14 Hemp Seed Health Benefits & Side Effects + Recipes

Produced by hemp plants, otherwise known as Cannabis sativa, hemp seeds are small and dark brown.

Organic hulled hemp seeds in a bowl

Since the 1930s, many people have been scared away from hemp seeds due to the fact they are related botanically to marijuana, a member of the cannabis family.

Most people are not even aware of the great nutritional benefits offered by hemp seed.

Today, we’ll present a detailed breakdown of the positive side of these unusual seeds.

What are Hemp Seeds​?

Since hemp seeds are produced by the cannabis plant by the same name ‘hemp’.

They contain tetrahydrocannabinoids (THC), but the amount of this chemical contained in the seeds is incredibly small, trace amounts only.

Hemp cultivated for non-intoxicant purposes is known as industrial hemp. In 1976, Cannabis sativa was split into 2 subspecies; Cannabis sativa subspecies sativa, which has less than 0.3% of THC in the reproductive part of the plant, and Cannabis sativa subspecies indica which has more than 0.3% THC.

The majority of ordinary marijuana contains around 8% THC (1).

Because there must be at least 1% THC present for you to become intoxicated, there is no way you could experience the sort of “high” reaction marijuana users experience when you consume hemp seeds (2).

​Hemp​: Brief Background

Hemp and cannabis are derived from the same plant but come from different parts of the plant.

woman holding hemp flower

Hemp is one of the first known and domesticated crops in the world.

During the earliest days of human history, cannabis thrived near the temporary dwellings of our ancestors.

Water nearby, wide open spaces, and well-fertilized soil gave aid to this “camp follower” crop which quickly became domesticated (3).

For millennia, hemp was cultivated in Europe and Asia. At that point in time, most of its value was found in it being a source of fiber, as well as an oilseed.

We know that hemp has long been used as a textile fiber because we have discovered remains of cloth woven from hemp as far back as 6000 years (4).

Hemp can be made into many things including:

  • Molded plastics
  • Paper products
  • Textiles used in fabric
  • Construction materials
  • Livestock feed and bedding
  • Body care products and essential oils
  • Medicines
  • Food

This is not a comprehensive list of all the things hemp can be used for, but our main focus today is not on every conceivable use but rather on the many direct benefits of the powerhouse hemp seed.

​14 ​Health Benefits of ​Hemp Seeds

The following is 14 evidence-based hemp seeds health benefits.  

1. Hemp Seeds Are Surprisingly Nutritious

You might be surprised to know that these tiny little hemp seeds, also known as hemp hearts, are packed with a nutritional punch.

Though classified as a seed, hemps hearts are actually a nut. When you eat them, you can expect a mild, nutty flavor.

organic hulled hemp seeds in a bowl and spoon

As far as macronutrients, one ounce of shelled hemp seeds (28 grams) will provide you approximately (5):

  • 155 calories
  • 2.4 g carbohydrates
  • 1.1 g fiber
  • 8.8 g protein
  • 13.7 g fat (1.3 g saturated, 1.5 g monounsaturated, 10.7 g polyunsaturated)

The vitamin and mineral content of hemp seeds is as follows (6, 25):

  • 20 mg calcium (77% daily value)
  • 15.4 mg vitamin E (77% daily value)
  • 462 mg phosphorus (41% daily value)
  • 300 mg magnesium (75% daily value)
  • 5 mg zinc (34% daily value)
  • 3.9 mg iron (22% daily value)
  • 0.1 mg copper (77% daily value)
  • 2.8 mg manganese (140% daily value)

Get all these nutrients in just 2 to 3 tablespoons of hemp seeds and they are easy to incorporate into your everyday diet.

KEY POINT: Hemp seeds are a great source of valuable nutrients.

High in vitamins and minerals, and full of protein and healthy fats, hemp seeds provide a broad spread of nutritional benefits.

​​​​2. Hemp Seeds Are a Great Vegetarian Protein Source

Hemp seeds are also a great source of protein (7) since over 25% of their caloric impact is from protein.

