Monday Munchies: Kale Chips

by Dana on March 7, 2011

Fresh curly kale

Last week I talked about food and ANDI scores, so I thought it would be fun to take the super duper superfood kale and introduce an easy way to include it in your diet: kale chips. These are not only easy to make but will also help satisfy cravings for something crunchy, as well as provide wonderful health benefits.

If you look around the web for kale chip recipes, you’ll find the them all to be fairly similar with slight tweaks for personal preference in preparation and seasonings. I am therefore not going to detail a recipe of my own, but instead tell you about what I’ve found that works best having tried many.

Which Type of Kale is the Best of the Bunch?

There are many varieties of kale and you can use any of them to make the kale chips. Of the types that I’ve tried, I find the curly kale to create the best chip both because of the size chip you can make (the leaves tear easily but still have some bulk to them) and the baking time has been consistent.

Achieving Maximum Kale Chip Crunch

It’s all about the crunch, is it not? So, in order to find out which preparation yielded the best results, I tried several different methods and found that massaging the kale in a plastic bag (which I learned from Kalyn) is my preference. I do, however, try to save the plastic bag and reuse it so that I don’t waste them. I have also taken a large glass bowl and used my hands to toss the kale to coat it and as long as the bowl leaves enough room for your hands to flip the leaves without them falling out, it should work.

Many of the recipes strongly recommend that the pieces of kale shouldn’t touch when you lay them out on the cookie sheet. This is definitely helpful when they’re baking as it does let them bake thoroughly. I have, however, baked some batches where the leaves are crowded and the pieces were less crunchy but tasted just fine; it’s merely a texture thing.

What Else Can I Do With Kale?

Kale has a variety of uses from salads to pasta toppings depending on how you prepare it. For additional information and other recipes, check out this informative Bay Area Bites post about kale.

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