Several friends have been raving to me lately about kale chips, a delicious new way to enjoy your leafy greens. Now, I really don’t know if this is new or not in the grand scheme of things; in fact, I suspect it is not new at all. There are probably folks reading this post who have been making this recipe for some time!
But, it is new to my friends and it is most certainly new to me, so here I am blogging about the experience!
Making kale chips basically involves breaking up an entire bunch of kale into 2 inch pieces, mixing them with olive oil, vinegar, and salt and then drying them out to a crisp in a warm oven for about 30 minutes.
Why are we even taking the time to make kale chips, you may ask? Isn’t kale great to eat raw in green smoothies and the like?
Actually, the answer is no, kale is not a good choice for eating raw. Kale is a cruciferous vegetable, and as such, contains goitgrogens that actively suppress the thyroid gland. The good news is that a gentle cooking above 212 F /100 C will significantly reduce the goitrogens (source), so you can enjoy your kale with reduced downside risk. If you already suffer from thyroid disorders, you may choose to avoid cruciferous veggies altogether, and that is, of course, your choice based on your personal situation.
However, in the context of a traditional, iodine rich diet, cooked crucifers like kale are a healthy choice.
I realize that there are folks reading this who will scoff at the recommendation to cook kale. I would suggest to those who are really into the green smoothie fad that blowing out your thyroid is not a great idea. Whatever small amounts of nutrition are lost by the gentle cooking of kale is more than made up for in the additional protection to this delicate, butterfly shaped gland in your neck.
You don’t want to do ANYTHING that messes with your thyroid! This little guy is very hard to fix once it goes on the blink. Protect it at all costs!
I should mention that I was skeptical of this recipe at first, as I really do not like kale at all. But, I trusted my friends and gave it a go anyway. I must say that after making kale chips, they really are delicious.
Another great thing about this kale chips recipe is that it includes olive oil. Fat eaten with your veggies increases nutrient absorption considerably.
If any of you have made this kale chips recipe with different herbs and spices, please comment so that all of us can benefit from the variations you have discovered!
Yum! The crunchiness is what makes this recipe, in my opinion. Kale chips would be an awesome, grain free addition to salads for that bit of crunchiness without any croutons!
For those of you that love garlic .. Kelly The Kitchen Kop posted a recipe for kale chips that uses garlic powder. Check it out!
Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist