I have a confession to make.
I am addicted to kale chips.
And not just any kale chips.
I’m talking about the Zesty Nacho Kale Chips by Rhythm Superfoods.
Dear Rhythm Superfoods,
If you happen to be reading this and want to send me a case of your chips, I certainly won’t complain.
Your #1 Fan
OK. Moving on.
The problem with this addiction is that it could easily eat me out of house and home. These kale chips are PRICEY at $5.75 for a 2 ounce bag. And let’s face it … I could easily eat more than 2 ounces at a time. Oh, yes, yes I could.
So, before we lose what little savings we have built up, I figured I best try to recreate a version at home that will ensure we will still have money left in our retirement account down the road. I really wanted to perfectly re-create the Rhythm chips as best I could, so I built my recipe based on the ingredients on the back of the bag. After playing with the ingredients and proportions, I found that I had added a few other items, but they turned out great. Not a perfect recreation, but pretty darn close and they sure hit the spot when I am craving that crunchy, “cheesy” kale chip experience.
Rhythm’s Zesty Nacho Kale Chips ingredients are: organic kale, organic sunflower seeds, organic tahini, organic carrot powder, organic spices, organic red bell pepper powder, organic apple cider vinegar, organic lemon juice concentrate, organic evaporated cane juice, sea salt.
My “Cheesy” Kale Chips ingredients are: organic kale, organic sunflower seed butter, organic tahini, organic apple cider vinegar, nutritional yeast, organic lemon juice, organic red bell pepper, organic sesame oil, raw honey, golden balsamic vinegar, coconut aminos, garlic powder, onion powder, sea salt, and black pepper.
I have a few additional ingredients in my list when compared to Rhythm’s, but I still think they turned out well. Being that I am dairy-free, this is the closest I’ll ever get to cheese! Enjoy!
Note: I have made this with both curly kale and the flat dinosaur kale. I prefer the curly, because it seems to “grab” the dressing better, so you get thicker coated pieces (for the ultimate cheesy experience). When I make it with 2 large bunches of curly kale, I use all of the dressing in this recipe. When I make it with 2 large bunches of dinosaur kale, I only use about half of the recipe, since the dressing doesn’t stick to the leaves as well. If you want to use the flat kale, you could do one of 3 things to remedy this conundrum:
- You can double the amount of dinosaur kale you use (4 bunches as opposed to 2)
- You can cut the dressing recipe in half
- You can make the full batch of the dressing and save the extra for another batch of kale chips (the dressing will stay good in the fridge for a couple weeks. Or, you can use the extra on chicken, fish, or as a veggie dip. It’s SUPER good on almost everything!
Also, I like the kale chips to be super duper coated in the sauce, so if you’re wanting them a little less coated, just start with half of the recipe and add more dressing until you get your desired coating.
P.S. I did do a cost breakdown and sadly, these kale chips are on the pricey side, even when I make them at home. My version comes out to about $1.90 – $2.00 an ounce, compared to Rhythm’s $2.86 an ounce. The per ounce cost is going to vary depending on where you live and the prices of your ingredients. This summer, I’m planning on growing my own kale, so that will shave off a bit of the cost. But, I am still in love with them, regardless!
My affiliate partner, Vitacost, has really good prices on some of the ingredients like tahini, sunflower seed butter, nutritional yeast, and coconut aminos. If you sign up through this link, you’ll get a coupon for $10 off your first purchase from Vitacost, and when your order ships, I’ll get a $10 off coupon for referring you!
- 2 large bunches organic kale (I used curly kale)
- ½ cup sunflower seed butter
- ½ cup tahini
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast
- 3 lemons, juiced
- 1 small red bell pepper
- 2 tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 tbsp. honey
- 1 tbsp. golden balsamic vinegar (optional, but I find it adds a little extra depth of flavor)
- ½ tbsp. coconut aminos
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- ½ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
- ½ tsp. sea salt, or to taste
- Wash your kale and remove all of the stems. Tear the kale leaves into bite sized pieces. Lay kale pieces out in a thin layer on some towels and let the water drain and the leaves to dry. You want to make sure the leaves are dry before tossing them with the sauce.
- In a high-powered blender or a food processor, combine all of the ingredients (except the kale) and blend until smooth and creamy. An immersion blender works well too. Make sure you taste for salt. I like lots of salt, but others may not like as much.
- Pour the sauce in a large bowl and then add the dry kale leaves. Using tongs (or your hands), toss the leaves in the dressing until coated.
- If you have a dehydrator, dehydrate the kale chips, following your dehydrator's instructions.
- If you're like me and have to use your oven, pre-heat the oven to 170°.
- Line some sheet pans with parchment paper. Spread the kale leaves out on the pans, making sure there are not big clumps of leaves stuck together. You want to make sure each chip has room to dehydrate on the pan.
- Bake in the oven for 3-5 hours, or until the chips are dry and crispy.
- You can also dehydrate in your dehydrator at 115 degrees for 6-8 hours.
- Store in an airtight container. If you want to keep your chips crisp, you can use a couple of the moisture packs that come in vitamin bottles, or add a couple tablespoons of uncooked rice to the bottom of the container. This will help absorb any moisture and keep your chips dry. I do this with my salt shakers -- add some uncooked rice to the shaker and it keeps the salt from clumping.