If you’re looking to expand your repertoire of vegetables, consider kale on your next trip to the produce market. This often-overlooked leafy green is earning well-deserved celebrity status from nutrition experts, chefs, and home cooks alike.
Just one cup of kale provides 5 grams of fiber and 15% of the daily requirement of calcium and vitamin B6, as well as 40% of magnesium. Kale is an antioxidant powerhouse, too. That same serving offers 180% of the daily requirement of vitamin A, 200% of vitamin C, and 1,020% of vitamin K.
Kale is an easy cool-season crop to grow, but if you buy it from your grocer, choose kale with firm leaves and stems. The freshest kale has deeply colored leaves of green, purple, or deep red. The smaller the leaf, the more tender and mild the flavor. If using mature leaves, slice away the center rib to avoid a bitter taste.
Try these 10 Kale recipes:
- Leek, Artichoke & Potato Soup - Nine cloves of garlic and a dollop of Kale and Basil pesto make for a hearty, flavorful soup.
- Winter Greens Soup - A warming recipe that uses 4 cups of kale.
- Kale Pesto - Delicious as a topping for pasta or bruschetta.
- Kale and Leek Soup - A bold flavored soup with wonderful texture.
- Kale & Pear Green Smoothie - Though it contains a full cup of kale, this smoothie is surprisingly sweet.
- Ginger Greens Juice - Refreshing and rejuvenating.
- Spicy Kale with Polenta- Crushed red pepper adds a hint of spice and goat cheese mellows out the flavor in this polenta dish.
- Autumn Toasted Pita and Kale Salad - A healthy, wholesome lunch or dinner, perfect for an autumn day.
- Lemon Grain Salad with Kale Pesto - With so much flavor, you won’t even realize you’re eating healthy grains.
- Freshly Minted Berry Smoothie - A vibrant berry smoothie with a hint of mint.