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Posted: November 27, 2012

16 healthier ways to make chips


By Nicole McDermott

Nov. 15, 2012 —

Allegedly, once you pop you can’t stop. Since it’s usually game over once that bag opens, we’ve rounded up a list of crunchy, customizable chip-like substitutes. They’re healthier, and most importantly, still tasty. Most can be made gluten-free, and with a whole lot less salt than store-bought ’tater versions. All it takes is some slicing, rubbing in oil, baking, and our favorite part — munching.

5 Pro Tips (for All Chip Varieties)

  • Use a mandoline — a cooking utensil that can pump out uniform, thin slices — or a chef’s knife to cut slices 1/8 — 1/4 of an inch thick. It’s important to get the chips thin to get just the right crisp.
  • When placing the chips on a baking sheet, line the sheet with parchment paper and lay the chips in a single layer. If the chips overlap, the edges won’t cook evenly.
  • For even cooking, rotate the pan halfway through and flip the chips.
  • For small batches, pop the chip subs in a toaster oven.
  • Store leftovers in an airtight container, though most of these won’t stay at their peak crunchiness for long (more reason to eat ’em right up).

Kale is a distant cousin of broccoli and is known to have a very large amount of antioxidants compared to other fruits and veggies. Since kale can sometimes be a little bitter, try gently massaging the leaves with a little olive oil before baking. Add nutritional yeast (a vegan powder loaded with nutrients) to these lightly crunchy snacks for a cheesy taste. Or dust with Parmesan for the real McCoy. For a flat chip, use dinosaur kale. The alternative, curly kale, is much more textured but also makes a tasty chip that hangs onto dips and toppings better.

DIY: Preheat oven to 375. Rinse and dry 1 large bunch of kale, then remove the stems and tough center ribs. Rip the kale into large pieces, toss with a little olive oil, then sprinkle with some salt and pepper. Bake until crisp, about 10 to 15 minutes, checking frequently. (They can burn easily!)

For lots of beta-carrot-ene (see what we did there?!), which converts into vitamin A in the body, munch on these orange veggie chips. Sprinkle with cinnamon, nutmeg, and a splash of OJ before popping them in the oven.

DIY: Preheat oven to 250 and bake for 45 minutes, or until crispy.

Turnips, which look like white beets with pretty purple stems, are a great source of vitamin B6, which helps to produce serotonin, the hormone that helps us sleep and control appetite[1]. If you’d rather not peel them, make sure to give them a good scrub before the chips hit the baking sheet.

DIY: Preheat oven to 375. Roast for 20-25 minutes.

For all 16 healthier chip ideas, go to

1. Pyridoxine effect on synthesis rate of serotonin in the monkey brain measured with positron emission tomography. Hartvig, P., Lindner, K., and Bjurling, P., et al. Uppsala University PET Centre, Uppsala, Sweden. Journal of Neural Transmission, 1995;102(2):91-7. [↩]

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