We can almost hear the collective eye roll that just happened when we mentioned kale. But hear us out! (You’ll be rewarded with a yummy recipe at the bottom too.)
At Tree House Kitchen, we are chefs, home cooks, parents, and educators. So we get our insights about food and cooking from many different people—and that’s a great thing. Our job is to empower you when choosing food for yourself and your family. So, the more we know, the better we are at helping you make your kitchen a happy place!
When you talk to us about those ingredients you place in the both love and hate category, kale comes up frequently. As much as you want to eat it or think you should, it’s not everyone’s favourite as far as dark leafy greens go.
As an ingredient, we love kale! We use it all the time in the test kitchen and our chef harvests bunches of it from her garden. We’re curious by nature and eager to rescue kale from becoming a forgotten and obsolete ingredient. So, we decided to dig deeper and get some facts about kale. We learned a lot of things we didn’t know, and as we share more about kale here, we hope you’ll find it as interesting as we do.
In the meantime, we’ll leave you with a very crispy, slightly spicy recipe for our favourite kale chips. We have a hunch you won’t have any trouble scarfing down a whole bowl of these and wondering why you’ve never made this easy snack before. They only take 20 minutes to bake, and our kids love them!
Try them out, and let us know what you think in the comments. We love to hear from you!
Have a great day, everyone! Keep calm and kale on.
Our Favourite Kale Chips
To shake things up, we have seasoned our chips with berbere, a blend of Ethiopian spices. We have included some tips on how to make your own blend at home.
Use any blend of spices you like. Or, if you prefer, keep it simple with a light salt and peppering.
2 large bunches of curly kale, washed and completely dried, stems removed, torn into large pieces
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 tbsp. nutritional yeast* (see the tips section)
1 tbsp. berbere spices** (or any spice blend you like; see the tips section)
1 tsp. fine sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Place torn kale in a large bowl. Add the oil and use your hands to massage it into the leaves. Take time and care to rub oil into all the curls.
- Add the nutritional yeast, spice blend and salt. Use your hands to toss well so all the leaves are coated with the seasonings. Don’t worry if some of the seasonings wind up at the bottom of the bowl.
- Spread the kale leaves evenly on the baking sheets in a single layer. It’s okay if the edges touch a little, but the leaves should not overlap. If the leaves don’t all fit, do one batch at a time.
- Sprinkle on any seasonings remaining in the bottom of the bowl.
- Place the baking sheets in the hot oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Switch the positions of pans in the oven. Bake 10 minutes longer until the kale is crisp.
- Remove the baking sheets from the oven and let cool for five minutes. Repeat with remaining kale, if needed.
Total prep time: Approximately 20 minutes (washing and drying kale, tearing kale and making spice blend).
Total cook time: 20 minutes.
Serves: 6-8 as a snack.
Equipment: Salad spinner, baking sheets, parchment paper and large bowl.
Tree House Tips
*Nutritional yeast is a Vitamin B12-rich, deactivated yeast found in the bulk section of natural food stores. It has a nutty, cheese-like flavour that works very well here. Try it on popcorn, too!
**You can buy berbere spices at a spice shop. Or, make your own, experimenting and tweaking to your taste. For our blend, we used whole spices ground in a spice grinder:
- 3 tsp. dried, crushed chilli flakes
- ½ tsp. ginger
- ½ tsp. black or green cardamom seed
- ¼ tsp. each fenugreek seed, nutmeg, black pepper, coriander seed, cinnamon, allspice, ajwain, clove and cassia buds
Any combination of these will work, so if you can’t find a specific ingredient, go ahead and make it anyway!
This is the perfect recipe for trying out different spice blends and seasonings. Try:
- Chili powder
- Any curry blend, such as Madras, garam masala or vindaloo
- Baharat or za’atar
- Smoked hot or sweet paprika, lemon zest or black pepper
Also, experiment with different varieties of kale.
- Eat kale chips on their own or crumble and use them as a seasoning for salads or popcorn.
- For best results, make sure the kale is very dry.
- Kale chips are best eaten as soon as possible after making them. Store completely cooled kale chips in an airtight container for one day.
© Tree House Kitchen. Triple tested.