Is it possible to live off kale? I hope so, because a large portion of my diet over the past couple of weeks has been oven-roasted kale. I know I’m a little prone to exaggeration, but these kale “chips” really are the bees’ knees (yup, I went there), and can be eaten with total impunity. The best thing is that these chips are beyond easy to make, and can be served as a snack or side dish. Just make sure that if you’re making this for a crowd, make a lot, because they’ll go like hot-cakes.
- 1 large bunch of kale, washed and chopped into large sections (about 2-3 inches)
- about 2 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil, but you can probably get away with less
- about 1 tsp smoked paprika
- sea salt and black pepper or Zatarain’s creole spice to taste
Other potential flavour combinations:
- roughly 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice + freshly cracked black pepper
- vegan parmesean + freshly chopped basil + sea salt
- freshly chopped rosemary + sea salt
- garlic salt + chili powder
- mesquite salt (or smoked sea salt) + garlic powder + onion powder + liquid hickory
- pomegranate juice + sugar cane (yes really)
- anything else your heart desires: experiment and go nuts!
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Drizzle the little olive oil evenly onto 2 baking sheets, then spread the kale carefully into a single layer over top. The key to great kale chips is not to crowd and not to leave in a pile – the leaves have to be opened and smooth. Sprinkle the smoked paprika and salt/pepper/Zatarain’s evenly across the leaves (and stalks – don’t toss those out, they’re super yummy too). Roast the kale for about 10 minutes, or until the leaves are crispy but not brown (and certainly not blackened). If you can, separate the leaves from the stalks (use 2 baking sheets) so that you easily leave the stalks in for a few minutes longer. They’ll crisp up really nicely. By the way, don’t be fooled if the leaves still look fresh and green – shake the pan or go at the leaves with a spatula to prove that they’re crisp, even if they don’t look it. Dig in!