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Late to the party: Kale Chips

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Late to the party: Kale Chips

Yes, I am horribly late to the party, and I realise that these have been done a million ways before, up, down, and sideways, but I have a good excuse! I never once saw kale when I was living in France. After visiting a myriad markets, stores, and supermarkets I just gave up and assumed that, much like such things as raw beetroot, kale would be one of those things that would “eventually” turn up. Give it a few more years and I’m sure it’ll be everywhere, but sadly this didn’t happen during my time there. Living now in a country where kale supply is no problem at all is a real pleasure, so I’ll be playing catch-up for a bit while I experiment with this wonderful, curly, leafy vegetable.

I had my misgivings about kale chips, I must say. So many people rave about them. Final verdict? Well… I won’t be turning in my occasional pack of potato chips any time soon, but these were a perfectly pleasant alternative. Very light, guilt-free, and actually “crispy” to boot. That one was a nice surprise! You know that “crack” you get when you bite into a potato chip? You bite into a kale chip and you get the same noise, so you can sit on the couch, munch on these, annoy everyone else in the room, but not feel quite so bad about filling your face!

I made two batches and experimented a little with baking times. I found that you have to be quite attentive to how they’re crisping up in the oven. A minute or two too long and they’ll start to get a bit darker. Unfortunately, unlike slightly browned potato chips, browned kale chips aren’t that hot. The slightly bitter taste of the kale which is so pleasing when it’s raw or steamed is amplified somewhat and  they’re do become a little less appealing. If you’re a fan of bitter flavours then go nuts, but if you want to enjoy these chips in optimum condition then do keep a watchful eye on the oven.

Kale Chips

I made a video for this as well – you can check it out below. I hope it will make up for the fact that these aren’t very photogenic. I kind of think it looks like a pile of dried autumn leaves… just without some wonderful orange and red hues!

The weather here has been funky as anything. At one point it was pretty darn cold, snow everywhere, then the temperature shot up to around 7 or 8 and it rained and all the snow vanished. Right now everything is grey and wet and decidedly unfestive, though I’m hoping that will change soon enough. My parents will come to spend Christmas in Sweden this year. It will be wonderful for my son to have the company of both sets of his grandparents, but I’d been hoping I could offer my parents a white Christmas. Of all places, northern Sweden could provide this, I thought, so I’ll be seriously unimpressed if it rains the whole time!

Video Recipe

Kale Chips
Serves 4
Light, crisp, and guilt free
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Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
51 calories
10 g
0 g
1 g
3 g
0 g
100 g
82 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
100g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 51
Calories from Fat 7
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
1%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 82mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 10g
3%
Dietary Fiber 2g
8%
Sugars 0g
Protein 3g
Vitamin A
308%
Vitamin C
200%
Calcium
14%
Iron
9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 400g Curly Kale
  2. 2tbsps Olive Oil
  3. 2tsps Salt
Instructions
  1. Start off by preheating your oven to 130 degrees Celsius. Remove the thick stalks from the kale leaves and then tear them up into large pieces - about 5cm across.
  2. Place the kale pieces in a colander and wash them thoroughly and then shake off any water.
  3. Arrange the kale across two large baking sheets. Sprinkle the oil and salt over both sheets and massage it into the kale.
  4. Place the baking sheets into the oven and bake for about 20 minutes, gently turning the kale every 5 minutes or so.
  5. Remove the chips when they have just turned crisp, before they brown too much, and enjoy.
Notes
  1. I kept the flavouring simple - plain salt - but these would go really well with a bit of cumin or chilli.
beta
calories
51
fat
1g
protein
3g
carbs
10g
more
Five Euro Food http://www.fiveeurofood.com/

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43 Comments

  1. I am so glad you made these and a video too! I have been wanting to make these at home for my family too. Around this time of the year there are so many tempting treats that I like to have some low carb, low fat treats to keep everyone happy. Wishing you a safe and happy holiday season. BAM

    Reply
    • Thanks Bam – they were definitely interesting and fun to make! Nice and crispy too. Happy holidays to you and your family :)

      Reply
  2. Hi Charles, thank you for your lovely words of encouragement regarding my new career path on my blog, I really appreciate it. I’m rather surprised it has come along so well so soon, and I’m very grateful for it. I really enjoyed my previous job and I’m very fortunate to have found something else I could do with passion.
    We had a customer several years ago who needed packaging designed for her raw food kale chip product. It was considered raw because of the low temperature they dehydrated the kale at. It was rather interesting because they not only seasoned the kale with flavourings like salt and cumin, but they also added almond flour and various other nut flours to enhance the nutritional value and give the chips some body. It was quite tasty and prompted me to go home and roast some myself. Sadly the amount of enjoyment the kale chips yielded did not warrant the electricity needed to dry them, so they didn’t even get a chance to be posted on the blog. On top of it, they didn’t turn out as pretty as yours did! It was also nice to hear your voice again for the demonstration — you really are quite an expert.
    It’s snowing quite madly here in Toronto right now, I do hope you have a beautiful white Christmas to share with your entire family in Sweden. JT came in as I was viewing your video and mentioned that where you are right now the sun rises after 10am and sets around 1:30pm! YIKES!

