Let’s talk about kale and all its awesomeness! Kale is the new spinach right? All the rage! And there’s good reason for that too. Here are some facts about the wonderful, magical, veritable vegetable…KALE!
Here are seven reasons to eat more kale:
1. Immunity: Kale is rich in immune-boosting antioxidants including vitamins A, C and K. In fact, 1 cup of kale contains 206% Vitamin A, 134% Vitamin C, and 684% Vitamin K! To get that much Vitamin A you’d have to eat 103 bananas (hello constipation). And to get that much vitamin K you’d have to eat 384 carrots (hello turning orange)! Kale has 10% more Vitamin C than Spinach.
2. Anti-inflamatory: Inflamation is the number one cause of many chronic conditions including heart disease, arthritis and autoimmune diseases. Kale is an effective anti-inflamatory food.
3. Omega Fatty Acids: Everyone knows omegas are essential to our health. Particularly for brain function and skin growth. They are especially important for developing brains of children. 1 cup of kale contains 120 mg of omega 3 fatty acids and 92 mg of omega 6 fatty acids. That’s a lot!
4. High in Fiber: Fiber deficiency has been linked to heart disease, digestive disorders and cancer. 1 cup of Kale contains 5% daily recommended fiber along with 2 grams of protein. It also contains sulfur which aids in digestion.
5. Iron: The number of Americans with an iron deficiency is on the rise. Per calorie, kale has more iron than beef (also more fiber)!
6. Calcium: Did you know that we stop building bones around the age of 25. Americans have some of the highest rates of bone loss and osteoporosis in the world. Kale’s calcium is more easily absorbed into the body and per calorie, kale contains more calcium than milk.
7. Low Calorie, Filling Food: 1 cup of kale has only 33 calories, but because it is so nutrient dense it is very filling. So 100 calories of kale is better than 100 calories of chocolate (in case you weren’t aware).
I made this cute infographic to show you just how awesome kale is…in case you are too lazy to read the 7 reasons above:
Hey, there’s a reason they call it a super food! It’s food…that’s super for you! Got it? Ok, awesome! Now let’s talk about one not so great thing about kale: THE TASTE!
I remember my first experience with kale. My sister in law told me to make kale chips! “They’re delicious,” she promised! So I unsuspectingly purchased my kale and proceeded to make the most disgusting thing I’ve ever had in my life! Come to find out, I added WAY too much salt. The entire family spit them out at the dinner table and I promptly apologized and swore I’d never touch the stuff again.
Fast forward several years and I live in Hawai’i where fresh produce is a little tricky. Anything that doesn’t grow here is extremely expensive. Anything that grows locally can be purchased at our local Makahiki (farmers’ market) for a decent price. Guess what grows fabulously in Hawai’i? You guessed it…Kale. We’re talking like $1.50 for a giant bundle! But I’ve gotten used to it and I’ve had to find ways to use it and get my 4 kids to eat it too. Ok, that was a really long story just to tell you “hey, here are kid friendly kale recipes!”
Strawberry Kale Lemonade
This is honestly delicious. Just trust me and give it a shot!
2 kale Leaves
10 frozen strawberries
1/4 lemon (peel and all)
1 Tablespoon hemp seeds
4 cups coconut water or just water
Blend away in your blender! I was really scared to throw a whole lemon in there, but it honestly balances out the kale so that you can’t even taste it in there. Try it, you’ll thank me!
Ok, This one is super food times 3! Quinoa, Kale and Eggs! Oh my!
6 Eggs (Organic Free Range whenever possible…they taste better too!)
2/3 cup cooked quinoa (1/2 cup uncooked)
2 garlic cloves
2 kale leaves
1/4 cup greek yogurt
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil, Grapeseed Oil or Olive Oil
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook quinoa according to package. Chop onion and kale, mince garlic. Sautee in oil for 3-5 minutes until onion is translucent and kale is soft. Mix all ingredients together. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour egg mixture into silicone baking cups or spray muffin tins with oil. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until tops are slightly golden and muffins aren’t wobbly. Remove and enjoy.
Ok, this one’s real tricky…
1 kale leaf
1/4 cup cheese
Cook quesadilla…if you need help with this, email me and I’ll find you a cooking class!
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Wash the kale, place kale in a large Ziploc bag with oil. Massage kale in the bag to coat evenly, lay out on baking sheets, sprinkle LIGHTLY with salt.
And the lazy man’s way to get kale in the system…Kale Pizza! I generally buy the pre-made crusts and put spaghetti sauce and cheese on it. Here’s a little tip: Put most of the kale on before you put the cheese on, that way they can’t pick off the kale! Gotta outsmart the little buggers! This one is win-win. They get to eat pizza, I get them to eat kale! Yay!