This post is sponsored by Manitoba Harvest. All thoughts, opinions, etc. are 100% my own.
Pop quiz! What do you suppose would happen if a vegan caramel apple joined forces with an apple pie and those two went into business with a bowl of vanilla chia pudding?
Mmhmm, we’d have ourselves this Caramel Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding.
This chia pudding has quickly earned a special place in my heart. Actually, I think it’s my favorite ever. I know, bold statement considering my steadfast declaration of undying love for the strawberry jam version I shared in June. Go
big bold or go home.
Creamy vanilla coconut yogurt chia pudding is layered into glasses or jars (hellooo, portable fall breakfast) along with spoonfuls of cinnamon-spiced apple compote and dreamy 5-minute vegan caramel.
These dreamy parfaits are topped with fresh apple slices and a generous sprinkle of Manitoba Harvest’s Maple & Cinnamon Hemp Heart Toppers. The Hemp Heart Toppers are a blend of hemp hearts, organic coconut sugar and maple sugar, raw cold milled organic hemp powder, and cinnamon. They offer a wonderful boost of plant-based protein and omega-3 (10 grams of each per serving), and their flavor reminds me of a cinnamon crumble topping.
The chia pudding comes together with just 5 to 25 minutes of prep (depending on whether or not you opt for homemade coconut yogurt or store-bought). It’s made by whisking together vanilla coconut yogurt, plant-based milk, pure maple syrup, sea salt, and chia seeds. The mixture is refrigerated for 6 hours (give or take a few), which allows the chia seeds time to soak. As they soak, they absorb the liquid and expand, thickening the mixture into a pudding-like treat. Using coconut yogurt in the pudding base ups the creaminess and lends a gourmet vibe.
The cinnamon-spiced apple compote can be made one of two ways. For a quicker version: add peeled and cored green apples to a high-speed blender along with a splash of apple juice, a few spoonfuls of maple syrup, and a small heap of ground cinnamon. Blend until the apples are puréed and the mixture resembles raw applesauce. That’s it for that version. For a heartier, warmer, richer version, you’ll go the extra mile by simmering the mixture for just 5 to 10 minutes. As it simmers, the compote thickens and the apple-cinnamon flavor intensifies.
Before assembling the parfaits, whip up a batch of my 5-minute caramel and let it cool slightly.
Then, layer the chia pudding, apple compote, and caramel into four small jars or bowls, creating six total layers within each parfait. From there, you can top the parfaits and serve them immediately or cover them, refrigerate for up to four days, and top just before serving. The latter option is perfect for those busy mornings when you’re in need of a quick and energizing grab-n-go breakfast or snack.
Once you’re ready to serve, top the parfaits with the sliced apples, Hemp Heart Toppers, and heck, another round of caramel while you’re at it.
Caramel Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding Parfait (Vegan)
The chia pudding comes together with just 5 to 25 minutes of active prep (depending on whether or not you opt for homemade coconut yogurt or store-bought). It's made by whisking together vanilla coconut yogurt, plant-based milk, pure maple syrup, sea salt, and chia seeds. The mixture is refrigerated for 6 hours (give or take a few), which allows the chia seeds time to soak and expand, thickening the mixture into a pudding-like treat. The chia pudding is topped with vegan caramel, apples, and hemp hearts.
Vanilla Coconut Yogurt Chia Pudding
- 1 1/3 cups vanilla coconut yogurt or store-bought unsweetened vanilla coconut yogurt
- 3/4 cup to 1 unsweetened plant-based milk, as needed
- 2 to 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup, to taste
- Pinch sea salt
- 1/3 cup chia seeds, plus more if needed
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and quartered
- 1/4 cup 100-percent-pure apple juice (2 fluid ounces)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup, more or less to taste
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 tablespoon ground chia seed*
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup 5-Minute Vegan Caramel , to taste (warm, not hot)
- 1 medium granny smith apple, thinly sliced or diced
- 1/4 cup Manitoba Harvest Maple & Cinnamon Hemp Heart Toppers
For the Coconut Yogurt Chia Pudding
In a medium-sized airtight container, whisk together the coconut yogurt, 3/4 cup of the plant-based milk, maple syrup, and sea salt. Add the chia seeds and whisk until they're evenly dispersed throughout the liquid. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours to thicken.
Thoroughly whisk after refrigerating to redistribute the chia seeds. If it's too thick, whisk in more plant-based milk, 1 tablespoon at a time to thin; if it's too thin, whisk in more chia seeds, 1 tablespoon at a time, to thicken.
For the Apple-Cinnamon Compote
Add the apples, apple juice, maple syrup, cinnamon, and sea salt to a high-speed blender, and blend on medium-low until puréed, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed. The texture should resemble thin applesauce.
You have two options for this next step. For a completely fuss-free fresh compote, go with option 1; for a richer, thicker, and heartier compote, go with option 2. 1) For raw compote: Transfer the mixture to a small mixing bowl, add the ground chia, and vigorously whisk to incorporate. Let stand for 10 minutes to thicken slightly. 2) For cooked compote: Transfer the mixture to a medium saucepan, add the ground chia, and vigorously whisk to incorporate. Turn the heat on medium-low, and bring the mixture to a rapid simmer. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes, or until the mixture begins to thicken and most of the excess liquid has cooked off. Remove from the heat and cool completely before assembling.
Layer the chia pudding, compote, and caramel into 4 small jars or bowls (I recommend two layers of each or 6 layers total). You can either top (see below) and serve immediately or cover/seal the parfaits as is, and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Just before serving, top each parfait with a few slices of the apple and 1 tablespoon of the Maple & Cinnamon Hemp Heart Toppers. If desired, finish with another drizzle of caramel.
*Use a coffee grinder or high-speed blender (e.g., Vitamix, Blendtec) to grind your own chia seed. Add about 1/4 up whole chia seed and grind or blend for 15 to 30 seconds, or until ground into a fine powder. Measure off 1 tablespoon and reserve the remainder for another use.
**The prep time includes the 6 hours of refrigeration required to thicken the chia pudding. The recipe requires 30 minutes or less of active preparation.