encouraging to make this kind of a treat– everyone likes it, it’s basically a ferment (which equals FUN in my book), and it’s HEALTHY!! πŸ™‚

Overnight Chia Porridge {soaked for better digestion and nutrition; dairy-free} #chiaporridge #overnightsoaked #overnightchia #overnightbreakfast #soakedporridge #dairyfreeporridge #paleobreakfast #gapsbreakfast #paleosnack #gapsdietsnack

Overnight Chia Porridge {soaked for better digestion and nutrition!; dairy-free; probiotics}
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Megan
  • 2 cups homemade nut/seed milk see recipe below in Recipe Notes, or coconut milk; or use raw or cultured milk if you prefer/can have dairy
  • 2/3 cup chia seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon non-dairy whey* (see how below); or pickling brine (choose any liquid food source of probiotics with a mild flavor, sauerkraut juice will even work; but nothing spicy or with garlic, obviously)
  • optional add-ins up to 2 Tablespoons maple syrup or honey, berries or dates; protein powder, collagen
  1. In medium size bowl combine 2 cups milk of choice with 2/3 cup chia seeds and whey (or kraut juice). Stir well.
  2. Allow to sit 15 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes in the beginning to keep seeds from sinking and clumping before they expand.
  3. Add up to 2 Tablespoons maple syrup or honey, if desired. Add any other mix-ins desired (berries, chopped dates, protein powder, collagen powder). {{NOTE: if you add protein powder, it is often *already sweetened*; so you won't likely need any additional sweetener added to your porridge.}}
  4. Transfer to ball jars. Cover with lids.
  5. Leave in warm location overnight, up to 24 hours.
  6. Transfer to fridge, where seeds will continue to reduce in phytates (and probiotics will increase). Porridge keeps well 4-5 days.
Recipe Notes

Homemade nut or seed milk making-nut-milk-ellies-bag

Combine in a high-powered blender: 3 cups filtered water and 2/3 cup raw hemp seeds (or a soaked/sprouted wet nut or seed of your choice). Optionally, add 1/16 teaspoon powdered stevia (or 5 to 8 drops liquid stevia), to taste. Process on medium-high speed for 50 seconds. Straining is optional. I use Ellie's Nut Milk Bag when I strain. (Find it here.) The milk is now ready to use.


Non-dairy whey

This can be collected from any non-dairy yogurt. Simply place yogurt in cheesecloth or coffee filter-lined colander, over a bowl. Allow to sit out overnight. The liquid that drips into the bowl is whey. It's full of probiotics and will inoculate a ferment or predigest the chia seeds in this recipe. (What's left behind in your colander is dairy-free Greek yogurt or yogurt cheese, thick, creamy and delicious.)

Will you make overnight Paleo soaked porridge?

Comments 36

  1. Yum, yum, yum!!! I would love some with berries on top just like that! We’re having beautiful spring weather here too …. Tiny love jumped out of the car today when we got home and said in the sweetest little voice, “I looooovvvvvveeeee spring because it’s pretty outside, the birds are chirping and flowers are starting to open.” My thoughts exactly. I love this time of the year!

    1. Yeeess!! Just when we need it most, even children! What joy, the seasons. And the fermentation in this porridge is similar, with the seeds becoming more alive, more digestible from the microbial activation that fermentation causes! πŸ™‚ Happy early spring, Emily! πŸ™‚

  2. I thought this was a helpful question from a reader via email: “I have been soaking and using chia seeds lately so really appreciate the
    recipe. I have been wondering though since chia seeds aren’t soaked and
    the water drained off, like in making “crispy nuts”, how is the phytic
    acid removed?”

    Answer: Great
    question. The transformation is different. With soaking in saltwater,
    we pour off the water (and some minerals) that contains antinutrients,
    thus reducing the phytates, AND the raw seed or nut converts to a
    living plant enzymatically (so the germination process), which enhances
    native phytase activity. With probiotic fermentation, (as in the
    overnight chia seed porridge recipe here) phytic acid is reduced, but not
    into soaking water. Rather it is solely due to the microbial activation of already present phytase enzymes, reducing the number of phosphate groups in the plant. Fewer phosphate groups
    mean better absorption of zinc, calcium and iron. Also fermentation
    produces certain acids that actually boost the absorption of certain
    minerals! Soaking is great (with salt water), but probiotic soaking that
    ferments is the best; (included in this category is the sourdough process).

    Hope this helps! πŸ™‚ Megan

    1. Hi Amy, no. By nature, a ferment is happy at room temperature. If anything, it will increase in probiotics. It is not wasted. It becomes Greek yogurt or yogurt “cheese”, but non-dairy versions.

    1. Thanks, Lindsey. We really love berries, especially in winter to get us through the long, dark hours! πŸ˜‰

    1. Possibly, depending on how much you use and how strong the other flavors are. This recipe is slightly sweet, so it’s more of an issue and better to use non-dairy whey.

  3. We make this and love it! I’m wondering if it would freeze well post-fermenting? I’m wanting to prepare easy bkfsts for after baby arrives. Any idea?

    1. Hi Allie, so glad!! No, I don’t think it will freeze well. The probiotics may not survive, and there will be a watery-quality; the texture won’t do well…is my thought. πŸ˜‰ I think you may do better with high-protein baked goods in the freezer. πŸ™‚

  4. This looks so delicious and it’s so EASY. I need to get better with my breakfast routine, so perfect timing with this recipe πŸ˜€

    1. Post

      Yes Amy! πŸ™‚ It won’t be creamy, but it will predigest the seeds, and you could always add creamy as a condiment if you want.

  5. Hi Megan,
    Thanks for sharing this. Quick question, if the soaked chia seeds cannot be drained, aren’t we consuming the phytic acid contained in the soaking liquid when we eat the porridge?

    1. Post

      Hi Mariana, great question. Nope. The phytic acid is neutralized within the seed. It doesn’t go out into the soaking water. The seed transforms due to the acidic medium. πŸ™‚

    1. Post

      Hi Sarah, what can’t you eat? Can you not have dairy or non-dairy whey? You need an acidic medium. Probiotics stirred into your milk would work if kept warm. A small amount of apple cider vinegar would work as well.

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