When compared by weight, the protein impact of hemp seeds is close to that of lamb and beef.

You can get around 10 grams of protein from 2 to 3 tablespoons of hemp seeds (8). 

two scoops of raw organic hemp protein powder and shelled hemp seeds

Amino acids are vital to the body, but your body is unable to produce all of them on its own.

These must come from food, and hemp seeds are a good choice since hemp seed is a a complete protein (9), they provide all 2​0 amino acids. ​

Many people are not getting enough protein in their diets on a daily basis.

 Of course, the amount of protein you need will vary depending on the type of life you live and your chosen way of eating.

If you are pretty sedentary, you will not need as much as if you were training for a triathlon.

Nonetheless, reaching the minimum recommended daily intake of protein is important.

The National Institute for Health recommends that (10):

  • Men between 19 and 70 years of age consume 56 grams of protein a day
  • Women between the ages of 19 and 70 consume 46 grams of protein a day
  • Pregnant and nursing women should consume 71 grams of protein a day.

Many people think they have to rely on meat sources for protein, but that is simply not the case.

While it is often difficult to find a complete protein that is plant-based due to them not containing the amino acid lysine, that is not an issue with hemp seeds.

There are two vital proteins found in hemp seed - edestin and albumin.

Edestin is similar to protein found in the human body and this protein works hard to repair cellular DNA.

Albumin is a protein also found in egg whites (8).

The protein found in hemp seeds is far easier for your body to digest when compared to protein from several other nuts, legumes and grains. (7).

High levels of glutamic acid and arginine, as well as the amino acids cysteine and methionine can be found in hemp seeds (11).

Hemp seeds can easily help you hit your recommended protein intake.

KEY POINT: Hemp seeds provide all 20 essential amino acids, and they are a complete protein source. ​

This makes hemp seeds ideal for your plant-based protein needs.

​3. Full of Healthy Fatty Acids

Over 30% of the hemp seed’s caloric density comes from fat.

hemp seed in bowl and hemp oil in glass bottle

Linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3) are two essential fatty acids that are found in high amounts in hemp seeds (8).

30 grams of shelled hemp seeds contains 3 grams omega-3 and 7.5 grams of omega-6 fatty acids ​(108).

Omega-3 fatty acids are linked to improving health like the development of muscle fibers (12) and helping to heal skin disorders (13), and they are also essential for balancing your immune system (14).

Unfortunately, studies show that many people living in the Western world do not get enough omega-3 fatty acids in their diet (15).

When researchers studied the relationship between coronary heart disease and linoleic acid (the omega-6 from hemp seeds), they found that people who consumed more linoleic acids had a lower risk of coronary heart disease events, and were less likely to die if an event did occur (16). 

When the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio is not properly balanced in our body, it can result in health problems like obesity and systemic inflammation (18).

Your body does not have the ability to create these fatty acids, nor can it convert omega-6 fatty acids into omega-3 fatty acids.

The only way your body can get these essential fatty acids is through your diet – but you must be careful to consume ​a  healthy ratio of omega-6 to omega-3.

The balance of these two fatty acids is important because when the balance is not properly maintained it can be detrimental to human health (17).

Too much omega-6 in the diet can result in the exacerbation of many inflammatory diseases, and put you at risk for developing diseases such as diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease, cardiovascular disease and rheumatoid arthritis (17).

For most people eating a Western diet, the balance of omega-6 to omega-3 is completely out of balance as they consume a ratio of at least 15:1 (19).

The recommended ratio of these fats in a healthy diet is 4:1 (20).

The proportional ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 in hemp seeds is between 2:1 and 3:1 (21​, 22).  

This makes hemp seeds beneficial in helping you ​consume more omega-3 to balance the omega-6.

KEY POINT: Hemp seeds provide an ideal ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 essential fatty acids. ​​

High consumption of omega-6 in our diet can be harmful to our health.  ​

Eating hemp seeds in can help balance the omega-6 to achieve a ​healthy fatty acid dietary balance.

