Fennel Chia Seed Crackers with Rocket (Arugula) Pesto

With fennel, rocket (arugula) and these on-the-vine tomatoes in season now, what better way to celebrate this bounty than with a beautiful fresh pesto and crispy chia crackers.

This is actually a really simple little recipe; the vine tomatoes that I’ve plated these with just have a small amount of salt sprinkled over them with a drizzle of avocado oil. I’m still enjoying the leftovers as I write this now.

Chia crackers are much lighter and can more easily be made thinner than flax crackers, which is why a lot of people prefer them.


Rate This Recipe
4.75 from 4 votes

Fennel Chia Seed Crackers with Rocket (Arugula) Pesto

Nutrition (For one serving)

Calories: 2947kcalCarbohydrates: 302gProtein: 76gFat: 184gSaturated Fat: 20gSodium: 6886mgPotassium: 6957mgFiber: 141gSugar: 94gVitamin A: 9254IUVitamin C: 238mgCalcium: 2387mgIron: 34mg



  • 3 fennel bulbs
  • 4 apples
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 3 tomatoes medium size
  • 4 c;loves garlic
  • 3/4 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp dill
  • 1 1/2 cup chia seed dry

Rocket (arugula) pesto

  • 7 oz rocket arugula
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tsp lemon juice



  • Juice the fennel, apple, lemon and tomato. Transfer this to a blender with the garlic and salt, then blend on full speed.
  • Once the garlic has been blended in, add the dill and blend on a lower setting to break up the dill without blending it all into one colour, so the specks of green still show through. This will give a more attractive cracker in the end.
  • In a bowl, combine the blended mixture with the chia and let that sit for 30 minutes. It will thicken up as the chia seeds go much more gelatinous. It’s better to juice all the ingredients as we’ve done here and soak the chia, rather than just blend all the ingredients up, as you might do with flax crackers, because too much fibre in chia crackers will stop them from crisping up.
  • Spread this mixture as thinly as possible over two nonstick dehydrator sheets, covering the whole sheets.
  • Dehydrate for 4 hours at 115 degrees F and then remove the nonstick sheet, transferring to a cutting board. Cut the crackers to the desired shape and size, which is easier at this stage, now they have been drying for 4 hours.
  • Return the individual crackers to the dehydrator, just on a mesh sheet, and continue to dehydrate at 115 degrees F for 14 hours.
  • Store for up to a week in a sealed container. If they go a little soft, they can be crisped up again in the dehydrator at 115 degrees for a few hours.

Rocket (arugula) pesto

  • Grind all ingredients in a food processor, leaving it a little chunky.
  • Can be kept in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Rate This Recipe
4.75 from 4 votes
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Russell James

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June 27th, 2012

44 thoughts on “Fennel Chia Seed Crackers with Rocket (Arugula) Pesto”

  1. Can you tell me approximately how many ounces of juice you used? Also, have you tried using the pulp before?

    • I’m really not sure how many ounces those vegetables will make when juiced. I’d just be guessing without actually doing it, which probably isn’t very helpful to you 🙂

      I will say that if you juice those ingredients listed, you’ll be good.

      I have used juice pulp before, yes. You can see that here.

  2. Everything I make is amazing every time! I love your videos! However, could you do a video on how you make your raw crackers? Your crackers always look so perfect and store bought looking! My crackers although tastes good, comes out unappealing. Uneven, “hilly” looking (some areas higher or lower than others) what is the secret to a sexy cracker!?

  3. Hi Russell,
    I have these in the dehydrator right now! I needed to add more chia and only had ground for the extra (the fennel bulbs were very fresh and large so more juice than needed) so they won’t be quite the same but I am sure they will be good. Only problem is there are a lot more than expected so is there a way of preserving them longer, freezing then rehydrating when I thaw them maybe?
    Just brought out my ‘The Raw Chef recipe series’ after ages of not looking at it and Im so inspired! I have your macadema cheese in the dehydrator too 🙂 Love your recipes!

    • Do you have more mixture than expected, or just more ground chia? The mixture could be frozen and then defrosted, yes.

      Glad you dusted off your recipes 🙂 Thanks so much for your comments.

      Can I ask (this might seem random, but I’m genuinely interested) what one words describes how we, The Raw Chef, leave you feeling when you use our recipes and website?


      • I feel great satisfaction and pride as your recipes are so good (I first found your recipes in a raw food magazine I picked up at Whole Foods .). They are just genius; important details that make all the difference are always included. I had paid a lot $ to take a raw gourmet class and was so disappointed because the recipes were so full of salt, OIL and SUGAR that my skin broke out from eating what we prepared. Your recipes are amazing and very thoughtfully include options for those who don’t have dehydrator, etc. Hope you come to Miami sometime to do a class.

