Kale chips are so 2011, I know. They were all the rage amongst bloggers and herbivores but seemed to have been since brushed aside for sexier fads, such as zoodles and chia pudding*. But today I bring you back in time, or back to the future (get it?) if this is the first time you’re hearing about these super-vita veggie chips.
*For the record, I am a huge fan of both zoodles and chia pudding. I follow the nutritional trends.
We briefly discussed kale in this juicing post. How its nutrient dense, dark leaves just can’t be overlooked. How it reigns supreme over other greens. How it was just made to be a part of your diet.
As if kale couldn’t get any better, I’ve managed to turn it into Doritos.
I’ll give you a minute to process that.
You like Doritos, don’t you? Of course you do, everyone likes Doritos! Well technically I didn’t turn kale into Doritos (I’m no David Blaine), but these nacho “cheese” kale chips are the edible doppelgangers of the spicy, cheesy, triangular treat*. I have to warn you though, these kale chips are addictive. They’re delicate and crunchy, and they satisfy every urge to binge on Lay’s.
*Reader Note: This recipe has even been approved by my toughest critic, my boyfriend (hi, Francisco), who was first to recognize the familiar Dorito-esque zestiness.
The recipe calls for Nutritional Yeast (pictured below). Nutritional yeast doesn’t sound yummy. There’s nothing really attractive about its name or appearance. But I am here to convert the non-believers.
WHAT IS IT?
Lovingly referred to as “nooch,” nutritional yeast is not like the kind of yeast we’re used to hearing about. It is not brewer’s yeast. It is not baking yeast. Those yeasts are active, and nutritional yeast is inactive. Inactive yeast will not froth or grow, the way other yeasts do.
Nooch is a vegetarian and vegan product. It is gluten-free, sugar-free, Kosher, and it is a great source of vitamin B12 (although some brands contain much less B12 than others, always check the label before purchasing).
WHAT DOES IT TASTE LIKE?
The flavor of nooch is cheesy, and slightly nutty. Personally, I love it. It tastes great and I find myself reaching for it to add depth and richness to a multitude of recipes.
HOW DO YOU USE IT?
There are so many ways to use nooch. I’ve made vegan mac and cheese using it; I sprinkle it on veggies. You can add it to soups, rice, whole grains; whip up a quick “cheese” sauce. But one of my favorite ways to use nooch is to season kale chips.
I made these chips on Sunday as way to distract myself from having to actually watch football. I devoured the bowl of kale chips (which was refilled twice) in a matter of minutes. The crumbs can be found below.
Nacho “Cheese” Kale Chips
1 bunch of kale (washed, dried, removed of stems, and ripped into 3 inch pieces)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon Mrs. Dash Salt Free Southwest Chipotle Seasoning (more or less depending on how spicy you like your chips)
½ tablespoon paprika (again, more or less)
2 tablespoons Nutritional Yeast (I like it extra “cheesy”)
- Preheat oven to 300°
- Line a baking sheet (or two) with parchment paper
- Place washed, dried, stemmed, and ripped kale into a large bowl and add oil, and seasonings
- Mix everything together with your hands to ensure that each kale piece is covered
- Lay kale flat on parchment*.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and enjoy!
*Sometimes I sprinkle a liiiitle extra nooch on the kale right before it goes into the oven. Can you tell I like this stuff?
Helpful Hints: Watch kale closely as it cooks—it can go from perfect to burnt in a matter of 60 seconds.
All hail King Kale!
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