4. Can Help With Heart Disease

Resulting in nearly 10 million deaths a year, heart disease is the number one killer in the world and has been for almost two decades (23).

Inflammatory processes have been linked to coronary heart disease (24), so avoiding inflammation is important in reducing your risk of heart disease. 

hemp seeds in hand with heart shape

The gamma-linolenic acid found in hemp seeds (​8​) helps to suppress inflammatory responses, which in turn reduces inflammation in the body.

Familial hypercholesterolemia is a genetic disorder characterized by extremely high cholesterol (26) and those who live with this disorder are more likely to die from heart disease while they are young (27).

As the excessively high levels of cholesterol collect in the platelets they can lead to abnormal platelet aggregation, which can increase the risk of atherothrombosis (28) that leads to cardiac death.

In animal studies it was found that adding hemp seeds to the diets of rabbits increased the measured levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) in the plasma, which in turn normalized the levels of cholesterol induced abnormal platelet aggregation (29).

When you get your cholesterol tested, they measure your total cholesterol, your HDL (good) cholesterol and your LDL (bad) cholesterol.

Your total cholesterol is divided by your HDL to find your cholesterol ratio, which helps determine your risk of heart disease (30).

The higher your ratio is, the greater your chance of developing heart disease (31). 

PUFAs like the gamma-linoleic acid found in hemp seeds can help lower the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL (32), thereby lowering your risk of heart disease. 

​For people at risk for coronary heart disease, it is recommended that 5-10% of the diet come from ​linoleic acid sources (33) such as hemp seeds.

High C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in the blood are an indicator of inflammation (34) as well as a predictor of heart attacks (35).

Arginine found in hemp seeds has been shown to be useful in the reduction of CRP (36).

Though heart attacks themselves can result in death, the ensuing ischemic reperfusion injury can also kill (37).

An animal study from 2007 has shown that a diet containing hemp seeds played a large role in the post-ischemic recovery of rats (38).

This study showed that during post ischemic reperfusion there were many cardio-protective effects brought on by the PUFA content of the hemp seeds.

KEY POINT: Hemp seeds can supply the PUFAs as well as the arginine that can help to lower the risk of heart disease.

​5. May Offer Protection against Alzheimer’s Disease

According to the CDC the sixth leading cause of death in the United States is Alzheimer’s disease (39).

Alzheimer’s causes 60-80% of all dementia cases (40).

tree head depicting alzheimers

It results in severe memory loss as well as problems with behavior and cognitive abilities, and it worsens over time.

​As mentioned earlier, omega-3 ​fatty acids are found in abundance amounts in hemp seeds (​8).

In one study, researchers were looking at the relation between Alzheimer’s disease and lipid status in the human body.

They were looking into the theory that omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial to neuroprotection and theorize that proper capacities of lipids could prevent or delay Alzheimer’s disease (41).

In another study it was found that the higher a person’s intake of omega-3 containing foods was, the less likely they were to experience mild cognitive impairment which is a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease (42​, 43).

​It is strongly believed that the production of this Abeta is directly correlated to the development of Alzheimer’s (45).

Research found that elevated LDL cholesterol levels play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s disease by generating to abeta in the brain (44​, ​52)

In a human study, linoleic acid supplementation (of which hemp seeds contains in abundance) over two weeks have been found to reduce LDL cholesterol by as much as 18% (​53).

In Alzheimer’s disease, many of the neurotransmitters in the brain have decreased in function (46) resulting in a loss of acetylcholinesterase (AChe) activity.

The most common drugs used to treat the effects of Alzheimer’s work to reduce the breakdown of AChe, allowing the neurotransmitters to function for longer periods of time (47).

A study found that some of the secondary metabolites in hemp seeds can act as AChe inhibitors, giving rise to the hope that hemp seeds maybe beneficial in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease (48).

