Crunch Crunch Crunch

I am a snacker: crunchy, salty, crispy, you name it, I like it.

Keeping potato chips, etc, in the house is a problem.

Recently I've been coming across a lot of healthy-alternative snack recipes, including one that's stood out for Kale Chips.

You heard it right. Kale. Chips.

I had to give this a try. 

When I took a look at the recipes, I noticed a huge amount of variation in cooking times, oven temperature, seasonings, etc. I needed something easy. Loosely following the recipe above, I took a few handfuls of kale pieces (I used the environment-un-friendly pre-bagged stuff. *guilt*) and dried the leaves as best I could.

Oh, yeah, I set the oven to 300 degrees, F. Then I went back to drying.

Salad spins. Paper towel blotting. Real towel blotting. Air drying. 

When they were dry enough, I tossed them in a bowl and added a few glugs of extra virgin olive oil. If I'd had regular olive oil, I would have used that. It's a little better for roasting, IMO.

At one point, Matt asked, "Aren't they just going to come out mushy?"

"Of course not," I scoffed, confidently tossing green leaves about the place. Of course, I had no idea. I only knew that there were many recipes online, and none of them said the kale got mushy. Unless they were all covering up the truth.

Oh, the paranoia.

I carefully put the leaves on two baking sheets in a single layer, and then added a liberal dusting of kosher salt.

Since I'm all sciencey from time to time, I used two kinds of baking sheets - my stone one, and a standard cookie sheet.  I just wanted to see if they'd come out different.

Spoiler: Other than the finish time (the cheap sheet cooked a little faster) they did not.

Within about 10 minutes, I could smell... something. I still can't describe exactly what it was, but it was good.

I pulled them out around 20 minutes - probably a tad too long, to be honest.

I couldn't get a picture to come out right that really showed these at their best.
I promise, they looked a little weird but not gross.

Gone was the pretty bright green.  I picked up a leaf, cautiously.  It was stiff, still a pleasant dark green (going to brown toward the edges).

I took a bite. Salty. Crispy. Oily (in a good way). The well-done ones tasted browned, like the deep brown of homemade potato chips or the tiny slivers in a batch of hand-cut fries that inevitably get overdone. 

The chips were really crumbly. One recipe suggested crumbling them and using them as a popcorn topper.

I can definitely see it.

I'll make these again, they were an interesting, different sort of snack. I wouldn't call them healthy - not for the amount of oil that went into them, or salt (I will cut back on the amount of salt) - but they were good. I can already see them dusted with old bay. Maybe even sugar for a salty-sweet thing?

Have you ever had Kale chips?  What's your favorite snack recipe?


  1. I need to do this when we get kale in our CSA. I keep reading about it and have never done it...

  2. Well THAT's interesting. Aren't you brave! They actually look quite good. :) Keep munchin' and experimenting!

  3. I'm a fan of kale chips. I find the curly kale (vs, for example, the tuscan kale) works best. It's an art form getting the right mix of oil, salt and crispiness. Leaning just a little to the not-crispy side makes them not so fab.