Healthy snacks like kale chips are becoming a regular feature at our parties and gatherings. And we’ve even learned to include them in our everyday diet to promote pro-health living. But not everyone knows how to cook this tasty snack to perfection, and most end with burnt leaves or chips with wet spots.
The trick to cooking the perfect kale chips is timing, and you can master this regardless of the kitchen technique you use. So, if you’re ready to know more about how long you should cook kale chips, then keep reading!
Steps for Making Kale Chips
The first thing about making kale chips is to understand what you’ll need. Because of its unique cooking method, some believe you need a special type of kale to prepare the recipe. But any kind of kale will make delicious kale chips, provided you stick with the cooking time. Once the kale is selected, you can proceed to prep it.
Prepping the Kale Chips
Kale comes with thick stems and we won’t need these for the kale chips. As such, you’ll have to trim the leaves by carefully cutting them off the stems with a knife or kitchen shears. Once the leaves are separated from the stems, they’re rinsed in running water in a colander at the sink, and dried with paper towels or in a salad spinner. You can discard the stems but some prefer to save them for vegetable stock.
Seasoning Kale Chips
You can flavor your kale chips with anything you prefer but note that the base ingredient is oil. You’ll need to toss or massage the kale with enough oil to coat all parts of its surface. The oil initiates the cooking phase without letting the leaves grow dry too quickly.
Most kale chips feature a combination of pepper and salt, but you can also use ranch seasonings, Parmesan cheese, bagel seasoning, sea salt, cayenne pepper, paprika, cinnamon, or even nutmeg. You can also add a dash of vinegar after cooking or sprinkle with nutritional yeast. And you can choose any oil type you prefer from olive to coconut, peanut, avocado, and sesame oil.
Cooking Time for Kale Chips
Kale chips can be prepared using a variety of kitchen methods, and the cooking time varies with each option. So, below, you’ll find several ways to cook kale chips and how long it takes;
Stovetop- Heat a large skillet at medium-high and add oil. Then, lower the heat to medium and add the trimmed kale leaves. Cook the kale for five minutes or until one side starts to char, then stir with a wooden spoon or spatula to cook the other side. Let the other side cook for another five minutes or until most sides turn crisp. Once ready, season as desired and serve.
Oven- Set the oven to preheat to 300F and line a baking pan with parchment paper. Then, place the washed, dried, trimmed, and seasoned kale on the pan in an even layer. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the edges start going brown.
Microwave- Arrange the seasoned kale leaves on a parchment-lined microwave-safe plate, ensuring they stay in one layer. Then, microwave the leaves until crispy, or for 2½ to 3 minutes, and serve immediately.
Air Fryer- Arrange the seasoned leaves in a single layer in the air fryer basket. Ensure the leaves are uncurled to the maximum and don’t allow them to overlap. Cook the kale in the air fryer at 375F for four to five minutes, tossing the pan once to promote even cooking. The kale chips are ready when they come out crispy.
Dehydrator- Spread the seasoned kale leaves in a single layer on the tray, ensuring not to crowd or let them overlap too much. Then, dehydrate the leaves for one hour at 145F, then lower the heat to 115F and dehydrate for another three to four hours. The kale chips are ready when they’re crispy.
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- Always start the kale chips with completely dried leaves, as damp leaves will make them soggy.
- Use only a little oil, as too much will drench the leave and prevent crisping.
- Ensure to spread out the leaves when you’re baking, so they can easily dry out.
- Never let your kale chips cook till most parts are browned, or you’ll wind up with a bitter taste.
- If you’re using the air fryer, consider placing another rack over the leaves so they don’t blow around as they cook.
- Season your kale chips after cooking, not before.
- One bunch of kale
- One tablespoon of olive oil
- One teaspoon of sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 300F and line a baking pan with parchment paper. Then, remove the kale leaves from their stems with a knife or kitchen shears, and cut the leaves into bite sizes (you can save the stems to make vegetable stock).
- Wash the kale leaves and dry thoroughly with a salad spinner or paper towels. Then drizzle with olive oil and toss the leaves to combine. You can also massage the oil onto the leaves so it reaches all surfaces.
- Arrange the oiled kale leaves on the lined baking pan, ensuring they stay in one layer and don’t overlap. Then, season with salt and slide the pan into the preheated oven.
- Bake the kale for 20 to 30 minutes or until the leaves start to turn brown at the edges and serve at once for the best results.
You can also view this video recipe for more help.