Look, I’m not going to claim that Air Fryer Kale Chips are a sure way to beat your chip cravings, but they are surprisingly addictive and make for a great salty/crunchy snack! I personally love how easy it is to whip up a batch of these kale chips in the air fryer. Plus, the seasoning possibilities are endless – you could toss them with ranch seasoning, taco seasoning, parmesan…the list goes on and on.
Tips for Getting Crispy Kale Chips
What makes kale chips so awesome? It’s the crispety crunch you get when you bite down on one, of course! There are 2 key steps in preparing your kale that will help ensure you get that crunch:
First, the most important thing you can do is to make sure the kale is completely dry before adding oil. Any residual water drops will prevent the kale from crisping up since it will be prone to steaming instead. I love using a salad spinner to help me get as much water as possible off the kale, followed up with blotting it with a paper towel. You don’t have to get too obsessive with the baby water droplets since some will quickly evaporate in the high heat of the air fryer, but be sure to get the big spots of water.
Next, you also want to add a bit of olive oil to the dried kale leaves. You don’t want to massage the oil into the leaves like you would for a kale salad, but you do want to do your best to coat the leaves evenly. I find it easiest to just get in there with my hands, but an oil mister could be really helpful here too.
Ingredients and Substitutions
Here’s what you’ll need to recreate these Air Fryer Kale Chips at home!
- Kale – I like curly kale for this recipe since all the ruffly ridges get nice and crispy, giving lots of texture to the “chips.” You could also use lacinato (dinosaur) kale, which I really love the flavor of. Just be sure to remove the stems and chop the kale into 2-3 inch pieces.
- Olive oil – You need just enough olive oil to get a thin, even coat of it massaged into the leaves of the kale. This will help the chips crisp evenly and allow the seasoning to stick to the leaves. You can do this by hand or using an oil mister to help get the even, thin coat. Just don’t go overboard with the massaging – you don’t want the leaves to turn tender like for a salad.
- Seasoning – I used a mixture of lemon pepper seasoning, ground mustard, and salt to season mine, but you could use any number of dry seasonings like ranch, parmesan, or buffalo.
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- 1 bunch curly kale, stems removed and torn into ~2" pieces, (197 grams)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp Oh My Spice! Lemon Pepper Seasoning
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground mustard
- Wash and totally dry kale pieces. Any remaining water will turn your chips soggy.
- Spray or toss kale with olive oil, gently massaging the leaves to coat them evenly. Add lemon pepper seasoning, salt, and ground mustard and toss to evenly season the kale.
- Pre-heat the air fryer to 375°F (or 370° if you don't have a 375° setting). Add kale in a single layer to the air fryer basket. You may need to do this in batches depending on the size of your air fryer. Air fry the kale for 3-4 minutes, tossing halfway through. Be sure to check it frequently towards the end to ensure the kale doesn't burn.
- Serve with garlic aioli, if desired. Store leftovers in an air tight container or bag at room temperature for 2-3 days.