How to Cook Kale

Kale is a leafy green plant known for its somewhat bitter taste and its plethora of health benefits. This healthy green contains several vitamins and minerals while remaining low in calories. There are various ways to prepare it, so you will never get bored! To add some healthy flair to your weekly menu plan, learn how to cook kale six different ways and be prepared for any dining occasion.

How to Cook Kale: 6 Delicious Methods

Sautéed Kale

Sautéed kale makes a fantastic side for any protein dish, and it is so easy to prepare. All you need is about a teaspoon of olive oil, some garlic (or garlic powder), and any additional spices you want to mix in.

Heat up the olive oil in a pan or skillet, add the chopped kale, and then sprinkle on your desired seasonings. Sauté the kale for about 10 minutes, and voila! You have a delightfully healthy and flavorful side dish.

Kale Chips

Another easy way to prepare kale is to crisp it in the oven and make kale chips. They make a fun, light snack by themselves or a healthy side dish for your favorite meal.

To make kale chips, place some chopped kale on a baking sheet and drizzle it with olive oil. Add any seasonings you would like (salt, pepper, and garlic powder are great for this) and cook them in the oven at 400F for about seven minutes. Let them cool for a couple of minutes and enjoy!

Braised Kale

If you want to soften the kale while adding tons of flavor, we recommend braising it.

To braise kale, you simply cook it in water for a long time at a low temperature. The added flavor comes in when you introduce some extra ingredients to the kale while cooking. Some of the best ingredients include spices like salt or garlic powder and bits of bacon or ham. While it simmers, all of the flavors come together and meld into a delightful, comforting side dish for any meal.

Steamed Kale

Steamed kale is one of the best side dishes for those who love health foods and comfort foods.

Place some chopped or sliced kale in a steamer and set it over a pot of boiling water. Let the kale cook covered until it starts to soften (this should take a few minutes). When you believe it is done, let it cool and then wring out any excess water before serving. To add some pizazz, throw in a little salt or garlic, some ham or bacon pieces, or whatever else you would like!

Blanched Kale

Blanching is a simple way to cook kale that both softens it and reduces its bitterness. Perfect for those who want to eat more of it but are turned away by its strong flavor!

To blanch kale, put a bunch of it into salted boiling water and then immediately transfer to cold water. This preparation method is fast and easy, and it provides you with lots of milder-tasting kale to enjoy. The only downside is that blanching it reduces some of the vitamin and mineral content of the kale, making it a little bit less nutritious than it would be if prepared by another method.

Bonus: Kale Salad

Okay, okay. This isn't really "cooking" the kale. However, if you're a fan of cool, crisp salads for lunch, you should give raw kale a try in your next salad. Making a kale salad is an easy way to use up any raw kale you have on hand.

We recommend using the "massaging" technique to rub the dressing into the kale, which will give the salad a huge boost of flavor. Then, throw in whatever toppings you fancy and enjoy! (Dried berries, nuts, and seeds are particularly amazing in kale salads. However, feel free to get creative in the kitchen!)

Now you know how to cook kale in six different ways. Whether you want to snack on kale chips while watching a movie, munch on a kale salad this afternoon, or whip up some delicious braised kale, you are ready for the task at hand! Which of these kale cooking methods are you most excited to try? Did we miss any?

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