In this article, you will learn:
- What is Kale?
- How to tell if your Kale has gone bad
- How to Store Kale?
- How to Store Kale in the Refrigerator
- How to Store Kale in the Freezer
- How to Preserve Kale by Drying
- How to Thaw Kale or eat Preserved Kale
What is Kale?
Kale is known as a superfood as it contains minerals and compounds that are beneficial to our health. It is consumed worldwide for its beneficial qualities and is eaten in all sorts of diets. It can be consumed in many ways, both cooked and raw. If you are looking for the best way to store kale, look no further.
Before you learn how to store kale, you need first to check if they are still good or not. Now you might be wondering, “how do I tell if my kale has gone bad?”. Well, that’s easy. You need to notice and check a few things. Let’s see what they are.
How to Tell If Your Kale Has Gone Bad?
Like any other vegetable or food, kale has a few obvious signs if it goes bad.
These are the signs:
- Mushy texture
- Releasing liquid
- Bad smell.
Fresh kale should always be green. Usually, fresh kale is always crispy and vibrant green with no wilting.
How to Store Kale?
These are the different methods for storing and preserving them. They are mostly:
Let’s begin with
It is a short-term solution to storing kale as it won’t last very long in the fridge. You’ll need a few things to store in the fridge.
- Airtight zip lock bags
- Tissue paper or kitchen towels
- Salad spinner (optional, used to remove moisture and water)
Now let’s take a look at the steps you need to follow:
- Wash the kale: First and foremost, you must wash your kale thoroughly to remove any dirt. It will also wash away any foreign objects from it.
- Remove excess moisture: After washing the kale, drain off any excess water and then dry the kale off using paper towels or tissue paper. It will help it stay fresh for a longer period without losing its integrity.
- Portioning the kale: You may optionally portion the kale according to your needs and divide it into small or large portions.
- Wrap kale in the paper towel: Wrap the kale in new dry paper towels after you are done portioning it. Wrap the kale entirely in the paper towel and then prepare to refrigerate it.
- Store kale in airtight containers/zip lock bags: Gently place the wrapped kale inside any airtight fridge-proof box. You can even use zip lock bags or airtight plastic bags to save space.
- Refrigerate kale: Then sit back and relax as the kale will now stay good for 5-7days without any worries. There is usually a special compartment for vegetables in most standard refrigerators, so we would suggest you keep the kale there.
It is more of a long-term solution for storing kale as it will last for a long time. We recommend you freeze kale if you don’t plan to eat it within a week or so.
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You’ll need a few things to store kale in the freezer.
- Airtight plastic bags or containers
- Kitchen towels or tissue paper
- Boiling water
- Wok or saucepan
- Large size bowls.
- Knives or scissors
- White distilled vinegar
Now let’s take a look at the steps you need to follow:
- Wash the kale: Again, this is the first thing you need to do. Wash the kale thoroughly to remove any dirt and any foreign objects from it. But in this case, after you are done washing it, you have to rinse it in vinegar water. Add 10-12mls of distilled white vinegar to 1liter of water. Next, you need to submerge the washed kale in the vinegar-water solution for 20-30mins.
- Blanch the kale: This is a very crucial step. That is because kale tends to become bitter when you freeze it. Blanching the kale for 2 minutes in boiling water will prevent it from becoming bitter and stop it from developing any bad taste. So after you are done blanching the kale for 2 minutes in boiling water, immediately shock the kale in ice-cold water to stop the kale from cooking any further and cool it down fast.
- Trim the kale: Next comes another important step. You need to cut or chop off any excess stems from the kale leaves. The stems tend to become soft and wilted, so you should remove their stems. It will also help the kale remain palatable.
- Remove excess moisture: Now that all trimming and blanching has been done dry off all the kale leaves with kitchen towels and or tissues and make sure no excess moisture remains on the kale.
- Portion the kale: Portion the kale into portions according to your needs.
- Wrap kale in paper towels: Before putting the kale inside the freezer, this is the last step. You need to wrap the kale portions in paper towels.
- Freeze the kale: Finally, put the portions of kale wrapped in kitchen towels/tissues, place them in resealable plastic bags or airtight boxes, and allow them to freeze. It will stay for a year easily inside the freezer. The unblanched kale will, however, last only for 4-6months.
It is another long-term solution for preserving kale and storing it. It requires a long time, but the results are worth it.
Things you need:
- Large flat tray
- Paper towels or tissue
- Airtight containers / resealable bags
- Dehydrator (optional)
- Sunlight (in case you down own a dehydrator)
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Now let us take a look at the steps you need to follow:
- Wash the kale: To remove dirt and foreign matter, you should always wash fruits and vegetables, especially leafy vegetables.
- Remove excess moisture: After thoroughly washing it, dry the kale off with paper towels and tissues as much as possible and remove any excess moisture.
- Lay the kale on a large tray: Lay all the kale out in a big tray; use two if necessary, but do not overlap the kale. Next, place the under your fan to dry it out initially for 10-20mins.
- Drying the kale: If you have a dehydrator, follow the instructions provided. If you don’t have a dehydrator, lay the kale out on a large tray, making sure not to overlap the kale. Then place it under direct sunlight to dry the kale out and preserve it. It will require a long time, and you’ll know it’s done once the kale crisps up.
- Optional step: You can now add spices and seasonings like salt and pepper to the dried kale to turn them into snacks like kale chips, as they are healthy, nutritious, and tasty.
- Store the kale: After you are done drying the kale, you can store them in airtight containers for a long time.
Now you might be wondering, “how do I thaw kale?” Or “How do I consume the kale stored and preserved?”
How to Thaw Kale or Eat Preserved Kale
- Frozen kale: Leave the kale out to defrost and thaw in the regular fridge for 1-2 hours before consuming it
- Refrigerated kale: Cook it directly or place it on paper towels and allow it to slowly reach room temp after taking them out of the refrigerator.
- Dried Kale: You can consume them directly or add them to any cooking food or dish.
Can you eat wilted kale?
No, you should never eat wilted kale.
How long does cooked kale last in the fridge?
Depending on how and what you cooked it with, it will last anywhere from 3-7days.
The best way of preserving kale?
There is no “best way” of doing it, it all depends on your need and how long you want to preserve it.
Kale is a vegetable we all should eat. You can eat your stored kale in many ways like smoothies, salads, etc. You can even add it to your favorite food to give it an additional boost. We hope our tips and steps able you to eat more healthy foods and be more sustainable.
Eva M. Smith is the owner of this website. She is a 4 year old mother of two and a professional chef. Eva loves to cook for her family, but being a working mom has a lot of challenges. From squeezing in time to do the groceries to make three meals for the day. Eva knows how challenging cooking can be without a kitchen gameplan.
That’s why she perfected techniques of preserving staple ingredients and several foods so that you have something pre-cooked or pre-baked to use for an array of meals. And they do not come short in flavor! And she does not want to sacrifice flavor with convenience. That’s why she is the best person to ask.