Kale is the latest superfood. The fibrous green leafy vegetable is packed with nutritional benefits. Unfortunately, eating kale can be tough on your teeth, and many people don’t appreciate the texture. So the next best choice is to juice it. However, there are many varieties, so which one should you drink? I’ll help you learn the differences so you can get the most out of your health drinks.
Nevertheless, what is the best type of kale for juicing? Curly kale is readily available in most grocery stores and I feel that it is the best. It is high in vitamin B6 and high in potassium. It is high in antioxidants which pleases most doctors. Also, it is great as a juice because it has a tangy taste.
Benefits of Juicing Kale
Juicing kale and other vegetables makes more of the vitamins bioavailable. What that means is your body gets more out of them. Because juicing crushes and squeezes every drop out of your produce, none of it goes undigested.
Additionally, you get a couple of nice bonuses. Juiced kale has the same texture as any juice, so there’s no tough texture to worry about. If you have issues with your teeth, then it’s an effortless way to ‘eat’ this healthy superfood.
You can strain kale juice through cheesecloth to get some of the particles out and reduce the thickness. Layer three to five sheets of cheesecloth in a large strainer. Then set it in a large bowl and pour your juice
Health Value of Juiced Kale
There’s a good reason that kale juice helps make you feel so good. The vitamins and nutrients in a few leaves have incredible health benefits that affect nearly every part of you on a cellular level. This amazing liquid provides far more than energy and hydration.
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- Vitamin A 206% DV- Your eyes need this fat-soluble vitamin for healthy vision. Additionally, it helps keep skin, bones, and tissues healthy as well as fighting cell damage.
- B Vitamins 3% DV- Thiamine, riboflavin, iron, phosphorous, and iron come from this group. In addition to supporting your liver, iron is vital to healthy blood and aids in growing healthy cells.
- Vitamin B6 9% DV- Unlike the other B’s kale has three times more B6. Pyridoxine helps promote brain health, and aids in hemoglobin production among its many benefits.
- Vitamin C 134% DV- Also called ascorbic acid, this vitamin is a panacea of useful effects including iron absorption, immune-boosting, wound healing, healthy bone, and tooth maintenance and collagen production.
- Vitamin K 684% DV- Blood and bone health rely on vitamin K. Without enough of this essential, your blood may clot when and where it shouldn’t. Moreover, it provides vital energy to your body. A single serving of kale provides over a thousand percent of your daily K requirement.
Additional Kale Benefits
In addition to that impressive list of vitamins, Kale has plenty of other beneficial ‘ingredients.’ For example, it contains antioxidants to help fight free radicals that oxidize inside your body. Moreover, it has Indol-3 Carbinol, which may help fight cancer.
At a mere thirty-three calories per serving, kale is extremely healthy. It has six grams of carbs, and a third of those are fiber to aid in digestion. Additionally, there are three grams of protein in a serving and alpha-linolenic acid, an omega 3.
Furthermore, you can get six percent of your magnesium, and more than a quarter of your daily manganese. Finally, a single serving of kale also contains nine to ten percent of your daily values for calcium, copper, and potassium. That’s a lot of health benefits for any single food.
Kale Juice Flavor
Another bonus comes from the flavor. Many people haven’t tried all the available varieties of kale. Resultantly, you may not know that the taste of these leaves can be lightly sweet, bitter or slightly spicy.
Regardless, you can always cover the flavor of green juices like kale if you don’t like it. Add carrot and apples for sweetness. Alternatively, you might try it with some tomato and jalapeno for a spicy drink.
For those who like an earthy green flavor, kale can add to your favorites. Try it with wheatgrass for a super-green taste. Plus, you can include some beet juice for an earthy addition.
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Keep in mind that pink-burgundy beets, or any red juice plus green kale juice will look brown when you mix them. This is natural. You don’t need to be concerned with the chocolatey color.
Interestingly, kale comes in a variety of colors. Kale leaves can be green, red-tinged, purple, blackish, or bluish. Each color varies from diluted to bright.