KEY POINT: Hemps seeds contain nutrients that can help in reducing the risk of developing ​Alzheimer’s disease.

​6. Can Improve Digestive Health

​People with adequate fiber consumption are at a lower risk for many diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and heart disease (50).

woman with hands around belly

Nutritional data shows that hemp seeds are a good source of both soluble and insoluble forms of dietary fiber, containing 4 grams of fiber in a 100g serving (51​, ​25). 

The fiber in hemp seeds is 20% soluble and 80% insoluble (8).

Soluble fiber can dissolve in water and forms a thick gel like sludge in the gut. 

It contains nutrients that feed the good digestive bacteria as well as help regulate cholesterol and reduce blood glucose spikes (​49​, 50​)

Insoluble fiber increases the amount of roughage to help food and waste travel along your gut. 

Insoluble fiber ingestion has been linked a lowered risk of type-2 diabetes (54, 55).

A study conducted in China looked at patients who were suffering from constipation and the efficacy of using hemp seed to treat this problem.

​The patients were relieved of their constipation when their diet was supplemented with hemp seed pills (56).  

It was found that for functional constipation, 7.5 grams was more effective than lower doses.

While there is plenty of fiber in the hemp hearts, most of the fiber in hemp seeds is found in the shell of the seed.

Therefore, if you want as much fiber as possible you will want to eat whole hemp seeds instead of the shelled hemp hearts since they contain very little fiber.

KEY POINT: Hemp seeds are a great source of both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber which helps us to have healthy digestive systems, resulting in better health.

​7. Regulate Immune Response

Fatty acids can be a beneficial tool in the modulation of immune responses (57).

Healthy human red and white bloodcells in close up 3d graphics render

They can be useful in ​over 100 autoimmune-inflammatory diseases (58) that we live with each day (59).

The fatty acids found in hemp seeds can play a role in the production of cytokines, gene regulation, signal transduction pathways, and antioxidant enzymes (59).

When they are able to control the above-mentioned systems, hemp seeds can reduce inflammation brought on by immune-mediation, and can also beneficially suppress the immune system in people with autoimmune diseases (60​, 61).

KEY POINT: The omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids hemp seeds help regulate our immune system.

​8. Skin Health

Because hemp seeds contain all 21 essential amino acids and provide the perfect 3:1 ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 essential fatty acids (62), hemp seeds can be pressed into an oil that is beneficial to skin.

There are many skin disorders, some the result of systemic disease (63) and others as a symptom of autoimmune disease (64).

The omega-3 and omega-6 oils found in hemp seeds can reach the deepest layers of your skin, alleviating the dry, itchy, red skin that can happen as a result of inflammatory skin disorders (65).

magnifying glass showing dry skin o face

Atopic dermatitis, or eczema symptoms showed improvement when treated with oil from hemp seeds (66).

Studies suggest that this improvement is a direct benefit received from the PUFAs in the hemp seed oil (67).

Additionally, hemp seeds contain antioxidants that are beneficial to skin health (68​, ​69).

One such antioxidant found in hemp seeds is Vitamin E (70) which has been used in the treatment of dermatological disorders for decades (71).

KEY POINT: If you suffer with dry itchy skin, you may find relief in using hemp seed oil due to its rich content of fatty acids and antioxidant properties.

​9. Promote Weight Loss

The most satiating macronutrient available in our diets is protein. This is believed to be a result of the amino acids contained in protein (72).

Not getting enough protein in your diet can cause you to feel hungrier and increase your desire to eat (73).

woman happy on scale as flaxseed help with her weight loss

​People who eat diets high in protein showed significantly greater weight loss when compared to those who didn’t (74).

Because hemp seeds are a complete protein (containing all 21 amino acids as well as several essential fatty acids), they can help to naturally suppress your hunger (8).

​Hemp seeds​ are also high in fiber. Fiber is another macronutrient that can promote satiety and help you to control your appetite (75).

