Kale is a leafy green vegetable packed with vitamins and minerals. It is also very high in fiber and low in fat. Because of its health benefits and versatility, it’s no surprise that kale has become a household staple.
One of the most popular preparation methods for kale is cooking it in the microwave.
Can you microwave kale?
You can microwave anything really, including kale.
You can cook kale in the microwave in a myriad of different preparations and can get some great results.
You just need to know what you are doing, what the end result that you are looking for is, and how to go about cooking the kale without burning it or making it something that you simply cannot stomach.
Kale is relatively easy to cook in the microwave because it has a very high water content, which means that it is going to heat up nicely and that you are going to be able to cook it relatively easily.
How to Cook Wilted or Steamed Kale In The Microwave
- First, you want to wash your kale. Kale is a green that is grown in sandy soil so you want to clean it thoroughly to ensure you are not eating dirt.
- Next, chop your kale into medium or fine pieces, depending on your preference. You can also shred the kale if you like it in very small pieces. The size of the pieces does not really affect the cooking time or how it cooks.
- You then want to add the kale to a microwave-safe bowl and sprinkle the kale with a couple of teaspoons of water. You need to add more water for larger quantities of kale.
- You then need to cover the kale with a damp paper towel or with a kitchen towel. Cook on high for about 2 minutes, you can go for less time if you have less kale and more time if you have a larger amount.
- Stir the kale every 30 seconds or so to ensure that it is steaming evenly.
- Remove the kale from the microwave and allow it to cool slightly.
- Dress with lemon juice, sea salt, and a little olive oil.
How to Cook Crispy Kale In The Microwave (Kale chips)
- Get flat-leaf kale, the curly kind will work but it will be a bit harder to get the chips evenly crisp.
- Wash your kale and fully pat dry.
- Arrange the kale in a single layer on a microwave-safe plate and lightly drizzle with olive oil. Do not overlap the pieces.
- Season with salt to taste.
- You then need to microwave on high for about 2 to 2 and a half minutes or until the kale is as crispy as you want it to be.
- You need to do this in batches until you have it all cooked and until you have all your kale made into kale chips.
Tips for Microwaving Kale
There are a few tips that you can follow to help make microwaving your kale easier and faster in the microwave. With the microwave, you do have to be careful of how you are cooking your kale.
If you want the kale to be wilted you need to add water to the microwave with the kale to help keep it from drying out.
If you want the kale to be crispy you need to make sure that there is no water in the microwave with the kale.
- Wash your kale before you cook it in any manner. You do not want to eat kale that has not been washed as it does have the potential to be dirty and sandy.
- Make sure you have the proper cooking vessel. If you are trying to steam the kale you need to make sure you have a bowl for steamed kale that is going to allow you to put water in the bottom of it and trap the steam. Make sure you have a plate that is flat for crispy kale.
- Do not be afraid of seasoning. Seasoning is part of what makes kale taste good, make sure you are seasoning it properly to help get the flavor and the overall taste that you want from your kale.
- Pay attention while cooking it. Your kale can quickly go from crispy and delicious to charred and burned. Make sure you watch your kale closely and that you take it out when it is done.
- Experiment with times. The times that we have discussed are just a suggestion. They may not work for your microwave. Test out your microwave and find the setting and time that works for you.
Advantages of Microwaved Kale
It’s a fast and healthy way to cook kale.
Kale is a good choice for microwaving because it’s fast and healthy.
Microwaving kale is an easy and fast way to cook it.
This method of cooking allows you to keep the nutrients in the kale so you can eat them instead of having them leach out.
Disadvantages of Microwaved Kale
The microwave doesn’t cook kale as well as the oven or stove.
It’s easy to overcook kale in the microwave.
Quickly overcook your Kale in a microwave without even knowing it.
How to Reheat Kale in the Microwave
To reheat your kale if you are reheating wilted or steamed kale you reheat it much the same way that you wilted it in the first place.
Put your kale into a microwave-safe bowl or dish and add a little bit of water. Heat the kale for a minute or so, stirring often to make sure that it is not getting dried out.
You want to pay attention to how you are heating it, as it can get very dry very quickly if you are not paying attention.
When reheating you do want to stir often to ensure it is cooking evenly. If it is not as hot as you want it to be and you find that it is drying out, add a little more water to help keep it moist.
How to Defrost Kale in the Microwave
Depending on what you are trying to do with the kale, if you want to cook it you can heat it on high so that it also cooks while it defrosts.
If you are looking to just defrost without cooking, you will want to use a low-power setting to avoid cooking the kale all the way through.
Put your kale in a microwave-safe bowl and cook it for a couple of minutes, stirring every 30 seconds to 60 seconds to help ensure that it is fully defrosted and that it has not been cooked through.
If you can allow it to melt a little on the counter or in the sink prior to heating it you can cut down on your heating time a little bit.
As long as you are stirring it often to break up the ice you should be able to heat it through without it overcooking or drying out your kale.
Do you lose nutritional value from microwaving kale?
On the plus side, microwaving kale does not deplete nutrients.
In fact, cooking greens in the microwave can actually help preserve their nutritional integrity. Additionally, microwaving kale is a quick and easy way to cook it.
On the downside, some people argue that microwaving kale (or any food for that matter) diminishes its flavor and texture.
Additionally, if you’re not careful, you can easily overcook kale in the microwave, making it tough and unpalatable.
Does kale spark in the microwave?
Kale is a healthy vegetable that is often enjoyed in the form of chips.
However, kale chips can sometimes cause sparks in the microwave.
This is due to the mineral or moisture content of the kale, as well as the sharp edges of the leaves.
Metals spark when they are placed in a microwave because they reflect microwaves and send them back to the metal. This process creates high electric fields that can cause sparks (arcing) and even fires.
To avoid this, it is best to dry the kale and spread it out on a plate before microwaving it.
If sparks still occur, it may be best to stop using the microwave altogether.
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