Cross-pollination may also change the tint of the leaves. While this will affect the color of your juice. Luckily, the color is also a good indication of which variety you’re juicing.
Types of Kale
In order to decide what kale you want to juice, it helps to understand a little about the different varieties of the plant. With so many variations available, you may be missing out on a tasty treat regardless of your palate. Here are some of the most common kales.
Chinese Kale– This member of the kale family looks more like spinach and broccoli cross-pollinated.
Curly Kale- This deep green leafy kale is the type you’re likely most familiar with. In American grocery stores, this subspecies is most commonly sold.
Decorative or Ornamental Kale- Possessing a surprisingly floral appearance, this kale has light green leaves that fade to white and then pink in the center. Though it appears to be a cross between a flower and lettuce, ornamental kale is edible. However, it makes better garnish than food.
Dinosaur or Lacinato Kale- The stunning leaves of this plant are a bluish-green. They tend to be around three inches wide when fully mature. Meanwhile, the leaf itself is deeply textured.
Kamome Red Kale- Like the ornamental kale, this type grows in a radiating, frilly edged, rose-like shape. The ‘red’ in the title is misleading because it can be deep red, pink, or white along with the dark green.
Redbor Kale- With very frilly red-violet leaves that border on black, Redbor probably looks the least like kale as you know it. Unless you’re a consummate gardener or hardcore foodie, you may not have seen this variety before.
Red Russian Kale- The distinctive, bright pink central stem of this kale reminds many people of swiss chard. However, the leaves can vary from vibrant green to a brownish-black.
Premier Kale- Container garden lovers are more likely to encounter Premier Kale. Its compact growth includes leaves up to a foot long, with a less ruffled appearance than most other types.
Siberian Kale- Although this kale can be green or bluish-green, it’s best known for high yield. When you want to grow a lot of kale efficiently, Siberian may be your best bet.
Walking Stick Kale- Known as cow cabbage, jersey cabbage, and tall jacks, this kale is the giant of the species. In its natural habitat, it can grow as tall as twenty feet.
Other Uses For Kale
Whatever variety you choose for juicing, all kale is a member of the brassica family. It’s no coincidence that at least one type looks a bit like broccoli. Naturally, they’re related. Luckily, like the rest of the brassicas, kale is versatile.
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Along with brussels sprouts, and cabbages, among others, the brassicas are related to mustard plants. That explains why some kale is lightly spicy. Altogether, the group has many uniquely flavorful members.
Deciding which kale to juice is a matter of taste. The most common variety that you see in stores, Curly Kale, is lightly sweet and makes ideal drinks. Hence the popularity with the American audience. Dinosaur Kale and Russian Red make good alternates for juicing.
When you’re in the mood for a salad, Dinosaur Kale also makes a good addition. However, the Russian Red and Redboor also make great raw ingredients. Give the leaves a light rub with olive oil for a more supple salad.
Chinese Kale, the type that looks more like spinach can go into salads as well. However, it’s even better in a stir fry wok. The smooth leaves complement Asian inspired dishes and add a unique flavor.
For healthier soups, and outstanding chili, try adding the tougher kales. Luckily, the heat and moisture help to soften up those fibrous leaves. The result is a vitamin filed dish with a unique appeal.
Lentil and other bean soups are especially delightful with some finely chopped kale. You can opt for bite-size cuts, or mince your greens up finely for a pervasive, but mild flavor boost.
What to Juice With Kale
One of the best things about kale is how much nutritional value it has. In fact, according to Healthline.com “Kale Is Among The Most Nutrient-Dense Foods on The Planet.” Resultantly, you can add anything you like to this superfood.
Whether you prefer berries or apples for a super sweet kick, or a carrot for lighter sweetness, you can add them to kale without worries. Whatever appeals to your palate works with this incredible juice. Try cabbage, celery or watermelon for a cool, hydrating summery sip.
Hopefully, you’re already juicing your kale. If not, then you should be. As a drink, kale is a quick and simple way to get a huge dose of your health needs daily.
Because juice makes more of the nutrients in kale bioavailable, you won’t miss out on any of this superfood. Make yourself a tall glass today, and every day.