If you've been following me on my blog or on instagram you might already know that I'm a recovering sugar addict who used to eat a primarily cookie-based diet. But that's not really the whole story. Because I addicted to salty and crunchy snacks too. I could easily down an entire family-sized bag of Tostitos Scoops (which is the best shape of chip ever invented) and I did that many times instead of eating dinner. So in a sense, my diet was balanced in a way, because I'd alternate between super sweet indulgences and then super salty and crunchy ones. And I don't think I even knew what kale was at that point.
But once I cleaned up my diet in order to address my PCOS and insulin resistance, the sugar cravings went away after a couple of weeks without sugar. The salty and crunchy cravings didn't, so I looked for healthier ways to satisfy them. Roasted chickpeas and homemade popcorn are 2 of my absolute favorite crunchy/salty snacks, but since they're higher in carbohydrates, anything more than a few handfuls caused blood sugar spikes that I was trying to avoid. Those blood sugar spikes will quickly turn into crashes that destabilize mood and energy, plus the long term effects of erratic blood sugar wreak havoc on your hormones.
So enter Kale Chips- These leaves not only get
super thin, crispy, and hold seasoning well, but they are JAM PACKED with nutrition. Kale is rich in Vitamins (A, C, K, and B6), important minerals like manganese, calcium, copper, potassium, and magnesium. It's also full of antioxidants, which are substances that fight inflammation, like Beta-Carotene, Quercetin and Kaempferol. The added nutritional yeast in the seasoning boosts it with a bit of protein and more B vitamins, so this snack is the perfect way to satisfy your salty/crunchy cravings and give you a huge nutrient boost as well.
Disclaimer to keep it real: I would never, ever tell anyone these taste like tortilla chips or potato chips. And if any health food blogger says something like that they're either lying or have never had a real chip in their lives. This is not a healthy version of tortilla chips. It's a really delicious way to eat kale and satisfy your cravings for a salty and crunchy snack.
You can make this recipe with any variety of Kale, but I find the curly kale is best because the shape is most similar to a scoop chip and crisps up more nicely.
1 head curly kale, stems removed and roughly chopped into 1-2 inch pieces
drizzle of olive oil or avocado oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp nutritional yeast
just a pinch of freshly ground pepper
Preheat your oven to 170°C or 340°F.
Wash, dry and cut kale and arrange on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Drizzle with oil and massage the oil into the kale- this helps break down the bitterness and ensures you'll have evenly coated chips.
In a small bowl, combine salt, garlic powder, nutritional yeast, and pepper.
Sprinkle the spice mixture over the kale and toss to combine.
Cook for 15-18 minutes, but check on it to make sure you don't burn it! Once they're the perfect level of crispy you don't have a lot of time before they can get burnt so set your alarm and pay attention!