Spicy Kale Chips

Kale has boomed in popularity in the last few years – and for good reason! It is not only incredibly nutritious but also super versatile and can be included in countless dishes. Chuck it in your morning smoothie, add it to your lunch time salad or top your dinner with it. However you choose to eat it, doing so is great for your health! It has such an amazing nutritional profile, with Vitamins A, C and K being present in extremely beneficial amounts! It is also a fantastic source of calcium, magnesium, iron and those all important antioxidants!

Almond Butter Kale Chips Julie Montagu4So, munch out on this super-healthy snack that has all the crunch of potato chips (that’s crisps for those outside of the U.S!) but with all the good stuff and none of the bad!

To make a dish of my spicy kale chips that will serve two to three people, find the following ingredients:

1 big bunch of kale
1½ tbsp of almond butter
1 tbsp of olive oil
½ tsp of ground cumin
½ tsp of chilli flakes
½ tsp of pink Himalayan sea salt

Almond Butter Kale Chips Julie MontaguGet started by first preheating the oven to 350F/180C/gas mark 4. You can then wash and dry the kale. Make sure you dry it completely and then tear it into large pieces. As you do so, make sure to remove the thick stalks and set them aside.

Almond Butter Kale Chips Julie Montagu5Next, in a large bowl, mix together the almond butter, olive oil, cumin, chilli flakes and sea salt until well combined. You can then place the kale leaves into the bowl and toss in the almond butter mixture. Mix this together well until all of the kale leaves are evenly coated.

The next step is to spread the kale leaves on a non-stick baking tray and place in your preheated oven for 10–15 minutes or until crisp. After this time, remove the tray from the oven and transfer the spicy kale chips into a bowl.

Almond Butter Kale Chips Julie Montagu3You can either eat them straight from the oven or, if you want to eat them later, then they will stay fresh stored in an airtight container for three days.

This is one of the recipes from my soon to be released book – Eat Real Foods! You can pre-order your copy in the UK by clicking here and pre-order your copy in the U.S by clicking here!

Seven Clever Ways to get your Kids Eating Leafy Green Vegetables!

Convincing your children that eating healfebruary green smoothie challengethily is a good idea isn’t always the easiest task. When they’re adamant that they’d rather fill their faces with sugar instead of the healthy snack that you’ve prepared for them, it can feel like you’re fighting a losing battle. However, there are many ways to easily incorporate health foods into your child’s diet, without causing a fuss! Here are just seven of my favourites…

Smoothies
Smoothies are easy to make and taste great. Even kids who don’t usually enjoy eating fresh fruit will be happy to drink a smoothie, especially if made to look a bit more enticing with colourful ingredients. You can blend the fruit with some soy milk and even sweeten with honey or natural sugars to satisfy that sweet tooth. Another great bonus of this treat is that you can also chuck some nutritional supplements and also things like kale or spinach into the mix and your child will be none the wiser!

Pasta Sauces simplesauce
Pasta is a simple and inexpensive meal that the majority of young ones will be happy to eat. Sprucing up any pasta dish with a delicious sauce is another great way to get some nutrients into your child’s diet. Making your sauce from scratch is the best way to know exactly what is going into the meal, and this also this allows you to blend in extra vegetables and herbs at your discretion!

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Soupred velvet soup grassrootsandgrains8
Soup is a fantastic way to cram a lot of goodness into one meal. Home-made vegetable soups can consist of absolutely anything you want and adding flavours and stock will keep any recipe tasty. Garnish with a selection of herbs before you serve for an extra dose of nourishment.

Kale Chipsimages
Kale chips are an interesting and nutritious alternative to potato chips and make the perfect snack between meals. They are so easy and quick to make that you can whip them up fresh whenever your young ones get peckish.

15649993-assortment-of-salad-dressing-bottlesSalad dressing
There is a massive variety of salad dressings that can be made with leafy green vegetables. To do this it’s best if you have a high powered food processor to properly blend everything together. Fresh spinach leaves are excellent for including in a salad dressing and it’s also easy to add in absolutely any herb to compliment the flavour.

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There are some very high quality vegetable burgers in the supermarkets these days, try substituting any meat products your children are eating for a veggie alternative. There is a lot of protein to be found in leafy green vegetables so there’s absolutely no need to worry that your children are missing out by not eating meat!

Purees
If your child is still young enough to be eating pureed food then it’s easy to combine leafy vegetables into any meal. This also works for older children. For example blended broccoli is easily disguised into mash potato and you can chuck any vegetable into the blender with tomatoes to make pizza sauce. images

Remember, you don’t always have to be sneaky to encourage your children to eat healthier foods. Often leading by example is a great way to show them that nutrition doesn’t have to be boring. Also, making every meal time fun and creative is a brilliant way to get children excited about food. Use your imagination when it comes to nutrition and they’ll use theirs!