Crispy Dehydrated Homemade Kale Chips Recipe

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dehydrated kale chips in blue bowl

In this world of “fake fruit snacks” and sugar-laden treats, I am always looking for healthy snack recipes to feed my family (and myself).  These no-bake cookies, Homemade Protein Bars, and Homemade Gummy Snacks are favorites around here, but sometimes I want something that isn’t a sweet treat.

These kale chips fit the bill plus it’s they’re a great way to use up extra leafy greens from your garden.

We have even taken to eating these as a side dish when I need a veggie dish on the fly :-)!)

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Why Make Your Own Kale Chips

  • They taste great.  Really.  Just ask my kids and everyone else whom I’ve shared them with
  • They are really healthy.
  • Save tons of money!  They cost $69/lb on one site and $43/lb on another.  Ugh!
  • Kale is super easy to grow.  You can even still grow it now in a lot of areas of the country

One Other Additional Reason–You belong to a CSA and they keep sending you–KALE!

An over-abundance of greens (especially kale) was one of the hardest things about participating in a CSA.

This year, though we are quite happy with our CSA experience, we still have a bit too much kale and chard, especially considering that our kale is one of the crops that really decided to do well in our garden (we still need to figure out why our zucchini seems to be the only zucchini resistant to growing :-).

In past years, we have made Oven-Baked Kale, which was quite a hit, and I will be sure to share the recipe with you soon.

However, the kale is really coming in fast and furious and I needed another solution (though it’s great, there are only so many nights that my family will eat baked kale :-).)

Well, here it is.  Tasty, crisp, salty and delicious and good for you – and a great way to get veggies into your family’s diet!

homemade kale chips on a dehydrator tray

Recipe Notes

  • You can make chips from kale, swiss chard — really any kind of green.  But our favorite so far is the kale!
  • I dehydrate my kale at about 135 degrees (the temperature of the food is lower than the temperature setting on the dehydrator).  I know this doesn’t leave the kale raw, but I have been doing quite a bit of reading on the dangers of eating raw cruciferous vegetables and how they can really wreak havoc on your thyroid.  The Healthy Home Economist has a great post on the problems with raw veggies – after reading that I no longer felt guilty about all the times that I passed over the raw broccoli and cauliflower at potlucks :-)!
  • You can, of course, make this kale chips recipe in your oven, but a dehydrator, especially the Excalibur Dehydrator, is a much better choice.  One of the main reasons why the Excalibur is great for making kale chips is that the trays are removable.  Kale chips are a lot taller than most foods you can dry, so you have to take out every other tray.  But even in my 9-tray machine I can only dry 4 trays worth of kale at one time.

For more posts on why I love my dehydrator, see:

Saving Money with a Dehydrator
Easiest Homemade Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Which Saves the Most – Dehydrating, Canning, or Freezing?

Kale Chips Recipe - They're super easy to make and super nutritious! My kids LOVE them--it's one chip you can feel good about them eating, and they're a fortune in the health food store. So make 'em yourself and SAVE!

Crunchy Dehydrated Kale Chips Recipe

This Homemade Kale Chips Recipe is a great healthy alternative to store-bought chips – so good that anytime I make them they are gone in a flash!
Print Pin Rate
Course: Snack
Cuisine: AIP, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Keto, Low-Carb, Paleo, Vegan, whole30
Keyword: dehydrated kale chips recipe
Servings: 6 cups
Calories: 80kcal

Ingredients

  • 7 cups kale
  • 2-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste. Coarse salt can also be used.)

Instructions

  • Wash kale thoroughly.
  • Remove thick stems from kale (I chop the stems and saute them well to avoid waste).
  • Chop or tear kale leaves into large pieces.
  • Place kale pieces into a large bowl.
  • Add olive oil and mix to coat.
  • Add salt and mix to coat
  • Spread kale in a not-too-thick layer on dehydrator trays (or cookie sheets if using an oven).
  • Place trays in dehydrator and dehydrate until crispy dry. (I dry these at about 125°F and they take about 2½ hours.)
  • Store in airtight containers (I use both plastic containers and bags, though be careful with the bags as these will crush easily).
  • Hide from kids because these can really be quite tasty :-)!

Notes

  • You can make chips from kale, swiss chard — really any kind of green.  But our favorite so far is the kale!
  • I dehydrate my kale at about 135 degrees (the temperature of the food is lower than the temperature setting on the dehydrator).  I know this doesn’t leave the kale raw, but I have been doing quite a bit of reading on the dangers of eating raw cruciferous vegetables and how they can really wreak havoc on your thyroid.  The Healthy Home Economist has a great post on the problems with raw veggies – after reading that I no longer felt guilty about all the times that I passed over the raw broccoli and cauliflower at potlucks :-)!
  • You can, of course, make this kale chips recipe in your oven, but a dehydrator, especially the Excalibur Dehydrator, is a much better choice.  One of the main reasons why the Excalibur is great for making kale chips is that the trays are removable.  Kale chips are a lot taller than most foods you can dry, so you have to take out every other tray.  But even in my 9-tray machine I can only dry 4 trays worth of kale at one time.

