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TIP: Microwave Kale Chips

“I am so sick of kale,” our friend Bonnie exclaimed, as we sat down to a restaurant lunch. We have nothing against a kale salad, but we were trended-out by the kale Caesar salad as a menu item. We wanted the original Caesar salad: We wanted romaine!

The one thing we agreed upon was kale chips as an alternative to potato chips or fries. Unlike baked kale chips, they can be ready in five minutes, in time to join a cold beer or soft drink.

We made this recipe in advance of St. Patrick’s Day, to test how much we’d need for a party.

You can make chips (of any kind) in minutes with the Microwave Chip Maker, a handy device from Mastrad. Two trays are $20. We bought a second set, since they can be stacked to turn out a greater volume of chips.

You can use a microwave-safe plate also; or cook the kale directly on the glass turntable.

Using herb-infused oil adds another layer of flavor to the chips.



Kale chips made with conventional curly kale. Photo courtesy Mastrad.



  • 1/2 bunch kale, cleaned and thoroughly dried
  • 4 tablespoons regular or herb-infused olive oil or canola oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste


    Lacinato kale, also called black kale or dinosaur kale and Tuscan kale. Photo courtesy TheGoodEggs.com.



    1. REMOVE the stems from the dry kale. Tear the leaves into 2″ pieces. Toss with the oil to coat and place the pieces in one layer on the tray. Don’t overlap the pieces; doing so can cause arcing* in the microwave. Season with salt and pepper.

    2a. WITH MICROWAVE CHIP MAKER TRAY: Microwave on HIGH for 1½ minutes. Continue microwaving in 30-second intervals until the desired crispness is reached. Allow to cool before removing to a bowl.

    2b. WITH A REGULAR MICROWAVE-SAFE PLATE: Microwave for 3 minutes, continuing in 30-second intervals until the desired crispness is reached. Transfer to serving bowl.

    3. REPEAT with additional batches. For the best flavor and texture, serve immediately; but you can store the chips in an airtight container for up to a week.

    There are more than 50 varieties of kale, of which four are most often found in the U.S. Curly kale is the variety typically found in grocery stores.


    You may have to hit farmers markets or specialty produce stores for the others: lacinato kale (also called black kale, dinosaur kale, and Tuscan kale, among other names), redbor kale (ornamental kale, which is equally edible) and red Russian kale.

    For kale chips, we personally preferred using lacinto kale or red Russian kale. The leaves are longer, flatter and better to tear into chip-size pieces. But you may prefer curly kale, which was used in the photo above.

    Here’s more about kale.
    *Arcing, or sparking, is rare and the USDA can’t explain what causes it. Theories include the mineral or moisture content of certain vegetables; and foods with sharp rather than round edges arranged too closely in the microwave.


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