It is 2016, and the kale crazy is officially still happening. But while kale smoothies and salads are nothing new in the modern consciousness, there are still plenty of unique kale recipes that prove this leafy green is (still) worth the hype. Even if you’re tired of hearing how kale is good for you, hear me out on this one: kale is good for so much more than a green juice.
Sure, the kale food trend might have been blown totally out of proportion, but can you really blame a vegetable for the publicity it gets when it’s written across Beyoncé’s sweatshirt in her “7/11” music video? It’s time to look past the hype and see kale for what it really is: a versatile vegetable that adds beautiful color to soups, amps up quesadillas, and makes for plenty of seriously delicious easy lunch ideas. You don’t need to become a health guru to appreciate this veggie, after all. It can even add some oomph to some of your favorite comfort foods.
These 18 kale recipes show that with a little massaging, seasoning, sautéeing, and more, kale can really be whatever you want it to be. And that, in itself, is pretty deserving of a “kale yeah!”
1. Simple Kale And Black Bean Burrito
This packable meal by Cookie and Kate will completely change your approach to workday lunches.
2. Crispy Kale Pizza
You can have your pizza and eat it too. A Beautiful Mess proves that pizza and kale are surprisingly a match made in foodie heaven.
3. Kale And Blistered Pepper Quesadilla
Skip taco night and try something different. A Cozy Kitchen's vegetable-filled quesadillas are a wholesome choice.
4. Kale Spring Rolls
Kale and daikon radish are a great match in Naturally Ella's spring roll recipe. Plus, a tahini-honey dipping sauce is pretty much irresistible.
5. Sun-Dried Tomato Cheesy Kale Chips
If you need a snack to munch on while scouring the Internet, then Oh She Glows will satisfy your cheese cravings — in a healthy way, of course.
6. Kale And Apple Soup
Bet you never thought of this pairing before. Cara's Cravings' sweet soup is an easy lunch.
7. Risotto With Radishes, Kale, And Lemon
There's nothing like a warm bowl of risotto on a cold evening. Five and Spice mixes things up with peppery radish and wholesome kale.
8. Cheesy Corn And Kale Souffle
Half Baked Harvest's individual corn and kale souffles are the perfect option for a warming weeknight dinner.
9. Simple Kale And Potato Soup
Stay healthy this winter with a soup that's simple yet totally comforting. The Kitchn does it right.
10. Vegan Kale And Artichoke Dip
If you're already a fan of spinach artichoke dip, then you'll go crazy for Love and Lemons' chickpea and kale-filled vegan version.
11. Kale, Hemp, And Flaxseed Oil Pesto
Forget the basil. Cookie and Kate will have you looking at pesto in a whole new light with this recipe.
12. Garlic And Kale Baked Gnocchi
If you're craving macaroni and cheese, try out A Beautiful Mess' gooey gnocchi instead for a real treat.
13. Chocolate Coconut Kale Chips
Kale doesn't have to be savory. Averie Cooks' chocolatey version makes a healthy snack.
14. Green Monster Overnight Oats
Take your oatmeal to the next level. Oh She Glows' overnight oats are basically a more substantial green smoothie.
15. Spicy Coconut Braised Kale
Kale is always good cooked with olive oil and some garlic, but Cara's Cravings reimagines it in a totally satisfying and spicy way.
16. Smoky Creamed Kale
Give the creamed spinach a break — The Kitchn's recipe will prove that kale can be comfort food, too.
17. Crostini With Squash And Kale
Bruscetta is always tasty on crusty bread, but Five and Spice's kale-squash combo is totally original. This is one satisfying appetizer.
18. Kale Panzanella
Love and Lemons' hearty panzanella makes the perfect work lunch. Plus, the bread in the salad will give you your much-craved carb fix.
For more food ideas, check out Bustle on YouTube.
Images: Cookie and Kate (2); A Beautiful Mess (2); A Cozy Kitchen (2); Naturally Ella (2); Oh She Glows (2); Cara’s Cravings (2); Five and Spice (2); Half Baked Harvest; The Kitchn (2); Love and Lemons (2); Averie Cooks