Many people add hemp seed protein to their diets in an attempt to raise their intake of protein without adding more meat.

The product that is commonly used as hemp protein is derived from dry hemp seed meal and contains about 50% protein.

In one 30 gram (4 tablespoons) serving there are around 15 grams of protein (76).

KEY POINT: The high levels of protein and fiber found in hemp seeds can keep you satiated helping you to lose weight.

​10​. Cancer Prevention

High levels of inflammation ​are linked to a increase risk of developing cancer as inflammatory cells produce an attractive environment for tumor growth (77).

We know that hemp seeds can play a role in reducing inflammation (78) due to their high levels of beneficial PUFAs.

hands holding pink ribbon that represents cancer

Researchers theorize that hemp seeds anti-inflammatory nature will be useful in the treatment of cancer and have started looking into this option.

Though the levels are minimal, there is THC in hemp seeds. THC has proven beneficial in the treatment of cancer.

In one study, THC was shown to inhibit the growth of glioblastoma multiforme tumors in the brain (79).

Another study found that CBD oil (also derived from the hemp plant) has proven effective in improving advanced stages of breast cancer (80).

Cannabinoids have also been found useful in treating the side effects of cancer treatment (81).

KEY POINT: There is promise that the use of ingredients found in hemp seeds can be beneficial in the treatment of cancer.

The research is still ongoing.

​​11​. Treat Multiple Sclerosis

People who suffer with multiple sclerosis (MS) experience many symptoms, but no two people will experience them in the same way.

Some of the more predictable symptoms of this disease are fatigue, difficulty walking, weakness and numbness, spasms and problems with vision (82).

Multiple ​sclerosis is a demyelinating disease.

In a demyelinating disease, the myelin sheath of the nerves is damaged which impairs the transmission of signals in the nerves that have been affected (83).

​Studies have ​found that supplementing with a mixture of hemp seeds and evening primrose oil significantly improved the symptoms the study participants were experiencing (84​, 85).

One such study claims that because of the hemp seeds effect on improving the myelin membrane, it might help to also prevent MS (85).

More research is required in this area.

KEY POINT: Hemp seeds have show its effectiveness in rebuilding myelin membranes which gives promise in the treatment and prevention of multiple sclerosis.

Combining the power of hemp seeds with evening primrose oil can ​ improve the life quality of MS patients.

​12​. Hormone Balance for Women

An imbalance in the hormone prolactin is thought to be directly responsible for the premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms experienced by more than 80% of women who have reached reproductive age (86​, ​87).

woman lying on sofa with pms

Prostaglandin is a hormone that has been used to reduce the effects of prolactin and lessen the symptoms of PMS (88).

Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) is an essential building block for prostaglandin E1 (89​,​ 90), and GLA is found in high levels in hemp seeds (75).

In one study, ​it was found that women who took one gram of GLA a day experienced a decrease in their PMS symptoms (91).

Researchers also believe GLA helps regulate the inflammation and imbalanced hormones that are characteristic of menopause (92​, ​93).

KEY POINT: The gamma-linoleic acid found in hemp seeds can play an integral role in reducing the symptoms of PMS caused by prolactin. 

It is also believed that this can reduce the symptoms of menopause.

​13. Help Arthritis and Joint Pain

There are two main types of arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

They both involve the joints in your body. 

When the joints and the tissues that surround them become inflamed, you will experience the joint pain that is synonymous with arthritis (94).

hemp oil in glass jar, hemp seed in wooden spoon and hemp protein in bowl

Many clinical trials have shown that omega-3 fatty acids are a great tool in the fight against chronic inflammation and autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Omega-3 supplementation helped to decrease the disease activity and it also reduced the need for anti-inflammatory drugs (95)

In hemp seeds the omega-3 is an excellent source of gamma linolenic acid (GLA) which has been shown to be effective in treating inflammation (96).

Studies found that diets rich in GLA can alter the generation of the prostaglandins and leukotrienes which can influence chronic inflammatory and acute responses (97).

