You love it or you hate it – kale is just one of those things. After some getting used to, I am on the love-side of the kale debate. Kale comes in many varieties (green, curly, lacinato, red russian!) and really is delicious raw in salad, smoothies, and pesto or steamed in pasta, soups, and purees. Once you discover the amazing secrets to preparing kale, I bet you’ll love it too.

  • Kale is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. Doesn’t that sentence alone make you crave a kale salad?
  • Kale is packed with iron – per calorie, it has more iron than beef. Iron is essential for cell growth, transporting oxygen through the body, and producing red blood cells.
  • There are 45 different flavonoids (plant pigments that function in the body as antioxidants) in kale – all of which provide anti-inflammatory benefits.
  • Like other cruciferous vegetables, (hello broccoli!) kale has been linked with preventative cancer benefits. Kale has antioxidant nutrients, anti-inflammatory nutrients, and anti-cancer nutrients – all of which have been shown to reduce chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.
  • Kale can help lower cholesterol too. When we eat kale, its nutrients bind with bile acids in our intestine, which then pass from the body. When this occurs, our liver needs to replace the missing bile acids by drawing from our supply of cholesterol. As a result, cholesterol levels drop. Bam!
  • Kale is also a very good source of fiber – necessary for healthy digestion, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, Vitamins A, C, E, B6, B2 & K, potassium, and protein.

Vegukate Tips:

Go organic! Kale is always on the “dirty dozen.”

Purchase kale with firm, fresh looking leaves and hardy stems. Pick stems of kale with smaller leaves, as these tend to taste more mild and less bitter. Store kale in a plastic bag for up to five days in the refrigerator. Beware: the longer kale is stored, the more bitter its flavor becomes.