The Best Gluten Free Kale Recipes

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6 New ways to love kale!

Kale is the health nut’s worst-kept secret: Almost everyone has waxed ecstatic about it. From green smoothies to kale chips, this leafy green is just about a household fixture.

There are compelling reasons to jump on the kale bandwagon: Few items are as nutrient-dense. Kale supplies high levels of nutrition, including lofty amounts of immune-boosting vitamin A, bone-friendly vitamin K, cancer-fighting vitamin C and the antioxidant lutein for improved eye health. All this for only about 30 calories per cup. And did we mention that kale’s tempered bitterness adds a distinctly pleasant flavor to a range of gluten free dishes?

Not everyone craves raw kale. That’s why we created these tasty gluten free options. From lively gluten-free pesto to satisfying gluten free stew, these kale-infused recipes are delicious new ways to love your kale.

Gluten-Free Oven-Baked Kale Frittata

Photo by Brynn Houska

Gluten-Free Oven-Baked Kale Frittata

MAKES 6 SERVINGS.

Who says pie is just for dessert? This kale-studded savory gluten free kale fritata comes together quickly for an energizing breakfast or quick weeknight dinner. If desired, chopped chicken or ground turkey can stand in for the sausage. Serve warm or at room temperature with your favorite salsa or sour cream. This gluten free recipe can be made egg-free; see instructions.

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Gluten-Free Kale Smoothie Packs

Photo by Brynn Houska

Gluten-Free Kale Smoothie Packs

MAKES 4 PACKS.

Green smoothies are all the rage but gathering up ingredients each time can be time-consuming on busy mornings. These ready-to-go gluten free kale frozen packs make it easy to enjoy a creamy gluten free drink in a matter of moments. For extra protein, add yogurt of choice or your favorite protein powder.

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Gluten Free Kale Caesar Salad

MAKES 4 SERVINGS.

Tuscan kale is sturdy enough to stand up to dressing without getting soggy. Sun-dried tomatoes offer a taste of umami and crunchy chickpeas are a healthy gluten-free alternative to croutons. This gluten free kale caesar salad can be made a day in advance. Add gluten free caesar dressing just before serving.

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Gluten Free Kale Falafel Patties with Smoky Tahini Sauce

Photo by Brynn Houska

Gluten Free Kale Falafel Patties with Smoky Tahini Sauce

MAKES 4 SERVINGS.

This healthy take on the classic Middle Eastern falafel boasts a spark of green and has fewer calories than the traditional fried variety. Gluten Free Tahini sauce provides a creamy, smoky counterpoint to the earthy patties.

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Gluten Free Chicken Pasta with Kale Pesto

Photo by Brynn Houska

Gluten Free Chicken Pasta with Kale Pesto

MAKES 6 SERVINGS.

A nutrient-packed alternative to regular pesto, this gluten free kale pesto is delicious tossed with freshly cooked gluten-free pasta. It’s also terrific as a spread for pizza or sandwiches. Nutritional yeast adds dairy-free cheesy flavor to the pesto, but you can stick with the more traditional option of grated Parmesan. If nuts aren’t tolerated, blend in hemp seeds. Baby kale is an easy way to add extra nutrition to this dish. It’s sold in plastic clamshells in stores alongside baby spinach. Serve this gluten free chicken pasta recipe for dinner or bring it to work for lunch. It can be enjoyed warm or chilled.

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Gluten-Free Mediterranean Bean

Photo by Brynn Houska

Gluten-Free Mediterranean Bean, Quinoa & Kale Stew

MAKES 6 SERVINGS.

This gluten-free springtime stew is hearty enough to stand alone as dinner. Don’t be put off by the lengthy ingredient list as it all comes together quickly.

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Shades of GREEN

Kale comes in interesting varieties. Here’s the best of the bunch.

 Quinoa & Kale Stew

CURLY GREEN

TUSCAN

REDBOR

RED RUSSIAN

KALETTES

FROZEN

This is the supermarket standby that most people think of when it comes to kale. Curly kale works nicely in everything from soups and salads to stir-fries and pesto. Heating curly kale or massaging a salad dressing into the leaves subdues some of its inherent bitterness.

Also known as lacinato or dinosaur kale, Tuscan kale has deep green, narrow leaves with bumps that look vaguely reptilian. Its sturdiness and hint of spiciness work well when it’s raw in slaws and salads or when it’s sautéed with meat.

A completely magenta kale. Beautiful, tasty and nutrient-dense. The vibrant color of curly redbor kale is a tip-off that it contains extra high levels of disease-fighting antioxidants. Use it like you would other kale.

 

With striking red stems and purple veins running through its silver green leaves, Red Russian tends to be more delicate and sweeter tasting than other varieties. Use it raw in salads or gently sauté it into scrambled eggs.

What would happen if kale and Brussels sprouts had a love child? Boom…you end up with kalettes. One of the newest members of the produce aisle, kalettes look similar to badminton birdies. Roast them in the oven for crispy leaves and tender, sweet stalks and to bring out their subtle nutty flavor.

Located alongside other frozen vegetables, bags of frozen chopped kale are a convenient way to use this mighty green in soups, stews and smoothies. For salads and sautés, stick with fresh kale.

Contributing chef Matthew Kadey, RD, (rocketfuelfoods.net) is a registered dietitian and food writer. He is author of The Muffin Tin Chef (Ulysses Press), The No-Cook, No-Bake Cookbook (Ulysses Press) and Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sports and Adventure (VeloPress).