Your Holiday Cranberry Sauce Just Way Healthier (The Secret is the Chia)

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Holiday meals just wouldn’t be the same without cranberry sauce. But this year, we think you should give up your favorite canned variety, and get festive with this nutritious batch of cranberry-chia jam. Enjoy it with your Thanksgiving meal, to liven up breakfast, or as part of your leftover spread.

Health Benefits

Along with a big kick of tang, cranberries are bursting with vitamins A, C and antioxidants, plus contain or provide a whopping 5 grams of fiber per cup. These tiny berries also contain flavinoids that help fight inflammation and may also help reduce certain types of bacterial growth. Research from the Cranberry Institute links cranberries to numerous health benefits including lower cholesterol and blood pressure.

One of the hottest superfoods around, chia seeds are a serious source of omega-3 fats, plus they contain protein, fiber, and important minerals like zinc and calcium. Enjoy their crunchy texture raw in salads and baked goods or as a natural thickener for drinks, puddings) and fruit spreads.

Cranberry-Chia Jam

Makes about 2 cups

Ingredients:

12 ounces fresh cranberries (about 3 cups)

Juice of 1/2 a lemon

1/2 cup agave

3 tablespoons chia seeds

Directions:

In a small saucepan combine cranberries, lemon juice and agave. Stir gently and bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until berries are warm and bursting.

Stir in the chia seeds and continue to cook for an additional minute, until thickened. Cool and store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

Nutrition Info Per Tablespoon

Calories: 23; Total Fat: 0 gram; Saturated Fat: 0 grams; Total Carbohydrate: 6 grams

Sugars: 4 grams; Protein: 0 grams; Sodium: 0 milligrams; Cholesterol: 0 milligrams

Fiber: 1 gram

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Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition.