Making Kale Chips: A Real Food Recipe Review — Does it Work?

5 out of 5 leaves

5 out of 5 leaves

Kale is a dark green leafy vegetable.  It is generally grown in the winter, and is a common find at farmers markets and in organic vegetable gardens.  Although considered by many to be the healthiest vegetable on the planet, it is not commonly eaten in the United States.  Some find the flavor and texture to be rather unpalatable.  Making baked chips or crisps out of kale is a recently popularized way to prepare it.  Are baked kale chips easy to make?  Are they any good?

The Good

  • Better for you – kale is super full of vitamins, healthy minerals, and known cancer fighting goodness
  • Better for your kids – this super healthy snack can easily replace their craving for chips or crisps
  • Easy to grow – this is one garden vegetable that likes the frost!
  • Easy to make – this DIY snack can be made quickly, even with the “help” of little hands

The Bad

  • Kale chips disappear all too quickly – then you have to make more!

My Experience

Fresh, local, organic kale from our CSA box.

Recently our family tried out subscribing to a CSA box.  Because we were coming to the end of the winter growing season with our first boxes, we got a lot of kale.  I’d never tried kale before, but I’d heard that you can make chips, or crisps out of them pretty easily.  Since a kale chip snack sounded much more appetizing than a limp pile of boiled kale on my dinner plate, I decided to try them out.

A quick internet survey of kale chip recipes revealed a bunch of versions that were all basically the same:

  1. Wash kale, cut or tear into small pieces (leave the ribs out)
  2. Place on baking sheet, drizzle lightly with olive oil
  3. Sprinkle with kosher salt, or other spices per your preference
  4. Bake until crisp and just starting to brown around the edges  (for me 350F for 13 min did the trick)

It took me about 15 minutes to fully prepare the kale for baking.  My three year old was very interested and wanted to make his own tray.  I was pleased that he could fully participate in this recipe.  He even improvised by suggesting the addition of carrot chips to the mix (great idea!).  The kale dehydrated quickly in the oven, and cooled quickly to room temperature when removed.

Yummy Kale Chips

So, how were they?  The first taste test was a success!  They were super, duper good.  The flavor reminded me of potato chips, with a slight note of broccoli.  I also kept thinking of popcorn, probably because the crispy chips just melted away in your mouth the way the way popcorn does.  My son and the baby (18 months) also ate these right up.  The whole bunch of kale was snacked away in less than a day.  I highly recommend making your own kale chips.  They are easy to make, super tasty, and seriously nutritious as well.

Have you ever tried making kale chips?  What’s your favorite way to prepare kale?

 Shared at  Monday Mania, Homestead Barnhop, Better Mom Mondays, Fat Tuesday, Teach Me Tuesday, One Project at a Time, Titus 2sday, Living Green, Hearth and Soul, Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways, Wildcrafting Wednesday, Women Living WellYour Green Resource, Simple Lives Thursday, A Rural JournalFight Back Friday, Farmgirl Friday
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25 Responses to Making Kale Chips: A Real Food Recipe Review — Does it Work?

  1. Seth says:

    Kale chips are definitely one of the snackiest ways to prepare kale… but it’s not really filling. I feel I could gobble up a whole bundle of kale that way in one sitting. I also recommend making kale salads with kale massaged in lemon juice. It makes kale more easily eaten, yet firm enough for substance.

    • Victoria says:

      True, Seth. You can eat up a whole bunch of kale without feeling full. Kale with lemon juice sounds tasty. Thanks for the tip!

  2. HappyMrsBass says:

    Yay Victoria! I love this! Haha, I am growing kale right now and it’s doing awesome. It was my experiment garden addition. Recently, DH and I have started juicing and we have been adding two kale leaves each time we juice…you can definitely tell it’s in the juice. I have been wanting to make kale chips, you made them sound delish! So next time I am at the super market, I guess I’ll grab some extra kale to make chips with! Thanks for the review!!!

    • Victoria says:

      Hey Jasmine! We have been using the kale for juicing as well. But the kale chips really hit that snacking spot, if you know what I mean. I’m out of room in my garden patch now, but thinking I might put some in for the winter. Did you plant from seeds or seedlings?

      • From seeds! I got about 90% germination…whoo hoo! I still have some seeds left over, so I am going to try a second season batch in the fall. I started them early and they thrived in the early spring, cool weather. 🙂

  3. I love kale chips. Can’t wait to start getting our CSA produce so I can make some for the first time this year! Since I’m in Colorado our CSA doesn’t start up until mid-June. 🙁

    • Victoria says:

      You have to wait until June? That IS sad. Do farmer’s markets start any earlier in your area?

  4. Nancy says:

    Sounds like an interesting and healthy snack.
    Thank you for sharing at Rural Thursdays.

  5. Carol says:

    Thank you for sharing. I put kale in the garden because it’s so full of goodness, but was wondering how I’d get the kids to eat it. I can’t wait for my baby kale to get big enough to try making kale chips. It’s probably a good thing that it’s not filling this way, so they’ll eat more of it!

    • Victoria says:

      It’s not filling at all. I’m always a little shocked by how fast, and how much kale we can eat in one sitting!

  6. Marlo says:

    Tried these and think they are great! Thanks for the recipe!

  7. 'Becca says:

    I love kale chips! Oddly enough, the rest of the family doesn’t like them much, so I go to the trouble of making them only for parties. My family does eat a lot of kale cooked other ways. 15 ways to use kale

  8. Kale chips do disappear quickly, they are so good! I have even seen some recipes that use a dehydrator, but it takes longer. Thanks for sharing this on Hearth & Soul. 🙂

  9. JM says:

    I became addicted to kale chips this year thanks to my CSA box. My favorite way to prepare them is with sesame seeds!

  10. Debi says:

    I can’t wait to try this. I am going down to the farmer’s market this afternoon and buying some fresh kale just for these! Thanks for the idea!

  11. I am dying to try this recipe. I had some from a bag the other day and they were delicious. BTW, I wanted to invite you to tomorrow for our maiden DIYlinky party voyage. No sense in partying all alone!

  12. April Harris says:

    What a wonderful way to eat something incredibly nutritious! Your kale chips sound absolutely scrumptious!

  13. Aw, Kale Chips remind me of my mommy back at home! We always make them when I come home and nosh on them over the baking pan on the oven! ha ha.

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  16. Pam Latimer says:

    Yes the above oiled and salt with chili powder, garlic powder and after they come out of the oven a little more oil tossed then add Brewers Yeast. Adds so much flavor and nutrition.