Spicy Smoky Kale Chips

Baked Kale Chips are always one of our forgotten favorites. When we plow through a big bowl of kale chips, we’re always reminding ourselves to make them again soon. But for some reason, this recipe gets buried under our pile of “must make again” list and regrettably, forgotten. That is, until someone makes them for us and our brains get re-freshed with these healthier “green” chips.

Indeed, it had been a few months since we crunched on a platter of kale chips. It wasn’t until we filmed Michelle for her Whole Family Cookbook promo, that we were reminded of these wonderful crispy greens.

A cooking scene we filmed for Michelle in her new cookbook trailer was a recipe for her baked kale chips. We followed her around in her beautiful garden, picking and preparing the chips for her family. Of course, we were happily reminded of how we love kale when we snuck a few to munch on during the shoot.

The aroma of baked kale is certainly unique and rather pungent. Kale greens are a part of the cruciferous family and although they release a rather sulfer-like aroma, the smell is easily forgotten when you bite in to their feathery light chips.

To make these this baked kale a little more exciting, we added some chile flakes for a fun and spicy-kick. After they were baked, you can also add a touch of paprika or cayenne pepper on top for the smoky bonus flavor. Either way, these spicy smoky kale chips are fabulously addicting. They’re so light, crunchy and absorb the flavors of a good sea salt perfectly.

If you’re ever got a hankering for potato chips, try making a big batch of crispy kale. Kale is obviously lighter and less caloric than fried potatoes, and they’re also greener, which means many more vitamins to add to your daily intake. You’ll be feeling less guilty if you ate a bag of kale chips than heavy potato chips.

start with small amount of olive oil to coat, add chili flakes

better than potato chips! (well, almost)

Spicy Smoky Kale Chips Recipe

Yield: 2-3

Recipe adapted from Whats Cooking With Kids


  • about one bunch of kale, rinsed and dried
  • Olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • about 1 tablespoon of chili flakes (or to taste)
  • sprinkling of paprika or cheyenne pepper power (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Remove the kale leaves from their tough end and inner stems. Cut longer leaves in half or preferred bite size pieces.
  3. Place kale pieces in large bowl. Start by tossing in about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. The kale leaves only need to be lightly coated with oil. Too much will make the chips too limp and greasy. Only add about  1 tablespoon of olive oil at a time. Then sprinkle in sea salt and chili flakes.
  4. Put the kale pieces in a single layer in a baking sheet lined. You can use parchment paper if you like for easier cleaning.
  5. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until crisp. About 5 minutes before they are finished, you can gently toss them in the sheet pan for more even baking. They will burn easy, be aware of how they are baking.
  6. For more smoky or spicy flavor, lightly dust the kale chips with paprika or cheyenne pepper power.
Recipe Source: WhiteOnRiceCouple.com.

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Recipe Note for Salt: All recipes containing salt are based on kosher or sea salt amounts, not table salt. If using table salt, reduce the amount used to taste.


{ 49 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Rachel

    I think you mean cayenne pepper. 🙂

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Right you are. Thanks for catching that!

  2. Saloni

    hi there, what kind of kale is this? I tried to do this kale that had much larger leaves and it was a disaster drying it. Some came out wet even after several rounds in the oven and tossing.

  3. Supreme 90 Day

    Fantastic recipe. The second time around, I tried adding some paprika to give the kale chips a bit of a kick. Came out great, and they make a perfect substitute for potato chips.

  4. N.L.

    I made kale chips using some ranch dressing seasoning from a packet bought at Whole Foods. Very good and no chemicals.

  5. Karen

    A bit off topic but I noticed the capped bottle that you had your olive oil in…is it by chance around 4oz? I am looking for a bottle like that that I can use to take my own salad dressing with me to go…I would love to know where you got it?

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Hi Karen, we found those bottles at The Container Store. They might be available online too on their website!

  6. Ashley Detrick

    I made them on the grill and it was amazing! Thanks for sharing.

  7. Sophia Harcourt

    I tried it and loved it! I believe I may have overdone them because I had to take some last minute quickie headshots so I turned off the oven but decided to leave them in. Still good. But probably not date night food. My friend and I had them stuck in our teeths:).

  8. Grant

    Love it – so simple! We have tons of leafy greens all the time – I keep forgetting that we can turn them into delicious chips!

  9. The Texas Peach

    I just recently started eating Kale. I love the Tuscan Kale especially. I haven’t tried Kale chips yet, but these sound really tasty. I will definitely have to try this recipe out soon!

  10. Pudding Pie Lane

    Wow, this is so unusual 🙂 I really really want to try this now, and you know what’s the best part? It’s baked! No deep frying means no chance of setting off the fire alarm in my student accomodation! 😀

  11. Alyson

    Oh my gosh, a friend of mine just brought some smoked paprika back from Spain for me… Now I’m super excited to use it in a recipe like this!

  12. briana

    This looks like the key to getting my husband to try Kale! Thanks for the recipe!

  13. Sprinzette @ Ginger and Almonds

    Your photography is breathtaking – the light is perfect and the shots so crisp. I love kale, so I will certainly be giving this a whirl in my kitchen…

  14. Brooke

    You had me at kale. Anything with kale has my vote. Anything that you two are obsessed with definitely gets my attention, too. 🙂 I can’t wait to make this. xoxox

  15. Lori Lynn

    These would disappear in an instant around here.
    Like using chile flakes for the extra kick.

