Steamed Kale

5 from 1 vote

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Steamed kale is an easy and flavorful side dish that’s great for any healthy meal plan. It is one of our favorite vegetarian recipes.

Even better, this healthy kale recipe is ready in under half an hour and takes just a few inexpensive ingredients.

Bowl of steamed kale with lemon zest garnish.
Make this healthy recipe in less than 30 minutes.

How to cook kale

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Steamed kale lunch with lemon water.
Rich in nutrients, steamed kale has also been shown to help lower cholesterol.

What does kale taste like?

If you’ve ever asked what steamed kale tastes like, let’s start with the family from which it comes.

A cruciferous vegetable, it is a member of the Brassica family. Other familiar healthy foods in this family include:

Different types of food, with Kale and Cabbage

Nutrient-dense and packed with nutrients, kale has a bit of an earthy taste and is slightly bitter, and it can range from a meaty taste to one rich in flavor and texture.

Naturally, your method of cooking will influence its taste.

How to Cook Kale

If you have ever wondered how to cook kale, there are many ways.  These include sautéeing, baking, broiling, and of course, steaming it.

Steamed kale effectively lowers cholesterol and is nearly half as potent as certain cholesterol-lowering medications.

Here is a useful link to the many health benefits of kale.

raw kale with lemon, garlic, pepper.


  • Kale
  • Olive Oil
  • Garlic
  • Lemon
  • Crushed red pepper
  • Water

How to make steamed kale

Raw kale chopped with large chef knife.

Remove the thick stems. Then chop the leaves. Start by washing it and then remove the thick, bitter stems.  Then, chop the leaves.

Next, you will heat some olive oil in a dutch oven and wilt the kale over medium-high heat; this takes a couple of minutes.

After it is wilted, add the chopped garlic and sautée and stir for another minute. Then, add the lemon juice and water and bring them to a boil.

Next, reduce heat, cover the Dutch oven, and cook for 15-20 minutes.

A bowl of food on a table, with Kale and Salad
Garnish the steamed kale with fresh lemon zest.

If you know me personally, you probably are aware that in the five-plus years since we started Platter Talk, my waistline has proportionally increased with our followers.

Not a good thing.

We love our readers, and we enjoy creating new recipes, but something has to give, and to that end, I’ve decided to be more health-conscious in the kitchen.

Not to worry, you will still get your fill of cakes from scratch, homemade pies, and all the cookies you can dunk.

With this in mind, we hope to focus a bit more on healthy eating, and that’s where this easy and flavorful recipe comes into play.

Antique dinner bowl containing steamed kale on a table.
Flavor this steamed kale recipe with lemon, garlic, and crushed red pepper.

This steamed kale recipe is simple and healthy. The lemon juice and zest play off the crushed red peppers and leave your palate wondering what will come with the next crunchy bite.

I’m hoping for better health and one more tasty recipe from Platter Talk that our readers will love.

FAQ about Kale

Can you freeze kale?

Yes, you can freeze this. Frozen kale can be stored in the freezer for up to 12 months if you blanche it before freezing.

Here’s how to freeze Kale:
-Blanche the stems for 3 minutes.
-Blanche the leaves for 2.5 minutes.

You don’t have to blanche the kale if you plan on using it within four weeks.

Why does kale make you gassy?

This might make you gassy because of its high fiber content. Kale is an excellent source of fiber.

One cup of raw kale has almost 15% of the recommended daily fiber for an adult!

How do you store Kale?

Wrap it in a paper towel and store it in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator.

Favorite kale recipes

If you are wondering what to do with kale, we have a few more kale recipes for you to try. If you have never cooked with this, then jump in, everyone has to start someplace.


If you’ve tried this recipe for Steamed Kale or any other recipe on Platter Talk, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below, we love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW US on FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM, and PINTEREST to see more delicious food and what we have cooking.

See our full collection of side dish recipes!

Steamed Kale

5 from 1 vote
See how to cook kale with this fast and simple steamed kale recipe from Platter Talk. Make this healthy recipe in less than 30 minutes!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Yield: 4 People


  • 1 bunch kale, washed, stemmed and chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, rough chop
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1 tbsp crushed red pepper
  • 2/3 cup water


  • Using a Dutch oven, heat olive oil on medium-high heat. Stir in kale and stir with wooden spoon until wilted, 2-3 minutes. Add chopped garlic and stir for another minute.
  • Add lemon juice, crushed red pepper and, water. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low simmer, cover Dutch oven and cook for 15 minutes or to desired texture.
  • Serve immediately and garnish with lemon zest.



Calories: 60kcal, Carbohydrates: 6g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 48mg, Potassium: 229mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 0g, Vitamin A: 3840IU, Vitamin C: 47.1mg, Calcium: 64mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Entree, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @plattertalk or tag #plattertalk!
Updated from the original post of August 30, 2018

More Healthy Side Dishes

Meet the Platter Talk Guys

Dan & Scott split their time between Wisconsin and Southwest Florida and are dads to six boys. Good food runs through their veins, and they love showing others how to cook easy recipes.

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  1. 5 stars
    Broccoli is one of my favorite veggies, which explains why I like kale so much too! Love the peppers in this nutritious recipe.

  2. 5 stars
    I love kale but sometimes it gets so tough! I love the idea of steaming it to reduce the oil content too!

  3. 5 stars
    One can never have too many healthy veggies to add to the dinnertime rotation! Cant wait to try this way to cook kale…. !