Making raw or lightly-baked chips at home saves money, and these chips give you a crunchy dose of vitamins and minerals in every serving. Choose any vegetable—zucchini, kale, beets, potatoes, cabbage, carrots— raw or lightly-baked veggie chips are superior to their  fried cousins.A single ounce of Brad’s Naked Leafy Kale delivers five grams of protein, 144 percent of the RDA of vitamin A, and 188 percent of the RDA of vitamin C as well as a healthy dose of iron and calcium. Homemade kale or other veggie chips have a similar nutritional profile.

Dehydrating veggie chips offers extra benefits: some say that the process does not dilute any water solvable nutrients in the vegetable. Dehydrating is also superb for food storage, as dehydrated vegetables and fruits last for years if properly kept. All in all, making homemade is even better, and with homemade kale and veggie chips, the cost plummets because the cost of production is not factored in: homemade veggie chips cost only as much as the vegetable or the seeds of said vegetable, which ranges from $0.50 to $3, while store bought ones can range from $3.50 to $9. Either way, veggie chips are a great way to satisfy any munchie cravings, so below are some helpful tips on how to make them:

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1. Purchase or Grow Your Own Desired Vegetable

It doesn’t matter what vegetable is most appealing as a chip to you, it just matters what vegetable is in the garden or the kitchen. Venture out to the backyard to see if the kale is ready for harvest, or even go for the carrots. Are there potatoes in the cupboard? After taking inventory, choose one and press on.

2. Cut the Vegetable Thin

After selecting a vegetable for chip-making, wash it well, and then cut it up if it’s leafy or peel and slice it if it’s starchy. The thinness of the slices matters, because if they are too thin, they’ll burn, and if they’re too thick, they won’t cook through. Raw veggie chips are the same way.

3. Put a Silpat Mat or Tinfoil or Parchment Paper on a Baking Sheet

A Silpat mat is a great way to ensure that food doesn’t stick to the pan or baking sheet, and with vegetable chips, the last thing anyone wants is charred, lifeless chips cemented to the pan. But, tinfoil and parchment paper work wonders too; just make sure that there’s a barrier between the chips and the baking sheet, then put the sliced chips on said barrier in even rows and columns like an algebraic matrix.

4. Bake or Dehydrate

The last step before veggie chip wonderland is the baking or dehydrating step. After laying out the chips on the covered baking sheet, stick it in the oven on 250° F for one to two hours or in the dehydrator on 115° F for ten to twelve hours.

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When they’re ready, devour them with gusto!Creating veggie chips at home does not have to be an impossible or daunting task. Follow these steps, and store bought veggie chips will be a thing of the past!

Image Source: Lotus Chips