Lemon Chia Fresca



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Sip on this lemon chia fresca, a refreshing lemonade-like drink with chia seeds that’s great for energy and boosting your metabolism. 

Lemon Chia Fresca in a clear mason jar with a slice of lemon.

While staying in Tulum I quickly noticed that every restaurant had some sort of aqua fresca and/or fresh juice on the menu. Laurel and I took advantage of this and tried a ton of unique combinations. I think one of my favorites was a tamarindo drink with habanero that I ordered at Restaurare one evening. It was sweet, spicy and so refreshing after a day in the sun!

Overhead shot of Lemon Chia Fresca in clear mason jar with lemon slices and yellow flowers.

Back at home I’ve been missing those fun drink options so I started playing around with infusing water and even got some tamarindo from nuts.com to try making agua de tamarindo. I haven’t experimented with it yet, but I’m excited to try my hand at it.

Anyhow, all of these new drink ideas inspired me to try making a chia fresca. If you’re unfamiliar, a chia fresca is simply water and/or juice mixed with chia seeds. The idea originated in Mexico as Ancient Aztec warriors and long-distance runners would use chia seeds to provide sustained energy for long periods of activity. Mixing the seeds with water is like making a homemade energy drink!

Lemon Chia Fresca in a clear mason jar with a slice of lemon.

Today people use chia frescas to stay fueled and hydrated for exercise, but also as a replacement for plain water, tea or coffee. So instead of opting for a cold brew to get you through your afternoon energy slump, you can sip the refreshing lemon chia fresca I’m sharing today.

Not only does the chia fresca have a delicious sweet lemon favor (without any actual sugar), it’s super hydrating and the cayenne pepper gives your metabolism a little boost. No more raiding your snack drawer all afternoon!

Hand stirring a spoon into a clear mason jar of Lemon Chia Fresca.

This basic lemon chia fresca recipe was actually inspired by Suja’s Lemon Love juice with lemon, stevia and cayenne pepper. It’s like a healthy lemonade and one of my favorite treats to buy at my local health food store. I’m hooked on this combo, but I have a feeling I’ll be experimenting more this summer with different chia fresca flavors, too. There are endless variations to play around with!

If you’re not a fan of drinking chia seeds because of the texture, you can always use them in other ways! Maybe try these chia breakfast cookies, chia pudding or chia jam!

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4.60 from 22 votes

No Sugar Lemon Chia Fresca

Sip on this lemon chia fresca, a refreshing lemonade-like drink with chia seeds that’s great for energy and boosting your metabolism. 
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 1 serving


  • 12 ounces of cold water*
  • 2 Tablespoons – 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2-3 teaspoons chia seeds
  • 5-6 drops liquid stevia, or 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • pinch of cayenne pepper


  • Combine all ingredients in a glass and let sit for about 15 minutes in the fridge so the chia seeds have a chance to absorb some of the liquid and “gel” up. Enjoy immediately or save for later. Can be made ahead of time as the mixture should last at least 2-3 days in the fridge.


*You can also use coconut water which is rich in potassium and magnesium.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 53kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 2g | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: lemon chia fresca
Did you make this recipe?Mention @eatingbirdfood and tag #eatingbirdfood!

About Brittany

Hey there, I’m Brittany, the creator of Eating Bird Food, cookbook author, health coach and mama of two littles. Here you’ll find quick and easy recipes that make healthy fun and enjoyable for you and your family!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Love this! I made this yesterday and loved it so much, I made a giant pitcher. I used maple syrup instead of stevia. This drink is definitely becoming a part of my routine. The pinch of cayenne is the perfect zing!

    1. So glad you enjoyed this, Dana! Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I so appreciate it. 🙂

  2. The nutrition states ‘Serving: 1g’
    I want to verify all the nutrition info is for a single serving?

  3. 4 stars
    Hi! Is it okay to make the No sugar Lemon fresca even if i dont have liquid stevia and mapple syrup to put on?

    1. Hey Sophia- You can definitely still make it. It just wont have any natural sweetness added to it so the taste will be slightly different.

  4. Outstanding way to enjoy
    A fun drink I realy like and have made the resepi
    Ladies are so smart thanks for the idea.

  5. 5 stars
    I loved it! I was a little skeptical about the texture of this drink from the mention of, “gel up” but it was great. Very refreshing. Will definitely add this to my morning regimen. Thank you.😊

  6. 5 stars
    I just had surgery here in Tampa, and used this recipe as a drink before surgery.
    It worked great for me, especially because I am diabetic, and no way can I go w/o any food all day!

    1. Hi Chris, I’m so glad this worked out for you! Thank you for taking the time to leave me a comment and review, I so appreciate it!

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