Another study looked specifically at the effect hemp seed oil had on rheumatoid arthritis symptoms.

During the study the researchers discovered that the hemp seed oil slashed the survival rate of MH7A synovial cells found in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

In several cases the hemp seed oil even promoted the death of these troublemaking cells. 

It concluded that the hemp seed oil was useful in treating the effects of arthritis (98).

KEY POINT: ​Hemp seeds contain a great source of the anti-inflammatory gamma linolenic acid (GLA). 

Adding hemp seeds to your diet can help reduce your inflammation, thus reducing joint pain and arthritis symptoms.

​14​. Help ​Treat Hypertension

High blood pressure affects nearly half of all American adults (99).

Blood pressure can remain at normal levels when the blood vessels are able to relax and dilate properly.

Nitric oxide, a gas molecule in the body can play a large role in the regulation of blood pressure (100).

sphygmomanometer on white background

The human body can synthesize nitric oxide from the amino acid l-arginine (101), which is found in high levels in hemp seeds (​8).

It is widely believed that a key contributor to hypertension is stress, due to the increased blood pressure elevations that occur under repeated stress (102).

To reduce the number of blood pressure elevations that leads to hypertension, we need to find a way to reduce stress. 

Hemp seed can help with this, too.

The protein hydrolysate found in hemp seed protein meal has been found to reduce stress factors in hypertensive rats (103).

For 4 to 8 weeks the study participants were fed defatted hemp seed meal that was hydrolyzed.

At the end of the testing period, the participants showed lower levels of hypertension when compared to the controls (104).

KEY POINT: The l-arginine found in hemp seeds can help regulate blood pressure by helping the production of nitric oxide.  ​

Studies of hemp seed meal and hypertension give hope to the idea of treating or even preventing hypertension.


​Hemp Seed Side Effects

At this point, you know the benefits of hemp seed and may consider adding it to your diet.  But does it have any side effects?  In short, minimal. 

hulled hemp seed pile

There are no known drug interactions with general medication. 

However, due to hemp seeds reducing blood platelet aggregation (107), it may increase bleeding risk if taken alongside anticoagulants.

Make sure to consult a medical practitioner if you have concerns about possible drug interactions.

Tips for Purchasing Hemp Seeds

You have now learned of some of the many benefits of hemp seeds, and now we are going to look at things you need to be mindful of when purchasing this wonder food.

There are a lot of options available, and it can be difficult to weed through the information and find what is best for you.

To help you make your choice, I’ve come up with a list of things you need to think about when you decide to purchase your hemp seeds.

Location​ 

Find out where your hemp seeds were grown.

Though things are slowly changing, as of this writing it is still against federal law to cultivate hemp in the United States, which means that you won’t be able to find any hemp seeds originating in the US (105).

When looking at reviews, it appears as though the best hemp hearts are cultivated in Canada – but this is a matter of opinion.

The good news is that many hemp seeds and other hemp products grown in Canada have been verified to be non-GMO (106).

Type of Seed

There are two types of hemp seeds sold.

One is hemp hearts which are seeds that have been hulled (also known as shelled), meaning that the outer crunchy shell has been removed.

The other is whole hemp seeds which are usually sold as roasted​.

hemp products: seeds, hearts (shelled seeds) and protein powder in small ceramic bowls on burlap canvas with word hemp spelled in letterpress wood type

The shell of the seed contains most of the fiber, so if you are looking to consume more fiber from hemp seed, whole hemp seed is what you need.  

Hulled hemp seeds will contain more protein and less carbs compared to whole hemp seeds.

Organic or Not

Just as with anything else you consume, you can find hemp seeds that are grown organically and hemp seeds that are grown conventionally.

If eating organic is important to you, be sure to look for that on the hemp seed packaging.

Brand 

There are dozens of brands to sift through when choosing hemp seeds.

There really isn’t one brand to recommend over the other as of yet, since they are all cultivated in the same way.

