Superfood recipes from Richmond’s Health Warrior.
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Health Warrior co-founder Nick Morris, Tarahumara runner Arnulfo Quimare, and Health Warrior CFO Austin Harris in the Copper Canyons of Mexico.
Photos courtesy of Hunter Pechin
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Nick Harris and Health Warrior CEO Shane Emmett
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Shane Emmett in the Copper Canyons of Mexico where the Tarahumara tribe lives.
Since 2013, Health Warrior’s chia product sales have more than quadrupled, according to the Richmond-based company’s vice president, Julia Wing-Larson. Chia seeds were widely-unknown in 2010, when CEO Shane Emmett launched the company with friends Dan Gluck and Nick Morris after reading about its dietary use by the long-distance runners of the Tarahumara tribe of Copper Canyon in Mexico. Now distributed in 10,000 stores across the country, including Target, Whole Foods, Wegman’s and Kroger, Health Warrior Chia products are still the only brand which contains chia as the first ingredient.
Chia seeds are high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to fight inflammation in the body and benefit the neurological and immune systems. “Chia is now a very popular superfood,” says Wing-Larson, “and we’re proud of the work we’ve done to make [it] delicious [and] convenient.” In addition to the company's original products, Health Warrior now offers protein bars and, new for 2017, a line of pumpkin seed bars, which are the first Health Warrior product to not contain chia. Wing-Larson says that like chia, pumpkin seeds are nutrient dense, but have more magnesium, zinc and copper. The pumpkin seed bars are initially available in three flavors—cinnamon spice, dark chocolate, and cracked pepper with turmeric—and each have only seven or eight ingredients. Read more about how Health Warrior got its start here.
New to superfoods? Health Warrior shares some punch-packed recipes to get you through the whole day. HealthWarrior.com
For Breakfast: Chia Pancakes
coconut oil (for frying the pancakes) ½ cup of almond meal (almond flour) 2 tablespoons of Health Warrior Premium Chia Seeds ½ tablespoons of baking powder 1 egg 1 large ripe banana ½ cup of unsweetened almond milk 1 tablespoon of almond butter 1 tablespoon of desiccated coconut
In a small bowl, whisk the egg then add the almond milk. Combine all dry ingredients in a separate bowl then pour the wet ingredients into the dry. Whisk to combine and allow to stand while the chia seeds absorb some of the liquid and expand. (If the batter gets too thick, thin it out with some additional almond milk).
Heat a frying pan or skillet over medium/low heat. Add a dollop of coconut oil and allow it to melt.
Spoon out pancakes into the pan and fry, around 3 – 4 minutes each side, until golden. Top with extra coconut flakes and fresh fruit.
Makes 6-8 pancakes
For Lunch: Chia Kiwi Smoothie
4 tablespoon chia seeds 1 1/2 cups lite coconut milk 2 teaspoons organic raw honey (or raw agave) 4 kiwi fruits, peeled and cut in cubes 2 tablespoons organic bee pollen Mixed seeds and nuts, to garnish
Soak the chia seeds in coconut milk for 20 minutes, or overnight in fridge. Add honey and mix to combine. Puree kiwi fruits in the food processor till smooth. Pour the puree into the serving glasses, then cover with soaked chia and gently stir. Garnish with bee pollen and berries.
For A Snack: Rosemary & Sea Salt Chia Crisps
¼ cup of Health Warrior chia seeds ¼ cup of pumpkin seeds (pepitas) ¼ cup of sunflower seeds ¼ gluten-free rolled oats 2 tablespoons of flax seeds ¼ cup of buckwheat flour 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil 1 cup of filtered water 1 teaspoon of rosemary (fresh or dried. If using fresh, chop finely) 1 teaspoon of sea salt
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
In a bowl, combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly. Allow the batter to stand for 20 – 30 minutes while the chia seeds absorb the water. When a dough consistency has formed, the mixture is ready.
Spread the mixture evenly on to the parchment paper. Layer another piece of parchment paper on top and use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a thin layer. Remove top layer of parchment paper carefully. Carefully cut the dough into small squares using a sharp knife. Place in the oven and bake for around 30 – 40 minutes (individual ovens may vary). Crisp bread is ready when golden brown and crisp.
For Dinner: Baked Sweet Potato Bowl
sweet potato Greek yogurt chopped walnuts honey chia seeds
Bake sweet potato at 400 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour until a knife slides easily into the sides of the sweet potato. Cut open and top with Greek Yogurt, chopped walnuts, honey and chia seeds.
For Dessert: Sticky Bun Chia Pudding
2 cups almond milk ½ cup Health Warrior chia seeds 2 tbsp agave 1 tbsp brown sugar 1 tsp cinnamon 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the sticky pecans: 2 tablespoon maple syrup 2 tablespoon agave pinch of sea salt ¾ cup chopped pecans
In a medium bowl, whisk together almond milk, chia seeds, agave, brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Once pudding has thickened, prepare the sticky pecans.
Add maple syrup, agave, and sea salt to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in pecans. Let pecans sit for 5 minutes. Spoon sticky pecans over pudding to serve.