Nutrition

Calories: 80kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 224mg | Potassium: 384mg | Vitamin A: 7809IU | Vitamin C: 94mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 1mg | Net Carbs: 7g

Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is merely an approximation. Optional ingredients are not included and when there is an alternative, the primary ingredient is typically used. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts since they have been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.

 Are kale chips the next healthy snack for your family?

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87 Comments

    1. Hi Denise! I would set it at the lowest possible temp while making sure that it isn’t going to be raw. Most ovens won’t go low enough to leave the kale raw so you’re probably OK there no matter what. 🙂

  1. It’s so funny seeing all these products for KALE CHIPS these days – they’re so over priced! You can simply make them yourself… and they’re sometimes SO MUCH BETTER! Your recipe look awesome and so simple! 🙂

    1. Thanks, Laurie. I actually always use coconut oil. Don’t know why I didn’t write that in the post – It’s there now :-).

  2. I tried kale chips at an event with a raw chef caterer – and I was hooked! this is saying something since I am the picky eater in the family. He used some ground nuts and some seasoning that tasted like cheese on his, but I think sea salt will work just fine.

    For those that asked about drying food in the oven, you can put your oven on low and then prop the door open with a wooden spoon to lower the temp more. (of course keeping an eye on children and pets) On my oven low is 150F and this trick works well for when I am drying my soaked walnuts and almonds. HTH

    1. Thanks, Davette! Nice oven tip. Of course, I wouldn’t want to do that in the summer :-). I have heard of kale chips with other seasoning, but haven’t tried them yet. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I love kale chips, and I agree that they’re ridiculously expensive in stores. I cannot wait to try your recipe!

    Jenn/Rook No. 17

  4. I just found your blog and can’t wait to read the past posts, I am now following you! Please stop by and visit me!
    Michelle at Simple Pleasures

  5. I have made kale chips before, but not dried. I can’t wait to try this method. Thanks for sharing with the Hearth and Soul hop.

  6. I haven’t tried kale chips yet, but keep meaning too. As for the zucchini, I learned that it doesn’t grow well in extremely hot weather (even though MomTrends is based in NYC, I live in Dallas, where we had a record hot summer; in 2 years, I’ve grown exactly 1 zucchini from multiple plants).

    Thanks for linking up with Friday Food on MomTrends.com!

    ~Shannon (Food Channel Editor @ MomTrends)

    1. Hmmmm…the zucchini. It was a hot summer this time here, but I’m in Michigan, so it’s not exactly “tropical” :-). We’re hoping to build more raised beds this year to see if we can get a really nice crop next! Thanks!

  7. Hi Adrienne,

    How long do these need to be in the oven or the dehydrator, more or less?

    The season of greens is over for us, but I’ll try them when my CSA sends them again.

    1. Hi Ruth.
      The kale leaves dry really quickly. I have never really timed it, but it seems to me that they are done in about 6 hours when I dry them at about 135 degrees.

      You can do this with other greens as well, by the way, but kale turns out the best in my opinion!

  8. My neighbor just got kale in her farm share basket last month and they gave her this recipe. Her kids gobbled it right up! She was shocked!

  9. I just love these little green treats, the only problem is I never can stop eating the little chips, they are so good! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  10. What a great idea! I have never had kale before, so this will be a nice introduction to the vegetable. Thanks for sharing!

  11. I really need to try to make these again. I did it once (although it was in the oven, not a dehydrator) and they were burnt on the edges and soggy on the inside–I must have done something wrong!

    1. I would think that these would burn easily in the oven, depending on the temp that you baked them at. I always had that problem with granola. No burning in the dehydrator :-).

  12. I am West Michigan Dutch. My Mom made the mashed potatoes/Kale and metworst sausage every fall for my Dad to take along to the deer hunting cabin.
    We would often have this as a meal in the winter time. We also called it “mouse”
    I now live in a German community and finding out about their special dishes.
    Would love to try the kale chips.

  13. These look yummy! I’m always looking for new ways to get my kids to eat greens, especially the dark ones. I would love it if you would come link this post to my new link party featuring allergy-friendly lunchbox ideas at https://allergyfreecookery.blogspot.com. The party goes live on Friday morning… hope to see you there! 🙂

    1. Hi Lisa. I’d be glad to join up on Friday. I don’t know if you noticed it or not, but my oldest has life-threatening food allergies so I will be checking out your site as well. I hope you can find lots to try on my site as well. Thanks!