I feel there are a three types of people: people who abhor kale, people who love kale, and people who pretend to love kale. Hopefully this snack will help turn the latter into actual kale lovers (and maybe even turn some of the haters over, too).
I love kale. I’d ask it to be my valentine but, unfortunately for kale, I am spoken for.
I sautee it. I snack on it raw (tastes like raw broccoli!). And my most favorite way to eat kale: kale chips. It’s quick, easy, and way healthier than regular chips: a cup of raw kale is right around 50 calories. Add in all those fancy nutrients (calcium, beta carotene, vitamins C and K, just to name a few) and you’re practically rolling in nutritional, tasty gold. And when it’s baked like this, it loses the toughness and chewiness which is a huge turn-off for a lot of people.
I can grab my kale at the neighborhood market for about $1.39/lb on most days. It’s not organic and frou-frou because really, I don’t buy into all of that. But you should buy whatever kale (and other veggies) you prefer.
- 1 bunch of kale
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- Kosher or sea salt
- Black pepper (fresh-ground is my preference)
- The first thing I do when I get my bunch of kale home is get it out of the produce bag and start prepping. You want to pull the leaves from the ribs into smaller pieces. Toss these pieces into a strainer and rinse well.
- Let the kale dry. You can use a salad spinner to make this step go way faster. I don’t have one, so I let my kale sit out on a few layers of paper towels for a 2-3 hours. Note: using wet kale can end up in soggy chips. Ew.
- Preheat oven to 375°.
- Spread the kale out on a baking sheet with a lip. It should be a single layer of kale. Drizzle your 2-3 tbsp of olive oil over the leaves. Use less oil for smaller bunches, more for bigger ones. After the oil, sprinkle your salt and pepper over the kale. Toss the kale around a bit, using hands or tongs, to evenly distribute the oil. The kale should not be soaked, just lightly coated.
- Pop the kale into the oven for 10-12 minutes. Keep an eye on it after the 10 minute mark. It’s done when there are crispy, brownish edges.
Let them cool, and then chow down! You can season them with just about anything — for some spice try a pinch of cayenne, cumin, or even garlic. Seasoned salt can be used. I’ve think a touch of lemon with the oil would be delicious, and I’m willing to bet sprinkling a bit of parmesan cheese over them after they’re out of the oven is fantastic.
You’ll find these have a very similar texture to potato chips — lighter, but a good crispy crunch and before you know it, your bowl’s empty. Or maybe that’s just my bowl.