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Last updated: October 25, 2023
Read these tips to help you blend kale into a creamy smoothie and avoid having little chunks of kale in your favorite drink.
Over the years, kale has slowly evolved into the go-to ingredient for green smoothies, juices, and shakes. Perhaps a bit overhyped as a super green, kale does offer powerful nutritional benefits.
But unless you have a strong enough blender at home, kale is not always the easiest of ingredients to blend into a delicious and creamy smoothie.
In this article, I will share my tips on how to properly blend kale into a nutritious drink with a nice, creamy texture.
6 Tips to Blend Kale Properly
There are several varieties of kale but the two most common ones are Curly kale and Lacinato kale, otherwise known as Dinosaur kale.
What these two types of kale have in common is their sturdy stems that are really difficult, if not impossible, to blend. The leaves of kale are also quite tough to break through.
Whenever you buy a kale green smoothie outside, chances are it hasn’t been blended properly. It will likely have a few leafy chunks of kale in there, which is not what you want to see in a smoothie.
Blending should always result in a delicious drink with a creamy, smooth texture without chunky bits and pieces floating around.
If you have a relatively basic blender at home, you will probably encounter that very same issue when blending kale or any other tough vegetable.
You could, of course, get a fancy Vitamix that can pulverize almost everything, but they are indeed a bit pricey. And that price tag isn’t always justified, especially when you don’t use a blender regularly.
Luckily, there are ways to blend kale properly, even with a more affordable smoothie blender. Here are six tips to help you blend kale into a delicious smoothie with a creamy and smooth texture.
1. Pick the Right Bunch of Kale
Don’t pick the first bunch of kale you come across, as some bunches are a bit softer or riper than others.
I also find that Curly kale is typically a bit softer and, therefore, easier to blend than Dinosaur kale.
2. Remove the Stems
A powerful Vitamix blender can blend the stems quite well, but otherwise, it’s best to cut the stems off.
The stems typically don’t contain the most nutrients anyway, so you won’t miss out on much.
3. Cut the Stems Into Little Pieces
If you do want to blend the stems, cut them into tiny chunks before placing them in the jar.
This will make life a lot easier for your blender.
4. Don’t Put the Kale in First
Place a softer ingredient, such as a banana, in your blender before the kale. Also add a few cups of water or other type of liquid.
This will allow your blender to “warm up” and prevent kale leaves from getting stuck in the bottom of the container.
Place ice cubes on top to put some weight on it. I’ve heard and read others saying that you need to put the kale in first, but I haven’t found that to be the most effective approach.
5. Steam or Cook the Kale Before Blending
Steaming or cooking kale for just a few minutes will make it much softer and easier to blend.
Don’t cook it for too long, as you don’t want to sacrifice too much of the nutrient content in the kale leaves.
6. Use Frozen Kale
Although it may not sound very obvious, frozen kale is actually easier to blend than fresh kale from the store.
The other benefit of freezing kale is that you can keep it for much longer. Give this a try and see if it works for you.
Read my guide to blending the perfect smoothie for even more tips!
There’s no denying that kale is an amazingly nutritious vegetable, but we should also not get too excited about just one type of leafy green.
The most important thing with blending is to always mix up the ingredients. Each vegetable and fruit has its own perks and nutritional benefits. It’s therefore essential to always consume different types of leafy greens to get a wider variety of nutrients in.
If you’d like to try a few recipes, read my list of tasty kale smoothies for some inspiration. There are some really good and easy-to-make smoothies in there.
While kale may not be the easiest ingredient to blend, if you follow the above tips, there’s really not much that can go wrong!