I Tried Martha Stewart’s Unusual Kale Prep Hack and of Course It Works

updated Feb 24, 2021
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Martha's kale tip
Credit: Denis Contreras/Stringer/Getty Images; Naomi Tomky

We always check TikTok to find the latest cool cooking hacks, and sure, sometimes they work better than others, but even just testing them out keeps life interesting in the kitchen, and every once in a while something comes out of it that saves time and effort. Of course, when the cooking hacks come from food personality and television star Martha Stewart, that ups the likelihood of them being useful. That woman knows what she’s doing.

In a video from @celebs, Martha offers a trick for getting the stem and rib out of kale — a somewhat pesky prep task, particularly when you have a large pile of kale (like Martha has in front of her). Using a slotted spoon, she simply pulls the kale stem through one of the holes, and the leaf stays on top.


Martha Stewart with an important cooking hack ##fyp ##celebs ##cookinghacks

♬ original sound – celebs

I Tried Martha Stewart’s Kale Stripper Tip

I decided to give it a try to make sure it works — because, again, not all these TikTok hacks do — but I should have known better than to doubt Martha. Grabbing the pile of kale and chard I’d plucked from my garden yesterday (so Martha of me!), I pulled a kale leaf through. At first, it didn’t really work, possibly because my spoon’s holes were too big. But if I used one finger to sort of shove the kale toward the edge of the spoon, it worked much better. Even more so if I gave it a head-start by just tearing the edge of the leaf a touch from the stem where they meet.

Credit: Naomi Tomky

Given the size of the holes in my spoon, I actually found it worked even better when I tried the tip with Swiss chard, which I generally find even more annoying to pull from the stem. And, because I like experimenting and saw it in the drawer when I grabbed my slotted spoon, I tested and found it worked with my cheese slicer, too — in case you don’t have a slotted spoon handy.

Credit: Naomi Tomky

Then I got greedy — a slotted spoon is little more than a handheld colander, and surely even more people have a colander, so maybe it will work on that? Nope. The thin metal of the spoon seems to be key here, so it didn’t work. But overall I learned something here today: TikTok + Martha Stewart = a winning combination!