  16. Brian @ A Thought For Food

    Kale chips are a great, healthy and flavor snack. I love the idea of using some cayenne pepper in here. Also, smoked paprika works nicely. But that’s the fantastic thing about this recipe… you can make it your own.

  17. Cathy@What Would Cathy Eat?

    Beautiful photography. Wow. I love kale chips. I posted one last summer made with chinese five spice powder. Now I’ll try your version!

  18. An Nguyen

    I love kale chips! Usually I toss the leaves with the tiniest bit of grated Parmesan, and when they are out of the oven, I crush them finely and then sprinkle over some popcorn. Very addicting. Another thing I do is that I toss the kale “dust” with some toasted sesame seeds, some ground peanuts and sea salt and eat it with rice as sort of a furikake.

  19. Dee D.

    That sounds delicious! i should start eating these instead of potato chips! Gorgeous photos too 🙂

  20. Heather Keppler

    Can you make these with Swiss Chard too and make Chard Chips? Would it be the same recipe?

    1. White on Rice Couple

      We haven’t tried yet. Radish leaves make a fun chip. If you make the Swiss Chard chips let us know how it turns out.

      1. Kim

        Ooh ooh… we have an answer! We grow lots of chard. Actually… they kinda grow themselves these days. When we got a craving for kale chips last year but didn’t have kale, we pulled some chard leaves ou of the garden, tossed them with duck fat (happened to be roasting a duck on the same day), salt and pepper, and roasted them until they looked like the kale chips above.

        So yea, it works with Swiss Chard. 🙂


        P.S. Beautiful photos, T&D!

        1. White on Rice Couple

          Awesome! Thanks for the answer, Kim!

  21. Magic of Spice

    Lovely recipe and gorgeous photos

  22. Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day

    So yummy! I really need to do a dehydrator day!

  23. Steph @Lick My Spoon

    Love kale chips and actually just posted about them too! I’ve taken to tossing the kale in a homemade caesar dressing before popping them in the oven. Gives them a great salty, cheesy, lemony flavor 🙂 http://lickmyspoon.com/recipes/superfood-kale/

  24. Mairi @ Toast

    Going to have to try these on the weekend as have a beautiful bag of kale & assorted greens…thinking smoked paprika. Stunning photos as always…so wish I was closer & could come to a workshop! If you are ever in NZ…. 🙂

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Thanks Mairi. Smoked paprika sounds fantastic. BTW… We’d love to go to NZ. Top of our list of international travel desires.

  25. Liz

    I love the idea of making them spicy!

  26. Liz the Chef

    Lovely – I found mine first from Lynda of @tastefood…The cayenne will have to be lost, as my husband chokes on black pepper. Honestly, what does a girl have to do to stand in line for your next
    food photo seminar 😉

    1. White on Rice Couple

      We’ve got Colorado and Boston lined up this year (Boston is for video though) but I’m sure we’ll manage a few other seminars here and there.

  27. Lorena

    This recipe is perfectly timed — I have a bunch of kale sitting in the fridge that I’ve been meaning to eat, but haven’t gotten to. Since my husband are doing “dinner and a movie” at home tomorrow night, this will provide a healthy balance to the homemade popcorn and pizza we’ll be munching on. Looks delicious!

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Someone say popcorn?! We love our evening popcorn! Especially with nutritional yeast, sea salt, and fresh cracked pepper. That is dinner sometimes!

      1. Story

        In my world salted popcorn must ALWAYS have pepper too. Always. Popcorn for dinner got me through medical school. And lots of potatoes.

  28. matt

    stunning stuff. I LOVE kale chips, and really like the idea of the smokiness. Fantastic photos as usual. Absolutely jealous of your light in the winter!

  29. EatLiveRun

    Your photos are gorgeous (like usual)! I must try these..!

  30. Da

    Now I know what to make with all the kale that is in my fridge.

  31. Happy Cook

    Wowo I would have never thought of makinf this, wish i could grab from my screen to taste.

  32. Susan H

    Yum!! Have not had these but will certainly give them a try. Seeing your lead in photo reminded me of the linen giveaway. Guess I missed who won those beauties. Would you share where you purchased them?

  33. Lauren @ glutenfreeandsouthern.com

    Wow, adding the paprika and the chili flakes is such a great idea! I usually just use olive oil and sea salt, but I think I’ll give this a whirl tonight. I’ve got three bunches of kale in my fridge since it was on sale at Whole Foods Sunday!

  34. Shaina

    I love that you gave these a bit of heat! I absolutely adored Michelle’s trailer, and I was so excited for all three of you that you were able to work together. I can’t wait to have her book in my hands and thumb through it.

  35. Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence

    I love kale chips. That first shot is gorgeous. Thanks for sharing 🙂


  36. Lauren at Keep It Sweet

    I love kale chips but always make them the same way. I like the idea of making them spicy and smoky for a change!

  37. Melani Bauman

    These look great! We made some for our blog a while back and someone suggested adding Parmesan to them which we later tried and tasted great!

  38. Jessica @ How Sweet

    I have a serious kale chip addiction. For someone who hates vegetables, it is odd that I love such a bitter green! I usually douse mine in nutritional yeast but I am definitely going to try these!

  39. joey

    This is the first time I’ve come across this…sounds delicious! Now if only I could find some kale here…

  40. mitzi @ my nikon eats food

    i just bought a bunch of kale to make kale chips. i was just gonna make it without any added flavor but spiciness would be so good!

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