As hemp seeds become more of a staple, there will be more differences and it will be easier to have a preference.

Where to Purchase

You can usually purchase hemp seeds at a local retailer or at a health food store. 

You can also find them online, where you are likely to get good bulk prices.

How To Add Hemp Seeds To Your Diet

There are ways you can add hemp seeds into your diet, and they are all relatively simple.

hemp seeds on spoon
  • You can sprinkle hemp seeds on top of your salad, just as you would any other topping like nuts or other seeds.
  • Top your breakfast smoothie with a bit of hemp seeds, or you can easily blend them into your smoothie if you’d rather.
  • Sprinkle hemp seeds on your sandwiches, whether it be a meat and cheese sandwich or a peanut butter and jelly. Have a tasty lunch with a nutritional kick!
  • Acai bowls and other types of loaded nutrition bowls are packed with nutrients, throw a few more in there with a handful of hemp seeds!
  • Whether they’re made from hamburger or beans, when making your burgers or meatloaf, mix the hemp seeds into your mixture.
  • Use hemp seeds as a topping for your baked potatoes.
  • Sprinkle some hemp seeds on top of your pizza or pasta dishes.
  • Use hemp seeds in place of sesame seed in Asian-inspired dishes like stir fry and sushi.
  • Blend up with water and make hemp seed milk.
  • Instead of popcorn, reach for toasted hemp seeds while binging on your favorite tv shows.
  • Toss some hemp seeds on top of your hearty bowl of oatmeal in the morning.
  • If you’re a cereal eater, add some nutrition to your fruity pebbles with a sprinkling of hemp seeds.

As you can see, there are plenty of ways to add hemp seeds into your diet, and they are all great choices for hiding away a bit more nutrition each day!


​Simple Hemp Seeds Recipes to Enjoy

​While it can be simple to add hemp seeds into your diet by just tossing them into something you already eat, it can also be a good idea to learn how to use the hemp seeds in recipes.

For the recipes, you can replace sugars with the appropriate amount of healthier sweeteners like stevia or swerve.

Below you will find a selection of tasty hemp seed.

1. Hemp ​Seed Banana Berry Pudding

This refreshing pudding is packed full of benefits from the hemp seeds as well as the berries

hemp seed banana berry pudding

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 2 cups berries, fresh or thawed from frozen
  • 2 tablespoon coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoon hemp seeds
  • 2 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Maple syrup to taste (optional)

Steps

  • Place bananas, berries and coconut milk in a food processer and combine. Taste the mixture for sweetness. If you’d like it sweeter, add maple syrup to your liking and blend again to combine.
  • Add hemp seeds, chia seeds and cinnamon, then pulse the mixture to combine the ingredients.
  • Transfer to a dish to chill and thicken in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight.

This makes 3 to 4 servings and will keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.

2. Fudge Hemp Seed Bites

These rich and fudgy hempseed balls are a decadent treat

fudge hemp seed balls

Ingredients

  • 8 pitted dates (medjool)
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoon hulled, divided hemp seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • A few drops of extract for flavoring (optional, but hazelnut is delicious)

Steps

  • Set aside 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds.
  • In a food processor, combine the dates, cocoa powder, hemp seeds, coconut oil and extract, mixing just until it starts sticking together.
  • Shape the mixture into small balls about 1 inch around, and roll the balls in the 2 tbsp of hemp seeds you set aside.
  • Refrigerate the balls for around 1 hour, or until they are firm.

This recipe will make 6 fudge balls, but it is very rich, so you won’t need many at once!