    Reply
    • Hi Eva – I like he sound of the additions your old customer added to the kale chips. I wonder how one sells kale chips… they’re quite fragile. I’d worry they’d turn into a pile of kale dust inside a regular chip bag.

      My parents will arrive tomorrow, and good news… it was snowing this evening, hehe. Let’s hope it sticks around until Christmas!

      Reply
  3. I have to say I haven’t had much luck with making kale chips. In fact every time I’ve tried I’ve had some too brown and some still not crunchy. My husband rolls his eyes and requests that I spend time making something more tasty. Yours look about as perfect as homemade gets without a dryer/hydrator machine. I bow to you on that! :) Kale is a wonderful ingredient any way you make it in my book.

    Reply
    • Oops, I meant dehydrator…sigh.

      Reply
    • I wouldn’t mind a dehydrator… I’d love to make some beef jerky, though it seems like the kind of thing I’d buy, use 5 times and then stow it away in a cupboard forever :D

      Reply
  4. I must say I haven’t bought in to the whole kale phenomenon – yet. But I’m thinking of giving these chips a try! Especially now in this holiday season, when I am craving sweet, salty, and crunchy things. Thanks for the idea. Wish I could come over for some Moroccan-inspired lamb stew! Though I’ll take LA weather over Sweden! Have fun with both grandparents. xo

    Reply
    • Thanks Orna – you know, if I made these again I might make some potato, parsnip and beetroot chips at the same time and combine them all in a bowl. On their own I think one can tire of them quickly but in a mix they’d be really nice! :)

      Reply
  5. “I won’t be turning in my pack of potato chips any time soon” heeheh… you’d fit in well with the potato heads in this family Charles (including myself — it’s a constant battle to stay away from the stuff — I simply cannot eat one (or two), so it’s mostly abstinence :(). Sounds like your batch of kale chips was a big success on the crispy front — a lot of folks have trouble with that aspect so very cool that it worked! How different that you weren’t able to find kale in France…is that the case with most of the less customary greens? (collards, swiss chard, mustard, etc. ?)

    What a blessing to have both sets of parents with you this year at Christmas… you and “the wife” :o) must be really looking forward to it. I hope you get some beautiful, brilliant snow!!

    Reply
    • Hi Kelly – Swiss chard was no problem in France… there was plenty of that, but I never saw rainbow chard. Collard I’ve never heard of before… I must look it up (but suffice to say it wasn’t easily available in France that I ever saw). At least I could occasionally find kohlrabi, but once is enough for that revolting thing sputnik-esque thing!

      Reply
  6. I commend you on your dedication to healthy eating but I’ll stick with my bag of chips and save the kale for a big pot of soup especially on a day like today with 8 inches of snow on the ground. A lot for one dump in south-western Ontario. :)

    Reply
    • Well, not so much healthy eating as an experiment. I felt like I had to try it, at least once :)

      Reply
  7. Your chips look so simple yet so addictive – it’s a good thing they are guilt-free! ;)

    Reply
    • Thanks Laura :) Merry Christmas!

      Reply
  8. Ooh I bought some kale yesterday at the Farmer’s Market! Will give these a go later when I have the oven on for some Christmas baking. Fingers crossed for a white Christmas with your family :)

    Reply
    • Thanks Chica – we had some snow today, hooray :)

      Reply
  9. Absolutely you and your parents deserve a white Christmas. If it has to be cold, it should at least be white. I hope your wish comes true and I think it would be very strange to be in Sweden and not have a white Christmas. It’s lovely that you will be with your parents and your wife’s parents for Christmas. How special for wee William. I have to confess that despite kale chips going viral, I have never tasted one! Perhaps it’s not too late for me to give these a try. I’ll be mindful to watch for the browning though – I’m no fan of anything bitter xx

    Reply
    • Hi Charlie, we had some snow this evening, fortunately. Here’s to hoping it stays until Christmas, or at least until tomorrow when my parents arrive!

      Reply
  10. I try and I try and I haven’t been able to love kale. I figure if I keep it up for another year or so, I’ll get there. :) I’ve tried the chips and I still find them bitter.

    Reply
    • I think I prefer it in a “non-chip” form, that’s for sure. It tastes so healthy and “green”. Sometimes I love flavours like that with a little twist of lemon! :)

      Reply
  11. Better late than never’s what I say! I do like kale chips and I like them baked and crumbled on top of everything. If I’m making soup with kale, I prefer to crumble baked kale than cook the kale in the soup. I think it’s a texture thing for me. Tell you what’s really good, mac and cheese with kale and bread crumb topping.
    I hope your parents have a great Christmas in Sweden and I hope it snows otherwise it’ll be just like being home with the rain :)

    Reply
    • Hi Nazneen – crumbled on things you say? That’s a fantastic idea… even better than just eating them as chips I think! Nice one!

      Reply
  12. I love kale chips! You are so right about how the bitterness seems to be amplified when they are left in the oven a little longer – I learned that the hard way! I started adding cumin and paprika to mine to make up for the extra couple of minutes – but I need to try your method next! Thanks for sharing :)

    Reply
    • Mm, cumin… my most favourite spice! That’s a good addition, I’ll have to remember that one!

