Kale is closely related to other types of cabbage, such as head cabbage, Brussel sprout, cauliflower, and broccoli, but also mustard, horseradish, and cress.

Kale does not form heads like most other types of cabbage, but rather very large and undulated or curled leaves. It is biennial, so if it survives the winter, it will form clusters with yellow flowers the next summer. Kale thrives exceedingly well in Iceland; however, it also has a very limited storage life.

Kale is tasty, especially if it has frozen, because the frost stimulates the degradation of starch, thus making it sweeter. Kale is a popular vegetable in many countries and is sold in quantities similar to cabbage.


As previously mentioned, kale has a rather short storage life, yet it should be possible to store it for a week or longer. Store it in a cooler at a temperature of 0-5°C. It is best to store it in the packaging in which it is sold, in most instances a perforated plastic bag. If the kale has become limp in the cooler it is good to toss it into cold water for a short while; then it absorbs some moisture and becomes crisper.


It is not advisable to eat kale raw, as one can do with white cabbage, because of the coarseness of the leaves. However, it is suitable for various boiled dishes. It can be boiled, fried in butter, broiled or used for mash, and raw kale is actually very suitable for all kinds of smoothies.

Is it alright to freeze kale?

Yes; the leaves are rinsed, chopped and the stalks removed. Then the kale is boiled in boiling water for 3 minutes, packaged and put into the freezer once it has cooled. During rapid boiling and freezing some of the nutrients and quality of taste are lost, but whereas kale is so rich in vitamins to start with, the nutritional value is still high after freezing.

Which parts are edible?

All parts


Nutritional values

Edible part 60 %
Content in 100 g
Water  85 g
Proteins 5,0 g
Fibres 4,3 g
Carbohydrates 7,3 g
Fat 0,6 g
kj 235
kcal 56
Iron 2,3 mg
Calsium 200 mg
A Ret. ein 850 µg
B1 0.15 mg
B2 0.29 mg
Niacin 2,8 mg
C (ascorbic acid) 150 mg

Kale is low in calories and a good source of vitamins A, B and C, in addition to potassium, phosphorus and iron. As with other types of cabbage, the green leaves are the richest in vitamins, so in fact kale is a better source of vitamins than for example white cabbage. It is an old belief that kale has preventative influences on diseases, most likely because of the high vitamin C and mineral content.

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