Saturday, July 30, 2011

Kale Chips

Kale chips; have you heard of these? Have you tried them? I hadn't but for some reason after I heard Gwyneth Paltrow talk about making them on Ellen, I was determined.

And I don't even really like Gwyneth Paltrow.

People will tell you, "These taste just like potato chips!"

They're wrong.

Yes, they're thin and crunchy, and yes they're salty, but the curly leaves have a very distinct texture that you'll either really like or won't be able to stand (sadly, I was in the latter group, which is such a shame because I'd much rather stuff my face with leaves than calorie-ridden fried potatoes).

I only started eating kale recently, but I usually love it sauteed with some chicken stock and apple cider vinegar to give it that yummy acidic bite. Cooked this way, it almost takes on the texture of cooked broccoli. I'll try to remember to jot down the recipe the next time we make it so I can share it here.

A few things to note about kale chips:

Don’t be shy with the olive oil. The last thing you want to be doing is scraping dried kale off your sheet pan.

Then again, don't over oil them or they won't crisp. If you take them out of the oven and they still look a little oily, remove the chips from the sheet pan and let them drain on paper towels before transferring them to a serving bowl.

You can season your chips however you like (although I recommend always using some kosher salt). You can stick to simply salt and pepper, you can sprinkle on some curry powder, or, one of my favorite combinations I tried was salt, chili powder, and a little cayenne. I've even seen some people sprinkle on brown sugar. Try lots of combos and pick your favorites!

I’ve heard rumors that little kids love these, and are too young to figure out that what they’re eating is also healthy. Plus, the recipe is super kid-friendly: it's quick, there’s no chopping involved, and raw kale has this great scrunchy texture that makes it really fun to squeeze, so if you find yourself faced with entertaining a small child, make these. Plus, they’ll be out of the oven by the time you’re done cleaning up. Instant gratification? Yes, please.

Kale Chips


5-6 leaves kale
olive oil for drizzling, 3-4 Tablespoons
salt and other spices, to taste


1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Wash kale leaves and dry thoroughly. My salad spinner worked awesomely.
3. Tear or cut the leaves from the woody stems, and into pieces about 2-3’’ big.
4. Arrange leaves on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with seasonings. Use your hands and toss to coat. Arrange the leaves in one layer on the baking sheet. If the sheet pan is too crowded, the kale will steam and will not crisp properly.
5. Bake chips for 11 minutes or until leaves are slightly shrunken and edges are dark green.
6. Remove from oven and sprinkle with more salt, to taste.


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