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Several friends have been raving to me lately about homemade kale chips, a delicious way to enjoy your leafy greens. While you can buy them at the health food store too, they are WAY tastier not to mention FAR less expensive if you take a few minutes and make them yourself!
In particular, kale chips really satisfy as a low carb snack when you are craving a crunch but don’t want to eat any type of starchy chip.
Why It’s Best to Cook Your Kale
Making kale chips basically involves breaking up an entire bunch 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. That’s it!
Why are we even taking the time to make kale chips, you may ask? Isn’t kale far better to eat raw in a green smoothie?
Actually, the answer is no, kale is not a good choice for eating raw. Kale is a cruciferous vegetable, and as such, contains goitrogens that actively suppress the thyroid gland. Contrary to popular belief, however, it is not high in oxalic acid, which can be a risk for the kidneys.
The good news is that gentle cooking above 212 F /100 C will significantly reduce the goitrogens, so you can enjoy your kale with reduced downside risk. (1)
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 cruciferous veggies like kale are a healthy choice.
I realize that there are people 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 gland is very hard to fix once it goes on the fritz. Protect it at all costs!
Homemade Kale Chips
I should mention that I was skeptical of this recipe at first, as I really do not like kale much at all. I must say that after trying them myself, the verdict is that they are truly delicious!
They make a good crunchy substitute for croutons on salads if you are low-carbing it.
Another great thing about this kale chips recipe is that it uses olive oil. Fat eaten with your veggies increases nutrient absorption considerably. If you’re worried about cooking with olive oil, the linked article explains why this isn’t a problem. The recipe turns out better with olive oil than using coconut oil or even avocado oil, in my opinion.
Homemade Kale Chips Recipe
Easy recipe for homemade kale chips that preserves the nutrients and reduces the potential for thyroid damage from the goitrogenic substances in this popular leafy green vegetable.
- 1 bunch kale rinsed well and dried, preferably organic
- 1 Tbl raw apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tbl extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
Strip leaves from stems in approximately 2 inch pieces. Rinse and dry thoroughly.
Place kale pieces in a large ziplock bag and pour dressing over them. Close bag tightly. Massage dressing into the kale pieces for 1-2 minutes.
Place on parchment paper lined cookie sheets and bake at 300 F/ 149 C for 20-30 minutes. Turn the kale pieces for the last 10 minutes to make sure both sides are thoroughly dried out and crisp.
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!
I used red kale for this recipe, but any type of kale works great!
Love my kale chips. If I can get black kale (Italian Kale) here in Australia, I prefer it and it makes fantastic chips. I don’t put vinegar on them though. I use either coconut/olive oil, salt and sesame seeds, or oil and ground cumin – delish!
I am wondering, if you have a dehydrator and use this to make kale chips. That dehydrating your chips break down the goitrogens? At what temperature do you have to heat the kale to break down the goitrogens? Thank you!
I prepped my kale last night at 11pm and put coconut oil and parm on them and put them in the oven. I woke up this morning and noticed they were in there..it was 11am. I guess i forgot to turn the oven on. I went ahead and just cooked them and had a few. Im wondering if i am exposing myself to some bad bacteria by doing that. Does anyone know if it was ok for them to be oiled up and in the oven with no heat for 12 hours..then cooked?
Wendy Sellers-Brown via Facebook
I was ignorant a little over 8 years ago and believed the docs when they thought they should remove my thyroid due to an enlarged goiter. It was not cancer and now I’m without a thyroid. Will avoiding cruciferous veggies or preparing them properly still benefit me like it will for people with a thyroid?
Kerry M. Pierce via Facebook
My daughter and I are addicted. We make them all the time. One more great benefit to Kale. Yay
Cynthia Coco Camille Korzekwa via Facebook
Toni O’Brien O’Brien you may like this
Michelle Stone Lehr via Facebook
I have two baking dishes of kale chips cooling on my counter! They go so quickly in my house. They make a great on the go snack too. We do olive oil, crushed sunflower seeds, turmeric, and cayenne pepper. My daughters like them with some zing. I through some kale in my chicken soup today as well. Your post was encouraging – thanks!
Julie Stilwell via Facebook
This looks like a good one
Sarah, I remembered that you said to add fat to juice, so I’ve added coconut milk and coconut oil to my juices. I guess though I will discontinue juicing kale and collards 🙁