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Kale Chips

The first time I tried these was on a trip to visit my friend Andee in Texas. She has a wonderful vegetable garden and at the time an over abundance of Kale. I’ve always wondered why people decide to grow Kale, I couldn’t think of a single recipe that I’d use it in, but once Andee (actually I think was her husband Michael) made these chips for me I was a convert.

Having never heard of Kale Chips I thought maybe I had stumbled on a new trend but as it often turns out I was the one behind. There are recipes all over the web with many different variations, including on some of my favorite blogs RoostHoney and JamFrog Star Farm and Smitten Kitchen. Since returning from Texas, I’ve been making these chips often, but I hadn’t managed to get around to photographing them. So today, when I spotted Russian Red Kale whilst mooching around Union Square farmers market, I remembered that the Frog Star Farm post had mentioned it as their favorite type to make chips with. I have no idea what I’d been using previously, other than it was a curly variety that wasn’t red, or purple for that matter, but tasted great, anyway, it seemed like a good opportunity to finally get up to date and post on Kale.

I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by these, they turn out beautifully crisp and it’s easy to sit and eat an entire bunch in no time, which is a good thing as Kale is great for you; among other things it’s packed with beta carotene, it’s an excellent source of vitamin A and C, and it’s high in iron – but don’t tell my kids, I’m thrilled that they’ll eat these and any hint that they are actually healthy might put an end to it.

Crispy Kale Chips
I bunch of Curly Kale
2 table spoons of Olive Oil

Preheat the oven to 325F/160C. Strip the leaves off their stalks, wash and dry them thoroughly – and I do mean thoroughly, wet leaves will lead to a soggy end. In a large bowl, mix the leaves with the olive oil; it’s best to use your hands to make sure the Kale is fully coated. Next arrange the leaves in a single layer on a baking sheet, try not to overlap them. Sprinkle with Kosher or sea salt and roast for between 8 to 15 minutes. You can lay them out on the sheets a little in advance, but don’t salt them until right before you intend to put them in the oven, as they’ll go limp. Make sure you keep an eye on them once they are in as they get crispy quite quickly and are best when fully crisp but not brown. Once they start to brown they are scorched and begin to taste slightly bitter, which some people don’t seem to mind (sometimes I think my husband will eat anything), but it’s not to my taste.

I haven’t yet tried variations on seasoning as I love them salted, but there seems to be endless alternatives.  My mother-in-law likes to use garlic salt and I’ve seen shop bought versions with both miso and parmesan cheese so if you find a combination you like please let us know – Melani

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sandra Jones - Mel This recipe is already on its way to Sheffield to my niece who was asking me for recipes for Kale as she needs to increase the amount of iron in her diet. As for getting something healthy into her girls…she is hoping.

Melissa P - I can’t wait to make these Kale chips. It’s one of those vegetables that I keep trying to like and I think this might do the trick.

Andee K - So I bought some figs and some prosciutto and bleu cheese. Here I am, browsing the site, looking for the recipe and I see kale chips! I missed a lot of posts! Somehow I didn’t get subscribed. Must remedy that….

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