      Reply
    • Haha, yeah, it goes with a lot of stuff doesn’t it!

      Reply
  13. Never such thing as too late Charles! And yes you really need no more than plain salt to season these wonderful crisps (hee hee Charles, forgot your British english?) but me being the chilli-obsessive, often add a sprinkle of garlic and chilli to it. So simple and so good I can’t believe it’s healthy. I’ve stopped making it simply because I forgot about it, but thanks for reminding me and for giving me ideas for eating somewhat healthily during this gorgefest season. Hope you and your gorgeous family is doing well. Happy Christmas in case I don’t get around to saying that on the day itself! x

    Reply
    • Thanks Shu – happy christmas to you too! I’m going to be serving a salad with pomegranate this year with the christmas lunch, in addition to the rest of the stuff of course. I think I’d suffer terribly if I didn’t have the option of something light and fresh tasting on top of all the starch, meat and carbs!

      Reply
  14. I have to agree with you Charles…I have had the kale chips and won’t be giving up my potato chips for them. You did a nice job of making them look good. :) We have 10 inches of snow on the ground and are supposed to get another 6 by the end of today. I really do think you will have the white Christmas you are wishing for you and your family to enjoy. Wish I could blow this latest snow storm your way.

    Reply
    • Hi Karen – good news is we had some snow this evening, so it’s a bit more white outside now at least :D

      Reply
  15. I enjoy kale chips. Taste like sea weeds (nori). Cooked rice wrapped with roasted kale chips is good too, you should try it next time. It’s like eating healthy fast food.

    Thank you for the prints. They arrived yesterday. They are all so beautiful! You did wonderful job! Thanks again.

    Reply
    • Thanks Nipponnin – the rice and kale sounds great – I’ll try it for sure!

      Glad you liked the prints! I changed print services now and now it’s possible to order different products – you can even get mousemats and glass paperweights – if you ever wanted gift ideas :D

      Reply
  16. Charles, I still haven’t tried kale chips because I love raw kale so much. But if I decide to try them, I’m coming back here for your delightful demo!

    Reply
    • Thanks Jean – raw kale… hmm, I love raw cauliflower, never really tried kale though. Will have a munch next time I have some!

      Reply
  17. Charles, if you’re late to the party, then I’m going to be a Cinderella whose FGM never came to rescue her!
    I haven’t been around for a long time now but while on holiday I popped by and read you moving post and was so shocked to learn you’ve left France. Have you made croissants during your stay there? Did I beat you to that party?
    I can’t wait to catch up on more of your posts. My summer holiday has started, and with graduation done and dusted, I have (I hope) all the time in the world to sink back into the blogs I follow and love.

    Oh, and
    Congrats on your Kale Milestone ;)

    Reply
    • Hi Fati – no, you beat me… I never made croissants. I really wanted to before I left, but I’ll have to make it here instead I think!

      Enjoy your summer holiday! That seems so weird to say for me at this time of year! :D

      Reply
  18. In this case, how late I am… I have never even tried to make kale chips and in general I haven’t still entered into the kale cooking frenzy. Now I feel so late, even if I make kale chips, I won’t even post them (but I’ll let you know!). They do sound and look delicious, I must admit, so time to buy some kale tomorrow on the market! (Have you been looking for kale on markets while living in France? I see kale every winter at lots of stalls.).

    Reply
    • Hi Sissi, yeah – I always checked the markets and the supermarkets. Never saw kale :(. Plenty of swiss chard and kohlrabi, but not once could I find kale. Seemed completely alien to everyone! I hope you have a good Christmas!

      Reply
  19. Nope, never seen kale here. Or might I add, tenderstem or purple sprouting broccoli. Which is really annoying. So I don’t think I will be able to make these anytime soon but they do look good :)
    If it doesn’t snow for Christmas where you are, well thats just plain silly. Fingers crossed xx

    Reply
    • Aaah, tenderstem broccoli… I saw that here too! I saw golden beets in the summer when I was here once as well… I can’t wait to try those!

      Had some snow this evening – hooray :)

      Reply
  20. Interesting! We had very similar weather. It was bitterly cold here and very snowy for weeks (before it was officially winter mind you). And now it’s warmed up and been rainy. I’m still holding out hope for a white Christmas. I much prefer snow to rain this time of year.

    We made some kale chips a while back. The kids thought they were okay. I wasn’t so impressed. I liked that they were healthy, but they just didn’t do it for me otherwise. I feel like kale is one of those things I should like, but I find I have to bury the flavor to enjoy it. I’ve had it in a pasta and in a salad (with lots of vinegar) that I have liked. Other than that, the bitterness isn’t for me.

    Well here’s to a white Christmas for you Charles! It seems only fair being your first Christmas in Sweden. :)

    Reply
    • Hi Kristy, yeah, I don’t think I’ll be making them again in a hurry. They were perfectly ok… and I didn’t at all mind the flavour but seriously – there’s better things you can eat. “Real” potato chips for example :p.

      Snow today… on New Year’s Eve… how festive :)

      Reply