It's the typical kale you find in the grocery store, packaged in bags or boxes or in bunches in the fresh produce section.It's dark green with curly edges on each leaf and it has super-tough stems (which you generally want to remove before cooking or eating).Since it's a bit tougher than other kales, you'll need to massage it with some citrus or acidic substance to break it down if you're eating in raw, like in a salad.Use it in juices, smoothies, and salads-just massage and soften the leaves with your hands to break down the fiber and make it easier for digestion, says Torchia.This kale is super dark in color, a bit thinner in texture and appearance, and has wrinkles (but not curls)."Great cooked and raw for salads, but it has thinner leaves so it's easier to eat than other kale sorts, which are tougher," she says.To eat it, remove the stems and massage the leaves (this is always a good idea because it begins the process of breaking down fiber), she says."For a salad, try cutting it into thin strips and add a favorite oil with chili flakes and pressed garlic," she says."You would want to cook this one since it's dense and needs to be softened in soups or simmered in broth for a great taste," she says.Simply toss it in a soup (like this kale detox soup) and simmer to soften, or sauté a quick side dish: Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, 1/8 teaspoon of salt, and massage the leaves until they wilt a bit.This kale also contains an antioxidant called alpha-lipoic acid (ALA), that may help lower blood sugar in people with diabetes, and boost heart health, says Torchia. .
The Most Common Types of Kale, Explained
You should be familiar with the most commonly available types of kale, so the next time you're shopping for the stuff you'll know exactly which kind you should pick up for a given recipe.After stripping the leaves from those tough, fibrous stems, it’s great sautéed with a bit of garlic or slow-simmered in oil, and even roasted alongside proteins or other vegetables.The curly edges crisp up beautifully when exposed to the oven's dry heat, and they taste great when cooked in an almost-dry skillet.It's a little bit tough compared to other varieties, so if you're going to eat it raw, it needs to be gently massaged with a bit of salt and acid like lemon juice or vinegar; that said, when treated properly, it lends a delicate, feathery texture to salads, and those crinkly edges make for a dramatic presentation.It has a deeper color and is slightly thinner and more tender than curly kale, making it more versatile—it cooks more quickly and requires less massaging for use in raw preparations. .
Can You Eat Raw Kale, and Should You?
These molecules help counteract oxidative damage caused by compounds called free radicals and may reduce your risk of conditions like heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and certain forms of cancer ( 2 , 3 ).Compared with raw kale, all cooking methods resulted in a significant reduction in total antioxidants and minerals, including calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, and magnesium ( 7 ).While raw kale may boast the highest nutrient content, the study found that steaming retained the most antioxidants and minerals, compared with other cooking methods ( 7 ).There are some concerns about eating raw kale, as goitrins can decrease the uptake of iodine, which is essential for the production of thyroid hormones ( 8 ).As a result, thyroid dysfunction can lead to reduced energy levels, weight gain, sensitivity to cold, and irregularities in heart rate ( 9 ).One review of goitrin concentrations in cruciferous vegetables found that only an excessive intake of 2.2 pounds (1 kg) of kale per day for several months significantly impaired thyroid function in otherwise healthy adults ( 8 ). .
Massaged Raw Kale Salad
But you will be surprised by how this tough green leaf transforms into a tender, light salad.As you rub it with olive oil using your hands, the leaves darken and shrink in size and the texture becomes soft – it’s delicious!Then it’s tossed with lemon juice and grated parmesan cheese.So when I got my hands on The Kitchn Cookbook and saw this recipe listed as a side dish in the book, I knew this would be perfect to share. .
Five Ways to Eat: Kale
Kale’s thick, almost rubbery leaves are ruffled and chewy as leather, and its bitter taste requires learned appreciation. .
Different Types of Kale: 7 Varieties and How to Use Them
Longtime health food staple kale became a trend at some point (thanks, Brooklyn ), but it’s stayed so popular that now it’s just a fact of life.Those of us unafraid to get intimate with our food give the dark, bitter green a vigorous rubdown before chopping it up for a raw salad .This extensive guide returns the favor for your extra efforts, revealing the details of seven different types of kale and what to do with them, so you never get bored.The colored varieties — sometimes called salad Savoy — are most often grown for ornamental purposes, but they’re edible.An ancient member of the Brassica family, kale is the sometimes spicy, other times a bit sweet, usually slightly bitter ancestor of broccoli, cauliflower , cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and kohlrabi.“Kale has roots deep in the horticultural soul,” says Suzanne DeJohn in her report for the Gardening Association of America .Kale is one of the few leafy greens that doesn’t shrink much when you cook it, and it’s great sautéed, baked , roasted, and stewed.Put it in salad (using our softening tips), sauté, toss it in a hearty bean soup, or blend it in a fruit smoothie.This Italian variety of kale was grown by Thomas Jefferson in his garden at Monticello, according to Berkley Wellness.Rather, the leaves are rumpled and puckered like savoy cabbage and curled under along the entire margin, DeJohn says.The leaf texture also looks a bit reptilian, so the coolest nickname for this kind of kale goes to the dinosaur.One of the most cold-hardy varieties available (go figure), Siberian kale has enormous leaves and can take quite a beating from cold or pests, according to One Green Planet.Redbor is a great plant for an ornamental garden, where you occasionally pluck off few leaves to use as edible plate decor. .