3. Coconut Hemp Seed Granola

This delicious granola can be eaten as a cereal, a yogurt topping, or by the handful as a delicious, filling snack

coconut hemp seed granola

Ingredients

  • 2 ¼ cups old fashioned oats
  • ½ cup hemp seeds
  • ¾ cup shredded coconut
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup melted coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Steps

  • Preheat oven to 325°F/162°C and line a baking pan with parchment paper or a nonstick mat.
  • Mix together the oats, hemp seeds, coconut, almonds, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl.
  • In another bowl, combine the coconut oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract.
  • Pour the liquid mixture over the oats and hemp seed mixture. Stir to combine.
  • Spread the granola mixture on your prepared baking pan.
  • Place in the oven for 10 minutes.
  • Stir the granola around on the pan and place it back in the oven for another 10 minutes.
  • Allow the granola to cool before storing in an airtight container.

This will make about 14 servings (at ¼ cup per serving) and will keep for about a week in an airtight container.

4. Black Bean and Hemp Seed Burgers

You won’t miss the meat at all with these tasty burgers

black bean hempseed burgers

Ingredients

  • 1 ¼oz can black beans, drained
  • 1 red pepper
  • ½ red onion
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • ¼ cup hemp seeds
  • ½ cup brazil nuts
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • ½ cup oats
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sea salt

Steps

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F/176°C and prepare a pan with parchment paper
  • Pulse the red onion and the red pepper in your food processer until they are minced, then add to a large mixing bowl.
  • In your food processor, add the brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, garlic, chili powder, cumin and salt and blend until it has a grainy texture. Add to the bowl with the pepper and onion.
  • Add the beans and the cilantro to the food processor and pulse them until they are almost smooth, then add to the mixing bowl.
  • Add the oats to all of the other ingredients in the mixing bowl and stir well to combine.
  • Take the mixture and form it into palm sized patties, then place the patties on the prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake the burger patties in the preheated oven for 25 minutes, then remove the pan and flip the burgers over.
  • Return the pan to the oven and cook the burgers for an additional 10 minutes.
  • When the burgers are done, serve them on buns (optional) with the usual burger toppings like lettuce, tomato and onion.

This recipe will make about 6 burger patties and is best when eaten fresh.

5. Hemp Crusted Baked Chicken Tenders

These chicken tenders are naturally gluten free, but will give you the crunch you love.

hemp chicken tenders

Ingredients

  • ½ cup hemp seeds
  • ½ cup almond meal
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 large eggs, whisked
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken tenders

Steps

  • Preheat your oven to 400°F/204°C and prepare a baking pan with parchment paper
  • In a bowl, mix together the hemp seeds, almond meal, garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper and cayenne.
  • Dip each chicken piece into the whisked egg, shaking off any excess.
  • Place chicken in the hemp mixture and coat with the hemp and seasonings.
  • Place chicken strip on prepared baking pan.
  • Continue with he remaining pieces of chicken.
  • Place your sheet of chicken tenders in your preheated oven and bake for 20 minutes, making sure to flip the tenders halfway through.
  • Remove from the oven and serve with your favorite dipping sauce or enjoy plain.

This recipe will make about 4-6 servings of chicken tenders and is best when enjoyed fresh.

6. Hemp Seed Milk

This simple recipe will quickly become a staple in your kitchen

hemp seed milk

Ingredients

  • 4 cups filtered water
  • ¾ cup hemp seeds

Steps

  • In a high-powered blender, combine the hemp seeds and water then blend until completely smooth.
  • Pour the mixture into a big bowl using a fine mesh strainer to catch any bits of hemp seed that remain.
  • Refrigerate your milk in a closed container.
  • Shake before each use.

This makes several servings of milk and will keep fresh for about 1 week in the fridge.

Now you have several delicious recipes you can make to get some hemp seeds into your diet!


Conclusion

Though hemp seeds are nothing new in nutrition, there is still a slight stigma due to the fact that they come from the cannabis plant.

Think about all the amazing health benefits that these tiny little seeds will provide you and get them into your daily diet.

They are easy to find, simple to use, and they add a nutrition packed punch to your daily routine.

Your heart, brain, skin and joints will all be thanking you!

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  • Updated October 3, 2018

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Great article!!

Cool! I think the black bean burger and the chicken tenders look especially enticing.

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