When Kale became the ultimate food trend back in 2012, it seems all possible food incarnations from this coarse, chewy, and bitter vegetable have been developed, including the Kale chips!
One of the earliest mentions of kale chips was way back in 2009 when a renowned New York City chef, Dan Barber developed a recipe for Bon Appétit. It was followed by the Vegetarian Times publishing a recipe for crispy kale leaves in 2010. In 2011, Gwyneth Paltrow baked kale chips on Ellen. While kale is not as trendy now as it was years back, it can still be considered a superfood with great health benefits, making it a great substitute for some of our guiltier pleasures, like potato or corn chips!
- The first Wednesday of October is declared as the National Kale Day.
- Kale was declared by Time Magazine as one of the top 10 food trends of 2012. Bon Appétit also declared 2012 as the year of the kale.
- This vegetable even caused a controversy when Chick-Fil-A sued a t-shirt maker from Vermont who produced and sold “eat more kale” t-shirts, which was worded similarly with their slogan, “eat more chicken.”
- Adding to Kale’s tremendous popularity at that time, Beyonce wore a sweatshirt with the word KALE in her music video for her song ‘7/11’ in 2014.
While it is cheaper to buy your own bunch of kale and turn it into chips using homemade recipes, some food brands already joined in the kale trend and released their own version of organic and flavored kale chips. These chips are commercially sold in groceries and supermarkets.
Production & Farming in Texas
Kale can be grown in Texas and is ideally planted during the fall and winter seasons. This makes it easier for local producers to harness this vegetable into kale chips and other kale treats. There are local Texan producers who make their own kale chips and turn it into appetizing treats by adding interesting and yummy flavors. These are sold in local farmers markets.
Preservatives, Additives, and Chemicals
Since kale and all its incarnations are said to be the ultimate superfood and as a healthy alternative, kale chips are produced and marketed as preservative and additive-free, organic and non-GMO.
For others who want to fully preserve and maintain that there are no hidden ingredients, they prefer to make their own kale chips, especially with kale being readily available in the market.
Kale chips are sold in sealed or resealable packs. Some are made from natural kraft paper pouches with see-through windows for the buyers to see the chips inside while others are traditionally packed in laminated plastics. Many prefer using the kraft pouches as it might be more environmentally friendly.
Kale chips are best enjoyed crispy through baking, deep-frying, or air-frying. But to preserve its healthy benefits, usage of oil in preparing the chips must be minimized.
Stems must also be removed when preparing the kale chips as these retain moisture and will prevent the kale chips from being crispy. Enjoy the chips plain or loaded with natural flavors and spices.
If you prepared your kale chips at home, make sure that the chips are completely cool before storing them so they will not steam and turn soggy in the container. Use an airtight container or vacuum sealable containers so the chips can also retain its shape.
While it should be eaten within the first couple of days for maximum freshness and taste, the kale chips can be stored for at least about a week.
Make your own homemade kale chips, using one of the original and earliest kale chips recipes by chef Dan Barber for Bon Appétit.
- 12 large Tuscan kale leaves, rinsed, dried, cut lengthwise in half, center ribs and stems removed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 250°F.
- Mix kale with oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
- Assemble the leaves in a single layer on 2 large baking sheets.
- Bake for about 30 minutes for flat leaves or up to 33 minutes for wrinkled leaves, or until they turn crisp.
- Transfer leaves to rack and cool completely before eating or storing.