  4. Hi Russell,
    When and where will You be in London in September? I would like to meet with You!

    Thank You

  5. In the first step, I am presuming that you just put the pulp of the first 4 ingredients into the food processor and not the juice, please clarify this step for me. Thank you

  6. Thank you for charing your inner passion with us. I so enjoy your e-mails because they are so much different from other newsmail – e-letters ,your´s are personal and I can really feel your passion and love for the things that you do.This e-mail was so deep and beautiful and I thank you again for charing, it´s great to getting to know you more.
    Gretings from Sweden/ Anna

  7. Thank you, thank you, thank you. That is one of the most meaningful messages I’ve read in a very long time – from anyone. Teaching and educating aside, you inspire and motivate others (me) to reach higher, to dig deeper and choose more mindfully. To feel the fear and do it anyway. I don’t know if you’re aware of this or not, but when you open like you did in this last message, it grants the rest of us permission, if you will, to do the same. To look harder and see where we could give more of ourselves – discover and share more joy through our own individual and unique expression. Don’t worry about the legacy Russell, – it’s alive and well.

    By remembering who you are, you have reminded me of who I am – and I will see you in London in September!

  8. Loved your email. Got this tweet from Marianne Williamson today and it sums up how your ‘businesslike’ emails have worked for me: “People hear you on the level you speak to them from. Speak from your heart, and they will hear with theirs”.
    I confess don’t always read the words cause sometimes the photos and ingredient lists are enough to get the message of what you’re offering and where you’re coming from. One email made my heart palpably open, simply because of the beauty and just the genius of it; another had me notice that food can have the same effect as music (in the way that it can shift your energy in the moment and take you to another place). You can’t fake responses like that – they just come from an open heart like the quote says above. Its a different language, a different wavelength.
    I’ve let go of (i.e culled) every online sub that doesn’t use it cause they just make me grumpy. I have a feeling that more and more people are feeling exactly the same and that the desire for simple humanity, heart-centred service and innocent, straightforward, happy human exchange is growing into a market in its own right. You are one of 2 or 3 people I see as being strikingly at the forefront of that. Good on you and keep it coming 🙂

    • Hi Roise, thank you so much for those observations and thoughts. I agree with you.

      There’s never been a better time for a person to have their passion be their career, and as that grows we’re seeing people really connect from a place of authenticity.

  9. Hi Russell, what a beautiful email you sent, and a wonderful recipe 🙂 I really felt you in your words, you are right to be ‘YOU’, people do relate and appreciate authenticity, that is why people ‘feel’ you. You have lovely comments here form your followers that proves your authentic and your love shows in your work!
    Love & Light from me 🙂
    Cher x

  10. I am an artist and I understand so well these feelings.We are alone with ourself create something who is coming from deep side of ourself and It is so rewarding when people appreciate our language and connect with the piece . Your creation in raw food is wonderful and you find yourself in this path and a lot of people follow you. Bravo !

  11. Dear Russell, thank you for what comes with this recipe. Body and Soul in your profession. Thanks for sharing. The food receives the feelings and thougts of the cheff, and when the chef is Transparent, the food increases its frequency.
    Thanks for being, totally, completely, involved in your service, this nurture our souls also.

    • Hi Alana, thanks of these words. I like the idea that the food increases its frequency as the chef creating it is transparent. I think that translates into the photos of the food too.

  12. Go for the comedy class. I did. It was an out the box thing and it was fun. I enjoy getting to know you. Hope I can meet you someday.

  13. ….oh and if I can’t find fennel can I substitute with something else, like celery for example?

  14. Russell could you please clarify what you mean by 3 bulbs of fennel? Do you mean 3 whole fennel plants?

  15. uauuu!!! thanks for opening your heart, you were brave! it’s great for me to know you more. It was a dream to meet you in Switzerland (the Italian girl, if you remember). I love this new recipe, I’ll try to do it.
    By the way my guru is Joe Vitale.

  16. Question: Due to breast cancer I must stay away from anything that simulates or stimulates estrogen so I don’t make Flax crackers any more. With Chia, doesn’t one need to drink extra fluids because the chia absorbs liquids around it? How does that make for a better cracker? Thanks for your time. I really want to make them.

    • I’ve not heard of anyone suggesting to drink extra fluids when eating chia. Remember also that these chia have already absorbed a lot of liquid from the juice.

  17. Hi! Russell. Can some other kind of nut be substituted for pine nuts in the pesto recipe. I know they are traditional, but I’m not wildly fond of them. Thanks.

  18. So touchy,open hearted and sincere your article on News From the Kitchen issue 32. I am nearly in tears…


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