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?
- 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
- Kale chips disappear all too quickly – then you have to make more!
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:
- Wash kale, cut or tear into small pieces (leave the ribs out)
- Place on baking sheet, drizzle lightly with olive oil
- Sprinkle with kosher salt, or other spices per your preference
- 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.
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?