Is eating raw kale *actually* bad for you?
It's anti-inflammatory, has been shown to help protect against both heart disease and cancer , and is packed with digestion-boosting fiber, as well as plenty of vitamin C, calcium, and vision-benefiting lutein ."Kale gets its super healthy reputation in part because of compounds called glucosinolates," says Brierley Horton, MS, RD.(Found in all cruciferous vegetables, gluconsinolates are the subject of intense research centered on cancer prevention.).Along with creating some thyroid concerns in some women when eaten in large quantities, Beth Basham, MS, RD, LD, says eating raw kale could also affect another subset of the population: those susceptible to kidney stones."Another population that might be weary of regular raw kale consumption would be those with kidney stones who have been told to follow an oxalate-restricted diet," Basham says.Excess consumption of oxalate-containing foods can be problematic for those who are susceptible and may lead to pain and future kidney stone development.".Whether you're someone who's affected by the raw greens or not—something you can chat with your doctor about to be sure—there are some expert-approved ways to reap the benefits, minus these potential health problems."Glucosinolates are greatly diminished by cooking, so it’s good advice to boil, roast or stew your kale before eating.This is the same for any other cruciferous veggie like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kohlrabi, and bok choy," Basham says."Eating your veggies with fat increases the availability of fat-soluble vitamins D, E, A, and K from the food source—a benefit you don't want to miss out on," she explains."There's no current recommendation on the number of green smoothies you can have, but if you can't live without them, limit consumption to three or four times per week if you include raw kale.". .
10 Delicious Ways to Eat More Kale
If you’ve been to a Whole Foods recently, you probably already know that kale scores a perfect 1000 on Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s Aggregate Nutrition Density Index (ANDI).I’ll bet you’ve even heard about those great Eat More Kale shirts, and the fight with Chick-fil-A.With that in mind, I put together this list of 10 fun, easy, really tasty ways to eat more kale.Kale stands up to big flavors and it is sturdy enough to survive a bit of mistreatment (e.g., being forgotten in the fridge for a few.There are really only two things you can do to mess up kale salad beyond repair: not removing the stems from the leaves, and not massaging the greens.(And a lesser grievance is giant pieces of kale—no one can gracefully shove half a kale leaf in their mouth!).¼ teaspoon dried herbs or spices such as thyme or ground cumin, optional.2 cups (220 g) shredded or chopped mixed crunchy vegetables, such as bell peppers, beets, carrots, and celery.¼ cup (40 g) finely chopped red onion, or 2 scallions (white and light green parts), sliced.¼ cup (30 g) dried fruit Directions: Place the kale in a large bowl and drizzle with the vinegar and oil, then add ½ teaspoonsalt and the herb(s), if using.Just before serving, season with salt, pepper, and vinegar to taste and sprinkle with the nuts and dried fruit.I’ll be the first to admit you won’t fool anyone if you put them in an Utz bag and try to pass them off as regular chips, but at least your body will thank you.This recipe not only has you boil the kale for a few minutes to soften it up, it adds panfried walnuts to up the excitement factor.Try this quinoa, white bean and kale stew from the can’t-miss PPK, or if you’re feeling seasonal, here’s an autumn harvest soup from Terry Walters.Again, dinosaur kale is a better choice than other varieties here — the leaves are flat, so they’ll do a better job of containing all that Mexican goodness without making a mess.Keep it simple — I know I said it gets boring eventually, but a little olive oil, a clove or two of garlic, a few minutes in the pan and squirt of lemon juice or soy sauce at the end make for a terrific and fast side to just about any main dish.If you like your kale softer, add some water and cover the pan for few minutes before adding the lemon juice or soy sauce.Leave it a comment (feel free to link to your own recipe if you’ve got a blog), and you’ll help make this post a great resource for potential kale-heads! .
Kale: Nutrition, Types, Cooking, and More
The leaf is tougher than spinach leaves, so it won’t wilt as quickly in the pan.Bake kale in the oven with just a little olive oil drizzled over lightly salted leaves.Store-bought kale chips can sometimes be deep-fried or come with a coating of cheese, so check labels to make sure you’re not reaching for a high-calorie snack. .
What the Kale? 4 Vegetables You Shouldn't Eat Raw
We love consuming fresh fruits and vegetables (especially ones that are seasonal, organic and come from the local farmers market), but you may want to pause before chomping down on raw broccoli or kale leaves.According to studies, some vegetables can be harmful to your health when consumed raw in large quantities or on a consistent basis.Despite the many nutrients these vegetables offer our bodies, specific chemicals and compounds can interfere with digestion, thyroid hormone synthesis, and cause various gastrointestinal problems.You probably shouldn't forge and eat these fungi raw as some varieties of mushrooms can be harmful on your digestive tract when not cooked.Sauté, grill, bake, or add this Vitamin D powerhouse to stews instead (perfect for cold weather), and reap the optimal nutrients for your health.It can be hard on your digestion when consumed raw in large quantities (although a few stems with some hummus is fine and recommended for a healthy snack).Research also suggests broccoli retains its nutrients best when cooked on low heat and with minimal water. .