I started making my own veggie chips around the time I started eating Paleo, when I was CRAVING nachos. (HOW CAN ANYONE LIVE WITHOUT TORTILLA CHIPS?!?!?!?) I had perused the chip aisles at a few grocery stores to see what Paleo options there were, and wasn’t very impressed. There were options considered Paleo and “healthier” than regular potato or tortilla chips, but they were still fried in oil and loaded with salt. All I wanted was a crunchy veggie chip that I could dip in salsa and guacamole, and that also wasn’t a saturated fat-bomb. Is that so much to ask??
As it turned out (as with most experiments and desperate attempts to make over recipes on this blog) it just took a little research an awesome (and inexpensive tool) to get the job done. So I loaded up my grocery cart with any vegetable that I thought could resemble a chip (basically anything that wouldn’t turn to mush), ordered a mandoline, and got crackin’.
Here is the secret though, you guys, is that you gotta use that mandoline. Or, if you have a knife as sharp as a samurai sword and the cutting precision of a….deli meat machine (???), that works too. If you’ve ever tried to bake your own veggie chips before, and failed, it’s probably because the chips were all different thickness and some burned, some were rubbery, and only a few survived. The mandoline ensures that all the chips are exactly the same thickness, so when they bake, they crisp up at the same rate.
The beauty of making veggie chips at home is that you can use lots of different kinds of vegetables, AND it costs LITERALLY (maybe?) about 1/10 of the cost of store-bought veggie chips. In this post, I used sweet potato, zucchini, plantains and kale, but you can ALSO use beets, butternut squash, carrots, or white potatoes.
If you want to whip up a batch of the EASIEST guacamole ever, do as I do: mix up some mashed avocado with a few tablespoons of store-bought salsa. WHAM BAM DONEZO.
- 1 large sweet potato
- 1 large zucchini
- 1 large unripe plantain, peeled
- ~2 cups kale, stripped from the stem and torn into pieces
- Grated parmesan, optional
- Preheat oven to 275 F.
- For the sweet potato: wash potato and cut off ends. Use a mandoline to slice even and thin slices. Lay on baking sheet, lined with a Silpat or parchment paper, and lightly sprayed with cooking oil. Spray lightly with cooking spray and salt to season. Bake for about 1 hour, turning chips over throughout baking. When they are done, they should look crinkly around the edges and be completely dry.
- For the zucchini: wash zucchini and cut off ends. Use a mandoline to slice even and thin slices. Lay a paper towel on a large plate, and place zucchini slices on paper towel. Salt liberally, then cover with another sheet of paper towel. Let stand for about 10 minutes until the paper towels are completely wet. Transfer zucchini slices to a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper, lightly sprayed with cooking oil. Spray with cooking oil and salt to season. Bake for about 25-30 minutes, turning chips over throughout baking. When done, zucchini chips should be lightly browned and dried.
- For the plantain: Peel plantain by cutting off ends, making a long slit in the skin, and peeling off. Use a mandoline to slice even and thin slices of plantain. Lay on baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper and lightly sprayed with cooking oil. Spray plantain slices with cooking oil and salt liberally. Bake for about 1 hour, turning chips over throughout baking. When done, plantain chips will start to curl at the edges, and should be completely dry.
- For the kale: Spread out torn kale pieces on a baking sheet. Spray evenly with cooking oil and sat to season. Finely grate some parmesan cheese on top (optional)! Bake for about 10 minutes, checking often to make sure they don't burn! Kale chips are done when visibly dry and crunchy.